HBO Max launches without 4K and HDR streams – but they're coming eventually

(Image credit: HBO Max)

New streaming service HBO Max has landed in the US, with international launches planned down the line. If you were hoping to start streaming movies and shows in 4K from today, though, bad news: the service doesn't currently support 4K streaming or High Dynamic Range (HDR)

"4K HDR will not be available at launch but we are looking to deliver it in the future," a HBO Max spokesperson confirms to TechRadar. 

The news may be a little disappointing, especially after Disney Plus launched with 4K HDR streams of the Marvel and Star Wars movies at no extra cost. HBO Max's $14.99 monthly subscription fee is a dollar short of Netflix's Premium Plan, which offers 4K streaming for available content. 

It might be a dealbreaker for some, then, but at least it's on HBO Max's roadmap for the future. Perhaps in the coming months, we'll get some idea of when to expect it.

When will HBO Max launch internationally?

HBO Max's international rollout is set to begin by 2021, according to a Deadline report, with the streaming service becoming available in Latin America. Expect HBO Max to launch in countries where the service already has a presence across Europe, too.

In the UK, a HBO Max launch is unlikely to be on the cards any time soon. Sky hosts HBO content in the UK, and in 2019 a deal was struck that would allow the entertainment giant to co-produce new HBO Max programming, as well as continuing to show HBO's new shows first. 

All your HBO faves, then, are likely to stay on Sky and Now TV for a few years at least.

Samuel Roberts

Samuel is a PR Manager at game developer Frontier. Formerly TechRadar's Senior Entertainment Editor, he's an expert in Marvel, Star Wars, Netflix shows and general streaming stuff. Before his stint at TechRadar, he spent six years at PC Gamer. Samuel is also the co-host of the popular Back Page podcast, in which he details the trials and tribulations of being a games magazine editor – and attempts to justify his impulsive eBay games buying binges.