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Stream TV Online: Best Cable-Free Service for Your Favourite TV Shows & Budget

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Looking for a way to try out services before you buy? Check out our Complete List of Free Streaming TV Trials!

Finding the right live TV streaming service for your needs can be intimidating. There are literally hundreds of channels and a number of services offer most of them.

Using our step-by-step process below, you can easily figure out which streaming service is right for you. If you know what channels your favorite shows are on, then you know what channels you need to prioritize.

Like with most things, one size does not fit all. You need to balance out cost and channel selection to find the cable TV alternative that is right for you.

Step-by-Step Instructions

This is a simple 7-step process for using the Streaming TV Channel and Streaming Sports matrices below.

  1. Make a list of all your favorite TV series, events, and sports.
  2. Make a second list of all the channels your favorite TV series, events, and sports air on. You can find guidance in the following pages:
  3. Use the matrices below. They provide lists of the most popular channels and sports along with indications of which streaming service offers each. You can use them to figure out which services offer the channels you cannot live without.
  4. Sign up for a trial of the streaming service that best matches your needs. (Many offer free trials.)
  5. Test it out. Make sure the channels you care about work as expected. Make sure the video quality is acceptable.
  6. If you are not satisfied with the video quality or channel selection, contact tech support. If that does not work, simply cancel before the trial is over.
  7. If you are satisfied with the channel selection and video quality then consider this exercise a success!

Streaming Services Overview

You can get complete details about all the major live TV streaming services in our review:

Price

  • DIRECTV STREAM: $69.99/mo
  • FuboTV: $69.99/mo
  • Hulu + Live TV: $69.99/mo
  • Philo: $25/mo
  • Sling TV: $40.00/mo
  • Vidgo: $59.95/mo
  • YouTube TV: $64.99/mo

DVR Specs

  • DIRECTV STREAM: Unlimited
  • FuboTV: 1000 hours
  • Hulu + Live TV: Unlimited
  • Philo: Unlimited
  • Sling TV: 50 hours
  • Vidgo: 20 hours (Premium plan only)
  • YouTube TV: Unlimited

Simultaneous Screens

  • DIRECTV STREAM: Unlimited
  • FuboTV: 10
  • Hulu + Live TV: 2
  • Philo: 3
  • Sling TV: 3/1
  • Vidgo: 3
  • YouTube TV: 3

Streaming TV Channel Matrix

In the following table:

