Struggling to log into the new Max streaming service? You’re not alone

The Max streaming service logo on a blank TV
HBO Max's streaming replacement is off to a rocky start. (Image credit: UnSplash)

Update: Responding to TechRadar's request for comment on the launch day log-in issues, Warner Bros. Discovery (WBD) confirmed it was aware of the problems users were facing, and that HBO Max subscribers would continue to be migrated over to the new service in the coming days.

A Max spokesperson also added: "You must always anticipate issues on a tech rollout of this scale. We can share that only minor ones have emerged and were quickly remedied."

Despite that statement, though, some TechRadar staff members are still unable to log into their accounts, so it's possible that you and other Max users may be facing a similar issue. We'll notify you all once we've finally gained access and/or once Max's problems are fully resolved.

Original story follows.

JB Perrette gives a talk standing in front of the Max logo on a big screen

Max replaced HBO Max as WBD's main streaming service on May 23. (Image credit: Jeff Kravitz/Warner Bros. Discovery)

Well, Warner Bros. Discovery (WBD) wasn't hoping for a rocky start to life for its newly launched Max streaming service – but that's exactly what's happened.

The super streamer, which replaced HBO Max, one of the best streaming services, today (May 23), has been marred by a persistent log-in problem that's preventing returning HBO Max users and new subscribers from accessing its suite of content.

Earlier today, I attempted to sign into the new platform to see what was available to stream, how Max's new user interface compares to its predecessor, and more. However, after trying to log into our account, I was met with the obligatory ' Something went wrong, please try again' message.

A screenshot of the Max log-in error message taken in Google Chrome

New and returning Max customers have been met with a log-in error message. (Image credit: Warner Bros. Discovery)

Initially, I didn't expect to be met with this error message. There were no issues with entering my account details – i.e. my email address and password. Upon signing in for the first time, though, I was asked to complete a couple of bot-resistant puzzles to confirm it was me who was signing into my account.

A screenshot of a Max-based puzzle you need to solve to sign in

Max asks you to protect your account by solving a few puzzles when you first sign in. (Image credit: Warner Bros. Discovery)

The puzzles, of which there are two to choose from, aren't very difficult to solve. But you can restart them at any point if you mess up. 

So, what are they? One is an audio-based puzzle, which tasks you with picking out the animal sound out of three noises that play through your speakers or headphones. The other is an image-based one, which asks you to rotate an animal in the direction that a wooden hand is pointing. See the image below for an example of what I mean.

A screenshot of a Max-based puzzle, which asks you to rotate an animal in the direction a hand is pointing

Warner Bros. Discovery really doesn't want your Max account to be hijacked. (Image credit: Warner Bros. Discovery)

Successfully complete three of these puzzles in a row and you'll be met with a 'Success!' message, indicating you've been signed in.

Or so you would hope. Despite completing the visual and audio challenges on multiple occasions, I was constantly met with the log-in error at every turn, meaning I've been unable to access my Max account since yesterday (May 22).

I'm not alone, either. A quick look at Max's Down Detector page indicates that many other users are suffering a similar issue, which usually means there's a major server problem on WBD's end. It's likely that the amount of people trying to log into the new streaming platform has (sorry) Max-ed out server capacity, ensuring that the rest of us can't sign in.

Frustratingly, it appears that not everyone is impacted by this log-in error. Two of TechRadar's US-based staff confirmed that they're able to log into the HBO Max and Max apps on Apple TV 4K and their smartphones. It could be, then, that the Max log-in error is only affecting those of us who are trying to sign in via a web browser, such as Google Chrome or Firefox.

A TV screen on an orange background showing the new Max streaming service logo

Max is still showing up as HBO Max on some devices. (Image credit: Warner Bros. Discovery)

It's likely that Max's servers will stabilize themselves over the next few hours, and I suspect WBD is working around the clock to increase server capacity to allow more people to try out the platform on launch day.

Unfortunately, there haven't been any updates from the Max Help Twitter account, or any of its sister social media channels, to indicate that there are any issues with logging into Max or when they might be resolved. I've reached out to WBD for a statement and I'll update this article if I hear back.

In the meantime, there's plenty of Max-based reading you can do instead. Get the lowdown on seven things HBO Max users need to know about the switchover, how much a Max subscription costs, read our guide on the best Max shows to stream as soon as you can log in, and see which new Max movies and TV series are worth watching on launch day

Senior Entertainment Reporter

As TechRadar's senior entertainment reporter, Tom covers all of the latest movies, TV shows, and streaming service news that you need to know about. You'll regularly find him writing about the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Star Wars, Netflix, Prime Video, Disney Plus, and many other topics of interest.

An NCTJ-accredited journalist, Tom also writes reviews, analytical articles, opinion pieces, and interview-led features on the biggest franchises, actors, directors and other industry leaders. You may see his quotes pop up in the odd official Marvel Studios video, too, such as this Moon Knight TV spot.

Away from work, Tom can be found checking out the latest video games, immersing himself in his favorite sporting pastime of football, reading the many unread books on his shelf, staying fit at the gym, and petting every dog he comes across. Got a scoop, interesting story, or an intriguing angle on the latest news in entertainment? Feel free to drop him a line.