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No HBO Max App on Vizio Smart TVs, But AirPlay & Cast Can Help

HBO Max is not available on a Vizio SmartCast TV, but AirPlay and Chromecast can help.

HBO Max is unavailable to download on Vizio Smart TVs as an app. While first-party smart TV platforms remain one of the least supported HBO Max device categories, SmartCast TV owners do have the option of using either AirPlay or Chromecast to watch HBO Max on their larger Vizio TV screens in the home.

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HBO Max launched in 2020 and offers substantially more content than what the legacy HBO service offered, even though a subscription is exactly the same price. This makes it a great option for anyone looking for HBO originals, DC, Cartoon Network, as well as other WarnerMedia content. However, and regardless of the shows and movies that are on offer, or the cost of the monthly plan, it is only worth having an HBO Max subscription if the service supports the devices an individual or household wants to watch on. When it comes to smart TVs, that’s a bit more of an issue for HBO subscribers than it probably should be.

Vizio smart TVs are not yet part of the HBO Max supported devices list. In fact, TVs are a pretty poorly supported category in general, with Samsung’s first-party TV OS the only one that’s officially supported and capable of downloading a dedicated app. Even with Samsung, the support only extends so far, as only 2016 and newer models can download the HBO Max app. At the same time, not all of the models released since 2016 are supported either.

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No Vizio smart TV app

While it remains unclear why HBO Max doesn’t support Vizio or many other smart TV brands directly, that’s not to say it can’t be watched on a TV. For starters HBO Max is available on smart TVs powered by Android TV, Fire TV, and Roku. This alone is likely to cater to the TV needs of many individuals and households. For those that don’t have a TV powered by one of these platforms, there is the option of streaming on one of the many supported streaming players that can be directly connected to a smart TV.

Although many TV brands are not supported at the app level, Vizio smart TV owners do have the option of casting HBO Max to their SmartCast TV. This is not quite as easy as watching directly through a TV app, but it is easy enough to do, so long as the Vizio TV is actually a SmartCast TV to begin with.

Providing it is a SmartCast TV, then streaming HBO Max will require the use of a smartphone, and it doesn’t matter whether it’s an iPhone or Android phone. To get started, the HBO Max app will need to be downloaded on the phone, the user will need to be signed in to their HBO Max account, and the phone and Vizio smart TV will need to be connected to the same Wi-Fi network.

Using AirPlay and Cast on A Vizio TV

If using an iPhone, then play a TV show episode or a movie through the HBO Max app and tap on the AirPlay icon that appears in the top right corner. It is then just a a matter of selecting the right Vizio SmartCast TV from the list of nearby devices. Once selected, the show or movie will be streamed directly to the TV.

Using AirPlay to stream on a Vizio TV:

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  1. Download and open HBO Max app
  2. Sign in using HBO Max subscription
  3. Play a TV show episode or movie
  4. Tap the AirPlay icon.
  5. Select the SmartCast TV

If using an Android phone, the process is mostly the same. Again, the user will need to make sure the Android phone and Vizio smart TV are connected to the same network, the HBO Max app is open (and signed in), and a TV show episode or movie is playing. However, instead of tapping the AirPlay icon, Android users will want to tap on the Cast icon instead. Again, it is then just a matter of selecting the right SmartCast TV from the list of nearby available devices.

Using Chromecast to stream on a Vizio TV:

  1. Download and open HBO Max app
  2. Sign in using HBO Max subscription
  3. Play a TV show episode or movie
  4. Tap the Cast icon.
  5. Select the SmartCast TV

Although neither option is ideal, they are a quick and easy solution to watching HBO Max on a Vizio smart TV. Once the connection has been made through either AirPlay or Chromecast, the user can control the video playback, volume, and switch to a different TV show episode or movie using their phone. Once finished, it is important to end the connection with the smart TV and this can be done by tapping on the same AirPlay or Cast icon in the HBO Max mobile app.

HBO Max on Vizio TVs summary

There’s currently no option to download an HBO Max app directly on a Vizio smart TV. Although Vizio TVs are currently not supported, they are not the only ones, with smart TVs from most major brands unable to download HBO Max. The exception here is Samsung-branded TVs, as well as those running on Android TV, Fire TV, or Roku.

While Vizio SmartCast TV users cannot download HBO Max, they can use the Android or iOS mobile app to stream HBO Max shows and movies to their TV. Once a connection has been made, the HBO Max subscriber can switch videos and control playback on their Vizio smart TV using their phone.

Read more: How to Download HBO Max Movies & Shows & Watch Offline

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By John Finn

John started Streaming Clarity to help consumers navigate the live TV streaming and subscription service landscape. John has been writing about technology and TV-related services and devices since 2014 and believes the best streaming approach is to bounce between services as needed. Contact John via email at john@streamingclarity.com or on Twitter

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