  • ✔️ — The base plan includes the channel
  • 💲 — The channel is available as an add-on or in a higher-price plan
  • ❌ — The channel is not available at all
  • 🔵 — Available in the Sling Blue plan only
  • 🟠 — Available in the Sling Orange plan only
  • 🟠🔵 — Available in both Sling plans.
td { text-align: center; } th { text-align: left; }
ChannelFuboSlingHuluDTVSYTTVVidgoPhilo
A&E🟠🔵
ABC
ABC News
ACCN💲💲💲
AccuWeather
AMC🟠🔵
AHC💲💲💲💲
Animal Planet
Aspire💲
AWE💲
ChannelFuboSlingHuluDTVSYTTVVidgoPhilo
AXS TV🟠🔵
Baby TV💲💲
BabyFirst
BBC America🟠🔵
BBC World💲💲💲
beIN Sports💲💲
beIN Xtra💲
BET🟠🔵
BET her💲💲💲
BET Jams💲
ChannelFuboSlingHuluDTVSYTTVVidgoPhilo
BET Soul💲
B1G💲💲
Billiard TV💲
BNC
Bloomberg🟠🔵
Boomerang💲
Bravo🔵
BYU TV
C-SPAN
C-SPAN 2
ChannelFuboSlingHuluDTVSYTTVVidgoPhilo
CN🟠🔵
CBS
CBSSN💲
CBSN
CGTN💲
Cheddar🟠🔵💲
Cinémoi💲💲
Cleo TV💲
CMT💲
CNBC💲
ChannelFuboSlingHuluDTVSYTTVVidgoPhilo
CNBC World💲💲💲
CNN🟠🔵
CNN Intl
Comedy Ctrl🟠🔵
Comet🟠🔵
Cooking💲💲💲💲
Court TV
Cowboy💲💲
Cozi TV
Crackle
ChannelFuboSlingHuluDTVSYTTVVidgoPhilo
C & I💲
Curiosity Strm💲💲
The CW💲
Dabl
Dest America💲💲💲💲💲
Discovery🔵
Disc Family💲💲💲
Disc Life💲💲💲
Disney🟠
Disney Junior💲
ChannelFuboSlingHuluDTVSYTTVVidgoPhilo
Disney XD💲
Docurama💲💲
Dove💲💲
Dox💲
Duck TV💲
DUST💲
E!🔵
ESPN🟠
ESPN2🟠
ESPN3✔†🟠✔†✔†✔†✔†
ChannelFuboSlingHuluDTVSYTTVVidgoPhilo
ESPNews💲💲💲
ESPNU💲💲💲
Estrella💲💲
FETV💲
Fight Network💲
FM💲
Food Network🟠🔵
Fox🔵
Fox Business💲
Fox News🔵
ChannelFuboSlingHuluDTVSYTTVVidgoPhilo
Fox Soccer💲💲
Fox Soul
France 24💲
Freeform🟠
FS1🔵
FS2💲💲
fuse TV💲🟠🔵💲
FX🔵
FXM💲💲💲
FXX💲
ChannelFuboSlingHuluDTVSYTTVVidgoPhilo
FYI Network💲💲
G4
GAC💲💲💲💲
GAC Family💲💲💲💲💲
GAC Living💲
Galavisión
GSN💲💲💲
Game+💲
getTV
Golf Channel💲💲
ChannelFuboSlingHuluDTVSYTTVVidgoPhilo
GolTV💲💲💲
Grit💲
GustoTV
Hallmark💲
HDNet Movies💲💲
Here TV💲
H & I💲💲
HGTV🟠🔵
History🟠🔵
HLN🔵
ChannelFuboSlingHuluDTVSYTTVVidgoPhilo
Hopster💲
IFC🟠🔵
ii24 News
Insight TV💲
INSP💲💲
ID🟠🔵
Jewelry TV
Kids Street
Law & Crime💲💲💲
Lifetime🟠🔵
ChannelFuboSlingHuluDTVSYTTVVidgoPhilo
LMN💲
Local Now🟠🔵
Logo TV💲💲💲
Longhorn
Magnolia💲💲💲💲
MAVTV💲💲💲
MGM💲
Military History💲
MLB Network💲💲💲
MotorTrend🟠
ChannelFuboSlingHuluDTVSYTTVVidgoPhilo
MSNBC🔵
MTV💲
MTV Classic💲💲💲💲
MTV Live💲💲
MTV2💲💲💲💲
MTVU💲
NASA
Nat Geo Wild💲💲💲
Nat Geo🔵
NBA TV💲💲💲
ChannelFuboSlingHuluDTVSYTTVVidgoPhilo
NBC🔵
NBC News
NBC Universo💲💲
NBCLX
Newsmax💲
NewsNation💲💲
Next Level💲
NFL Network🔵
NFL RedZone💲💲💲💲
NHL Network💲💲💲
ChannelFuboSlingHuluDTVSYTTVVidgoPhilo
Nick Jr🟠🔵💲
Nick Music💲
Nickelodeon
Nicktoons💲💲💲💲💲
Olympic💲💲
OANN
Outdoor💲💲💲
Outside TV💲💲
Ovation
OWN💲
ChannelFuboSlingHuluDTVSYTTVVidgoPhilo
Oxygen💲💲
Pac-12💲💲
Paramount💲
PBS
PBS Kids
People TV💲
Pixl💲
PlayersTV💲
Pocket Watch
Pop TV💲
ChannelFuboSlingHuluDTVSYTTVVidgoPhilo
Pursuit💲
QVC
QVC-2
Real Madrid💲
Reelz💲💲
Revolt💲💲
Revry💲
RFD-TV💲💲
RT America💲
Science💲💲💲💲
ChannelFuboSlingHuluDTVSYTTVVidgoPhilo
SEC Network💲💲💲
Smithsonian💲
Sony Movie💲💲💲
SportsGrind💲
Sportsman💲💲💲💲
Stadium💲🟠🔵💲
Start TV💲
Sundance💲
Syfy🔵
Tastemade💲💲
ChannelFuboSlingHuluDTVSYTTVVidgoPhilo
TBS🟠🔵
TCM💲
TeenNick💲💲💲💲
Telemundo
Tennis💲💲💲
Tigo Sports💲
TLC🔵
TNT🟠🔵
Travel🟠🔵💲
TruTV🔵
ChannelFuboSlingHuluDTVSYTTVVidgoPhilo
TUDN💲
TV Land💲
TV One💲
TVG💲💲💲
TVG2💲💲
TyC Sports💲💲💲
UniMás💲
Universal Kids💲
Univision
UPtv💲
ChannelFuboSlingHuluDTVSYTTVVidgoPhilo
USA🔵
VH1💲
Vice TV🟠🔵
VSiN💲💲💲
WE tv💲
Weather💲
Weather Nation💲
Willow TV💲
World Fishing💲💲
Zona Futbol💲

