Exploring today's technology for tomorrow's possibilities
Best Live TV Streaming Services
January 31, 2022
Streaming TV services and live TV streaming platforms are great alternatives to traditional cable packages. They can reduce or even eliminate costs associated with watching your favorite shows and movies, and they typically offer more control for users through on-demand, DVR options, and more.
The services available today range from completely free and focused on local channels, to live sports and cinema hubs. While our list focuses on live TV streaming, many of the platforms offer premium packages with additional features. Many also charge a subscription fee, but you’ll only need a smart TV or computer to start watching – no more boxes or extra cables.
1. YouTube TV
Designed as a complete replacement to cable, YouTube TV is a well-rounded option that offers a bit of everything for everyone. It has a strong focus on sports content and channels you’d expect from a mainstream provider including ABC, CBS, Food Network, AMC, and Comedy Central.
YouTube TV offers a standard 85 channels, but you may have access to more depending on where you live. Curious to try? Enter your zip code to see exactly what’s available with a subscription in your area. It also has a 7-day free trial to see how things work and free cancellation at any time.
Price: $64.99 per month
Varied, with lots of sports channels
Share subscription with up to 6 accounts
2. Sling TV
Sling TV may not offer as many channels as some competitors, but it makes up for it with a solid variety of subscription options at intermediate prices. Their Sling Orange and Sling Blue tiers ($35 per month) offer two themes: NBA and family entertainment, or entertainment and news. The tiers provide 32 and 42 channels, respectively, or you can combine them for 50 total.
Sling has targeted bundles, too, including an NBA-only option and a Chromecast/Google TV offer. Whichever subscription level you prefer, you can use the free 3-day trial to test the waters. Overall, it’s a great way to reduce annual costs without sacrificing the content and features you want.
Price: $35 per month for Orange; $35 for Blue; $50 for Orange & Blue
Strong focus on sports, news, and general entertainment
50 hours of free DVR, pay for more
Up to 3 device streams
Philo lacks the same sports offerings as our first entries, but it offers a bigger number and range of channels. The base package is simple, with 60+ channels at $25 per month and features unlimited DVR storage (save recordings for up to 12 months). There’s also a 7-day free trial.
Philo subscriptions include a lot of popular user features. You can find a bunch of affordable movie add-ons, starting at as little as $3 per month. Users can also stream simultaneously on up to 3 devices and create 10 profiles per account.
Price: $25 per month
Balanced content library with optional add-ons
Unlimited DVR storage (auto-deletes after 12 months)
7-day free trial for all services and options
4. Plex TV
Plex TV offers 2 different account types that vary based on their features. Free accounts can stream from Plex’s oversized content library, with a large number of on-demand TV shows and movies in addition to live TV streaming. The service is also designed to help manage your existing media library through an accompanying app.
The upgraded version, Plex Pass, starts at $4.99 per month, $39.99 per year, or a lifetime subscription for just $119.99 (about the cost of three annual subscriptions). Plex Pass provides advanced management and automation features, plus offline sync so you can watch anything from anywhere.
Price: Free or $4.99 per month for PlexPass; 1 year for $39.99; lifetime for $119.99
Manage the rest of your library
Live TV streaming and on-demand content
Save with annual and lifetime memberships
5. Frndly TV
Frndly TV is one of the more family-centric video streaming services on our list, as you may have guessed from the name. Their offerings focus on the full range of Hallmark programming, a variety of educational content, plus lifestyle, cooking, and entertainment channels.
Compared to other live TV streaming services, Frndly TV is one of the most affordable options. The basic packages cost just $6.99 per month. Spend $8.99 for the Classic tier to get unlimited 3-month DVR storage and an additional device for streaming. The premium package is $10.99 and adds simultaneous streaming for 2 extra devices and 9-month DVR storage.
Price: $6.99 per month for Basic; $8.99 for Classic; $10.99 for Premium
Family-friendly content library
Unlimited DVR storage (for up to 9 months)
Includes access to on-demand content
6. Pluto TV
Pluto TV is the first option on our list that exists entirely as a free service. Instead of live streaming existing channels, Pluto TV aggregates a wide variety of content into its own channels, with dedicated Star Trek and British Drama channels, among others.
You can create an account to receive updates from the service, but all you need to watch Pluto TV is to visit their website. The on-demand library is easy to navigate, too, thanks to the convenient embedded video player.
200+ curated channels
Popular with niche viewers
Streaming and on-demand content
7. Hulu + Live TV
Another paid offering, Hulu + Live TV is a popular live TV streaming option thanks to its assortment of extra content. You can access Hulu Originals and the standard Hulu offerings, plus shared access to Disney+ and ESPN+.
Basic features provide support for simultaneous viewing on two devices and 50 hours of DVR storage. There are numerous add-ons available to tweak your experience, including access to HBO Max or Showtime, and streaming on unlimited devices. It’s a popular candidate for the best TV streaming service at $69.99 per month.
Price: $69.99 per month
Includes access to Hulu’s on-demand offerings
Also includes access to Disney+ and ESPN+
2 screens and 50 hours storage to start
FuboTV is most popular among sports fans, because it streams events from just about every professional league. From the NFL and NBA to NASCAR and boxing, you’ll find it on fubo. Plus, it hosts niche channels including IFC and BBC America.
