HBO Now is an American streaming service that is distributed by the popular premium channel, Home Box Office (HBO). Though it only offers access to HBO programming, it is one of the most popular in the industry, at least during certain times of the year. Instead of needing a cable or satellite subscription to watch HBO, this service gives you the ability to watch their content for only a set amount each month. In this HBO Now review, we’ll talk more about the service so you can see when and if you need it.
HBO Now officially launched on April 7th, 2015. That was just ahead of the premiere of the 5th season of one of their biggest shows of all time, Game of Thrones. The response to the show was so overwhelming, it caused the service to crash. Outside of the occasional issue, it allows the user to watch whether they are at their home location or elsewhere. Fast internet speeds have made streaming services a viable option. If you want to check it out, they offer a 1-month free trial to test the service.
After the 1-month trial, users pay $15 a month with no contracts. Though you may drop the service at any time, some like to take advantage of other HBO shows. From great classic shows like Oz, The Sopranos, Boardwalk Empire, Six Feet Under, and many more, they are all available on HBO Now. Though it is not hard to see why the service is popular, they had another issue for the premiere of Game of Thrones in 2017. These types of crashes are not normal or common, but the service seemed to get overwhelmed by the show once again.
Currently, all subscribers must be located within the US or US territories. If you are traveling outside the of the US, you would need to connect to a VPN first.
HBO Now Top Shows
Though we mentioned some of these series earlier, we shall give you a brief synopsis of each one. That way, you can decide if you want to take a closer look. Movies may come and go out of the rotation, but we have found the HBO original programming to be always available. This is not a full list, but it should still give you some ideas.
- Game of Thrones – Launched in 2011, this is one of the most popular HBO shows of all time. This medieval-style fantasy series takes place in the fictional land of Westeros. The show would certainly have a mature rating for sex, violence, strong language, adult content, and adult situations. The show had more than 10 million people viewing for the premiere of the 7th season, and an additional 6 million for same day viewing.
- The Sopranos – Launched in January of 1999, this crime drama follows the lives of the fictional mafia family, the Sopranos. The show ran 6 seasons for a total of 86 episodes. With the popularity of movies like the Godfather and others, this romanticized show was wildly popular when it ran.
- Westworld – This show is a new addition to the HBO lineup. It is based on the 1973 film by the same name. It tells the story of people that travel to an android location and the androids become autonomous. At almost $10 million dollars an episode to make, they spared no expense to make the 10 episodes of the first season.
- Boardwalk Empire – This historical fiction show is set in the 1920s and follows the life of Enoch “Nucky” Thompson, the mayor of Atlantic City, New Jersey. This show is artfully done and you are likely to see many characters from history. The show launched in 2010 and ended in 2014.
Those are just a few of the offerings available on HBO Now.
Devices Supported by HBO Now
As you can see by the image above, HBO Now supports a large number of different devices. Those include:
- Smart TVs – Amazon Fire TV, Android, Apple TV, Google Chromecast, FireTV stick, Roku, and Samsung.
- Game Consoles – PlayStation 3 & 4, Xbox 360, and Xbox One.
- Phone and Tablet – Android, iPad, iPhone, and Fire Tablets.
- Computer – Windows and Mac.
As we wrap up our review of HBO Now, we want to mention that we really love the service. It is a great way to enjoy HBO programming like GoT without a cable subscription. Apparently, we are not alone. Of course, it helps if you also enjoy some of the shows we mentioned. Despite a few crashes at inopportune times, we suggest giving HBO Now a try. If you have not checked them out before, it is time to seize the opportunity with their 1-month free trial.