Streaming Sports Matrix

In the following table:

  • ✔️ — The base plan supports the sport well
  • 💲 — The sport is well supported with an add-on or in a higher-price plan
  • ❌ — The sport is not well supported.

Note that some of the soccer leagues are not well-represented on live TV. Those you can usually find via Paramount+, which is just $4.99/mo.

td { text-align: center; } th { text-align: left; }
SportFuboSlingHuluDTVSYTTVVidgo
Baseball (MLB)💲
Basketball (NBA)💲
Basketball (NCAA)💲💲💲
Boxing💲
Cricket💲
Cycling
Darts[1]
Football (NCAA)💲💲💲
Football (NFL)
Formula 1
SportFuboSlingHuluDTVSYTTVVidgo
Golf
Gymnastics
Hockey (NHL)
Horse Racing💲💲💲
IndyCar
MotoGP
NASCAR
Olympics
Poker💲
Pool[1]
SportFuboSlingHuluDTVSYTTVVidgo
Pro Wrestling
Rugby
Snooker[1]
Soccer💲💲
Soccer (AFC)[2]
Soccer (Brasileiro Série A)[2]
Soccer (Bundesliga)
Soccer (CAF)💲
Soccer (CONCACAF)
Soccer (La Liga)
SportFuboSlingHuluDTVSYTTVVidgo
Soccer (Liga MX)💲
Soccer (Ligue 1)💲
MLS💲
Soccer (NWSL)[2]
Soccer (OFC)[3]
Soccer (Olympic)
Soccer (Premier League)
Soccer (Serie A)[2]
Soccer (UEFA)[2]
Softball
SportFuboSlingHuluDTVSYTTVVidgo
Tennis💲💲💲
UFC
Volleyball💲💲💲
  • [1] Darts, pool, and snooker fans should check out DAZN.
  • [2] AFC, Campeonato Brasileiro Série A, NWSL, Serie A, and UEFA fans should look at Paramount+.
  • [3] OFC fans should go to Eleven Sports.

Live TV Streaming Services

Streaming services vary quite a bit in their price, which channels they carry, and their features. We get asked a lot, “What’s the best streaming service?” Unfortunately, there is no simple answer to that question. There’s only the best streaming system for your household, your budget, and your viewing habits.

Streaming services may differ, but they all have a few things in common:

  • They use your existing broadband internet connection to deliver your programming.
  • Many if not most of the channels they carry will look familiar to you as
    “basic cable” channels: AMC, History Channel, Food Network, ESPN, and so forth.
  • There are no contracts, early termination penalties, installation appointments, or random mystery fees. You can cancel anytime, usually online.
  • Almost all have cloud DVR provided and on-demand programming available.

So read on to find out which service is a good fit for you!

FuboTV

fubotv logo

Sporty fuboTV is the only major live TV streaming service not owned by a major media conglomerate. Originally founded as a way for American soccer fans to follow their favorite sport, you can still see those roots in fuboTV’s unmatched international sports coverage. 

But fuboTV isn’t just sports anymore – roughly two-thirds of its channels are entertainment, news, and family channels like Discovery, FX, Nickelodeon, MTV, Fox News, and MSNBC. It also features an excellent channel-cost ratio, great 4K coverage (Elite+ plans), and one of the better interfaces.

FuboTV offers three English base plans, a Spanish-language plan, and many add-ons. You can find more details on our Packages & Pricing page. Fubo runs on all standard streaming devices – see fuboTV Devices for more info.

