HBO’s ‘The Last of Us’ gets a warm welcome with 4.7M U.S. viewers

The Last of Us” made its debut last night on HBO and HBO Max. The series premiere garnered 4.7 million U.S. viewers, making it HBO’s second-largest debut since “Boardwalk Empire” premiered over a decade ago with 4.81 million viewers, the company announced today. “House of the Dragon” remains the biggest premiere in HBO history with nearly 10 million viewers.

The video game adaptation was a recipe for success given the established fan base, a star-studded cast, and an accurate representation of the franchise that many gamers loved to see come to life. While it’s too early to predict if “The Last of Us” will become the most popular game-based TV series, the viewership data is a sure sign that HBO is doing something right. Notably, “The Last of Us” is the company’s first time adapting a video game into a show.

“We are thrilled to see fans of the series and game alike experience this iconic story in a new way, and we extend our gratitude to them for helping to make it a success,” said Casey Bloys, Chairman and CEO of HBO & HBO Max Content, in a statement.

We’ll also add that the premiere caused a 69% increase in first-time U.S. downloads of the HBO Max app across iOS and Android devices, per third-party app intelligence estimates from (previously App Annie). Plus, the HBO Max app reached #4 on the overall free iPhone app ranking on the U.S. App Store on the night of the premiere. The last time it was this high in the ranking was when it hit #3 on the list when “House of the Dragon” debuted in August 2022.

However, “The Last of Us” has big shoes to fill if it wants to compete with other game-based shows like Netflix’s “Arcane,” which is based on “League of Legends.” Based on Netflix’s own metrics, “Arcane” had 38.4 million viewing hours during the week of November 15, 2021. Paramount+’s “Halo” set a record for being the streamer’s most-watched series premiere worldwide. Amazon Prime Video also has video game adaptations in the works, including a “God of War” series.

The HBO original series will have nine episodes in total and will stream on Sundays.

HBO Max subscribers were only introduced to a few characters in the first episode, so it’s likely the following episodes will feature more, such as Frank (Murray Bartlett), Bill (Nick Offerman), Kathleen (Melanie Lynskey), Florence (Elaine Miles), Riley (Storm Reid), Perry (Jeffrey Pierce) and Henry (Lamar Johnson). Viewers will also finally get to see clickers in action.

HBO’s ‘The Last of Us’ gets a warm welcome with 4.7M U.S. viewers by Lauren Forristal originally published on TechCrunch

Peacock adds live TV from all local NBC stations to its Premium Plus tier

Peacock announced that on November 30, its Premium Plus subscribers will get 24/7 access to their local NBC station in all of NBC’s 210 markets, including live TV programming like local news, sports, weather and entertainment.

Subscribers will soon be able to livestream popular programs like “The TODAY Show,” “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon” and “Saturday Night Live” without paying for cable. As part of yesterday’s soft launch, some Premium Plus subscribers already gained access to their NBC local affiliate channel livestream.

“With Peacock’s local affiliate livestream, our subscribers are getting the unique combination of the ad-free on-demand content they love with the local news and NBC programming that is already part of their daily life,” Kelly Campbell, president, Peacock and Direct-to-Consumer, NBCUniversal, said in a statement.

NBC’s local affiliate stations join brands and channels like NFL, Golf, Premiere League, NBC News, Sky News, TODAY, Hallmark, WWE and others.

Peacock is likely including more live TV options to compete with rival Paramount+, which has always included local programming on its platform. Paramount+, with its 46 million subscribers, brings live TV to 99% of the United States, the company claims on its website.

After experiencing a slowdown in subscriber growth, it’s also possible that Peacock is urging more of its subscribers to upgrade to Premium Plus. Peacock recently revealed that its total paid subscriber base jumped from 13 million paid subscribers to over 15 million in the third quarter.

While it’s unlikely that many Peacock subscribers of its free ad-supported plan will switch over to the $9.99/month Premium Plus tier, its possible subscribers paying $4.99/month for the Premium plan will want to switch over to get 24/7 access to their local NBC station.

Plus, $9.99/month is a better deal than paying the hefty price for cable or live TV streaming services like Sling TV.

