AT&T's (NYSE:T) HBO Max streaming service will make its U.S. debut on May 27, the Wednesday after Memorial Day weekend.
The new streaming service, which will compete with the likes of Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) Walt Disney's (NYSE:DIS) Disney +, and Amazon's (NASDAQ:AMZN) Prime Video, will cost $14.99 a month, making it the costliest of the platforms.
Through the service, viewers will get access to all of HBO's content as well as old TV shows including "Friends" and "Rick and Morty." The service is free to existing HBO Now customers.
HBO Max had planned to launch with a plethora of new content but with movie and television production shut down amid the pandemic, that's being pushed out. According to the Wall Street Journal, HBO Max's much-awaited "Friends" reunion show is delayed until the summer or fall. Other comedies and dramas that were in development are also on hold.
Without the "Friends" reunion show at launch, which HBO Max was counting on to lure new subscribers its way, it is not clear how the service will fare. After all, it's going up against some heavy hitters that are seeing usage surge amid the pandemic. As of the beginning of April, Disney+ has more than 50 million subscribers, up from 22 million in February. Meanwhile, Netflix has 167 million global subscribers.
"Our number one goal is having extraordinary content for everyone in the family, and the HBO Max programming mix we are so excited to unveil on May 27 will bear that out," WarnerMedia Entertainment chairman Robert Greenblatt said in a statement to The Hollywood Reporter. "Even in the midst of this unprecedented pandemic, the all-star teams behind every aspect of HBO Max will deliver a platform and a robust slate of content that is varied, of the highest quality, and second to none."