Shoring up its streaming services to continue its hardware war with Roku and Google, Amazon and HBO are making a deal to bring HBO GO to the Fire TV and Fire TV Stick.
The inclusion of HBO GO comes roughly a month after Google Chromecast announced integration with Showtime Anytime, a service Amazon's Fire streaming family already offered. The Fire TV's streaming service has quadrupled since its launch, according to Peter Larsen, vice president of Amazon Devices.
"We're thrilled to add HBO GO, the most requested service, to Fire TV in time for the holidays," says Larsen. "HBO has produced some of the most groundbreaking and award-winning TV shows and movies, and we are excited to bring this amazing content to our customers, all of which is accessible via voice search on your Fire TV remote."
Support for HBO GO gives Fire TV and Fire TV Stick users access to more than 1,700 movies, miniseries, TV shows and documentaries. As always, consumers will need to have an HBO subscription through their cable or satellite TV provider to access HBO GO's content.
HBO GO joins a host of more than 700 apps and games that includes streaming services from companies such as Netflix, HuluPlus, Showtime Anytime, Twitch and Spotify. It also benefits from Amazon's own Amazon Instant Video collection, a service that is only offered elsewhere on Roku's streaming hardware.
"Given our long-standing relationship with Amazon, we're delighted to bring HBO GO to Amazon's Fire TV, offering our vast collection of award-winning TV series and movies to Fire TV users," said Jeff Dallesandro, vice president of HBO's Digital Domestic Network Distribution.
To celebrate the inclusion of HBO on its streaming platforms, Amazon has sliced $20 off the Fire TV's $100 price. The Fire TV set-top box is still in stock and available for delivery before Christmas, though the Fire TV Stick is sold out and won't be replenished until Jan. 6, 2015.
Though the Fire TV Stick will be restocked in early January, David Limp, Amazon's senior vice president of devices, projected the streaming dongles wouldn't reach homes sooner than Jan. 15. That may have changed, unless one- and two-day shipping won't be available when the Fire TV Stick returns to Amazon warehouses.
"We built a ton of these, but customer demand still outpaced our supply," stated Limp back in mid-November. "We're excited by the overwhelming customer response and the team is working hard to build more as quickly as possible."
The stick connects to the HDMI port on an HDTV for access to movies, TV shows, music, photos, apps and games, and it comes with a remote control for navigation.