HBO’s new standalone streaming service called HBO NOW has officially launched on Apple TV, iPhone, and iPad. HBO NOW allows subscribers to watch the premium network’s movies and TV shows online. The service is similar to Netflix as it’s delivered over a high-speed Internet connection rather than cable or satellite and doesn’t require long-term committments through contracts. Here’s how to get HBO NOW works:
9to5Toys Last Call: 11″ MacBook Air (early 2014) $650 w/ .edu, 50% off iOS & Mac Photo Editing Apps, more
Today’s can’t miss deals:
Last Call Updates:
- Mac/iOS App Store promo discounts 35 Photo + Video apps by 50% or more
- iTunes Free App of the Week: Back to Bed ($4 value)
- Apple iPad 4 Retina 16GB 4G GSM/LTE Unlocked: $300 shipped or $50/mo for 6 months
- Philips’ Hue Go puts smart lighting everywhere so you’ll never have to rough it again
- Home: Hamilton Beach slow cooker $25, Philips Norelco razor $75, Dyson fans, more
Apple MacBook Air 11.6-inch 1.4GHz/4GB/128GB + Office 365 for $650 w/edu (orig. $899+)
Game of Thrones: A Telltale Games Series is IGN’s free iOS game of the month ($5 value)
This no fuss cover makes it stupid easy to add USB power to any outlet
Pixelmator – the best photo editor for Mac – cuts its price in half to $15 (Reg. $30)
Small States Review: TM1985’s Weekend Duffel is the perfect companion for any excursion, $371 giveaway
More new gear from today:
HP X702 128GB USB 3.0 Flash Drive $31 shipped (Reg. $45+)
Seagate Central 3TB Personal Cloud Storage External Hard Drive $80 shipped (orig. $180)
- New! Nostalgia runs high w/ the iOS release of DuckTales: Remastered
- New! 2K Drive now available for free on iOS (Reg. $7)
- New! Games/Apps: Evolve $40, PS4/Xbox One controllers $42, iOS freebies, more
- New! JBL Headphones: J55i $20 (Reg. $35+), J56BT wireless $55 (Reg. $70+)
- New! ZeroLemon iPhone 6 battery case $31 Prime shipped (Reg. $51)
- New! Daily Deals: Touch Chromebook $180, Logitech Harmony Remote (refurb) $25, more
- New! Amazon Gold Box: Jackery Giant+ 12Ah Dual USB Battery: $30 shipped, Eton Rukus rugged solar battery/bluetooth speaker: $45 shipped
More deals still alive:
Buy Apple TV for $69 and get a free $10 Target gift card, more savings for REDcard holders
- Beam a 300″ 1080p projection w/ this $500 Acer projector (Reg. $800)
- Xbox One AC Unity bundle w/ Halo MCC & 3-months Live $350, more
- Aukey 3600mAh power bank + Lightning cable $16 Prime shipped ($26 value), more
- Buy a 2TB Portable HDD for $80 or a 5TB Desktop HDD for $125
- Home theater upgrade: Bose Acoustimass 6 speaker set $369 shipped (Reg. $400+)
- TP-LINK 300Mbps Universal Wi-Fi range extender $18 shipped (Reg. $24)
- PlayStation Plus announces free games for April: Dishonored, Never Alone, more
- Media: Hobbit – Battle of the Five Armies BR/DVD/Digital $13, much more
- Clean up your diet w/ free Kindle downloads of these healthy cookbooks
- Nintendo deals: amiibo figures 25% off, 3DS games $25, eShop 10% off
- Storage: Samsung 250GB SSD $100, Toshiba 500GB Portable HD $35
- Mackie speakers + ATH-M40x Pro Headphones $130 shipped ($200 value)
- Headphones: Sol Republic Tracks Air Bluetooth $75, more
- Apple adds 12 different iMac w/ Retina 5K models to its refurb store, up to $660 off
Outsource your house chores to Amazon and get a free $20 gift card
New products & more:
Onkyo’s new portable headphone digital-to-analog converter uses a Lightning cable to boost your iPhone’s sound
- Sling TV will offer HBO plus on-demand content in time for Game of Thrones premiere
- Amazon’s Dash Service brings push button ordering to your washing machine
- DeNA’s new Marvel Mighty Heroes brawler is now available on iOS & Android
- Quirky’s new line of home automation includes a gorgeous coffee maker w/ iOS integration
- This Batman: Arkham Knight PS4 is one of the best looking consoles, pre-order
- Neo smartpen N2 sends handwritten words and doodles to its app
- This case lets you deck out your MacBook with LEGO bricks
- Spotify finds an exclusive gaming console home w/ Sony’s new PlayStation Music service
- Amazon announces unlimited Cloud Drive storage for all of your photos and files
- The software used by Pixar to create visual effects for movies like Toy Story is now free
- Former Apple Designer launches new iOS and Android connected timepiece
- Relive the most epic battles from the Final Fantasy series in Record Keeper for iOS/Android
- Here’s how to install Kano OS on your Raspberry Pi 2 for free
- The iDrink iPhone case includes a built-in breathalyzer, bottle opener and driving game
- InfiniteUSB cables offer an endless supply of USB ports for your laptop
At the Spring Forward event, Apple and HBO announced HBO Now, an over-the-top unbundled streaming service for HBO shows, like Game of Thrones, independent of a cable subscription. They claimed that HBO Now would be ‘exclusive to Apple TV and iOS devices for three months’. This seemed like a great promotion for Apple’s television offerings, coinciding with a price cut of the Apple TV box to $69.
