HBO Max- May 2020 launch - Page 3 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #61 of 285 Old 05-26-2020, 01:24 AM - Thread Starter
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there's a countdown clock on the official HBO Max website...looks like it will unlock at 3:00 AM EST...I'm hoping it has 4K HDR/Dolby Vision support but I'm not holding my breath...I'm guessing 4K HDR support will be announced as Coming Later...

https://www.att.com/hbo-max/
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post #62 of 285 Old 05-26-2020, 07:05 AM
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Originally Posted by TitusTroy View Post
there's a countdown clock on the official HBO Max website...looks like it will unlock at 3:00 AM EST...I'm hoping it has 4K HDR/Dolby Vision support but I'm not holding my breath...I'm guessing 4K HDR support will be announced as Coming Later...

https://www.att.com/hbo-max/
You would think they would be advertising 4K HDR/Dolby Vision in all of their press releases as another reason that $14.99 a month is a value. Disney+ did in their run up to the launch date. It feels like they are just focused on converting as many of the existing HBO and HBO NOW customers over to HBO Max at launch and it will give them an impressive subscriber number for their first financial reporting period. I guess 4K/HDR/Dolby Vision aficionados are not their launch day targets. Run up the subscriber count on the 'easy converts' first and then worry about the others later.

I am with you. Won't hold my breath, but it would be a pleasant surprise. The catalog of content will be impressive, but presenting a large portion of it in 4K/HDR/Dolby Vision/ATMOS is what would really make the $14.99 a month feel like a true value.

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post #63 of 285 Old 05-26-2020, 07:44 AM - Thread Starter
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I guess 4K/HDR/Dolby Vision aficionados are not their launch day targets. Run up the subscriber count on the 'easy converts' first and then worry about the others later.

I am with you. Won't hold my breath, but it would be a pleasant surprise. The catalog of content will be impressive, but presenting a large portion of it in 4K/HDR/Dolby Vision/ATMOS is what would really make the $14.99 a month feel like a true value.
Disney+, Apple TV+ all launched with 4K/HDR/Dolby Vision support but I guess AT&T must not consider it important...if there's no 4K HDR support at launch I wonder how the 1080p SDR streams will compare to the HBO Amazon Channel ones?...HBO through Amazon currently offers the best image quality so I'm wondering if HBO Max can beat that in terms of bit-rate etc
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post #64 of 285 Old 05-26-2020, 08:56 AM
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Disney+, Apple TV+ all launched with 4K/HDR/Dolby Vision support but I guess AT&T must not consider it important...if there's no 4K HDR support at launch I wonder how the 1080p SDR streams will compare to the HBO Amazon Channel ones?...HBO through Amazon currently offers the best image quality so I'm wondering if HBO Max can beat that in terms of bit-rate etc
HBO is a prestige brand and they haven't even offered 4K support much less HDR/Dolby Vision/ATMOS support across most platforms. That makes me think none of it will be offered on HBO Max at launch.

And with less than 24 hours to launch I still have not seen distribution deals in place with Roku or Prime Video for either a standalone app or a Roku or Prime Video Channel offering. We may not even have that as a comparison at launch.

I currently own Roku TV's with Fire Stick TV devices as well. Unless something changes in the next 24 hours, or I chose an add-on (HULU) option I would prefer to avoid, I would not have a streaming device option available to view HBO Max except from a web browser window from a PC connected to my smart TV.

There will eventually be deals with Roku and Prime Video, but it is just another reminder of what pawns both sides of this think we are.

