HBO Max and Disney Plus are the newest subscription streaming services to have hit the market, but they are both doing well for upstarts. For instance, HBO Max is now head-to-head with Disney Plus services, so how do they compare?
There are many streaming services nowadays, and it’s impossible to subscribe to all of them. I mean, it would be too much trouble and financially straining. You are left with the ultimate choice of picking one between HBO Max and Disney Plus.
There are several aspects to consider when comparing these services but it will be up to you to make your choice. HBO Max and Disney Plus both have their strengths and weaknesses. But they have certain features that make each of them stand out from its counterpart. Without saying too much, let’s dive in right away and find out how HBO Max and Disney Plus compare.
HBO Max Overview
HBO Max is among the latest streaming services to have joined the market. The service launched in late May 2020, and as it is many potential subscribers are eager to try out this newcomer. This streaming service from WarnerMedia basically aggregates content from the company’s brands like HBO, Warner Bros, and DC.
The biggest rival to HBO Max is Netflix, but Disney Plus comes in second. The reason why HBO Max and Disney Plus are close competitors is the fact that they both have quite popular TV shows and movies in their content libraries, and a good number of them are aimed at kids.
HBO Max is a streaming service you should consider as a subscriber because it includes everything you will find on HBO. It also brings along a vast back catalog of your favorite shows such as The Big Bang Theory and hundreds of Warner movies like The Hobbit.
There is really plenty of content in their library to keep you entertained day and night. That being said, HBO Max is a great option for people who are already subscribed to HBO Now. Since the cost is the same, you might as well get HBO Max and enjoy much more content.
Disney Plus Overview
We all know about the iconic company Disney. Everything they do seems to simply flourish and become big even without trying. The same goes for their upstart streaming service Disney Plus.
After the launch of Disney Plus in November 2019, it has been giving titans such as Netflix and Amazon Prime sleepless nights. As we speak, Disney Plus already has over 100 million subscribers in the two years it has been in the market.
These are numbers that HBO Max is still struggling to achieve. It’s actually fair to say that Disney Plus has been a success for an upstarts streaming service.
So what are the selling points for this service? For one thing, Disney Plus is well priced. This makes it affordable for the majority. Secondly, you will certainly like the features you get for the price. Let’s not forget this service is family-oriented, and that means the adults will enjoy it as much as the kids.
We have barely touched on the details, and that’s where we are headed now. The viewers need to see how these services compare in terms of price, user experience, content, design, and so on.
HBO Max vs. Disney Plus: Quick comparison of features
There are lots of differences between HBO Max and Disney Plus, especially in terms of content. But you will come to realize that there are other bigger differences. Here is a quick comparison of the two services, and it also gives you an idea of the features they both have to offer to their potential viewers.
|Disney Plus||HBO Max|
|Top Titles||Toy Story, The Simpsons, The Mandalorian.||Friends, Rick and Morty, Game of Thrones.|
|4K HDR available||Yes||No|
|Number of streams||4||3|
HBO Max vs. Disney Plus: Price and availability
Price is always a significant factor in determining a suitable streaming service. You can only go for what you can afford. Besides, the subscribers want to ensure they are actually getting the most value out of their hard-earned money.
The biggest difference between HBO Max and Disney Plus is the price. Disney Plus costs $7.99 a month while HBO Max is at $14.99 a month. You can already see that the monthly subscription cost of HBO Max is twice that of Disney Plus.
The relatively low price tag is one of the reasons many people are attracted to Disney Plus. The truth is viewers aren’t looking to spend lots of money on streamers and anything that can help them save money would be a good choice.
Meanwhile, HBO Max carries quite a hefty price tag. For a standard plan, it has one of the most expensive monthly subscriptions. Both HBO Now and HBO Max cost $15 a month which is a bit confusing to some of us but we just have to deal with it.
Those who opt to sign up for a preorder deal in which they pay for a full year in advance can get a discount. The price is dropped to $12 a month. There are also other discounts offered and you can find them if you look hard enough.
Disney Plus is obviously cheaper than HBO Max. The best part is the features that come with its standard plan. You can stream the content in HD and 4K HDR when available. It also offers up to four simultaneous streams which is a commendable move for the price.
Furthermore, Disney provides a bundle that includes Disney Plus, ESPN+, and Hulu for only $12.99 per month. With this, you can watch more sports and your favorite shows from Hulu.
If you want to stick around for longer, Disney has a yearly plan for you at the price of $79.99. It will actually save you a good sum of money and during these tough times of a pandemic, we will take all the savings we can get.
