onsdag 17. februar 2010

A First Look At HBO Go: Curb Your Enthusiasm

Today HBO announced it will be making its movies and TV Shows available on the Web to subscribers through HBO Go, which up until now has been in private beta. HBO Go is part of the cable industry's TV Everywhere strategy to make TV content available online to paying subscribers. It contains 600 hours of movies and TV shows which can be streamed live and even in HD. HBO Go is available first to Verizon FIOS subscribers. Since I am a Verizon FIOS customer, I logged into HBO Go this morning and checked it out. (Despite reports elsewhere that it won't be available until Thursday, it is in fact now live). Below are my initial impressions and screenshots.

The videos play decently and you can watch in HD, but if I wasn't already paying for HBO I certainly wouldn't pay for access to this site. The choice of shows and movies is just not that great. You can watch every episode of The Wire, and the final season of The Sopranos, but not one episode of Curb Your Enthusiasm. You get a lot more in your cable subscription, especially if you get multiple HBO channels. The on-demand option is great, but essentially HBO Go is competing with much broader array of choices on the TV which can also be made on-demand through a DVR. There are some movies like The Watchmen and Taken, which I think I've already seen three times each this month on TV, and a spattering of older archived movies like Canadian Bacon, but for the most part the selection is worse than what you get on Netflix via its streaming option. I'm not sure I want to see The Chumscrubber in HD.

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