HBO streaming plan to launch next year alongside Game of Thrones' new season

By Himanshu Arora ยท 17 replies
Dec 10, 2014
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  1. HBO is planning to launch its standalone streaming service in April next year, according to a Fortune report. The launch is expected to coincide with the premiere of the new season of Game of Thrones, the company's most-watched show ever,...

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  2. I like the "we riot" poster. Totally agree. I have watched this show, but the most watched show on HBO ever ?
    It amazes me, cause it is mostly guff. And I only continue to watch it hoping that the dragons fly over winterfell with their phoenix like fire breath and resurrect eanSay eanBays character..... and he gets mass revenge.
  3. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,742   +422

    It would be nice to watch it as the show airs on HBO, but on their streaming service. I just hope they can deal with the bandwidth demands. I use the WatchESPN app on an AppleTV and all of the ESPN channels work fine at any time of the day, until you watch the regular ESPN channel during Monday Night Football, then all kinds of video/audio and connectivity issues occur.

    I don't want to cough up what is surely going to be a decent sum, to deal with video issues.
  4. My biggest question is how much.
  5. TomSEA

    TomSEA TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,718   +860

    I think they're asking for trouble kicking off a new streaming service at the same time their biggest show starts. It's like UbiSoft or EA launching a big-title game without being tested.
  6. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 9,732   +3,703

    Isn't streaming the same as tuning in to a AM/FM radio station? If they can broadcast, it doesn't matter how many are listening/watching. I've always thought of streaming differently than on-demand.
  7. bielius

    bielius TS Addict Posts: 214   +17

    But it's still internet, still using net cables :)

    I don't think twitch and them are streaming everything over air : D
  8. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 9,732   +3,703

    The concept is the same whether over-the-air or copper line. They broadcast once (single bandwidth solution being sent to thousands of viewers) and everyone tunes in.
  9. tipstir

    tipstir TS Ambassador Posts: 2,477   +126

    So Netflix won't be able to have any HBO content series to run if HBO already charging CATV customers almost $20 a month for just getting HBO various networks they carry. How much are the streaming HBO going to run? More than Netflix. The race is on now!
  10. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,742   +422

    @tipstir - Not sure that is true, Netflix won't get first run stuff, just like they don't with everything else*. Amazon Prime has a ton of HBO stuff, but it won't be showing GoT either.

    *except their original content or stuff they bought from others like Arrested Development
  11. wiyosaya

    wiyosaya TS Evangelist Posts: 1,945   +764

    OTA comes from a radio transmitter that is one-way only - transmitter to receiver. There is no need for a direct connection from the transmitter to the receiver. In this case, there is the possibility of an unlimited number of receivers picking up the signal and listening to it. In part, this is possible without violating the laws of physics due to the fact that most receivers amplify the signal as it is received.

    Streaming, while conceptually the same as OTA, is technologically much different. Technologically, streaming would be the equivalent of connecting a wire from an OTA receiver directly to the OTA transmitter. If enough wires are connected in that manner, then the transmitter might not have enough power to supply "signal" to all the connected receivers. This is primarily due to the resistance of the wires.

    In streaming, there is an explicit connection similar to the scenario I described above. It is accomplished by using a portion of an ISPs bandwidth over a virtual pipe to each person who wants to receive the streamed content. ISPs do not have unlimited bandwidth, and the cable that carries the ISP's signal to the subscriber's house also has a limited bandwidth. If either of the ISP's bandwidth or the bandwidth to a customer's house are exceeded, then there will be problems, much as SNGX1275 describes that happens to the ESPN app during peak viewing times, I.e., Monday Night Football.

    If you happen to be lucky enough where your ISP runs fiber to your home, then the possibility of problems is greatly reduced, but not eliminated. In this case, there is still a possibility of the fiber's bandwidth being exceeded and the server farm that supplies the streaming material might not support a high enough number of connections at any one time. If the server farm supports X number of connections and N people try to connect where N is greater than X, some of those N people will be disappointed.