HBO doesn’t provide any options for a yearly plan or any other tired plans. The service also doesn’t currently support 4K HDR streaming. If you are into 4K streaming, then you are better off with Disney plus.
All things considered, Disney plus takes the lead on the price battle. It’s reasonably priced and offers features like 4K streaming which are not available on HBO Max. When you opt for Disney, you will definitely get more value for your money.
With that being said, if you are already a HBO Now subscriber, you might as well migrate to HBO Max because the price is the same. In fact, HBO Now is actually migrated to HBO Max at absolutely no extra costs.
You will be granted access to much more content at the same price and that seems like a fair deal to most of us. For those who may want a little time to decide if they should switch to HBO Max, there is currently a seven-day free trial.
Unfortunately, Disney Plus doesn’t offer any free trials at the moment.
HBO Max vs. Disney: Original content
The truth is both HBO Max and Disney Plus are a bit underwhelming in terms of original content. Disney Plus launched earlier it does have a slight advantage. But even so, the service hasn’t been able to do much in terms of releasing original content to keep the viewers happy.
Aside from a few like The Mandalorian from Star Wars universe, High School Musical, and Diary of a Future President, there isn’t much original content from Disney. However, we can’t completely dismiss Disney Plus because it has managed to release a decent slate of popular films and TV shows.
It might not possess the endless library of the like of Netflix but a good number of their films have been big hits. We are still looking forward to more original films from Disney Plus and hopefully, they will come soon.
HBO Max is the newest streaming service in town and that means it’s in the same boat as Disney Plus when it comes to original programming. At its launch, there was only one scripted series from HBO Max and it was named Love Life alongside an animated series the Looney Tunes Cartoons.
Soon after, the service decided to boost their original lineup with the release of more originals including Search Party season 3, Doom Patrol season 2 and a Seth Rogen film named An American Pickle.
Disney Plus definitely has struggled to have as many breakouts when it comes to the original content. With the exception of The Mandalorian that was incredibly a massive hit, there are fewer other original films to talk about.
On the other hand, HBO Max is better suited to the original content. This is thanks to the six Max Originals that are already streaming and the popular series named Love Life. The pandemic might have impacted the service as a result some of the content was delayed but there are many originals being released.
HBO Max has plans to release close to 100 titles by the end of 2021. While Disney had promised its subscribers many forthcoming releases, living up to those promises has proven difficult. The viewers are surely disappointed with the delays and cancelations of titles.
So what kind of movies and TV shows are likely to be found on the HBO Max and Disney Plus catalogs? Both streaming services have fairly huge content libraries because they don’t just get their content from a single brand.
Disney Plus amasses its huge library from a total of five brands including Pixar, Star Wars, Marvel, National Geographic, and of course Disney. HBO Max on the other hand houses content from the Warner Bros. movie and television series, DC and HBO. It also franchises content from BBC and Studio Ghibli.
HBO Max vs. Disney Plus: Back catalog
For both services, there is a vast back catalog. However, HBO Max reigns supreme in the category. Disney Plus does make attempts to cater to the needs of all generations through its brands such as Star Wars, Pixar, and MCU but these don’t cover all types of viewers.
Disney Plus is a streamer that mainly caters to the younger generations. This means those who want to watch more of the adult programming are basically left out. There are lots of movies and shows on this streamer but the programming doesn’t necessarily cover viewers of all ages.
If you want to binge on Disney classics and other programs from the Disney Channel, then this is the appropriate streaming service for you. It’s the place to be when you want to go through your childhood memories and all that nostalgic stuff. But as for content designed for adults, there is not so much of it on Disney Plus.
Meanwhile, HBO Max made its debut with over 10,000 hours of content. This included titles from Warner Bros. Pictures, DC Entertainment, New Line Cinema, TNT, TBS, TruTV, CNN, Turner Classic Movies, The CW, Cartoon Network, and Adult Swim.
Furthermore, HBO Max is a streaming service that’s mainly centered around HBO. This means all of the content the network previously released and its future content will be made available to the subscribers. There are plenty of popular titles from HBO Max including Doctor Who, The Sopranos, The Big Bang Theory and so much more.
The movie catalog is made even better with all of the eight Harry Potter movies, DC films, Godzilla titles, and the Lord of the Rings trilogy. Besides, when you compare the Disney Plus list of classics to that of HBO Max, HBO takes the crown. They have exciting classics such as Gone with the wind, The Adventures of Robin Hood, and Casablanca.
HBO Max also adds to its library an entire catalog of anime films from Studio Ghibli that haven’t been released for streaming in the US just yet.