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post #65 of 285 Old 05-26-2020, 09:23 AM - Thread Starter
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And with less than 24 hours to launch I still have not seen distribution deals in place with Roku or Prime Video for either a standalone app or a Roku or Prime Video Channel offering. We may not even have that as a comparison at launch
there can still be comparisons between Amazon Channels HBO versus HBO Max standalone app (in terms of content available on both such as Game of Thrones 1080p SDR across both devices)...I have HBO included as part of my Verizon FiOS cable package so I'll get 'free' access to HBO Max...hopefully 4K HDR will not take months to arrive
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post #66 of 285 Old 05-26-2020, 09:32 AM
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there can still be comparisons between Amazon Channels HBO versus HBO Max standalone app (in terms of content available on both such as Game of Thrones 1080p SDR across both devices)...I have HBO included as part of my Verizon FiOS cable package so I'll get 'free' access to HBO Max...hopefully 4K HDR will not take months to arrive
Good point. Unless this gets even more contentious and all HBO versions are removed from Fire TV. All parties here have shown how petty they can be in the past.

I was browsing through the Roku support forum and even there this seems way more complicated than it should be. If you have the HBO add-on through your HULU subscription on Roku you will be upgraded to HBO Max. But, if you want to access any of the 'Max' part of HBO Max you will have to install the standalone HBO Max app and use your HULU credentials to log in. Apparently you will not be able to access the 'Max' part of HBO Max from within your HULU HBO add-on subscription and the HULU interface. Brilliant!!

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post #67 of 285 Old 05-26-2020, 09:40 AM - Thread Starter
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I was browsing through the Roku support forum and even there this seems way more complicated than it should be. If you have the HBO add-on through your HULU subscription on Roku you will be upgraded to HBO Max. But, if you want to access any of the 'Max' part of HBO Max you will have to install the standalone HBO Max app and user your HULU credentials to log in. Apparently you will not be able to access the 'Max' part of HBO Max from within your HULU HBO add-on subscription and the HULU interface. Brilliant!!
I think that makes sense...you're not going to be able to access HBO Max through Hulu's HBO app...that's only for 'regular' HBO...same way that you won't be able to with Amazon Channels or Apple Channels HBO add-on...you need the separate app to access the HBO Max exclusives...with my FiOS sub I'll be able to access the HBO MAX app using my FiOS log-in credentials...
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post #68 of 285 Old 05-26-2020, 11:21 AM
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I think that makes sense...you're not going to be able to access HBO Max through Hulu's HBO app...that's only for 'regular' HBO...same way that you won't be able to with Amazon Channels or Apple Channels HBO add-on...you need the separate app to access the HBO Max exclusives...with my FiOS sub I'll be able to access the HBO MAX app using my FiOS log-in credentials...
Yes. Unfortunately that stinks.

I like having Prime Video Channel subscriptions that rolls all of that content under the Fire TV UI and RECENT row. Makes for a much cleaner and quicker access to whatever content you are currently watching. It is also nice for content with weekly releases. When a new episode lands on a specific streaming service it also gets added to your RECENT row on Fire TV Home Screen. Back to chasing down new weekly episodes across multiple apps and unique Home Screen UI's. SIGH.....

I wonder if PEACOCK streaming will have a similar approach?

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post #69 of 285 Old 05-26-2020, 12:51 PM - Thread Starter
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HBO Max is full of potential, but its biggest hurdle remains AT&T’s messy execution

WarnerMedia is an amalgamation of brands that makes it hard to define a definitive voice...compare that to Disney, which touts its classic films and five major tentpoles: Disney Animation, Pixar, Lucasfilm, Marvel Studios, and Disney live-action films...in contrast, HBO is a premium network known for its mature and award-winning shows targeted at adults

in its Max iteration, it hopes to bring an abundance of originals targeted at teens and children’s shows...it’s a play at a broader audience, but one that erodes anyone’s understanding of what HBO’s identity is and, more importantly, who it’s for...HBO Max doesn’t have an immediate tentpole like The Mandalorian or Stranger Things, but it does have a seemingly endless and wide array of entertainment to satiate any subscriber’s need...

https://www.theverge.com/2020/5/26/2...etflix-peacock
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post #70 of 285 Old 05-26-2020, 01:09 PM
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Disney+, Apple TV+ all launched with 4K/HDR/Dolby Vision support but I guess AT&T must not consider it important...if there's no 4K HDR support at launch I wonder how the 1080p SDR streams will compare to the HBO Amazon Channel ones?...HBO through Amazon currently offers the best image quality so I'm wondering if HBO Max can beat that in terms of bit-rate etc
Are you able to compare it with an ATV4K? This is the first I'm reading of this.

