HBO Max will release a completely rebuilt Apple TV app by the end of the year to overcome various issues users are having with the current version, according to a new report.
Shortly after Warnermedia removed its HBO Max offering from Apple TV channels in May, an update to its tvOS app released afterward essentially broke several features of the service.
In June, HBO Max ditched the native tvOS video player in favor of a custom video player, which introduced video fast-forwarding and rewinding issues in the app.
Recognizing its mistake, HBO quickly restored the native tvOS video player UI. However, playback control issues remained, while users continued to report other issues related to subtitles and audio description.
According to HBO Max executives who spoke to Vulture, these remaining errors should be fixed for all Apple TV users “within days”, while subscribers can expect an all-new app to be rolled out to meet the needs of the current service.
“We’re going to replace every connected TV app over the next four or five months,” an unnamed WarnerMedia official said. Apple TV customers will likely have to wait until the end of the year for the new app to appear, and a redesign of the mobile and web apps are planned for early 2022.
According to the report, the problems started when the company launched a new $10 ad-supported tier and expanded its app to 39 new countries in June. Integrating ads into what was an ad-free platform required the introduction of a whole new layer of app coding, and that’s when the widely reported bugs were established.
WarnerMedia also admitted that the current HBO Max app wasn’t created from scratch and runs on a modernized version of the older HBO Go and HBO Now services, which were made for a very different product. Hence the decision to start from scratch with a brand new app, which has been in the works since at least the end of last year.