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Dune, The Matrix, and Succession boost US-based HBO and HBO Max subscribers to 46.8 million

Dune, The Matrix, and Succession boost US-based HBO and HBO Max subscribers to 46.8 million


The service’s subscriber account reached 73.8 million globally

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Illustration by William Joel / The Verge

HBO Max reached 73.8 million subscribers at the end of 2021, 46.8 million of which are located in the US, marking a 5.3 million increase over a full year. The numbers were shared as part of AT&T’s (HBO Max’s parent company) fourth-quarter earnings for 2021.

Jason Kilar, the CEO of Time Warner, celebrated the platform’s success on Twitter, noting HBO Max’s subscriber numbers are up 35 percent over the past two years, both in the US and 45 other markets. He also says HBO Max’s subscriber count is way ahead of analysts’ projections — by a whole four years.

In an interview with CNBC, Kilar notes the service “grew much faster than Netflix” in the US during 2021. Netflix’s fourth-quarter earnings revealed the platform didn’t meet its forecasts for subscriber growth, reaching 221.84 million subscribers instead of the predicted 222.06 million.

Last year, HBO Max exclusively offered some of the most highly anticipated content, such as the latest addition to the Matrix series, which debuted in theaters and on HBO Max. Dune, the film based on the classic sci-fi novel by Frank Herbert, aired on the platform one day before its release in theaters, while HBO Max also released the third season of the hit series Succession.

HBO Max partnered with Warner Bros. to release 10 movies this year, but none of them appear to be big-budget films, as the studio shifts away from same-day theatrical releases for its most prominent titles. Warner Bros. films that do debut in theaters, however, are set to be shown for 45 days before hitting streaming services.