According to the original Wall Street Journal report, WBD also decided to keep Discovery+ as it stands due to its customer base. Around 20 million subscribers currently pay for the platform, which hosts original programming and pre-existing ones from channels like TLC and Food Network. Insiders argue that the Discovery+ customer base is less likely to want to pay for an extra service with content they don’t want just to access the content they do.
However, Variety last confirmed that as of November 2022, the total number of subscribers across all WBD streaming avenues was around 95 million. This means that HBO Max and HBO have accounted for substantially more subscribers than Discovery+, making the decision to prioritize the latter a bit confusing. It’s likely that the customer base of Discovery+ is less likely to want to pay extra money for the combined service than HBO or HBO Max subscribers, but that’s still unconfirmed. That being said, what is known is that WBD CEO David Zaslav had overseen the creation and growth of Discovery+ before the company merged with Warner Bros.
It is unknown when either the new streaming service or the FAST channel will be available to consumers. However, the combined platform will likely arrive sometime in the spring and, according to Variety, could be named Max. More will likely be revealed when the company holds its fourth-quarter earnings call on February 23.