HBO in talks with Apple, Google to launch streaming service

The service’s retail price is expected to be $15 a month and will launch next month.

FILE: Apple's fall event delivered what many industry watchers expected - including new iPhones, and a smartwatch.  Picture: AFP

LOS ANGELES - HBO network is in talks with Apple Inc., Google Inc. and some other companies to be its launch partner for the highly anticipated HBO Now video streaming service, according to two media reports.

The service's retail price is expected to be $15 a month and will launch next month, timed to the season premiere of HBO's blockbuster series Game of Thrones, the International Business Times reported, citing sources familiar with the matter.

HBO, ramping up plans for an a-la-carte version of its premium channel, is in talks with at least five companies including Apple and Google to distribute the Web-only service, Bloomberg reported, citing people familiar with the matter.

TiVo Inc., which makes digital video recorders, is in discussions with HBO about distributing the service, Chief Executive Tom Rogers told Bloomberg.

"We know there's great anticipation around our standalone streaming service," an HBO spokesman said in a statement. "And when we have details to share, we will do so."

Representatives from Apple and Google did not immediately respond to emailed requests for comment.

Time Warner Inc., which owns the HBO pay-TV service, announced the video streaming service in October in order to hold onto or attract subscribers who are ditching pricey cable television subscriptions.

HBO Now will give consumers direct access to HBO with only a broadband connection.