How to get HBO Max on your Fire TV right now

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How to get HBO Max on your Fire TV right now

HBO Max launched last week without support for Amazon’s Fire TV devices, and it might be a while before that changes.

As Protocol’s Janko Roettgers reported, Amazon and AT&T’s WarnerMedia unit are fighting over several issues, including Amazon’s cut of ad revenue in other WarnerMedia apps and whether Amazon’s Channels service should handle HBO Max distribution, as it does now for HBO proper. Although WarnerMedia is also in a dispute with Roku, it sounds like those companies are closer to a deal that will bring HBO Max to Roku devices soon.

Fortunately, Fire TV users don’t have to wait for Amazon and WarnerMedia to resolve their money squabbles. Instead, you can get HBO Max’s expanded catalog and new-and-improved app right now by sideloading the Android TV version onto your Fire TV device. (For more on what HBO Max offers, and how you can upgrade from an existing HBO subscription, head to our explainer.)

In the meantime, here’s how to get the HBO Max app on any Fire TV device:

Enable Fire TV sideloading

In Android circles, the term “sideloading” refers to installing an app from outside of any official app store. Because Amazon’s Fire TV software is based on Google’s Android operating system, sideloading lets you run pretty much any Android app on your Fire TV Stick, Fire TV streaming box, Fire TV Cube, or Fire TV Edition television.

Still, installing apps from outside Amazon’s store is somewhat of a security risk, so the feature is disabled by default. To enable sideloading on a Fire TV device, head to the Settings menu, then scroll over to “My Fire TV.”

myfiretv Jared Newman / IDG

In this menu, select “Developer options,” then toggle both ADB debugging and Apps from Unknown Sources to “On.”

You’ll see a scary-sounding warning when you enable latter setting. Just hit “Turn On” when prompted. Once you’ve installed HBO Max, you can always disable sideloading to keep other external software out, and you’ll still be able to use Max without issue.

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