HBO may not plan on bringing a web-only subscription to the US any time soon, but international locations may be a different story. After launching a web-only streaming option — much like Netflix's service — through HBO Nordic two years ago, The Wall Street Journal reports that HBO is now considering expanding that option to other countries, including Japan and Turkey. There is reportedly no timeline for how soon the expansion would roll out, however.
HBO has a lot of room for international expansion
Aside from having strong internet, the locations HBO is eyeing reportedly have to do with the revenue that they're currently bringing in for the network. In regions where it could be performing better, HBO may be hoping that opening up a web subscription option can help it to gain more ground among consumers.
As US growth becomes harder for HBO, the Journal reports that it's turning toward expansion abroad. Its international units reportedly accounts for just a quarter of its business, leaving a lot of room for expansion. Beyond that, expanding internationally gives HBO the opportunity to improve its streaming options and make them more reliable before bringing them on their own to the US, should it ever choose to do so. HBO relies on cable providers to handle various areas of business — such as customer service and billing — that it would have to take over for a web-only option, and for now it makes more sense for it to continue leaning on its lucrative partnerships in the US than break off on its own.