Today is a great day for him new streaming service Max. After months of fanfare from executives, the combined HBO Max/Discovery streaming service has launched. But for all the talk of a better tech platform (which could very well be true!) and all the new content (which is definitely true), Max isn’t working for some. Or the thought of having to download a new app is inconvenient and annoying at best.
Here’s what you need to know about the entire transition.
There are a few things that could be a game here, but there’s an obvious one: Unlike HBO Max, the new Max service is only available in the US, including American Samoa, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands.
So if you’re outside of any of those locations and Max isn’t working, there’s your answer.
Max will expand. It will arrive in Latin America and the Caribbean at the end of the year, according to a supporting document. Europe is ready for 2024. The same goes for Southeast Asia. However, that timeline could change. Meanwhile, there are solutions.
When HBO Go and HBO Now merged into HBO Max in May 2020, the apps were updated and nothing new needed to be downloaded. That’s not the case for many people looking to upgrade to the Max now that it’s available.
If you are on an Amazon, Cox, roku, Vizio or Xfinity, it seems like the apps should have been updated from HBO Max to Max. Other devices, such as android tvApple TV or other smart TVs will require you to download the Max app, likely due to the limitations of those different app stores.
If you previously had an HBO Max account, you now have a Max account. Final point. In fact, you might not even have to sign in to the new Max app, at least if you still have the old HBO Max on the same device (so maybe wait a second before deleting it). While we can think of a few reasons why it’s not the best idea, not having to create a new account is a good thing.
Look, the folks at Warner Bros. Discovery said the only thing they could: that the transition should be easy and that their accounts would sync up pretty well. And that seems to be true to a large extent. They downplayed that this was never really a 1:1 transition like HBO Go/Now merged with HBO Max.
But there is one important thing to remember: you have to download a new app and deal with a new user interface or wait for your country to connect:
Max is not just a rebranded HBO Max. It is the combination of HBO Max and Discovery. That means a lot of new content. And where there is new content, there are new lawyers. Content distribution is a hive of legal jargon, which is why some programs are not available in some places, on some devices, or in some way. It’s a nightmare for those of us who have had to deal with even a hint of this from the outside. And while that doesn’t excuse a window where Max isn’t working and might not explain any sort of glitch or network issues, which are more than possible any time a high-profile streaming service goes live, we have to remember that There are a lot of moving parts here. Some are technical. Some are legal. And some may simply have been overlooked.