LOS ANGELES — HBO is going mobile.

LOS ANGELES — HBO is going mobile.

The pay TV network on Monday will begin offering its subscribers access to watch HBO programming on Android mobile devices and Apple Inc.'s iPhone and iPad tablet.

"That device has changed television," HBO Co-President Eric Kessler said this week, pointing to an iPad during an interview at the company's Santa Monica, Calif., offices.

HBO hopes the iPad will kick-start HBO Go, the online viewing option for current HBO subscribers that the network launched last year. The move marks a turn for the Time Warner Inc.-owned channel, which was a pioneer in enticing viewers to watch cable TV but has moved cautiously in embracing the Internet.

HBO, however, recognizes that the revolution under way in viewing habits is as profound as the one it helped spark in the 1980s when TV viewers began flocking to cable to watch uncut movies and big-ticket sports events.

Company executives have been guarded about putting the network's programming on the Web, fearful that doing so might give subscribers a reason to drop cable TV service.

"HBO, regardless of how strong their programming is, faces a host of significant challenges to their business — more than at almost any other time in their history," said Will Richmond, a longtime cable executive and publisher of the Boston-based VideoNuze.com news site. "This is a completely new landscape for HBO."

HBO has held to a contrarian view about how to approach the Internet. Still, company executives acknowledge that the Internet and mobile technology is reshaping the way people watch TV. And HBO must adapt, they say, to protect its empire, which generates $1.4 billion annually in operating income — a deep well of profits for parent Time Warner.