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Report: HBO Close to 3.5M Online Subscribers

HBO now has nearly 3.5 million subscribers via online streaming services, including its own HBO Now, reports The Financial Times.

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The newspaper does not break out the numbers, but HBO is available through live streamers DIRECTV Now, Sling TV, PlayStation Vue and Hulu. In addition, HBO Now is available as a standalone service for $15 a month.

Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes said in February that HBO Now had passed the two million subscriber mark. The company has not updated those numbers since.

The Financial Times report details how Time Warner has used new online options to offset recent subscriber losses by cable and satellite operators.

In addition, the newspaper writes, Time Warner has shifted from an annual fee increase for cable and satellite operators to a revenue sharing plan, which gives them more money if they sell more HBO subscriptions.

The company is hopeful the new model will boost the number of pay TV-based subscriptions for HBO.

HBO, and its sister channel, Cinemax, now have more than 130 million subscribers worldwide, including nearly 50 million in the United States.

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— Phillip Swann