    Personally, I have heard that this service is going to come in at about $20 a month. Perhaps the only way I would subscribe to it, being a cord cutter, is if it were free.
  12. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 9,732   +3,703

    Which is rendered irrelevant every time the signal passes a internet node. I'm not asking the differences between OTA and Internet infrastructure. My question is before it reaches this stage of broadcasting.
    The question is at the broadcast level. Do they or do they not have the bandwidth to stream a channel. If they do have the bandwidth, will there bandwidth drop as people login an view? Once their stream passes its first internet node, it is no longer an in-house issue. The comments above are suggesting, the more viewers watching will create an in-house issue of lacking bandwidth. I can only see this happening with on-demand content. Meaning each demand will require its own bandwidth. With streaming, is there not only one demand with no ceiling on the amount of viewers?
  13. tipstir

    tipstir TS Ambassador Posts: 2,477   +126

    SOI = Streaming over internet to ISP to the customer we all know this can be done which Netflix service has do so cheaply. Once they introduce 1080p and 4K then the prices jack-up. I am OTA ditched CATV back in mid 2012. So 2 years later over 75 OTA channels most of the local networks are had sub channels for MeTV, Bounce TV, This TV, Create TV, Car TV also HSN, QVC other shopping channels you see on CATV are now on OTA. There is an entire list of OTA sub channel more are being added this year so many.

    I stream with Netflix for what I don't get on OTA, but ThisTV and ANTV both carry 24/7 Movies so does the new Grit TV aimed more males.

    HBO has cancelled two series I've enjoyed like True Blood and Boardwalk Empire of course those two where coming to the end of the cycle anyway. Netflix has it own series which is provides viewers. As long is cost it kept low I'll keep Netflix, but once it starts getting to $15 to $20 a month just too high.
    wiyosaya likes this.
  14. wiyosaya

    wiyosaya TS Evangelist Posts: 1,945   +764

    The analogy is not the same. When it passes an internet node, the signal level is boosted, not the bandwidth.

    An OTA signal transmits only one copy of a program, however, a streaming service must broadcast a copy of whatever it is for each subscriber; otherwise, there would be published times as to when a subscriber would be able to view a program transmitted from a streaming service, and all subscribers would then have to view or record that broadcast. That is the OTA model, and since streaming services do not follow this model, this is where bandwidth/connection limitations come into play.

    Yes, there might be only one copy of whatever program on the disk of a streaming service, but the streaming service must send each subscriber their own copy; again, bandwidth/connection limitations are highly relevant. When examined and understood, this is highly relevant. The implementations of the model in the two cases are vastly different.
  15. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 9,732   +3,703

    You are making my analogy incorrect by taking it to a level I had not intended. You can't seem to stop before the broadcast is sent through the air or pass the first node. Try explaining the differences before it passes the first node, and list why it would be different than OTA before transmitted through the air. A stream is a single broadcast, you either have access or you do not.

    I think I have explained I understand there is differences between OTA and Internet Infrastructure. I knew that 25 years ago.

    Lets not forget I understand electronics, you have no need in explaining to me my analogy is flawed beyond a specific point. My analogy is focusing on the broadcast level, not the delivery method.
  16. wiyosaya

    wiyosaya TS Evangelist Posts: 1,945   +764

    Being concise is important as I see it.
  17. Easy. The reason it's different is because a radio is shouting into space, just once, regardless of how many people decide to listen.
    Streaming content means that for each person listening, the data has to be retrieved from the actual server hosting it.

    Why do you think Facebook's servers are so large? Once person accessing a webpage is peanuts - the amount of data is trivial for an average page.
    Take 10,000,000 x trivial & all of a sudden it's a lot.
    That's also one of the reasons a fair amount of Linux distros are torrents. That way the bandwidth requirement is shared among all the downloaders instead of being solely on the provider.
  18. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 9,732   +3,703

    Then it is not just being broadcast once is it. Not if it is being broadcast for everyone.

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