“This is an exciting new offering that expands our best-in-class broadcast and local programming to new audiences,” added Philip Martzolf, president, NBC Affiliate Relations.

Peacock adds live TV from all local NBC stations to its Premium Plus tier by Lauren Forristal originally published on TechCrunch

Football fans unable to watch DirecTV’s NFL Sunday Ticket due to the website and app crashing

It is DirecTV’s final year as the exclusive home of NFL Sunday Ticket, the out-of-market sports package that broadcasts National Football League regular season games, and let’s just say opening weekend isn’t off to a great start. 

Reports of the Sunday Ticket website and app crashing were rampant yesterday as customers were either locked out of the service, unable to sign in, experienced laggy feeds, or received error messages that claimed they couldn’t stream because they were inside an NFL stadium when they weren’t. 

DirecTV wasn’t immediately available to comment to TechCrunch. The company told The Verge, “We’re aware some customers are unable to access NFL Sunday Ticket online or through the app. Our teams are working to resolve this, but in the meantime, we recommend satellite customers watch on TV.” 

DirecTV is still reaching out to Twitter users about finding a resolution to the problems. 

DirecTV wasn’t the only service that crashed either. Viewers trying to watch NFL RedZone on Sling TV and YouTube TV experienced streaming issues. Even the newly-launched NFL+ streaming service gave some subscribers trouble.

DirecTV has held the rights to Sunday Ticket since 1994, and it’s not the first time users have experienced streaming issues.

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell confirmed in July that the next winner of the Sunday Ticket will be a streaming service and is going to be revealed in the fall.

Football fans unable to watch DirecTV’s NFL Sunday Ticket due to the website and app crashing by Lauren Forristal originally published on TechCrunch

Roku’s latest update adds short-form video, a universal save list and ‘continue watching’ feature

Alongside its fall hardware update, which included new streaming and audio devices, Roku today unveiled the features it has in store for the next version of its media software, Roku OS 11.5. This time around, the platform maker is looking to advance its own offerings, like its Live TV experience, as well as better cater to viewers who are struggling to keep up with a range of film and TV content across a growing number of streaming services with new features like an expanded universal watch list, a platform-wide “continue watching” feature, and a new discovery center called “The Buzz,” featuring short-form content.

Many of the new additions see Roku returning to its roots as a company that focuses more on connecting customers to the many streaming services they enjoy, instead of heavily pushing its own free streaming hub, The Roku Channel, and subscription platform.

For instance, one new feature is transforming Roku’s “Save List,” previously available only on The Roku Channel and in the mobile app, into a platform-wide universal watch list that lets viewers save movies and shows from across their services to a single destination. This feature will now also be located within the “What to Watch” hub on Roku’s Home Screen Menu, in addition to the mobile app.

Image Credits: Roku: Save List

To use the feature, Roku customers will see a “Save” option on the newly revamped movie and TV show details pages, which now sport a more visual design. This “Save” option will let the user add a given title to their Save List for later viewing. This could be particularly useful for titles that are still only available for rent or purchase, but may hit a customer’s subscription streaming services at a later date, as well as those they just want to remind themselves to watch later.

Save Lists will additionally arrive in Canada, the U.K., and Ireland with this release.

Another feature, “Continue Watching,” will also be located in this “What to Watch” hub, giving customers a quick way to jump back into titles they were previously viewing. And it doesn’t only work with The Roku Channel, the company says — it will support top streamers like Netflix, HBO Max, and Paramount+, too. The company hinted more partners were on the way, but could not share names.

Image Credits: Roku: Continue Watching

Roku also can’t seem to escape consumer demand for short-form content.

Like Netflix, which entered this space with its comedy-focused “Fast Laughs” feature on mobile before expanding to the TV earlier this year, Roku is also now embracing short-form video with a new Home Screen addition called “The Buzz.”

But unlike Netflix, it’s not creating any of this short content itself. Instead, it’s leaving that up to partners, including AMC+, Apple TV+, BET+, Crackle, Hallmark Movies Now, IGN, Plex, Popcornflix, SHOWTIME, Starz, The CW, Tubi, Vevo, and Wondrium.