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post #71 of 285 Old 05-26-2020, 01:37 PM
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This is the first I'm reading of this.
Of what? That content on HBO Max may not be in 4K/HDR/Dolby Vision/ATMOS at launch?

None of their press releases leading up to the launch have confirmed this type of support. The current HBO/HBO NOW/HBO GO apps do no support it either. We are left to speculate for another few hours until launch.

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post #72 of 285 Old 05-26-2020, 01:39 PM - Thread Starter
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Are you able to compare it with an ATV4K? This is the first I'm reading of this.
HBO via Amazon Channels currently offers the highest bit rate and image quality...Apple TV Channels HBO is also very good but Amazon is slightly better...people have done tests comparing the bit rates

** I'm strictly talking about HBO and not comparing it against Netflix or any 4K platform
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post #73 of 285 Old 05-26-2020, 03:13 PM
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Here’s what HBO Max looks like
https://www.theverge.com/2019/10/29/...ate-ui-gallery


First look at HBO Max interface.

Individual profiles. Yea!!

Share viewing experience sounds interesting.
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HBO Max will also offer a shared viewing experience, one where you can create a combined shared account with other people you watch with, to improve the kind of recommendations each of you might individually see.

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post #74 of 285 Old 05-26-2020, 03:54 PM
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Of what? That content on HBO Max may not be in 4K/HDR/Dolby Vision/ATMOS at launch?

None of their press releases leading up to the launch have confirmed this type of support. The current HBO/HBO NOW/HBO GO apps do no support it either. We are left to speculate for another few hours until launch.
That the HBO video quality is better than what the Apple TV channels app offers. Are you viewing HBO through the ATV or Amazon device
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post #75 of 285 Old 05-26-2020, 03:58 PM
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That the HBO video quality is better than what the Apple TV channels app offers. Are you viewing HBO through the ATV or Amazon device
Sorry. See post #72 . He responded to your original question.

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post #76 of 285 Old 05-26-2020, 06:16 PM
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Techy scares people. AT&T is targeting the average person who already has HBO of any stripe, fancy numbers won't matter to most people who watch HBO. HBO has always been about the programs, as will be HBO Max.

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post #77 of 285 Old 05-26-2020, 06:24 PM - Thread Starter
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Techy scares people. AT&T is targeting the average person who already has HBO of any stripe, fancy numbers won't matter to most people who watch HBO. HBO has always been about the programs, as will be HBO Max.
4K support will be added eventually...and honestly HBO Max doesn't really have any must-see original content available at launch...I don't see anything big coming anytime soon either...it would be nice to watch Westworld or Game of Thrones in 4K Dolby Vision
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post #78 of 285 Old 05-26-2020, 06:31 PM
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Techy scares people. AT&T is targeting the average person who already has HBO of any stripe, fancy numbers won't matter to most people who watch HBO. HBO has always been about the programs, as will be HBO Max.
Were you commenting on whether they offer 4K/HDR/Dolby Vision/ATMOS support at launch? I think Netflix, Disney+ and Prime Video are targeting the average person as well and feel it is necessary to offer premium video and audio options to their customers.

HBO before May 27th was about quality over quantity prestige programming. The Max part of HBO Max intends to try and skew younger, more female and more diverse. And they will pump out much more quantity of content once filming can safely begin again. The quantity of content alone will make the prestige part of the old HBO suffer. Perhaps that is not a bad thing, because they have to offer more diverse content to more people to survive as a streamer. But just like Netflix, that kind of output spits out some hot garbage along with some great programming.

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post #79 of 285 Old 05-26-2020, 06:42 PM
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There is world outside of forums.. People are more concerned with how much does it cost..Money talks..Disney is cheap, Apple TV plus is cheap, Hulu is cheap.. Netflix used to be cheap..but they have been at this for awhile. Premium features are a financial risk. We're in/ headed for bad financial times... Cheap always wins.