In conclusion, HBO Max has the upper hand in variety, especially for adults. Disney Plus leans more on family-oriented content but still fails to cater to all ages.
Disney Plus seems to be compatible with pretty much every device you can find. The good thing is that most of these devices are the best for streaming so you have nothing to worry about. Some of the devices you can use to stream include Android phones, iPhones, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, and a wide range of smart televisions.
In the meantime, HBO Max is accessible on Google Chromecast, Apple devices, Android devices, Xbox, PlayStation 4, and the newer models of Samsung smart TVs. Unfortunately, it’s not yet on Roku or even on the Amazon Fire TVs.
It’s really a big drawback considering these are among the most popular streaming devices. It’s disappointing but we hope the service will be available on these two devices sooner than later.
At launch, Disney Plus offered support for 4K video streaming and Dolby Atmos surround sound alongside a maximum of four concurrent streams. On the other hand, HBO Max only offers up to three simultaneous streams and supports neither 4K HDR nor Dolby Atmos.
But there are promises of those being included at some point in the future. The truth is a couple of the important features are lacking on HBO Max, which is a huge bummer for the service. But it launched just the other day and things will get better little by little.
That said, Disney Plus takes the crown in this category. At launch, this streaming service was already packed with the features viewers need. That means they understand exactly what people are looking for in a streamer.
Are both services are ideal for the children?
Growing up we have always watched shows and cartoons from Disney. And then you hear the iconic company has launched a streamer that consists of family-friendly content. With that, it’s easy to think Disney Plus has an edge over HBO Max when it comes to kid-friendly content.
Well, we hate to break it to you but this time you are wrong. HBO Max is getting more subscribers from families with young kids thanks to its programming that’s aimed at the kids. This new service is the home to kid-focused originals like the Sesame Street series and Looney Tunes cartoons as well as the entire cartoon network catalog. Alongside all the films from Studio Ghibli, HBO Max also includes the Leo movies and Doctor Who.
As you might already know, Disney Plus provides mostly shows and movies that are meant for the kids. There is nothing R-rated or M-rated on this streaming platform. Though, there are a few intense PG and PG-13 content that’s not really appropriate for the younger audience.
Fortunately, if you don’t want the younger viewers in your home accessing inappropriate content, Disney Plus has parental control features. In this case, parents create profiles for their children and then toggle the profile set to On. This automatically prevents any of the PG and PG-13 content from showing up on the kids’ profiles.
On the downside, this feature is not useful for all age groups. You can’t possibly enable PG content and then disable PG-13 content all at the same time. But some people argue since there is technically no R-rated or M-rated content on the platform, the parental control features don’t have to be that intense. That being said, Disney Plus needs to upgrade its parental control and quit on the excuses.
Meanwhile, HBO Max makes things easy by ensuring the kid’s profiles are customizable. The parents are the ones to choose the rating levels for the kids ranging from PG, PG-13, G, R, and NC-17 for the movies. The rating levels for the television shows are TV-G, TV-14, TV-PG, TV-MA, TV-Y7, and TV-Y. Also, you can create and enable a passcode that prevents the kids from signing out of their profile and getting into yours.
Disney Plus might have earned a reputation of having the best programming for kids, but HBO Max definitely has a lot going for parental controls.
On the platform, you can connect two profiles to create a distinct watching space for the shows you watch together with the kids. This is smart because it prevents messing up your own recommendation engine.
In conclusion, Disney Plus definitely takes the lead when it comes to providing ideal content for the kids. Meanwhile, HBO Max gets the upper hand for offering the best customizable kids profiles as well as great content. HBO Max obviously has an edge here.
HBO Max vs Disney Plus: Interface and user experience
Disney Plus has a user-friendly interface characterized by rows of tiles sorted in categories like Recommended for you, Continue watching, and so on.
HBO Max takes the same approach only that its design is more visually appealing. The fewer tiles on the screen create breaks for the eyes to rest. On Disney Plus, the top of the home page has hubs for each brand including Marvel, Pixar, Nation Geographic, Star Wars, and Disney.
HBO Max also has quite a similar hub when you scroll down the profile page. The truth is both streaming platforms offer more or less the same usability and user experience.
HBO Max vs. Disney Plus: Which is the best service?
You can never go wrong with Disney Plus if you’re looking for pure content for your children. It has everything from the classics to originals.
But HBO Max offers a huge catalog of movies and shows that are exclusive to the platform and we love the parental controls. Besides, it makes more sense to choose HBO Max if you are already a HBO Now subscriber.
The price is the same for both services. For those who want variety and more content to keep the adults happy, HBO Max is a match.