HBO to offer standalone streaming service

Written by

streaming, web-based feed of the movie channel with all its original programs starting next year, for people who do not have cable or satellite TV.

During an investors’ meeting at the New York headquarters of parent company Time Warner today, HBO CEO Richard Plepler said the move will target 80 million homes.

So, fans of series like “Game of Thrones” – the most illegally downloaded show of 2013 – will no longer need to pay for HBO on top of their regular cable bill (or steal their friend’s HBO GO password).

The new HBO streaming service will now have to face off against competitors like Netflix and Amazon Prime, which have put a lot of money into their own original programming with critical hits like “House of Cards” and “Transparent.”

What does it mean for the small screen going forward?

Adam Epstein has been following this story, and writes for the website Quartz. He spoke with KCRW’s Steve Chiotakis.