These brands will post short-form video clips, trailers, interviews, and even images to engage Roku viewers who are looking for something new to watch. Viewers can “like” these posts and save the content to watch later through the updated watch list feature. They can also follow profiles, as on social media, or immediately start streaming the promoted title. The company said the feature would expand over time with more content and partners.

Image Credits: Roku’s The Buzz

The updated software will also introduce a few features that cater to Roku’s own interests.

One of these is the new Roku Store, which lets consumers shop for both free and paid streaming channels. This is more of an update to the existing channel search experience, as the store will better organize the available offerings by category in more of a marketplace format.

Roku will also promote its foray into Live TV with a dedicated Live TV Channel “Guide” button on its mobile app remote, which will likely appeal more to recent cord-cutters who still want a cable TV-like experience.

At launch, this Live TV Guide will include content from The Roku Channel, over-the-air content from a connected TV tuner, free AVOD (ad-supported video on demand) channels, and premium subscription channels launched through The Roku Channel’s subscription platform.

Image Credits: Roku Home Screen

By pushing the new button, users will be able to browse and search channels or filter their discovery efforts by way of new channel categories — Recents, Favorites, and Subscribed. The latter will connect users to their Premium stations from The Roku Channel. Customers can also browse the Live TV offering by genre, like News, Sports, Movies, Entertainment, Kids, Crime, Music, and En Espanol.

Related to Live TV, Roku will later introduce a centralized discovery location for sports content that will help viewers find live sports on now, as well as replays and other sports-related content.

Among the smaller updates in this release is an enhancement to Roku’s voice feature that adds a display on-screen showing the channel options related to a voice search. This way, Roku Voice can ask a follow-up question, like asking which channel in the list the user wanted, and the user can respond more conversationally by saying something like “the second one.”

The company is also expanding its Bluetooth Private Listening feature, which lets users listen to TV through headphones so as not to disturb others. This now supports the company’s newest Roku Ultra and its audio devices the Streambar and Streambar Pro.

The company notes the Roku OS 11.5 update is arriving in the months ahead, but says some features may appear sooner instead of waiting to be packaged as a part of the larger OS release.

Roku also today introduced a new version of the Roku Express streaming player ($29.99) with dual-band Wi-Fi and additional storage, and a new product called Roku Wireless Bass ($129.99).

Roku’s latest update adds short-form video, a universal save list and ‘continue watching’ feature by Sarah Perez originally published on TechCrunch

HBO grows its ‘Game of Thrones’ franchise, gives spin-off ‘House of the Dragon’ a second season

Days after HBO’s “House of the Dragon” became the most-watched premiere for a new HBO original series, the “Game of Thrones” prequel series is renewed for a second season. Now that the rumor is confirmed, fans can rest in knowing the Dance of the Dragons is just beginning to unfold.

The company also announced today that the audience has doubled with over 20 million viewers across linear, on-demand, and HBO Max in the U.S, per Nielsen data combined with HBO’s own data. When the first episode premiered on Sunday, August 21, the show had 10 million viewers. HBO and HBO Max have only aired one episode so far.

Based on the huge audience as well as the many positive reviews and an 86% audience score on Rotten Tomatoes, it’s no wonder a Season 2 is now guaranteed.

Eager to gain revenue and subscribers ahead of the merger between Warner Bros. Discovery-owned streaming services HBO Max and Discovery+, it appears the company is banking on “House of the Dragon” to succeed. The company reported 91.2 million subscribers across HBO, HBO Max, and Discovery+ in the second quarter, with a loss of 300,000 domestic subscribers. Warner Bros. Discovery had a net loss of $3.4 million.

Despite the HBO Max app crashing on Sunday, data from shows that app downloads jumped from 47,300 on August 15 to 131,000 downloads on the day of the premiere. On August 21, HBO Max secured the No. 1 spot for streaming app downloads, beating rivals Netflix, Hulu, and Disney+.

We previously reported that HBO Max had 21% U.S. download market share in the first quarter of 2022, per Sensor Tower’s “Store Intelligence Data Digest” report.

HBO embraces the impressively large “Game of Thrones” fanbase. The company has done a lot to promote the show. In an email to staff, Warner Bros. Discovery CEO David Zaslav called it “the largest marketing campaign in HBO’s history,” reported The Hollywood Reporter. Zaslav noted that the campaign reached nearly 130 million people in the United States.

