HBO's online streaming service HBO Broadband has been around for a couple of years now, but today it is being relaunched as HBO Go. While the site and player are getting a welcome refresh, the basic problems that existed with the old service remain.
HBO sees HBO Go as just a supplementary service for their existing cable and satellite customers, rather than as an opportunity to create a completely new type of customer. In other words, you can't buy a subscription to the broadband service by itself, you simply get it for free with your existing cable or satellite TV subscription. That seems pretty short sighted in a world where a growing number of people are dropping cable and satellite services, and replacing them with online video services and free over the air TV.
To make matters worse, the HBO Go service will only actually go wherever you're willing to haul a computer. There's no support for mobile devices, and because the online viewer uses Flash, any future support for the iPad will be tricky at best. At the press launch, HBO co-president Eric Kessler mentioned the possibility of a future mobile strategy, but didn't provide any details.
Come on HBO, I'm sure there are plenty of people who would be willing to pay to watch Curb Your Enthusiasm or Sex And The City once they get their iPads.