Last night I asked HBO’s press relations team to look the other way and give us Obama’s copy of the Game of Thrones season six premiere, we also asked if HBO Now would ever appear on a game console.
The video streaming app, which allows users to pay to watch all of HBO’s programming without a cable subscription, has appeared on a number of streaming devices, but game consoles from Sony and Microsoft are stuck in the old HBO GO days. For now, those users will instead have to steal passwords from aunts and uncles who subscribe to cable, rather than pay for their own a la carte HBO access.
We wondered if that situation might change in light of a new one Game of Thrones season starts this weekend, as HBO has a precedent there. The company launched the HBO GO app for the Xbox 360 the same day Got‘s second season premiere in 2012. As it turns out, our hunch was right. Without notice, HBO Now rolled out its first console apps on Thursday, and they land exclusively on Xbox systems – both the Xbox One and Xbox 360. An Xbox Live subscription is not required for either console.
If you haven’t already tried HBO Now on another device (or can come up with an entirely new set of credentials), you can effectively watch the first few episodes of the new one Got season for free thanks to HBO Now’s one-month free trial for new users. (The same applies to Silicon Valley and Veepthe final seasons of which also begin next Sunday.) After that, viewers must pay $15/month to continue subscribing.
HBO has not made any announcements about other gaming platforms getting the Now treatment in the near future.