When promoting “House of Dragon,” HBO released a companion AR app DracARys that lets fans raise their own virtual dragon, an official podcast that provides commentary, and a partnership with Snapchat that gives users a fire-breathing dragon Lens. It also scored a high-profile ad slot on Roku devices — directly in Roku’s main navigation, just below the “Home” menu.

“House of the Dragon” has taken years to make, with each episode costing approximately less than $20 million, sources told Variety. In total, Season 1 is 10 episodes long.

It is rumored that HBO is making six more spin-offs — a move that Disney+ continues to do with its Star Wars franchise. Netflix is pulling a similar strategy, creating an IP universe for “The Gray Man,” and giving “Stranger Things” a spin-off series. The “Lord of the Rings” movie franchise is getting a prequel series on Amazon Prime Video premiering on September 2.

Mad Realities’ Devin Lewtan is onboarding crypto users through reality television

Web3 doesn’t have the most inclusive reputation, yet so many crypto founders talk about onboarding the next 100 million users into the space. Statistically speaking, the next 100 million can’t possibly be comprised entirely of a homogenous group of cis white men who spend most of their waking hours coding and/or day trading (no shade, just pointing out a fact)!

This week on Chain Reaction, I interviewed Devin Lewtan, a twentysomething founder who seems to have found the secret sauce when it comes to bringing web3 to new audiences.

Her NYC-based media company, Mad Realities, just debuted its first season of “Proof of Love,” a reality TV show focused on dating that allows viewers to engage with the plot and vote on key decisions through NFTs. This April, Mad Realities raised $6 million in a seed round from investors including crypto VC firm Paradigm and socialite Paris Hilton to build a platform they hope will become the ‘Netflix of web3.’ You can listen to the full interview with Devin below.

“We think the thing that’s going to bring the next 100 million people into crypto is going to be content, because it’s intuitive. It’s a real consumer use case,” Lewtan said on the podcast.

Lewtan, who catapulted into tech world fame when she co-released the viral Clubhouse show “NYU Girls Roasting Tech Guys” during the height of the pandemic, first got interested in NFTs when started chatting with her friend and now-cofounder Alice Ma about how crypto could help change the way media is funded.

“We put out a blog post basically saying, what would it look like if we put on this dating show where people minted our NFTs and they could vote on who made it into the show, what happens and who wins and get fun, special, governance perks based on the tier that they bought,” Lewtan said.

Shortly after the Mad Realities team released its first blog post in November, they had raised the equivalent of ~$500k USD worth of ethereum to finance production. In a matter of just a few months, they had whipped up a five-week, interactive show filmed in person in New York City.

The audience for the first season, which wrapped up in April this year, was ~65% female and comprised mainly of people who were just there for the entertainment value of the show at first rather than for its connection to web3, Lewtan said.

Mad Realities CEO and cofounder Devin Lewtan

Mad Realities CEO and cofounder Devin Lewtan Image Credits: Provided by Devin Lewtan

Once audience members saw the perks and voting rights afforded to Mad Realities NFT holders, called “roseholders” in a nod to “The Bachelor” franchise, they were intrigued.

“They were able to say to their friends, I’m pretty sure that these roseholders that keep appearing are people who bought NFTs, and those NF T’s let them vote on things, and then the money from the NFTs funded the show. And then they’re like, that actually makes sense to me, more than most projects in the space … that’s not really like the scammy type of use case that I think about with NFTs,” Lewtan said.

As for what’s next, Lewtan said the next season of “Proof of Love” launching this fall will inform the startup as it crafts a broader vision for what a web3 media platform could look like. They are experimenting with ideas such as bringing other content creators onto the Mad Realities platform and helping them launch their own NFT projects for their audiences, she added.

Above all, Lewtan emphasized the importance of keeping user-friendliness top of mind while building the product.

“One of the things that we’re focusing on now as we build out our app is that it’s important that [creating a crypto wallet] is not one of the steps in the process. You should just be able to create an account and not think about the fact that it’s connected to a wallet,” Lewtan said.