Accounts start with 250 hours of DVR storage but you can get up to 1,000 hours with Pro ($69.99 per month) and Elite ($79.99 per month) subscriptions. While the Starter subscription ($64.99 per month) offers streaming on 3 screens, the upgraded tiers include up to 10 screens within your household.
Price: $69.99 per month for Pro; $79.99 for Elite
Extremely popular with sports fans
157 channels or more
Streaming on 3 to 10 screens
9. DIRECTV Stream
Previously known as AT&T TV, DIRECTV Stream is another leading option that doubles down on variety and features. It also boasts a bigger range of subscription packages compared to most services, with a competitive “essentials” Entertainment tier at $69.99 per month. Compared to others in that price range, it provides a strong balance of sports and entertainment content.
Higher-priced packages add new channels, and each tier includes access to 3 months worth of movie add-ons including EPIX and Showtime. You can also expand your DVR storage for $10 per month.
Price: $69.99 per month for Entertainment; $84.99 for Choice; $94.99 for Ultimate; $139.99 for Premier
Balanced content library
Live TV streaming and on-demand content
Unlimited DVR storage for $10 per month
Vidgo is a mid-range option when it comes to price, and it has a strong focus on sports programming and local channels. It also hosts a solid assortment of general entertainment and lifestyle channels. Like a few other options on our list, Vidgo has a 7-day free trial.
Subscriptions are organized into two tiers, with an affordable Spanish option ($30 per month) focused on “Latino Sports, News, and Entertainment.” The English Plus package has 95+ channels, while the Premium package ups the base total to 117+.
Price: $50 per month for EnglishPlus; $79.95 for EnglishPremium ($79.95); $30 for SpanishMas
Strong focus on sports and local channels
Live TV streaming and on-demand content
There are clearly a lot of streaming TV services to consider for reducing costs and cutting the cord. Most options offer lower prices, better features and functionality, and a more targeted channel selection than traditional cable packages.
The streaming service you choose really depends on your budget and overall viewing preferences. Pluto TV and Plex are great for free live streaming, but you get premium content with YouTube TV and DIRECTV Stream. And for diehard sports fans, you can’t miss with fuboTV and Sling TV.
About the Author: Dwight Pavlovic is a contributing writer for HP Tech Takes. Dwight is a music and technology writer based out of West Virginia.
We are working to meet the current extraordinary customer demand for our products. Our website reflects current product availability but circumstances are dynamic. You may check your order status via our Track My Order page (Click Here to log in). We will send updates by email as soon as they are available. We greatly value your business and appreciate your ongoing patience as we work to get your order to you.
Prices, specifications, availability and terms of offers may change without notice. Price protection, price matching or price guarantees do not apply to Intra-day, Daily Deals or limited-time promotions. Quantity limits may apply to orders, including orders for discounted and promotional items. Despite our best efforts, a small number of items may contain pricing, typography, or photography errors. Correct prices and promotions are validated at the time your order is placed. These terms apply only to products sold by HP.com; reseller offers may vary. Items sold by HP.com are not for immediate resale. Orders that do not comply with HP.com terms, conditions, and limitations may be cancelled. Contract and volume customers not eligible.
HP’s MSRP is subject to discount. HP’s MSRP price is shown as either a stand-alone price or as a strike-through price with a discounted or promotional price also listed. Discounted or promotional pricing is indicated by the presence of an additional higher MSRP strike-through price.
The following applies to HP systems with Intel 6th Gen and other future-generation processors on systems shipping with Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 8.1 or Windows 10 Pro systems downgraded to Windows 7 Professional, Windows 8 Pro, or Windows 8.1: This version of Windows running with the processor or chipsets used in this system has limited support from Microsoft. For more information about Microsoft’s support, please see Microsoft’s Support Lifecycle FAQ at https://support.microsoft.com/lifecycle
In-home warranty is available only on select customizable HP desktop PCs. Need for in-home service is determined by HP support representative. Customer may be required to run system self-test programs or correct reported faults by following advice given over phone. On-site services provided only if issue can't be corrected remotely. Service not available holidays and weekends.
Not all features are available in all editions or versions of Windows. Systems may require upgraded and/or separately purchased hardware, drivers, software or BIOS update to take full advantage of Windows functionality. Windows is automatically updated and enabled. High speed internet and Microsoft account required. ISP fees may apply and additional requirements may apply over time for updates. See http://www.windows.com.
HP Rewards qualifying and eligible products/purchases are defined as those from the following categories: Printers, Business PCs (Elite, Pro and Workstation brands), select Business Accessories and select Ink, Toner & Paper.My HP Rewards
*SpencerLab Sept 2021 study of printer inks sold in North America commissioned by HP for on-average performance of 16 brands of non-HP refill, remanufactured, and imitation cartridges vs. Original HP Ink SKUs 952XL, 63XL, 902XL, 950XL, 951XL. To account for reliability-driven supplies issues, defective and failed cartridges were included in the page yield calculations. Consequently, the reported page yield numbers are not based on ISO/IEC 24711 standard methodology, as it requires defective supplies be excluded from page yield calculation. See https://spencerlab.com/reports/HPInkReliability-NA-2021.pdf
Help protect your printer and your data with Original HP cartridges: HP office-class printing systems are select Enterprise and Managed devices with FutureSmart firmware 4.5 and up, Pro devices, LaserJet models
The personal information you provide will be used according to the HP Privacy Statement