Picking the right streaming services is a tough and sometimes confusing task in 2023. With everchanging pricing models and content offerings, it can be hard for cord cutters to feel confident in their choices.
Money expert Clark Howard and his family are no different than you and me when it comes to this struggle to find the best value for our entertainment dollar.
I recently asked Clark what he does for streaming TV in his own home. Those of you who listen to his advice often won’t be shocked by his strategy: Deals, deals and more deals!
“If I don’t have some sort of promotional tie-in or some way to get it for free, you REALLY have to give me a good reason to pay for it,” Clark says.
But his frugality in the streaming TV world doesn’t mean he’s not well entertained. He says he gets all of the content he and his family want with this strategy.
Let’s look at what Clark’s watching and how much he’s paying for these streaming services.
Clark’s Pick for Live TV Streaming: YouTube TV
Monthly Price: $64.99
Channels: 127 (Full list)
Free Trial: 14 Days (Sign up)
Cloud DVR Hours: Unlimited
Simultaneous Streams: 3
Local Channels: ABC, CBS, FOX, NBC
Regional Sports: NBC Sports channels only
Supported Streaming Devices:
Amazon Fire, Chromecast, Apple TV and select smart TVs (Full list)
This service, which Team Clark rates as the best all-around live TV option, checks a lot of boxes:
- Great channel selection
- Unlimited DVR storage
- All of your local channels
Clark, who is a self-described football nut, says he can’t be without ESPN and other sports channels. YouTube TV has all of those, as well as the non-sports channels that his family enjoys.
He receives a $10 per month discount from the regular retail price because of a T-Mobile promotion.
Clark said he tried a free trial of YouTube TV’s 4K add-on option, but chose not to pay for it.
“It made no difference in my life, so we just dropped it after the free trial and continued to pay for regular YouTube TV with the T-Mobile discount,” Clark said.
Clark’s Picks for On-Demand Streaming
Clark has several video streaming service subscriptions, but a couple of things you should know first:
- You’ll find that he has these services mostly for the enjoyment of his family. He says he actually consumes very little TV content beyond his favorite sports.
- Clark receives subscriptions to most of these streaming services as a perk for being a customer of some other service. In that way, it’s “free” to him vs. going out of pocket for a standalone subscription.
Here’s a look at the on-demand services he has on his television:
|Streaming Service||Normal Monthly Price||How Clark Gets It Free or Discounted|
|Netflix||$7 – $20||Clark receives this free as a T-Mobile wireless customer|
|Peacock||$5 – $10||Clark receives this free as an Xfinity internet customer|
|Paramount+||$5 – $10||Clark receives this as a perk to his Walmart+ subscription|
|Prime Video||$9 – $15||Clark receives this as a perk to his Amazon Prime subscription|
Clark says he used to pay for Disney+, but that he stopped that because “no one watches it” at his house anymore.
He also said that he’s had several opportunities to receive Apple TV+ for free, but he has not been compelled to try it.
Clark Loves Free Streaming TV
“The hottest thing in streaming right now is free streaming products,” Clark says. “There are tons of them. And it seems like there are new ones all the time. You’re able to watch a ton of content at no cost.”
He says a favorite in his home is Pluto TV, which his wife loves to watch. Owned by Paramount Global, this service offers live channels and on-demand options for content from familiar brands like CBS, Nickelodeon, Comedy Central and MTV.
Clark’s Guilty Pleasure: NFL Sunday Ticket
We spent the majority of this article showing you what a good job Clark does of taking advantage of the discounts and freebies available to him in the streaming space.
So it’s only fair that we also point out that he’s not always frugal! He splurges on the content that means the most to him.
Clark is an avid football fan. He enjoys watching his favorite team, the Atlanta Falcons, along with the rest of the National Football League.
Paying a premium for an NFL Sunday Ticket subscription gives Clark access to every out-of-market NFL game during the football season.
Though Clark is not a DIRECTV satellite customer, which is generally a requirement to receive this service, he subscribes via exemption to pay for this premium add-on as a streaming-only feature via NFLSundayTicket.TV.
It’s worth noting that YouTube TV has acquired the rights to NFL Sunday Ticket for the 2023 season and beyond. It will be offered as an add-on purchase there.
Here’s to hoping a cheaper price comes with that new provider!
Do you have similar streaming tastes to Clark’s? Are you a fan of his strategy for getting the value out of his streaming dollar? We’d love to hear about your strategies in the Clark.com community.