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Max Lost the HBO Name But Kept the Brand Halo

Among subscribers, the perceived “quality” for Max is at 55 percent, the same as in January—even as all the other streamers dropped.
Among subscribers, the perceived “quality” for Max is at 55 percent, the same as in January—even as all the other streamers dropped. Photo: Christopher Polk/Getty Images
Matthew Belloni
August 28, 2023

Warner Bros. Discovery C.E.O. David Zaslav has certainly taken heat for removing HBO from the name of the Max service after it combined with Discovery+ in May. Rolling Stone recently dubbed the Max relaunch as the 34th worst decision in the history of television. (Worse than Cop Rock? Really?) But what if consumers don’t actually care that much? What if the perception of quality and trust in Max are actually higher than for HBO Max just six months ago?   

That’s what the new Puck Official Streaming Service Hierarchy survey found. Our study, conducted by The Quorum and its pollsters, measured how 2,000 consumers feel about each of the services. Part One is here, and Part Two, focusing just on Max, shows the brand equity metrics adhere much closer to HBO Max than to Discovery+, both of which were measured separately in our first study, in January.