4 Things to Know Before You Sign Up for YouTube TV

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  • YouTube TV typically offers a free trial period of at least 7 days, with no promo code necessary.

  • NEWS ALERT: BET, CMT, Comedy Central, MTV, Nickelodeon, Paramount Network, TV Land and VH1 are coming to YouTube TV this summer, ViacomCBS announced on May 7, 2020. 

  • For $50 per month, the service features 70+ channels, including local sports and news in most cities.

YouTube TV is money expert Clark Howard’s favorite live TV streaming service for those who want to save money by cutting the cord without giving up their must-have channels.

The streaming TV service is one of a handful of options, including Sling TV, Hulu + Live TV and AT&T TV Now.

What Is YouTube TV? Team Clark Reviews the Live TV Streaming Service

For $50 per month, a YouTube TV membership provides access to more than 70 broadcast and cable networks — no contract or cable box required.

Clark has tried several streaming TV services and says this one is the best:

“My favorite of all the streaming products is YouTube TV. It has a pretty wide array of television programming, but what’s really neat is that multiple people could be watching different things at the same time and everybody has an unlimited DVR.”

Team Clark has repeatedly tested YouTube TV and the other major live TV streaming services. Read on to learn what you need to know before you sign up!

Table of Contents: 

1. What Channels Do You Get With YouTube TV?

When you’re trying to choose a cable or satellite TV alternative, the list of channels is probably the most important factor.

YouTube TV’s channel lineup features more sports networks than most of its competitors. They include ESPN, Fox Sports 1 & 2, Big Ten Network, CBS Sports Network, MLB Network, NBCSN, SEC Network and NBA TV.

In early March, the streaming provider reached an agreement to keep FOX Regional Sports Networks in some areas.

A deal with ViacomCBS will bring 14 additional networks to YouTube TV’s lineup. BET, CMT, Comedy Central, MTV, Nickelodeon, Paramount Network, TV Land and VH1 will be available to YouTube TV subscribers this summer.

Other ViacomCBS networks will launch at a later date. Watch this space for updates.

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YouTube TV Channel List

YouTube TV:
$49.99/month
ABC
ACC Network (ACCN)
AMC
Animal Planet
BBC America
BBC World News
Big Ten Network (BTN)
Bravo
Cartoon Network
CBS
CBS Sports Network
Cheddar Business
Cheddar News
CNBC
CNBC World
CNN
Comet
Court TV
Cozi TV
CW
Discovery Channel
Disney Channel
Disney Junior
Disney XD
E!
ESPN
ESPN2
ESPNews
ESPNU
Food Network
FOX
Fox Business Network
Fox News Channel
Fox Sports 1 (FS1)
Fox Sports 2 (FS2)
Freeform
FX
FXM
FXX
Golf Channel
HGTV
HLN
IFC
Investigation Discovery (ID)
Local Now
MLB Network
MotorTrend
MSNBC
National Geographic
Nat Geo Wild
NBA TV
NBC
NBCSN
Newsy
Olympic Channel
OWN
Oxygen
PBS
PBS Kids
Pop
SEC Network
Smithsonian Channel
Start TV
Sundance TV
SYFY
Tastemade
TBS
TCM (Turner Classic Movies)
Telemundo
Tennis Channel
TLC
TNT
Travel Channel
truTV
Universal Kids
Universo
USA
WE tv

2. Does YouTube TV Include Unlimited DVR?

YouTube TV’s navigation makes it easy to find live TV shows, but it’s equally as simple to record content to watch at a later time with its cloud DVR function.

Subscribers can record as many shows as they want to — there’s no storage limit — and recordings are kept for up to nine months.

In the video below, we demonstrate how to navigate the service’s cloud DVR and some of the other features like its live TV guide, which looks a lot like what you get with cable.

3. How Do You Stream YouTube TV on Your TV? 

You can always watch YouTube TV on your phone, tablet or computer, but what if you just want to stream your favorite shows on the big screen?

The streaming service’s list of supported devices includes Google Chromecast, Roku, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, Android TV, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and some Samsung and LG TVs.

If you don’t already have a streaming device, Clark recommends the $30 Roku Express because it’s cheap and easy to use. Click here to read our Quick Tips for First-Time Streamers.

Roku Express streaming media player
Roku Express streaming media player

4. Can a Family Share YouTube TV?

There are six accounts included with a YouTube TV membership for family members and roommates to receive their own unique recommendations and cloud DVR. Each household can watch up to three streams at a time.

If you want to use the service while traveling, you can access certain programs based on your location. Learn more here.

Pros and Cons of YouTube TV 

Just like Clark, I’ve been impressed with YouTube TV. I didn’t experience error messages or buffering while streaming over an internet connection with roughly 60 Mbps download speed.

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The service recommends a download speed of at least 13 Mbps to reliably stream HD video. (Learn how to check your speed here.)

YouTube TV has a great lineup of sports networks for $50 a month, but Sling TV offers a variety of sports, news and entertainment networks at a cheaper price. Hulu + Live TV is slightly more expensive.

Unlimited DVR is a bright spot for YouTube TV because some of its competitors place limits on storage or charge extra for it. Personalized DVR for family members is another benefit.

Most major streaming devices are compatible with the service, with Amazon Fire TV added in late 2019.

YouTube TV: Pros and Cons 

Pros Cons
One simple plan for $50/month FOX Regional Sports Networks not available in all locations
Lots of sports: ESPN, FS1, FS2, MLB Network, NBA TV and more
Unlimited DVR

If you’re thinking about switching from cable to YouTube TV, take advantage of the free trial first. If you don’t like it, just keep trying other services until you find one that’s a good fit. They all have free trials!

Learn more and compare your options in Clark’s guide to the best live TV streaming plans and deals!

More Clark.com Streaming TV Content: 

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