While HBO GO is advertised as "free," that is a little bit deceiving. HBO GO is not a typical streaming service, so it can be branded as free, but there are still associated costs. HBO GO users have to already have a cable or satellite service. These services often times cost a great deal each month. Additionally, subscribers have to also be paying a monthly subscription fee for HBO alone. That subscription fee typically ranges from $10-$20 each month. There are deals where HBO is free to new TV customers, but those trials usually expire after 30-90 days. So while downloading and signing into HBO GO is "free," subscribers are already paying for the service in other ways making HBO GO a conveniently added "perk."
Unlike most streaming services, HBO GO limits who can access the service. Consumers who want the HBO subscription will have to utilize HBO NOW. HBO GO is specifically designed for those who have an HBO subscription with their cable or satellite television provider.
Authentication on each new device can be somewhat of a time-consuming process. HBO GO subscribers will have to authenticate their services through their cable or satellite provider. HBO NOW edges out HBO GO in the following areas:
While there is no cap on the number of devices subscribers can sign into, there are restrictions associated with simultaneous streaming. If multiple devices are simultaneously streaming the same movie/episode, they will likely not run into a problem. However, if the devices are watching different content, restrictions can apply.
Deciding between HBO GO and HBO NOW has appeared to create the most confusion for streaming enthusiasts. However, HBO has made it relatively simple. HBO GO is strictly for those who have a satellite/cable provider with an HBO subscription, while HBO NOW can be enjoyed by anyone for a monthly subscription fee. For those who want to enjoy HBO content and are already paying a cable or satellite provider for television services, HBO GO is an excellent option. With HBO GO, subscribers can expect:
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