The bug appears to be limited to Apple TV 4K models of any generation running tvOS 16.1. The latest version of the app is unable to stream HDR content for unknown reasons, resulting in an abrupt error. HBO stated that the company is aware of the bug and is “working on a fix.”
According to the report, the HBO Max development team advised users to keep checking for updates to the tvOS app, implying that the fix will be available in the coming days.
Users have discovered a workaround to continue watching HBO Max on affected Apple TV models while HBO works on the update. Because the bug is related to HDR content, switching Apple TV to SDR mode removes the error message.
To do so, launch the Settings app on your Apple TV and navigate to the Video and Audio menu. Then, change the Format from HDR to SDR, disable Match Content, and disable Match Dynamic Range and Match Frame Rate. For some users, forcing Apple TV to run in 1080p or 720p resolution worked as well. However, these are not ideal solutions.
HBO Max updated its iOS app in August, adding SharePlay support, a new Shuffle button, a dedicated home for downloaded content, improved tablet support, a refined design, and stability improvements.
In terms of tvOS 16.1, the update adds a new Siri interface for Apple TV users, as well as the “Hey Siri” command when using AirPods and support for the new Matter smart home accessory standard.