Amazon offers its subscribers access to ‘Prime Video Channels,’ which is a direct way for Amazon users to sign up for certain third-party video streaming services like HBO, Starz, and more. Though Prime Video Channels isn’t going anywhere, a new report suggests that WarnerMedia may remove HBO from the roster in order to bolster its competing HBO Max streaming service.
WarnerMedia and Amazon have not confirmed the leak, which comes from CNBC citing anonymous sources. According to those sources, Amazon has agreed to remove HBO from Prime Video Channels, at least from the Amazon Fire TV UI. The change will reportedly happen when the company’s deal ends next year.
When a user signs up for service through Amazon’s Channels offering, the content from that third-party service appears within the Prime Video UI. This was allegedly a big issue for WarnerMedia and may have been the reason negotiations to bring HBO Max to Amazon’s platforms took so long.
The sources claim that WarnerMedia wants HBO users to access the service through HBO Max, enabling the company to gather viewer data that could be used for targeted ads. That ad-supported HBO Max option is expected to launch sometime next year.
The report indicates that Amazon eventually caved on the Prime Video Channels issue, paving the way for HBO Max’s recent arrival on the Fire TV platform. Whether consumers will care about the loss is another matter — many have complained that Amazon Prime’s interface is difficult to browse and they may prefer to use the HBO Max app regardless of Prime Channels.