What we like
- Unlimited Cloud-DVR, available for 9 months.
- An inclusive list of top-rated channels.
- Multi-screen streaming, 3 at once.
- 6 profile settings on a single account.
- User-friendly interface.
What we don’t like
- Less 4K content, despite being charged at an additional $20.
- Some premium add-on channels could be included as a starter.
Not to sound offensive, but did you just switch on your TV, flip through the channels you never watch, and come to the conclusion that you’re going to cut the cord? You’re not alone, and you won’t be the last. By the way, while searching for the best live TV streaming subscription, how many times did YouTube TV come to your face? Can’t recall? Probably why you’re reading this article.
However, YouTube TV, since its launch in 2017, has been receiving all the hype that its competitors including Hulu Plus Live TV, Sling TV, Philo, etc. have been craving. But failed to secure, provided YouTube TV’s acclaimed streaming and DVR services.
But are these services really as performing as they say? Does YouTube TV really outsmart its competitors? Does it fulfill your entertainment cravings? Does it come at an affordable tag? We will find out all of this below in this YouTube TV review, and conclude if YouTube TV will be the replacement for your provoking cable tv.
But, before proceeding with all the questions above, how about we go through what YouTube TV has to offer? While comparing it with that of competitors. Because not only it will help us understand the live TV streaming service better, but answer many of our questions in the first place.
A Comparative Breakdown of YouTube TV’s Offerings
Though YouTube TV offers arguably more than its competitors, there might be a point or two where its competitors may be having a competitive advantage. And to eradicate this probability, let’s break down everything YouTube TV has to offer in comparison to the offerings of its rivals.
YouTube TV Channels
Regardless of what you fancy watching, be it news, sports, or movies, YouTube TV has got you covered. Offering as many as 90 local and PBS channels, you might run out of time to watch the tv, but not the channels. All the famous channels including FOX NEWS, CNBC, MSNBC, CNN, etc. lie but a tap away, answering one of our four targeted questions as positive.
This list of channels is the most any live TV streaming service across the United States offers. Consider this YouTube TV’s one of unique selling points that provides it a competitive edge over its competitors.
YouTube TV Cloud DVR
How much were/are you paying to cloud record your favorite shows, movies, or programs? And on top of that, how much for additional storage? Well, that’s the thing of the past. With YouTube TV, you can have unlimited recordings, charged at absolutely no extra cost, i.e., included within the monthly subscription fee.
Your recording will be available roughly for 9 months, provided that you are still a subscriber, leaving plenty of time to watch your favorite videos at your disposal. Another reason to believe YouTube TV outsmarts the competitors?
But on the contrary, DirectTV stream offers 20 hours of DVR (charging an additional $10 a month for unlimited storage), Hulu Plus Live TV lets you DVR the footage of 50 hours (charging $10 a month for 200 hours with commercial skip), and Fubo TV, at last, offers you 250 hours of DVR with no option to go unlimited.
YouTube TV On-demand Content
YouTube TV has an on-demand feature that allows you to watch your favorite but missed shows with the same vibe. Now you may be thinking of this (on-demand) and DVR as the same, but they aren’t, and what distinguishes them is the ability to skip the commercials, which you can’t with on-demand content.
Not only YouTube TV, but any live streaming service like Hulu Live Plus TV, Philo, Sling, etc. can’t provide you with an option to skip the commercials in on-demand videos or content. It’s just on demand’s nature, for they are not recorded.
YouTube TV Multi-User/Device Streaming
With YouTube TV’s ability to be streamed on three different devices at the same time, no one in your household will complain or ask you to stop using the service for them to watch. You can make as many as 6 profiles in a single account, allowing you to stream while keeping the privacy maintained.
On the contrary, Hulu Live Plus TV, charged at $76 a month, can be streamed on two devices simultaneously, and if you want to switch to unlimited screens, you’ll have to bag an add-on that costs you an additional $10 a month. Now you might be wondering if YouTube TV offers unlimited screens or not.
In a nutshell, yes, it does. But for that you’ll have to buy its 4K subscription, allowing you to stream as many devices as you want while being connected to your home’s WiFi. Not to forget, the YouTube TV’s 4K subscription comes at an additional $20 a month that will take your overall bill to around $85-$90 a month.
Also, buying a 4K subscription might hand you the liberty to stream unlimited devices, but not enough content to stream in 4K. So, you’ll have to make a tough choice there, as you’ll not be paying only $20 a month, but with a monthly fee of $65.
How Well Does YouTube TV’s Web User Interface Interact With You?
Now that you know where YouTube TV stands in terms of its offerings, let’s get to the user interface it boasts. Equipped with a UI same as that of its sister company YouTube, YouTube TV has a neat look, flaunting premium vibes from the very moment you hop onto it.
The three top-level tabs including, Home, Live, and Library are what you keep navigating or hopping through. The home is where the YouTube TV shows you the recommendations based on your watching history, both the live and featured shows or channels.