Here’s what you get with fuboTV’s Pro Plan:

  • Base Price: $69.99/mo
  • Channels: 110+, including local affiliates
  • Simultaneous Screens: 10 devices
  • Cloud DVR Storage: 1,000 hours
  • Regional Sports Networks: 14 (most of any service except DIRECTV STREAM)

Here’s what you’re missing with fuboTV:

FuboTV Is Great For

  • Soccer fans
  • Other international sports fans – rugby, handball, cricket
  • NFL fans
  • Fans of niche competitive games like poker, billiards, or darts
  • Spanish-speaking sports fans
  • Philadelphia-area sports fans
  • Anyone looking for a solid general cable-replacement service

More Info: Main ReviewPackages & PricesLocal & Regional ChannelsDevices

Sign Up for a Free 7-Day Fubo Trial

DIRECTV STREAM

DIRECTV STREAM

To be totally honest, DIRECTV STREAM’s single biggest draw is probably its regional sports networks. Don’t get us wrong, it’s a fine service, with a good mix of family, news, sports, lifestyle, and general entertainment channels. Unlike every other streaming service, it carries channels from all the major media outlets, with no glaring holes in its lineup. And it has the most thorough coverage of local network stations.

But since the other services dropped the Bally Sports networks, DIRECTV STREAM has had a bit of a monopoly on the local sports gig. And that means, regardless of any of the other factors, good or bad, if you are a fan of your local pro baseball, basketball, or hockey team (plus some soccer teams), DIRECTV STREAM is, quite literally, the only game in town. 

DIRECTV STREAM organizes its channels into four tiers: Entertainment, Choice, Ultimate, and Premier. See our Packages & Prices page for a full list. It supports most major streaming devices, except Android TVs. You can find more details on our DIRECTV STREAM Devices discussion.

DIRECTV STREAM normally offers a 5-day free trial but they combine it with other deals throughout the year and during Black Friday.

Here’s what you get with DIRECTV STREAM’s Entertainment Package:

  • Base Price: $69.99/mo
  • Channels: 75+, including local affiliates
  • Simultaneous Screens: Unlimited
  • Cloud DVR Storage: Unlimited

Here’s what you’re missing with DIRECTV STREAM:

DIRECTV STREAM Is Great For

  • Die-hard fans of local baseball, basketball, hockey, and some soccer teams across the country (except Philadelphia)
  • Viewers who want all the channels and are willing to pay for them
  • Anyone who has trouble deciding between this add-on or that and would rather just pick a tier and be done with it.
  • First-time streamers or the less tech-savvy among us
  • Viewers who liked everything about their traditional cable or satellite provider except being locked into high prices by a contract.

More Info: Main ReviewPackages & PricesLocal & Regional ChannelsDevices

Get DIRECTV STREAM Free for 5 Days

Sling TV

Sling TV Logo (2021 100x50)

Sling TV is the original live TV streaming service, the first to provide a real alternative to cable or satellite. Unlike DIRECTV STREAM, which applies the “kitchen sink” model to its service (as in, “everything but the”), Sling TV offers smaller base packages of core channels, with the option to customize with add-on bundles and a la carte premium networks. It’s like the IKEA of TV providers – everything is modular.

Sling has two base plans, 7 multi-channel add-ons, and dozens and dozens of a la carte options (Sling TV Packages & Prices), most of which are under $5/mo. It supports all major streaming devices, and some really exotic ones (Sling TV Devices).

One downside of Sling is that if you do want a large selection of channels, the costs add up. You are usually better off with FuboTV or one of the other full cable replacement services in this case.

Here’s what you get with Sling Blue:

  • Price: $40.00/mo
  • Channels: 40+ (including NBC & Fox)
  • Simultaneous Screens: 3
  • Cloud DVR Storage: 50

Here’s what you get with Sling Orange:

  • Price: $40.00/mo
  • Channels: 30+
  • Simultaneous Screens: 1
  • Cloud DVR Storage: 50

Here’s what you’re missing with Sling TV:

Sling TV Is Great For

  • Bargain-hunters who are willing to pick and choose exactly what they want
  • Viewers who make minimal use of their DVR
  • People looking for a few specific channels that aren’t available through Philo
  • Subscribers looking for something really different from traditional cable

More Info: Main ReviewPackages & PricesLocal & Regional ChannelsDevicesBlack Friday Deal

Save 50% on Sling TV

Hulu + Live TV

hulu logo

Hulu was the second streaming on-demand service, after Netflix, and it has successfully expanded its reach to live TV now too. For years, it’s had two major things going for it: first, a slew of critically and commercially acclaimed Originals; and second, new episodes of ongoing network series within 24 hours of airing. Now parent-company Disney is bringing out the big guns to compete head-to-head with YouTube TV and the others.

Hulu Live only has one base plan, and a few add-ons (Hulu Live Packages & Prices). All Hulu Live subscriptions include the Hulu on-demand library, Disney+, and ESPN+. Hulu also has some really amazingly broad device support (Hulu Live Devices).

