After removing originals from its library, laying off employees, kneecapping its animation department, and canceling Batgirl, Warner Bros. is still looking to get rid of a few things, particularly in the letter department. Per CNBC (via Variety), Warners is considering naming its HBO Max-Discover+ hybrid app “Max.” We can already hear Sean Parker encouraging David Zazlov to drop the “HBO” because it’s cleaner.
Considering all the nonsense the company has gone through to find a couple of billion dollars in tax write-downs, this one makes sense—although we highly doubt it will result in any savings. HBO has a long history of annoying app names, and no one wants to return to the dark ages of HBO Go and HBO Now. So maybe it is time to drop the Home Box Office from its app names and let it live on as its own thing. However, nothing is official yet. According to CNBC, the company’s lawyers are still vetting the name. But it’s best practice not to tell people the name of an app until it’s three months along.
“Max” will bring together the disparate parts of the Warner Bros. Discovery universe. Like Disney+ and HBO Max and Discovery+ and, well, just about any other streaming app, this one will have different hubs, leading you to more buggy, difficult-to-navigate menus. “Max” is expected in the spring of next year, but we’re not holding out for any UX improvements. We’ve been through this game enough times, and we’re not holding our breath for an app that’s both responsive and easy to use.
But apparently, executives are pushing for a name change because they don’t want the offerings on the apps to dilute the HBO brand. HBO is television’s gold standard for quality, so, understandably, the higher-ups might be concerned about the 600 90 Day Fiancé spin-offs coming to Max.