As AT&T gears up to acquire Time Warner, mobile content is top-of-mind for teams at both companies. AT&T’s CEO Randall Stephenson spoke of these plans on Tuesday, singling out HBO as a Time Warner brand that has become a household name.
But how would something like Game of Thrones look on mobile? Shorter — much shorter. “Maybe you want a 20-minute episode,” Stephenson suggested, noting before that the mere suggestion would be terrifying for HBO CEO Richard Plepler.
“Let the content geniuses and creative geniuses think about this, but curate the content uniquely for a mobile environment,” he added.
Stephenson insisted that “broad, deep distribution” is the key to success in the media and entertainment business, and that AT&T had no intention of making Time Warner content exclusive to AT&T customers.
Plepler hasn’t responded to the suggestion of 20-minute episodes, but if we may speak for the Game of Thrones fandom — NO. By the old gods, and the new, no.
Twenty minutes is roughly the length of some scenes on Game of Thrones. Short mobile episodes would mean less lingering looks and brooding Jon Snow or brevity of tertiary characters like the very important Podrick Payne.
On the flip side, mobile episodes would make for impressive bonus content to tease upcoming seasons or the five spinoffs HBO has in the pipeline. I guess… we’ll allow it.