updated 05:40 pm EDT, Thu May 6, 2010
Time Warner CEO thinks HBO online in his control
Time Warner doesn't necessarily have any reason to launch an HBO app for the iPad or any other device, company CEO Jeff Bewkes said when discussing the company's latest financial results. The media firm could "easily" make an app to stream the cable channel's shows to Apple's tablet but doesn't have any motivation to do so. Since it goes over the web, the online HBO Go service doesn't have to be tied to a particular platform and gives Time Warner control over how the service works for any device, not just the iPad.
"If [viewers] want to access it on the broadband device, including any device made by any company, could be Korean, could be Apple, when they turn the thing on, they'll be looking at HBO," Bewkes said. "So [channels like HBO] don't need to make a deal or an arrangement or diffuse some of the money or leverage to a device maker because [subscribers will] view on every device for no extra charge."
Viewing through the web would still need changes, however, as HBO Go currently requires a plugin like Flash to work properly. Free-to-air etworks like CBS have already made HTML5 versions of their sites that would work in the iPad's browser, but no premium networks have made a similar leap. Many of these already sell show episodes in the iTunes Store or other mobile portals.
Time Warner is considered one of the more conservative content producers and has usually insisted that any free content come only as a bonus; HBO Go and the associated TV Everywhere initiative require that customers already be subscribed to Time Warner Cable. [via Seeking Alpha]