However, Sling TV has now announced that it will be offering the same deal through its service: HBO shows for $15 a month. This throws shade at Apple’s announcement — signing up for Sling TV will make HBO available on devices like the Roku this month. It is worth noting that the Sling deal also requires a subscription to Sling itself, HBO is only available as an add-on, which is an additional $20 a month.
Sling has found a ‘loophole’ in Apple’s deal so that it can offer cable-independent HBO content this month as well, sidelining Apple’s three month exclusivity window …
Following a release for iPad back in March, HBO’s Game of Thrones Ascent game developed by Disruptor Beam & Kongregate is now available for iPhone. The game already racked up around 2,500,000 players on Facebook and the web before making its way to iPad in March, and it comes to the App Store with new art, optimized imagery for Retina displays, and Game Center leaderboards.
With Game of Thrones Ascent, fans can immerse themselves beyond the books and show, living the life of a noble in Westeros, working with (or against) each other in a persistent, authentic game world. Taking part in thousands of story-driven quests, players delve deeply into the lore and develop their own lands and reputation among the Great Houses. Players explore an expansive world filled with deep political and social play involving diplomatic agreements, pacts, marriages, and betrothals. Through Alliance challenges, players work with hundreds of others to accomplish great tasks and rise to the top of the Power Rankings.
The developers update the game weekly and alongside new episodes of the TV show when it’s airing. That includes new quests, in-game items and more that follow the storyline of the show.
Game of Thrones Ascent is available for iPhone now as a free download on the App Store.
HBO has pushed out an update to its HBO Go app in at least the US today. Version 2.1 brings AirPlay multitasking support, allowing videos from the HBO Go app to continue playing while users navigate to other apps. Also included in this release is enhancements to the interactive features experience for the network’s popular Game of Thrones series and the usual performance enhancements:
– Includes AirPlay multitasking capability — other apps can be used while video continues to stream via AirPlay.
– Enhancements to the interactive features experience for Game of Thrones
– General performance enhancements
HBO Go version 2.1 for iPhone and iPad is available from the App Store now.
Reuters reported that HBO might consider a reversal of its previous position of not allowing access to HBO Go without a cable subscription.
HBO Go launched 3 years ago to allow subscribers to watch shows on tablets, but the service is so far restricted to those who have a cable TV subscription with an HBO partner and pay a top-up HBO fee. Co-President Eric Kessler had previously, and rather naively, said in a video interview at VideoNuze that those abandoning cable TV for purely online viewing was “minimal” and a temporary response to the economy, and he said there was no reason to offer a standalone mobile service.
This position now appears to be softening, with CEO Richard Plepler recognizing that a growing number of consumers want to choose both content and viewing platform at will.
“Right now we have the right model,” Plepler told Reuters on Wednesday evening at the Season 3 premiere of HBO’s hit TV show “Game of Thrones.” “Maybe HBO GO, with our broadband partners, could evolve.”
Companies like HBO are faced with a difficult tightrope act. While they earn billions of dollars from their existing sales model, any new offering that risks cannibalizing revenue is a frightening prospect for the company. Equally, however, it’s clear that ‘cable-cutting’ —giving up cable TV subscriptions in favor of online viewing— will only increase. Failing to respond to this is not an option.
One number will be looming very large in front of HBO: 25 million. That’s the number of illegal downloads of its hit show “Game of Thrones”. While some substantial proportion of those people would download pirated content for free no matter what options were available, there is a growing phenomenon of illegal downloads by those who would be willing to pay for content simply because existing deals don’t allow them the freedom to simply pay for the content they want on the device they want.