YouTube TV is now available, and it is an absolute reckoning for regular cable operators – you know, those guests who slurp us with equipment rental and HD service if those things should just be free.
For far too long, cable contracts have penalized us when we even look at another cable option while packages are being packaged in things that we do not use (cough, home phones) and channels that we do not all watch, so cable companies line up.
Well, bad news cable companies: those days are over.
YouTube TV is a complete replacement of the cable and offers live TV on your phone, tablet and streaming device without a costly cable subscription and contract.
It is a deal that feels too good to be true for those of us and even though it has some of its own problems, it may one day fail the cable companies.
Although cable cutters are absolutely on the radar of YouTube, it is the so-called cord-never that is there – those of us who have never paid for the cable, and probably will never use it – where YouTube TV really speaks. They are all the channels we are used to from our parents' house, but for a price that we can afford.
Are you ready to cancel the cable once and for all? Are you ready to stream dozens of channels wherever you are, without needing a cable box? If so, pull up a chair and we'll give you the 411 about this new service that will change your service.
How to watch YouTube TV on TV
First you have to sign up for a free trial version of the service. Once that has happened, you can tune in to your browser (tv.youtube.com) or find the YouTube TV app on your iOS and Android phone or tablet.
If you're looking for the experience to lean back, YouTube TV is available on Chromecast and Apple TV, compatible with cast from your aforementioned phone and tablet or, if you're the proud owner of an Android TV and / or Roku device, You can find a special app for YouTube TV in their respective channel stores.
Now it is also worth pointing out that in order to access YouTube TV, you not only need a subscription to the service, but also an Internet service plan from one of your local ISPs (for most people is that AT & T, Spectrum, Verizon).
This is something that most people already pay for and therefore has not gotten into the cost of YouTube TV – but it is worth mentioning anyway.
Why YouTube TV is new, but important
Why does YouTube TV grow big? Although PlayStation Vue and Sling TV had to find a new audience for their products, YouTube TV already has one billion users who live in 88 countries and speak 76 different languages.
So far, that huge user base, combined with the YouTube brand – plus offering a contract-free cable experience – attracted many customers, about 800,000 finally counted in July 2018.
Should the service ever find its way to the UK where people watch about 180m hours a day – a number that according to The Guardian is growing by 45% year-on-year – it could cause major problems for traditional service providers.
OK, so YouTube TV is getting big, you see that. But what is YouTube TV exactly and why should you care about it? Let's talk about it.
So, how is YouTube TV different?
YouTube TV is an American exclusive streaming service for live TV – think of Netflix, but instead of on-demand TV programs and movies, you can see many, many more cable channels such as ABC, NBC, FOX, ESPN and Disney. It looks like a cable, in the sense that everything is distributed on a channel and yes, you have to pay for it monthly, but the difference is that you can take shows anytime and anywhere.
We recharged the service for the first time, we recommended shows like Archer, The Big Bang Theory, The Simpsons and much more. We have easily found enough content to keep us busy for the time, plus we have plenty to see the next time we log in, thanks to the great Cloud DVR from YouTube TV.
Cloud DVR, if you have never heard that term before, you can record your favorite programs while being broadcast and stored in the cloud for later viewing. It is TiVo, but everything is online.
YouTube TV promises unlimited storage for shows for up to nine months – a big advantage over the competition that usually offers just 28 days of storage.
If you think you'll just jump past the ads, think again carefully. Just like traditional cable, YouTube TV and the range of channels still need revenue that goes beyond your month-to-month subscription costs. And ads are, just as we despise them, the way YouTube turns the light on.
But your monthly plan is not without the benefits – YouTube says the service allows six people in the family to access the service and up to three of them can simultaneously tune into the same account on the service – a big advantage when you want to replace cable and you have a big family.
The other thing you need to know about YouTube TV is the price: $ 40 per month. For comparison, that is slightly more expensive than the standard $ 20-per-month package from Sling TV and a few dollars less than the basic $ 45 package from PlayStation Vue that includes local stations such as CBS, NBC, etc.
Cut to the chase
- What is YouTube TV? A live TV streaming service such as Sling TV
- When would be a good time? It is now available!
- How much is it? $ 40 per month, unless you get an add-on package
- Where can you view it? Everywhere in the 99 American markets where it is available
Which channels are available on YouTube TV?
First of all, all regular local channels are on board: ABC, CBS, FOX, NBC and more. That means that every NFL game up to and including the Super Bowl can be viewed every Sunday. AMC has also signed up, which means that you can still get your Walking Dead fix on Sunday.
In addition to local things, you have all the channels that fall under the umbrella of those companies – eg ESPN, CSN, FOX Sports, USA, FX, Disney, E !, Bravo, SyFy, FXX, National Geographic, MSNBC, FOX News, CNBC and more.
Here is the complete picture of each channel so far.
On top of all those channels shown above, you also get access to YouTube's own YouTube network of shows, YouTube Red Originals. Shows on this & # 39; network & # 39; (a term that we use very lightly here) are Scare PewDiePie and exclusive films that you probably have never heard of. This is not really a huge attraction for most people, but yes, maybe the money that comes in through YouTube TV can be used to boost the quality of this content to near-Netflix levels.
Now, as with Amazon Video, you can purchase additional premium stations for an additional fee. At the moment, the list of premium offers includes FOX Soccer Plus and Showtime, which cost about $ 10 extra per month.
OK, who's missing so far? To be honest, not many important channels. The service still lacks important cable channels such as Comedy Central and Nickelodeon, in addition to premium channels such as HBO, but YouTube slowly fills the gaps.
How is it different from YouTube Red?
This can be a bit confusing, so listen. YouTube Red is an ad-free version of YouTube with some great features, such as allowing video playback even when your phone is turned off. A subscription to YouTube Red also gives you access to the channel of YouTube Red Originals that we talked about earlier.
What YouTube Red does not allow is watching live TV or cable TV content. You need YouTube TV for that.
YouTube TV, like YouTube Red, starts as a service that is only for the United States and may expand to other territories. YouTube wants to sell its Red service somewhere in the UK sometime in 2017, but it has problems doing this. It is more than likely that YouTube TV would follow that path, unfortunately.
Is there any cross-over potential between these two services? Absolutely. Maybe a subscription to YouTube TV also offers you a free subscription to Red. But we will just have to wait to learn more from YouTube if that is the case.
Is YouTube TV a better deal than cable?
That is a good question. The answer is here & # 39; maybe & # 39 ;. Depending on how your cable provider packs the internet and cable bundles. If you're already paying for the internet, you can earn an additional $ 30 for YouTube TV and maybe a $ 10 per month subscription to Netflix and as much content as a cable TV service that usually runs $ 60-70 per month .
That said, if you pay for one of those bundles that allow you to package cable, internet and telephone services together for a lower price, YouTube TV may not look less.
The benefits of going for a streaming service via a cable service are the ability to watch programs anywhere, the ability to use Cloud DVR to save shows for later and the free contract that allows you to use your account. cancel without a termination fee. Moreover, you do not need to rent a cable box from companies such as Comcast, Spectrum or AT & T, because the streaming service is delivered via whatever device you use.
In short, YouTube TV can offer just as many channels as the basic cable, without the need for a junction box and a 12-month contract, which is why we consider it a victory. It does all that and offers Cloud DVR, an abundance of apps for devices such as Apple TV and the Xbox One family of consoles and video on demand, making it one of the best streaming services in the world. (Although, at the time of writing, YouTube TV is NOT currently supported on PS4 or Roku – so there is still room for improvement.)
How fast can you start watching? Straight away. Just go to tv.youtube.com to start your free trial.