Cable Companies Prepared for HBO Go to Go Streaming-Only

HBO GO may soon be available to non-cable-TV subscribers as an online-only streaming product, just like Netflix. […] The move marks a major sea change for the TV industry. For the last year, Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes has repeatedly dismissed suggestions that HBO Go would become available on online-only streaming platforms. But at a Goldman Sachs communications conference last week, he said he was rethinking it. “Up until now” the idea wasn’t attractive, he said, but now that “the broadband opportunity is getting bigger,” it’s becoming “more viable and more interesting.” […] The TV distributors, meanwhile, still have the potential ability to punish smaller channels if they find other routes for distribution. As it stands, licensing agreements usually include language that limits a programmer’s ability to make its content available online. For smaller stations that stray, big pay-TV companies can try to reduce the amount they pay a programmer in retrans fees, thus levying a significant blow to a programmers’ revenue stream. – Haley Sweetland Edwards,TIME
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