When you hear the name HBO Max, you may think of several things. First and foremost, a streaming service. Second, the place to stream The Batman movie and Game of Thrones. Third, dare we say, sports? Not yet, but HBO Max subscribers in Latin America have already started watching sports on the service in that region. And those sports include soccer.
As World Soccer Talk reported, HBO Max wants to acquire rights to MLS. In fact, we reported two years ago before HBO Max launched that its sister company Turner Sports’ interest in MLS was high. Since then, the likes of Turner Sports, HBO Max and Warner Media were acquired by the mega merger between Discovery and Warner Bros. Launched just last month, the new company is Warner Bros Discovery.
Merging HBO Max may cause concerns
Currently, reports are that Warner Bros Discovery will merge Discovery+ with HBO Max, thus creating one mega app. With the MLS media rights deal scheduled to begin in 2023, it’s quite possible the new mega app won’t be ready in time. Consequently, HBO Max could be the stop gap measure for MLS and Warner Bros Discovery until the new app launches.
However, a Warner Bros Discovery app that combines Discovery+ and HBO Max will likely cost MLS fans more. HBO Max is currently $9.99 per month. Discovery+ is $4.99 per month. If the apps combine for a price point of $14.98, will MLS fans subscribe?
Regardless, we know Warner Bros Discovery want the media rights to MLS. Whether it will or not, we may find out in the coming weeks.
The soccer experience on HBO Max
In the meantime, in Latin America, HBO Max offers the UEFA Champions League to subscribers. Specifically, the coverage is available in Mexico.
Subscribers in Mexico have access to all of the UEFA Champions League games. Integrating soccer into the app along with movie and TV shows is seamless. For instance, HBO Max’s navigation works very similarly to how it does in the United States to access entertainment shows.
Overall, HBO Max in Mexico gives soccer fans enough of a taste to see what soccer on the streaming service will look like. If Warner Bros Discovery does acquire a portion of the MLS rights, the end result may end up looking totally different.
At the same time as Warner Bros Discovery is looking to acquire MLS TV rights, the WB Discovery merged company is teaming up with BT Sport to battle Sky Sports in the UK. And who is Sky Sports owned by? None other than Comcast. It’s another battle between media giants over sports rights.
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