Stupid logic What would happen if HBO no longer had the pay-TV industrys marketing team propping it up all the time? The results would be disastrous, and theres no way that HBO could make up in online volume the number of subscribers it would lose from cable. Which is why, even though some users would actually pay more for access to HBO GO without all the other cable channels, you wont see it show up as a standalone service anytime soon."
Yes because pay TV would no longer sell HBO. There would be MILLIONS of people still interested in HBO via pay TV. If say Charter ( my cable company ) gave up selling HBO, then guess what, DirecTv and Dish Network would suddenly get tons of new customers from my area. Any pay-tv company that stopped selling HBO would be stupid.
Why does HBO need pay TV to "advertise" it? No one heard of HBO? It's only been around for 35+ years. It's sad that the morons in charge of HBO don't get it yet. They are losing MILLIONS of $$$$$$$. Maybe when my special runs out I''ll just dump cable completely and just use a relatives login to get access to HBOGo. Then HBO you get NOTHING form me when you could have gotten SOMETHING. Forcing people in an expensive cable package when they clearly have no desire for one is not the way to get or keep customers.
I wonder if Game Of Thrones would still be the most pirated show if HBO offered HBOGo separately and also offered current season episodes for sale at Amazon and ITunes? I suspect the amount of piracy for that show would drop significantly. It would drop even further if they didn't decide to charge $4 per episode in HD.
And also because of the consistently rising cost of cable TV and the stagnant economic growth, what do you think the first thing to go in the cable package is?
It's the HBO subscription.
As for the people saying that it would complicate things to have programmers handle the delivery and servers, they've already been doing it for HBO GO. The only difference is to remove the authentication for the cable/satellite subscription and go to the account solely. They may need some server upgrades for capacity, and they may want to consider doing live streams of the HBO channels (a la WatchESPN, wouldn't that be sweet?), but technologically, there wouldn't be that many expanded costs associated with it as compared to the walled garden, IMO.