“A wallet is compatible, but if you sign up, you should be able to have an NFT in your wallet and your app and not even think about it … So a lot of the stuff that we’re focusing on is, what is the experience like to be so user friendly and mobile-first where it doesn’t even feel like it’s a crypto product?”

Amazon and DirecTV partnership brings ‘Thursday Night Football’ to 300,000+ bars, restaurants and other venues

Amazon Prime Video and DirecTV struck a multiyear agreement that allows business owners to stream “Thursday Night Football” for their patrons. Amazon’s “TNF” broadcasts, including pregame, halftime and postgame coverage, will be available to more than 300,000 sports bars, restaurants, retail stores, hotel lounges, casinos and sports books, among other venues across the U.S., regardless of if it is a national chain or local.

DirecTV for Business customers that are subscribed to Business Entertainment, Business Xtra, Commercial Entertainment, Commercial Xtra, Commercial Choice PLUS and the Spanish-language Commercial Mas Ultra will automatically get Prime Video’s “Thursday Night Football” feed for no extra cost. The games can be found on DirecTV channel 9526.

The deal will begin with the preseason football matchup between the San Francisco 49ers and the Houston Texans on August 25. The regular season slate will commence on September 15.

Typically, bars and restaurants don’t have streaming services because it can be expensive to upgrade all the TVs. DirecTV for Business allows venues to continue providing NFL fans with an otherwise streaming-exclusive “Thursday Night Football” lineup of games.

“The sports media landscape continues to evolve rapidly, and the focus on delivering a great experience to our entire range of customers must remain at the center of that evolution,” said Rob Thun, DirecTV chief content officer, in a statement. “This agreement between Amazon and DirecTV for Business comes at an important time when more streaming companies are obtaining exclusive rights to marquee sports programming and fans want to cheer on their teams at home and while out at bars, restaurants, and other businesses with friends, family, and coworkers.”

Starting in 1994, DirecTV hosted NFL’s “Sunday Ticket.” However, its rights to broadcast the popular football package expire at the end of the upcoming season. While it will no longer be a partner for “Sunday Ticket,” this new deal with Amazon allows the satellite company to remain in the NFL business.

Last month, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said the National Football League would most likely announce a streaming partner for “Sunday Ticket” in the fall.

The NFL’s 11-year media rights agreement with Amazon Prime Video makes the streaming service the first streamer to hold exclusive rights to a package of NFL games.

Last week, Amazon closed a three-year deal with Nielsen to include the streaming service and its livestreaming program “Thursday Night Football” in its National TV measurement service, a first for the data measurement firm.

After CNN+ shutdown, Discovery+ adds a CNN Originals hub to its U.S. service

Today, Discovery+ subscribers in the U.S. get access to over 800 episodes of CNN content through a dedicated CNN Originals hub. The network’s three brands — CNN Original Series, CNN Films, and HLN Original Series — will provide viewers with a selection of titles such as “Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown,” “Stanley Tucci: Searching for Italy,” “Real Life Nightmare,” “Death Row Stories,” “Race for the Vaccine,” among others.

Subscribers can access the hub within the Discovery+ app or on the web. Supported devices include Amazon Fire devices, iOS devices, Apple TVs, Samsung Smart TVs, VIZIO Smart TVs, Roku devices, Android TVs, and other Android devices.

According to the company, the hub will get an initial offering of CNN Originals for viewers to stream, with select CNN Original Series and HLN Original Series added later. More titles will be announced in a few months.

The announcement was initially made earlier this month, ahead of Warner Bros Discovery’s second-quarter results. The news also comes five months after the CNN+ streaming service was quickly shut down, most likely disappointing the 10,000 or more people streaming the service for the one month it had been in existence.

Now CNN fans can stream the content on Discovery+ at $4.99 per month, along with a variety of other documentaries, home improvement shows, true crime, lifestyle, and other content from networks Investigation Discovery, HGTV, TLC, and Food Network.

CNN+ would only have CNN content at $5.99, so having the hub on Discovery+ is a much better value.

“True crime, food, and travel programming are among the most-watched genres for discovery+ viewers, so these titles from CNN will fit right in with our best-in-class collection of unscripted content,” JB Perrette, President and CEO of Warner Bros. Discovery Streaming, said in a statement at the beginning of August.

