AT&T’s WarnerMedia, long a giant in cable TV, was a late arrival to streaming video. Under its new CEO, Warner is trying to make up for lost time
One a free offering for
its entertainment cable channel programs and the other a subscription-based CNN
spin-off of sorts
WarnerMedia doesn't seem to be pinning all its hopes on HBO Max for streaming services. According to sources, the company is considering launching two more streaming services.
One of them could be CNN's paid service, which ditches the usual 24-hour news in favor of deep original broadcasts and international content. Another potential service could be a free advertising and entertainment offer with material from cable channels such as TBS and TNT. CNN is supposedly slated to launch in 2021 if approved by management, and an entertainment cable TV analog won't appear until 2022.
However, there is no guarantee that these services will actually come true, even if the information is fully consistent with the truth. Nonetheless, the rumors give an idea of where WarnerMedia is thinking in trying to carve out a spot in the fast-growing streaming service space. Apparently, the company believes that it is more efficient to offer a range of services to suit specific tastes, rather than a comprehensive subscription, such as Paramount + from ViacomCBS (formerly CBS All Access).
It is unknown if this approach will work. AT&T, parent company of WarnerMedia, has been criticized for launching a range of streaming services in recent years, the differences between them are not always obvious. Users found it difficult to choose between AT&T TV, AT&T TV Now or AT&T WatchTV at times. In the case of the upcoming WarnerMedia apps, the differences are more pronounced, but perhaps not everyone will want to subscribe to multiple services just to get everything the TV giant has to offer. HBO Max has a relatively modest 8.6 million subscribers so far, and new, more specialized services are unlikely to outshine those numbers.