Home Box Office recently launched a bit of a game-changer: pushing its content, at no additional charge, to Apple's iPhone and iPad and Android's mobile devices.
HBO, the pioneer in luring eyeballs away from commercial television using feature films, Sex and the City, and The Sopranos, generates $1.4 billion in annual operating income. But seeing its empire threatened by Amazon and Netflix, HBO has unleashed HBO GO, a free app, giving its subscribers round-the-clock personal access to its content. The app is extremely user-friendly. It took me less than a minute to confirm that I was a current HBO customer and in no time I was watching the latest episodes of Treme and Real Time with Bill Maher and had full access to features like Avatar and Sherlock Holmes.
Later this spring, HBO will make the unprecedented move of premiering an episode of its new hit Game of Thrones on HBO GO before it appears on its television channel.