HBO Max activations doubled in the fourth quarter to 17.2 million as revenues for WarnerMedia and parent company AT&T slid in 2020, the telco giant reported today (Jan. 27).
Domestic HBO Max and HBO subscribers topped 41 million, up from 38 million in Q3. Worldwide, subscribers grew to 61 million from 57 million.
AT&T chief John Stankey (pictured) attributed those gains — achieved two years ahead of the company’s forecast — to the release of Wonder Woman 1984 in December. HBO Max’s unscripted and documentary fare in 2020 includes such titles as On the Record, 12 Dates of Christmas, How To with John Wilson and The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air Reunion.
Still, the company stated in its fiscal update the COVID-19 pandemic impacted revenues across most of its business.
WarnerMedia revenue for the quarter landed at US$8.6 billion, compared to $9.5 billion in the year-ago quarter — largely due to lower TV and theatrical revenues and sports timing, despite higher subscription revenues driven by HBO Max — and $7.5 billion in Q3.
AT&T’s consolidated revenues for the fourth quarter totaled $45.7 billion versus $46.8 billion in the Q4 of 2019.
For full-year 2020, when compared with 2019 results, AT&T’s consolidated revenues totaled $171.8 billion compared to $181.2 billion.
In addition to lower content and advertising revenues for WarnerMedia, AT&T posted revenue declines in domestic video, legacy wireline services and Latin America, which was impacted by foreign exchange pressures.
Growth from domestic wireless equipment and strategic and managed services partly offset those declines, AT&T stated.
In 2021, AT&T projects its consolidated revenue to grow in the 1% range.