Almost two years after the initial launch of HBO Go, Time Warner Cable subscribers will finally have the opportunity to sign up for the network’s online streaming service. As of this week, Time Warner Cable customers who subscribe to HBO and Cinemax will have instant access to over 1,400 titles from the HBO catalog and 400 from Cinemax on the web, via computers, iPads, iPhones, and Android phones. The news comes just days after Time Warner Cable launched its beta trial of the service.

Last year, Netflix CEO Reed Hastings named HBO Go as his company’s most feared competitor, observing that “HBO is becoming much more Netflix-like, and we’re becoming much more HBO-like.” The contest has continued to heat up in the new year, with HBO drawing a line in the sand by announcing that it would no longer sell DVDs and Blu-rays directly to the home video giant. As a Time Warner subscriber, I’ve got no plans to quit Netflix anytime soon, but as HBO beefs up its offerings, it’s certainly possible I’ll become less reliant on Netflix over time.

Read Time Warner Cable’s full press release about HBO Go and Max Go after the jump.

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A few months ago, U.S. Copyright Group tried to sue over 20,000 people for downloading indie films such as Uwe Boll’s Far Cry. Seeing some modest success with that plan, they arranged to follow it up with a new lawsuit, targeting people who had downloaded The Hurt Locker. The original idea was to use software to track down the IP addresses of people downloaded these films over bittorrent networks. The Group would provide the IP addresses to Internet service providers (e.g. Comcast, Time Warner Cable, etc.) and subpoena them to turn over downloaders’ real names and addresses. These people would then be offered the opportunity to settle for a modest sum of money. Refusal would result in a lawsuit.

It’s a classic, time-honored way of ruthlessly extracting money from people that want your product, used by the RIAA back in its golden years. But it turns out, Time Warner Cable isn’t too happy with the plan.
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