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Difference Between HBO Go and HBO Now

The future of TV may well be in the hands of streaming services that could rival the cost of a cable package with a significant margin. Online streaming is undoubtedly the future of digital broadcasting, empowering viewers to enjoy their favorite TV shows and movies using a plethora of methods. TV is going online faster than you can imagine, thanks to the future cord-cutters. HBO fans have their fair share of entertainment these days, thanks to the company’s twin streaming services – HBO Go and HBO Now. If you have HBO included in your cable TV package, you may have access to both the streaming services. Both are offered exclusively by the America’s premium cable network HBO with access to a coveted library of every documentary, movie, and series at your disposal.


What is HBO Go?

HBO Go is a video-on-demand online streaming service which provides access to the massive library of movies, television shows, documentaries, comedy specials, and live broadcasts, almost everything that HBO has to offer. However, you can only use the HBO Go service if you’re already subscribed to HBO which in fact, is the only way to access it. It is absolutely free to use, but you have to pay as per your subscription to your cable company each month to access the service. Simply login to your cable account and you’re good to go.


What is HBO Now?

HBO Now is free online streaming service offered by HBO that lets anyone subscribe to HBO directly using compatible devices regardless of whether you have an existing cable subscription or not. It also provides access to everything including latest releases, featured content, live broadcasts, and all of HBO’s content for a flat rate of $14.99 per month. Unlike HBO Go, no cable or satellite TV subscription is required to use HBO Now on a multitude of devices, without the need to authenticate on each device.

Difference between HBO Go and HBO Now

Though both offer almost the same digital content, but there are a few differences that render each service unique. We highlight some key differences between HBO Go and HBO Now to help you choose the right streaming service for you.

  1. Service of HBO Go Vs. HBO Now

Both HBO Go and Now are free streaming services offered by HBO providing access to a massive library of movies, shows, documentaries, sitcoms, and more digital content. HBO Go is an online streaming service that’s come absolutely free with your paid HBO subscription package through participating cable or satellite TV providers. HBO Now, on the other hand, is a stand-alone on-demand streaming service that anyone can sign up for on a subscription basis, regardless of whether they have a cable or satellite TV subscription.

  1. Content in HBO Go Vs. HBO Now

Both streaming services offer the same original content with every comedy special, movie, documentary, and television series at your disposal, regardless of whether you go for HBO Go or HBO Now. They both provide access to everything HBO has to offer including live broadcasts, new releases, and featured content. Plus, viewers can access the “Just Added” movies section which allows them to see everything that’s new on HBO. However, this is where the similarities end. You can only use HBO Go, if you have HBO in your cable subscription package, whereas you can purchase HBO Now either directly from HBO or from other service providers.

  1. Cost of HBO Go Vs. HBO Now

HBO Go is a free service offered by HBO meaning it is free to use but since you need an existing cable or satellite TV subscription for the services, you have to pay for the cable TV subscription as your local cable provider demands. Some cable TV providers may offer one or two year HBO subscription for free, whereas in some areas, it can go up to $10 to $20 on top of your existing cable bill. HBO Now, on the other hand, is provided by many subscription providers at a flat rate of $14.99 on a monthly basis without any additional cost.

  1. Devices

HBO Go has been around since it was officially launched on Feb 18, 2010 and was initially available for access via the HBO website. It wasn’t until 2011 that the service made its way to iOS and Android devices for both smartphone and tablet computers. The service has expanded over the years to work on almost all compatible devices and every platform including TiVo. HBO Now, on the contrary, is comparatively new in the HBO family which also supports a myriad of devices and lots of platforms, except for a few exceptions such as TiVo, a DVR plus cable box developed by TiVo Corporation.

HBO Go vs. HBO Now: Comparison Chart


Summary of HBO Go verses HBO Now

Both HBO Go and HBO Now are free video-on-demand streaming services that gives viewers access to everything HBO has to offer – from movies and television shows to live broadcasts and comedy specials to featured content and new releases. They offer the same original content for you to enjoy on-the-go, but this is where all the similarities end. Unlike HBO Go which comes pre-included with the HBO subscription package, HBO Now is a stand-alone streaming service that anyone can subscribe to on a monthly subscription basis at a flat rate of $14.99 per month. HBO Go works with your existing HBO package and that’s the only way to use the service.

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References :

[0]Image credit: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/b/b2/HBONOW-logo.svg/640px-HBONOW-logo.svg.png

[1]Image credit: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/5/5a/HBOGO.svg/640px-HBOGO.svg.png

[2]Mesce Jr., Bill. Inside the Rise of HBO. Jefferson, North Carolina: McFarland Publishing, 2015. Print

[3]Leverette, Marc et al. It's Not TV: Watching HBO in the Post-Television Era. Abingdon: Routledge, 2009. Print

[4]DeFino, Dean J. The HBO Effect. Bllomsbury: Bloomsbury Publishing USA, 2013. Print

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