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post #80 of 285 Old 05-26-2020, 06:43 PM
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4K support will be added eventually...and honestly HBO Max doesn't really have any must-see original content available at launch...I don't see anything big coming anytime soon either...it would be nice to watch Westworld or Game of Thrones in 4K Dolby Vision
HBO Max Originals may not dictate 4K/HDR at launch, but remember that Max part of HBO Max also includes all of the Warner movie catalog. Definitely some content there we would all enjoy in 4K/HDR. Like you said, eventually they will get there.

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post #81 of 285 Old 05-26-2020, 07:19 PM - Thread Starter
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HBO Max Originals may not dictate 4K/HDR at launch, but remember that Max part of HBO Max also includes all of the Warner movie catalog. Definitely some content there we would all enjoy in 4K/HDR. Like you said, eventually they will get there.
I was surprised to read that none of the Harry Potter movies will be available on HBO Max until at least 2025...the recent Harry Potter 4K Collection box-set was pretty impressive (especially the first 2 movies)
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post #82 of 285 Old 05-26-2020, 08:23 PM
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I was surprised to read that none of the Harry Potter movies will be available on HBO Max until at least 2025...the recent Harry Potter 4K Collection box-set was pretty impressive (especially the first 2 movies)
Welcome to the world of streaming rights. I read that also. NBC Universal has the streaming rights until 2025. I guess they will be on Peacock in a few months!!

I watched an episode of Disney Gallery about the making of The Mandalorian and Favreau mentioned his work on The Jungle Book remake and some of the technology used. I thought what a good idea, let's check out The Jungle Book in glorious 4K/Dolby Vision/ATMOS. I can on March 30, 2021 when streaming rights are available. ARRRGGGHHH!!

Now that all the big players/studios are in the streaming game they should call a cease fire / detente, get in a room and everyone agrees to give back license fee revenues committed to and streaming rights all revert back to parent studios. Disney probably has another 3 to 4 years to untangle all of their license agreements to outside parties. 5 years for Harry Potter to find his way home to Hogwarts. Jeez!!
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post #83 of 285 Old 05-26-2020, 08:41 PM
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Just saw this posted on the Roku forum from someone that signed up for HBO Max a few days ago. They just received an update this evening on platform access at launch.

Quote:
"WarnerMedia's new streaming platform, HBO Max, is available on Wednesday!

We want you to have access to your favorite shows and movies — see below for all the ways you can stream HBO Max starting tomorrow. You may have a device that doesn't support HBO Max. We're working to add even more ways you can access our platform, so stay tuned for updates.

Here's where you can stream HBO Max Wednesday morning:
  • Android phones and tablets
  • Android TV (including most Sony Android TVs, 2016 models and later)
  • Apple TV (4th generation and later)
  • Web (at HBOMax.com)
  • Google Chromecast
  • Chromebooks
  • iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch
  • PlayStation 4
  • Samsung TV (2016 models and later)
  • Xbox One

If you don't have the HBO Max app, open the app store on any supported device, search for HBO Max, and install the app. Once installed, open HBO Max and sign in using your HBO NOW email and password. Then, you can stream HBO plus SO much more."

I guess we can officially say that Roku and Amazon Fire TV will miss the HBO Max Launch Party at 3AM EDT.

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post #84 of 285 Old 05-27-2020, 01:00 AM - Thread Starter
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I was surprised to read that none of the Harry Potter movies will be available on HBO Max until at least 2025...the recent Harry Potter 4K Collection box-set was pretty impressive (especially the first 2 movies)
Good News: in a nice surprise all 8 Harry Potter movies are available on HBO MAX...looks like a last minute deal was struck...

