Accessibility features on HBO Max

You can use accessibility features to get around HBO Max and stream shows and movies. HBO Max supports the following:

Closed captions

Some shows and movies on HBO Max can be watched with closed captions. Some closed captions are only available in English. During playback, you can turn closed captions on or off by choosing the Audio and Captions button in the video player.

For more info, go to Subtitles, captions, and audio.

Audio Description (Narration)

Audio description is an alternate audio track that describes what's happening on screen in between dialogue (for example, a detailed narration of the scene or action that's taking place). To find titles with audio description:

  • On the HBO Max Home screen, find the Browse by Genre row (the last row on the Home screen), then choose Audio Description.

Audio description may only be available in English. Shows and movies with Audio Description will have an Audio Description indicator on the details page.

Turn Audio description on or off

You can turn on Audio Description for select shows and movies. When you turn on Audio Description, it plays as the default audio track for other shows and movies you watch (if available). Here's how:

  1. Start playing a show or movie, then bring up the player controls.
  2. Choose the Audio and Subtitles menu speech bubble.
  3. In the Audio section, choose English - Audio Description (if available), then select the close subtitles and audio popup button (X) to close.

To turn off audio description, re-open Audio and Subtitles menu and choose any other language in the Audio section.

If you've turned off audio description in HBO Max but they keep appearing, check your device settings. For example:

  • On your phone or tablet, go to Settings > Accessibility and turn off Audio Description.

Finding shows and movies with Audio Description

Search:

  • In HBO Max, choose Search from the Home screen and search for Audio Description.
  • On the search page, scroll down to the Browse by Genre row and choose Audio Description. Here you'll find the full collection of Audio Description content.

From the Home Page:

  • On the HBO Max Home page, scroll down to the Browse by Genre row (the last row on the Home screen), then choose Audio Description. Here you'll find the full collection of Audio Description content.

From the Series or Movies Page:

  1. In HBO Max, select Series or Movies (top of screen).
  2. Scroll down to find the Browse by Genre row (the last row on the Home screen) and then select the Audio Description tile. Here you can find series and movies with Audio Description. In the Audio Description collection, you can filter titles alphabetically or by genre.
  3. Select the series and movies you would like to explore.

Screen readers

You can use screen readers to help you find and play titles. HBO Max supports the following screen readers:

*Fire TV's VoiceView does not support Dolby Audio in playback. You may need to disable Dolby Audio on your Fire TV device to control playback with VoiceView.

**Support for PlayStation 4 is coming soon. Please check back for updates.

***If you use a Samsung Android device and you use the Samsung Voice Assistant, you may need to install TalkBack to get full support for the screen reader.

You can also stream using AirPlay or Chromecast and use the screen reader on your phone or tablet to control playback.

Keyboard navigation

You can use an external (hardware) keyboard to get around HBO Max and control playback on the web, phone or tablet. Here's how:

Get around HBO Max

  • Press Tab or the Arrow keys to move between items.
  • Press Spacebar to choose the selected item.
  • Press Enter to activate links.
  • Press Esc to close the menus and overlays.
iOS: Keyboard not working?
On your iOS device, go to Settings > Accessibility > Keyboards > Full Keyboard Access and turn on Full Keyboard Access. For more info, go to iPhone: Adjust Keyboard Settings or iPad: Adjust Keyboard Settings.

Are you using a keyboard on a streaming player or game console?

  • Use the Arrow keys to navigate and the Enter key to select.
  • Keyboard shortcuts aren't available at this time.

Alexa voice commands (in select countries)

You can use Alexa voice commands to find and play HBO Max shows and movies, as well as control video playback. For example, you can say commands like "Alexa, find dramas on HBO Max" or "Alexa, play House of the Dragon."

What you need:

  • Amazon Fire TV device
  • Alexa enabled device, Alexa voice remote, or a paired Echo device

You can use the following Alexa commands with HBO Max. If you're using an Alexa Voice Remote, press and hold the Voice button and then talk to Alexa.

To open HBO Max, use open or launch. For example, say "Alexa, open HBO Max." Then, choose a profile and start streaming.

To search for a show or movie, use find. For example, say "Alexa, find The Last of Us."

Playback controls

To play a movie or the next episode in a series, use play or watch. For example, say "Alexa, play The White Lotus."

To play a specific episode in a season, specify the season and episode. For example, say "Alexa, play Game of Thrones Season 1 Episode 2."

To pause playback, use pause. For example, say "Alexa, pause."

To resume playback, use resume, play, watch, or unpause. For example, say "Alexa, resume."

To stop playback, use stop. For example, say "Alexa, stop."

To skip ahead 30 seconds, use fast forward. For example, say "Alexa, fast forward."

To skip back 30 seconds, use rewind. For example, say "Alexa, rewind."

Voice commands not working?
  1. Make sure your Amazon Fire TV is up to date. To do this, go to Settings > Device > About > Check for System Update.
  2. Make sure your Alexa device is linked to your Fire TV. Find out how at Use Your Alexa Device to Control Your Fire TV.

For more info, go to Alexa Help.

Photosensitivity warnings

Some shows and movies with intense flash patterns have a photosensitivity warning on the title details screen. We're working to add photosensitivity warnings to all shows and movies on HBO Max.