Once the king of streaming services, Netflix's dominance is slipping away. A new streaming service will be online soon and it's taking away one of Netflix's most popular shows.
AT&T-owned WarnerMedia had already announced it was starting its own service, but this week it told us its name and the content it will be offering. And it's not looking good for Netflix.
This has been a tough year for Netflix already as new streaming services from older networks with built-in audiences will be debuting later this year or early next. Read on to learn more about the new streaming service and its potential effects on Netflix.
'Friends' no more
WarnerMedia announced the name of its new streaming service will be -- HBO Max. It also unveiled what content it will offer and one is a massive body blow to Netflix.
Last year, Netflix paid an astounding $100 million to stream one of its most popular shows, "Friends," through 2019. That comes to an end in 2020 when "Friends" migrates to HBO Max.
In a tweet, Netflix acknowledged its loss of "Friends."
The One Where We Have To Say Goodbye.
We’re sorry to see Friends go to Warner's streaming service at the beginning of 2020 (in The US). Thanks for the memories, gang
— Netflix US (@netflix) July 9, 2019
Netflix suffered another major loss this year when Disney finally announced details regarding its new streaming channel, Disney Plus, which will exclusively air all Disney films, as well as the wildly popular Marvel Cinematic Universe and "Star Wars" franchises.
Netflix had exclusive licensing rights to all three of these Disney products, but that comes to an end on November 12, when Disney Plus launches. Adding to Netflix's woes is that Disney now operates Hulu, one of Netflix's first competitors.
Also coming soon is Apple's new streaming service called AppleTV+, which is set to offer original content from such major Hollywood players as Steven Spielberg, J.J. Abrams and Oprah Winfrey.
Finally, NBCUniversal's streaming service is on its way. Unlike the other new services, it will continue to license its products to other streaming platforms, as well as keep the rights to certain shows.
Netflix is trying to fight back with original movies and shows. The results have been mixed so far. For every "Stranger Things," there is a slew of duds.
What's on HBO Max
So, besides all 236 episodes of "Friends," what else will HBO Max be streaming? One popular oldie but goodie is "The Fresh Prince of Bel Air," starring Will Smith. It will also have original films and programs, such as a couple of horror series from the likes of Jordan Peele and Stephen King.
Reese Witherspoon's company will produce two films for HBO Max. Other original shows will star "Pitch Perfect's" Anna Kendrick and "The Big Bang Theory" alum Kaley Cuoco. The CW's upcoming "Batwoman" will also stream exclusively on HBO Max, along with many of the networks other shows.
HBO Max will combine content from HBO with a slate of original shows and other programming from Warner Bros., New Line, DC Entertainment and more. So, say goodbye to all the "Batman" films airing on Netflix and other streaming platforms.
What's not clear yet, however, is how HBO Max will differ from their other streaming properties, HBO GO and HBO NOW. Will "Game of Thrones" suddenly pop up on HBO Max? Who knows. The HBO Max suits haven't offered up those details, but it's bound to lead to some confusion once the service hits.
Speaking of which, the platform is scheduled to launch in the spring of 2020. HBO Max claims it will have 10,000 hours of premium content when it debuts.
Obviously, you probably can't get all these new streaming services or you could go broke. How will you pick and choose?
If your main concern is price, Disney Plus will cost just $7 a month. The standard Netflix package in HD is $13 a month.
As for HBO Max, no pricing has been announced yet. However, there are reports that the service could cost up to $17, but it will likely be bundled with HBO and Cinemax. That's not a bad incentive.
If your concern is content, well that's a personal choice. If you can't live without "Friends" or the "The Avengers," you know where to find them. And for the first time, that won't be Netflix.
The real cost of cutting the cord
Cutting the cord is a way of cutting your cable costs, right? Well, as with most things, that depends. More and more streaming services for on-demand content are coming online, as are options for watching live TV. All that can add up and soon your TV-watching bill could surpass your cable costs.