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AT&T Will Offer HBO Free To "Unlimited Plus" Wireless Customers

Another analyst sees lower earnings for Verizon during the first quarter

The deal starts Thursday, and is eligible for new and existing AT&T customers. To entice its subscribers to add TV service, for example, AT&T offers its Unlimited Plus customers a $25 discount on DirecTV.

"Our customers want wireless entertainment on their terms, and we're going to deliver", said AT&T Entertainment Group Chief Marketing Officer David Christopher.

We're starting to see why AT&T plans to acquire Time Warner.

Additionally, Unlimited Plus customers will receive a $25 monthly credit that can be used towards DIRECTV, DIRECTV NOW, or AT&T U-verse. It's also likely to raise concerns related to net neutrality, or the principle that internet providers like AT&T should not give preferential treatment to certain services, particularly ones it owns.

With AT&T's Unlimited Plus plan, customers receive unlimited talk, text, and data, as well as 10GB of tethering data. The $5 price is well below the typical fee that cable operators charge, and below the $15 a month that the company charges for its direct-to-consumer HBO Now streaming service. But a word to the wise; subscribers consuming more than 22GB of data each month could end up with their data speed throttled. The move would marry a telecom giant with a media powerhouse and potentially pave the way toward more content and service bundles like the combination of AT&T's Unlimited Plus plan and HBO. The "Live a Little" line-up does include the leading basic sports channels.