April 13, 2023

Here’s How Much a ‘Max’ Subscription Will Cost You After May 23


There’s a new name in the sea of streaming options, as HBO Max and Discovery Plus are combining platforms. Netflix, Hulu, Prime Video, Disney+, Apple TV+, and nowMax. Fortunately, it might not cost extra to subscribe, seeing as its a combination of two existing services you might already pay for.

How much does Max cost?

Announced Wednesday, but leaked on Tuesday, Max is the new streaming service from Warner Bros. Discovery. The service essentially combines the content from HBO Max and Discovery+ into one, following last year’s merger of both platforms. That means you’ll be able to stream Games of Thrones and then something like Fixer Upper without leaving the app.

Max offers three tiers to choose from:

  • Ad-lite plan: Stream Max in HD with up to two concurrent streams ($9.99 per month)
  • Ad-free plan: Stream Max in HD with up to two concurrent streams and up to 30 downloads ($15.99 per month)
  • Ultimate plan: Stream Max in 4K HDR with Dolby Atmos sound (when available) with up to four concurrent streams and up to 100 downloads ($19.99 per month)

Like HBO Max, Max plans to offer its own exclusive shows, now known as Max Originals. Some of the Max Originals already announced include The Penguin, a spinoff of The Big Bang Theory, as well as a new version of The Conjuring. We’ve also seen announcements for Max Originals following the streaming service’s event, such as a new Harry Potter TV series and a new Game of Thrones prequel, A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms.

When will HBO Max and Discovery+ become Max?

Your HBO Max app should automatically update to “Max” on May 23. If not, you’ll be prompted to download the new Max app on your device. If you already have an HBO Max subscription, it’ll carry over when Warner Bros. Discovery makes the switch. While the company doesn’t make it clear, I assume an HBO Max ad-plan transfers to the Max ad-lite plan, while an ad-free plan transfers to the new ad-free plan, since their prices are the same. But, if so, it’s a bummer to lose the 4K content currently offered under HBO Max’s $15.99 plan. You’ll need to spend an extra $4 per month for that, and for the extra two concurrent streams.

While HBO Max will cease to exist after May 23, Discovery+ will live on as a standalone option. You’ll still be able to subscribe to either its base tier for $4.99 per month, or its ad-free tier for $6.99 per month. Why Warner Bros. Discovery is still offering a Discovery+ plan, but not an individual HBO plan, also isn’t clear. I’d love the option to subscribe to HBO-only content for a lower price. These days, HBO is where I do most of my streaming, with shows like Succession, Barry, The Last of Us, and House of the Dragon, so I’d happily pay for a standalone service that offers these shows in 4K without the $20 price tag.


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