Bad News: no 4K HDR support at launch
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post #85 of 285 Old 05-27-2020, 05:02 AM - Thread Starter
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HBO Max delivers 1080p at 2x bitrate compared to HBO Now

HBO has often been criticized for its low streaming quality...while it has technically delivered 1080p HD, the low bitrate (level of compression) has made its shows look far worse than 1080p content on competing streaming services...it is disappointing to see HBO Max launch without 4K HDR support but at least it delivers significantly higher video bitrate for 1080p...FlatpanelsHD is seeing an average of 7-10 Mb/s bitrate for 1080p (with MPEG4 AVC) while streaming Joker, Wonder Woman, Batman v Superman, and X-Men: Dark Phoenix, with video bitrate peak at around 13-14 Mb/s

For comparison HBO Now and HBO Go typically hovered around 4-5 Mb/s for 1080p while HBO Europe/Nordic is even lower at around 3.5 Mb/s...in other words, you are getting two to three times as high throughput with HBO Max...HBO Max delivers better HD streaming quality than Netflix and many other providers, surpassing even Apple's 1080p bitrate (but obviously not Apple's 4K HDR bitrate)

We are getting audio in Dolby Digital (AC-3) and 384 Kb/s bitrate

https://www.flatpanelshd.com/news.ph...&id=1590578825
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post #86 of 285 Old 05-27-2020, 07:38 AM
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I won’t be signing up for HBO max until either 4K HDR support or the game of thrones spinoff comes out! Hopefully the Syder cut of justice league gets a UHD release also on digital and disc! I’m already paying for 5 streaming subscriptions and have Apple+ for free until November. IMO 14.99 a month without UHD is not worth it! I had HBO NOW just for GOT and then canceled. Same with showtime for Ray Donovan.

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post #87 of 285 Old 05-27-2020, 08:02 AM - Thread Starter
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had no issues signing into HBO Max with my Verizon FiOS log-in info...disappointed that there's no 4K HDR support at launch...hopefully it won't take months to get it...at least the 1080p quality is comparable to Amazon's HBO Channel add-on (in terms of average/peak bit-rates)...so I can now cancel my Amazon HBO subscription and save $15 a month

one of the first things I checked out was The Long Night episode of GoT...still is too dark but looks better then when I watched it through the linear HBO channel (FiOS) but I think you really need the UHD to appreciate this episode and see it how it was intended

I'm glad I'm getting HBO Max 'free' as part of my Verizon FiOS package...if I wasn't I would still probably pay for HBO Max because it does offer the best image quality even in 1080p...HBO has a lot of great content so it's worth it and once they add 4K HDR support it'll be a no-brainer
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post #88 of 285 Old 05-27-2020, 09:51 AM
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I agree with the general sentiment here. Launching in 2020 without 4K and/or HDR in inexcusable and than charging $15 per month for it is plain stupid IMO. HBO does make some of the best TV content out there but I feel they are over estimating the value proposition of HBO Max.
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post #89 of 285 Old 05-27-2020, 09:56 AM - Thread Starter
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HBO Max Is Available to Comcast Customers, After WarnerMedia Lands Post-Launch Deal

Better late than never: WarnerMedia clinched a deal with Comcast for HBO Max, with the final pact officially hammered into place just hours after the super-size streaming service launched early Wednesday...under the deal, Comcast’s existing HBO subscribers with Xfinity X1 and Xfinity Flex will be able to log in to HBO Max on supported devices — for no additional charge...

https://variety.com/2020/digital/new...ia-1234617114/
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post #90 of 285 Old 05-27-2020, 11:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TitusTroy View Post
HBO Max Is Available to Comcast Customers, After WarnerMedia Lands Post-Launch Deal

Better late than never: WarnerMedia clinched a deal with Comcast for HBO Max, with the final pact officially hammered into place just hours after the super-size streaming service launched early Wednesday...under the deal, Comcast’s existing HBO subscribers with Xfinity X1 and Xfinity Flex will be able to log in to HBO Max on supported devices — for no additional charge...

https://variety.com/2020/digital/new...ia-1234617114/
So no go for standard Comcast subscribers as it appears you need to have the Comcast X1 STB and or the Comcast Xfinity Flex service and box in order to get HBO Max.
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