What Does Discovery+ Mean for HBO Max?

Ariel Ariel
1 minute read Apr. 8

This is a single insight from This Week in Apps #108 - What's with All That Growth?. Check out the full article for more insights.

The great consolidation of streaming services is starting, and it's the leader, HBO Max, that's leading the way.

In the next few days, HBO Max will merge with discovery+ and consume all of its content. The move, which resulted in the GM of HBO Max leaving the company, might be seen as "business as usual", but I think there's much more to it.

I've been following streaming services for quite a while now, tracking HBO Max before it was even Max and seeing the countless new streamers that bloomed during covid.

Throughout all of that, I said we're in a time of flux, where every streamer is battling for control and being very loose with their content. When consolidation starts, you know that era is about to end.

So why is discovery+ – which spells its name with a lower-case d – folding? Because it couldn't scale.

In 2021, discovery+, which launched in January, grew its net MRR to $3.7M, according to our estimates. Nice, but... that's not really all that much when you consider Peacock, not a leader in the category, ended 2021 with $10.7M of net MRR. And Peacock offers a lot of free content that's powered by ads and doesn't require paying.

Not the same content exactly, I know, but that's exactly it.

This is the first of many mergers to come and with that, a change in how streamers offer content and how much they charge for it. It'll take some time for it to really kick in, but it's the path we're on.

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