The live tab, however, lists airing or to-be-aired programs, allowing you to turn on notifications for an airing about to start, but that stays with a YouTube TV’s mobile app only. Remember the DVR shows or videos? They are all stored in the cloud and accessed in the library, which is the last of three top-level tabs.
The top right corner accommodates a search tool that helps you with finding the best content at the right time. You can search for anything from any genre, or if you are a news geek, YouTube TV might have you schedule your days to watch every single news channel in its list.
Coming back to the point, the search tool also allows you to explore through its array of entertainment channels with linked searches, you can type in the genre/climax along with a year, and it’ll elicit a list of channels, movies, or shows linking to both the terms searched, refreshing your nostalgic memories or making new ones right at a tap.
You can fast-forward or reverse the now playing show, channel, or movie with 15-second buttons that are placed on the right side of the screen, almost the same as that of the regular youtube app. The left side of the now playing screen, however, has all the tools you will need to select the best streaming quality or audio track, enable the closed captions, and change the playback speed.
There is this information button as well, that shows you the relevant and useful information about the show. For instance, if you are playing a movie, and you click on the button, it will display its release date, genre, director, budget, box office earnings, and so on.
What Devices does YouTube TV support?
The live TV streaming service can be accessed or streamed from any device, given its support for YouTube TV. If you don’t have the device, your laptop/PC or mobile device would do. However, the list of YouTube TV compatible devices is as follows:
- Select TVs with NVIDIA shield and built-in android
- Smart TVs by Samsung (2016 and onwards)
- Smart TVs by LG (2016 and onwards)
- Select SmartCast Models by Vizio
- Select Smart TV Models by Hisense
- Select Smart TV Models by Sharp
- Select Smart TV Models by Sony
- Google TV built-in Chromecast
- TVs and players by Roku
- 4th generation and 4K Apple TV
- Fire TV Cube
- 4K, lite, 2nd gen, and 3rd gen fire TV sticks
- Select smart TVs with fire TV edition
- PlayStation 4
- PlayStation 4 Pro
- PlayStation 5
- Xbox Series X, S
- Xbox One, One S, One X
Tablets & Smartphones
- Devices running Android 5.0 and onwards
- Devices running iOS 11 or onwards
What Channels are available as Add ons?
YouTube TV already offers an array of 90+ channels; and based on your residential region in the United States, it broadcasts the local channels as well. However, if you are more of an original content seeker, you might want to consider opting for add ons that come at an additional handful of dollars but may turn out to be worthy.
Not to forget, YouTube TV also offers a free trial of 14 days, which is a great opportunity to test out everything you deem necessary or unnecessary including these channels that come as add ons:
- $40.00/month – NBA League Pass
- $14.99/month – HBO MAX
- $3.00/month – CuriosityStream
- $9.00/month – Starz
- $9.00/month – Cinemax
- $15.00/month – FOX Soccer Plus
- $6.00/month – Epix
- $6.00/month – Acorn
Famous entertainers such as Disney, MTV, Cartoon Network, ESPN, ESPN 2, etc. are also available as premium add-on networks, check out all of them here, and find yourself the channels that you can’t help watching.
Sure about YouTube TV?
Though YouTube TV stands out as an exemplary live TV streaming service rich in features and functionalities, it might give you a tough time with the prices. Surely, if you can afford it, you must go for it, but if you think that those 90 channels and unlimited cloud DVR storage would be too much for you, you might want to look at its alternatives.
At $35/month or $50/month combined, you can go for sling orange and blue streaming service plans, whose only downside is the limitation of channels, but may turn out enough for you if you like sticking to a single channel or rarely navigate through them. Not to forget the two big streaming giants Netflix, and Disney+, available at way lesser price tags as compared to YouTube TV or any of its competitors.
But of course, they don’t offer any live TV streaming, but if you are opting for YouTube TV to only watch the movies, then Netflix or Disney+ would be the best substitute for it.
Getting Started YouTube TV
Well, if you have decided to join a whopping figure of 4 million YouTube TV subscribers, let’s get you familiar with how quickly you can start.
Read More: How to cancel Youtube Premium
YouTube TV, like Google’s other applications, features quite a user-friendly commencement. At first, you will have to decide whether you will be streaming the service via a supported media device, console, or smartphones and tablets. Once you have decided, you will have to connect it to the internet, sign in with an ID you used to buy the subscription, and bid farewell to your cable tv, or as they say, cut the cord.
Given what YouTube TV offers including the channels, unlimited cloud DVR, on-demand content, parental controls, multi-screen streaming, wide hardware support, and much more, a $64.99/mo price tag seems quite reasonable.
Such features and functionalities are rarely found with any of its competitors, and if found, they are either charged separately or come as an add-on. So yes, it wouldn’t be wrong to declare YouTube TV as the best live TV streaming service there is across the whole United States.
And if you are not sure if YouTube TV is or is not for you, you can always sign up for its free trial to get rid of all the doubts prevailing within your mind. At last, this YouTube TV review turned out triumphs and concludes that if you can, you should opt for YouTube TV.