Other titles on the new hub include “1968: The Year That Changed America,” “American Dynasties: The Kennedys,” “American Style,” “The Bush Years: Family, Duty, Power,” “Chasing Life with Dr. Sanjay Gupta,” “Christiane Amanpour: Sex and Love Around the World,” “Crimes of the Century,” “Declassified: Untold Stories of American Spies” (Seasons 1-3), “Diana,” “First Ladies,” “Nomad with Carlton McCoy,” “Reframed: Marilyn Monroe,” “The People v. The Klan,” “United Shades of America with W. Kamau Bell” (Seasons 1-6), “Beyond Reasonable Doubt,” “The Dead Wives Club,” “The Killer Truth,” and lots more.

There will also be select titles from the CNN Special Reports collection like “Assault on Democracy: The Roots of Trump’s Insurrection.”

With CNN+ gone, Warner Bros. Discovery decided to integrate CNN Originals into its streaming strategy both with this new dedicated hub on Discovery+ as well as by adding titles to HBO Max. The CNN Original “Who’s Talking to Chris Wallace?” is premiering on HBO Max this fall.

On September 30, HBO Max will also gain content from Chip and Joanna Gaines’ Magnolia Network, such as the titles “Fixer Upper: Welcome Home,” “The Lost Kitchen,” and “Restoration Road with Clint Harp.”

In the second quarter of 2022, Warner Bros. Discovery reported that the total number of direct-to-consumer subscribers across HBO, HBO Max, and Discovery+ was 92.1 million.


Streaming viewership surpassed cable TV for the first time, says Nielsen

Streaming viewership reached new highs last month, exceeding cable usage for the first time, according to Nielsen. The measurement firm today released its total TV and streaming report for July, stating that streaming represented a 34.8% share of total TV viewing in the U.S. — an increase of 22.6% compared to July 2021. Cable consumption was a little behind at 34.4%, an 8.9% drop from the year prior and a 2% decline compared to June.

Streaming had exceeded broadcast viewing before, and this continued to be the case, with broadcast down 3.7% on volume compared with June. Broadcast’s share of TV viewing was at 21.6% the report said.

The new milestone reinforces streaming as a top choice for TV viewers, mainly driven by original content that can’t be found on cable or broadcast television.

July also broke a record with the highest-volume streaming weeks, the data measurement firm noted. The average time spent streaming last month was 190.9 billion minutes per week. The week of Christmas in December 2021 was the last all-time high that Nielsen measured, with 183 billion minutes.

Note that Nielsen’s report only compares programming viewed on TVs and internet-connected TVs. It doesn’t measure streaming via mobile or desktop, which would likely make streaming’s market share even larger.

In fact, streaming on big screens (connected TVs, smart TVs and gaming consoles) represented 77% of globally streamed minutes in Q1 2022, according to a report by streaming data analytics company Conviva.

Content — especially exclusive and unique content — is key to the success of streaming services. The boost in TV viewership was primarily driven by streaming releases across Netflix, YouTube, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, Disney+ and HBO Max.

Image Credits: Nielsen

When Nielsen looked at the breakdown of streaming services, Netflix held the largest share of overall TV viewing among streaming platforms with 8%. In June, Netflix was at 7.7%. So, while Netflix reported a huge loss in subscribers, the service remains popular among TV viewers in the U.S.

Nielsen pointed to Netflix’s “Stranger Things” Season 4 as the main driver, which had almost 18 billion viewing minutes in July. Netflix boasted that “Stranger Things 4” had the largest opening weekend for an English-language series and was the most watched season of English-language TV in one week on the platform.

Also, “Virgin River” and “The Umbrella Academy” contributed nearly 11 billion minutes of combined viewing. The action thriller “The Gray Man,” which will now get its own universe, and the animated adventure film “The Sea Beast” chipped in more than five billion minutes.

Netflix’s founder and co-CEO Reed Hastings agrees with analysts that say linear TV is nearing its end. In the second-quarter earnings call, he remarked, “Looking forward, streaming is working everywhere. Everyone is pouring in. It’s the end of linear TV over the next five, 10 years.”