Here’s what you get with Hulu Live:

  • Price: $69.99/mo
  • Channels: 85+, including local affiliates
  • Simultaneous Screens: 2
  • Cloud DVR Storage: Unlimited
  • Regional Sports Networks: 7

Here’s what you’re missing with Hulu Live:

Hulu Live Is Great For

  • Viewers who like a lot of on-demand to fill the spaces between live programming.
  • Households with diverse tastes or ages looking for something for everyone
  • Hulu on-demand users who want to dip a toe into live TV streaming

More Info: Main ReviewPackages & PricesLocal & Regional ChannelsDevices

Try Hulu + Live TV Today!

Vidgo

vidgo logo

Vidgo is kind of an odd duck. It’s sort of a mid-priced, mid-sized service, somewhere between Sling TV and Philo (at the bargain end) and DIRECTV STREAM (at the pricier end), with an eclectic mix of channels that’s all its own. Eschewing such fancy stuffs as DVR and on-demand content until very recently, Vidgo offers a more old-fashioned, austere version of streaming.

Vidgo has two English plans and a Spanish package, with no add-ons or any customization options (Vidgo Packages & Prices). It also offers the bare minimum in device support – it supports the most common streaming gadgets, but that’s it (Vidgo Devices).

Here’s what you get with Vidgo Plus:

Here’s what you’re missing with Vidgo:

Vidgo Is Great For

  • NCAA sports fans
  • Conservative news junkies
  • Families that prefer more classic, wholesome programming
  • Spanish-language viewers, especially first-time streamers

More Info: Main ReviewPackages & PricesLocal & Regional ChannelsDevices

Try Vidgo Today!

Philo

Philo is the baby of the streaming services, not in terms of age (that’s Vidgo), but in terms of size and just how adorable it is. That’s an odd description for a TV provider, but it manages to make a decent service that charges only $25/mo. It does this by passing over three major media owners, all local channels, and the mainstays of live TV: news and sports. Is it worth it? You decide.

Philo offers one base plan, and several low-cost premium options (Philo Packages & Prices). It works on the standard devices, plus a few extras (Philo Devices).

Here’s what you get with Philo:

  • Price: $25/mo
  • Channels: 60+
  • Simultaneous Screens: 3
  • Cloud DVR Storage: Unlimited

Here’s what you’re missing with Philo:

Philo Is Great For

  • Antenna-owners (or those willing to buy an antenna) who don’t need networks from their TV provider
  • You who find most of the TV shows of the last fifteen to twenty years unwatchable
  • Fans of “classic” TV – reruns of favorites from the 1950s through the 1990s
  • Kids, especially less-discerning kids who will watch whatever’s on
  • Anyone on a budget, such as students or seniors
  • Schmaltzy movie addicts

More Info: Main ReviewPackages & PricesDevices

Try Philo Free for 7 Days

YouTube TV

Like Hulu + Live TV is the natural expansion of Hulu’s on-demand service, YouTube TV is the logical next step for YouTube’s user-generated video gallery. The comparison to Hulu is apt, because YouTube TV offers a similar service in scope and price. In lieu of Hulu Live’s on-demand bonuses (Disney+, ESPN+), YouTube TV has simply more channels, and a collection of a la carte add-ons second only to Sling TV.

YouTube TV has one English base plan, and one Spanish base plan, with more add-on options than Hulu Live (but not as many as Sling). It runs on all standard devices, but, being owned by Google, integrates with Android and Nest devices particularly well.

Here’s what you get with YouTube TV:

  • Price: $64.99/mo
  • Channels: 85+ (plus local affiliates)
  • Simultaneous Screens: 3
  • Cloud DVR Storage: Unlimited
  • Regional Sports Networks: 7 (the same as Hulu Live)

Here’s what you’re missing with YouTube TV:

YouTube TV Is Great For

  • Viewers who prefer live channels over on-demand
  • Households that go for The Walking Dead and independent movies over On Patrol: Live and Ancient Aliens
  • Families with a variety of interests and ages looking for something for everyone

More Info: Main ReviewLocal & Regional Channels

Ditch “Big Cable” Now – 3 Simple Steps to Cut the Cord

  1. Pick the right streaming service
  2. Get the content you deserve with the best VPN.
  3. Supercharge your internet provider

That’s it — you’ll save money, take back control, and enjoy TV more!

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