Max raises prices by $1 a month on ad-free plans

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Warner Bros. Discovery is tacking on a $1 price increase to its ad-free tiers of Max effective June 4, 2024.

The streamer’s base ad-free plan is going to $16.99 a month or $169.99 a year, an increase of $20.

The top “Ultimate” tier will also increase $1 to $20.99 a month. Subscribers to this level will benefit from a slightly more generous discount for prepaying for an annual plan, with the cost going up $10 to $209.99.

The “ultimate” price hike is significant in that it pushes the top tier above $20 a month, though it is still not as pricey at Netflix’s top offering at $22.99 a mont.h. However, Netflix’s “standard” plan is slightly less expensive at $15.49.

Max is not adjusting its ad-supported plan, which remains at $9.99 a month or $99.99 a year (Netflix prices a similar offering at $6.99 a month.

The price hikes come as WBD grapples with a changing media landscape and cost-cutting pressures post-merger.

It also is at a key time in the streamer’s release cycle: The hit “Hacks” dropped in May 2024 and the much-anticipated Season 2 of “Game of Thrones” spinoff “House of the Dragon” is set to be released June 16, 2024.

Although Max has been showing some positive signs in terms of subscriber growth, it also has been called out for being one of the least-sticky streamers on the market with very little customer loyalty and higher churn rates.

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In May 2024, Max announced it had signed a deal with Disney to bundle Disney+, Hulu and Max in a single offering, though pricing or a debut date have not been announced.

That news was followed shortly after by a deal between Netflix, Apple TV+ and Peacock for a similar arrangement. 

Earlier in 2024, Disney+ also unveiled tighter integration between Disney+ and Hulu, including expanded marketing efforts to sell both streamers together as opposed to piecemeal.

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