Image Credits: Netflix

In second place, YouTube and YouTube TV had a total share of 7.3%, a nice jump from last month at 6.9%. YouTube’s livestreaming service, YouTube TV, recently reached a milestone of its own, surpassing 5 million paid subs and users with trials for the service. While the streaming service isn’t big on original content, it’s a cheaper — and arguably — better alternative to cable, with access to major broadcast networks, national sports channels and major cable news channels, all at $65 per month.

Hulu’s total share of 3.6% can be attributed to the second season of “Only Murders in the Building” and the new hit series “The Bear,” which had a combined 3 billion minutes viewed. With 46.2 million subscribers, Disney+’s sister streaming service broke a record of 58 Emmy nominations this year, while Disney+ only had 34. “Only Murders in the Building” had 17 noms.

Craig Erwich, president of Hulu Originals and ABC Entertainment, has called the show Hulu’s “true crown jewel” of its slate because of its “appeal across generations” and “the intersection of humor and heart.” The show has been renewed for a third season.

Amazon’s Prime Video sits in fourth place with a total share of 3%, driven by the new series “The Terminal List,” starring Chris Pratt, and new episodes of “The Boys,” which accumulated more than eight billion viewing minutes. Two days ago, Amazon and Nielsen struck a deal to measure the ratings of Prime Video’s “Thursday Night Football.”

According to the report, Disney+ and HBO Max had the smallest share of TV viewing at 1.8% and 1%, respectively.

HBO Max has been under fire lately due to the removal of 40+ titles and layoffs that affected 70 employees.

Last week, Disney+ announced it is raising the price of its premium subscription to $10.99 per month, up from $7.99. U.S. subscribers will see the change in early December. Hulu, ESPN+ and the Disney Bundle (Hulu with ads) also saw price hikes.

HBO Max is removing 36 titles and creators are not happy

HBO Max is continuing its content removal spree with 36 titles going off the service this week including 20 of its in-house productions. Other titles include originals from HBO and Cartoon Network along with a few acquired titles. The development first reported by Variety noted that this move was aligned with the big HBO Max-Discovery+ merger slotted to take place next year.

In order to prepare for the merger, the company has been silently removing titles for some weeks now. Earlier this month, during its quarterly earnings call, Warner Bros. Discovery said HBO Max will start showing Discovery+ reality shows from Chip and Joanna Gaines’ Magnolia Network starting September 30.

“As we work toward bringing our content catalogs together under one platform, we will be making changes to the content offering available on both HBO Max and discovery+. That will include the removal of some content from both platforms,” the firm said in a statement to Variety. We have reached out to HBO Max to learn when exactly these titles will be removed.

The company is likely removing titles to cut costs and make way for newer titles in the combined service. While it’s just a money-saving tactic for the streaming giants, creatives are worried that their hard work in creating shows will be wasted because of executive decisions.

Julia Pot, the creator the of animated show “Summer Camp Island” said on Twitter that the makers didn’t have much information about the reasons behind this move. We have asked HBO Max for a comment on its communication with creators, and we will update the story if we hear back.

Here is the full list of titles being removed from the service:

HBO Max and HBO Originals

  • 12 Dates of Christmas
  • About Last Night
  • Aquaman: King of Atlantis
  • Close Enough
  • Ellen’s Next Great Designer
  • Esme & Roy
  • The Fungies!
  • Generation Hustle
  • Generation
  • Infinity Train
  • Little Ellen
  • My Mom, Your Dad
  • My Dinner with Herve
  • Odo
  • Ravi Patel’s Pursuit of Happiness
  • Summer Camp Island
  • Share
  • The Not-Too-Late Show with Elmo
  • The Runaway Bunny
  • Theodosia
  • Tig n’ Seek
  • Yabba Dabba Dinosaurs

Cartoon Network

  • Dodo
  • Elliott From Earth
  • Mao Mao, Heroes of Pure Heart
  • Mighty Magiswords
  • OK K.O.! – Let’s Be Heroes
  • Uncle Grandpa
  • Victor and Valentino

Licensed Titles

  • Detention Adventure”
  • Messy Goes to Okido
  • Mia’s Magic Playground
  • The Ollie & Moon Show
  • Pac-Man and the Ghostly Adventures
  • Make It Big, Make It Small
  • Squish