Your Guide to Streaming

No cable? No problem. It’s easier than ever to watch the shows and movies you want, when you want. Here’s everything you need to get started.

See which streaming apps are right for you.

What is Streaming TV?

Streaming allows you to connect to a world of entertainment through Netflix, Amazon Video, Hulu, HBO Now, WatchESPN, and more. If you want to start streaming, you’ll need a way to connect your TV to your high-speed internet connection. You may already have a smart TV, but streaming media players like Amazon Fire TV give you easy access to an even wider breadth of TV shows, movies, and games. Shop Fire TV now.

Which Apps Do I Want?

Whether you have a cable subscription or not, it’s easy to start streaming with Fire TV.


If you have a cable subscription, you can stream TV shows and movies on-demand from many of your favorite channels like WatchESPN, HGTV Watch, and Lifetime. Just search for your favorite channel app on your streaming device or smart TV, download it, and enter your cable information. You’ll be able to start streaming your favorite shows, no DVR required.


If you don’t have a cable subscription, you can still watch many popular shows, sports and movies. Netflix, Hulu, Sling TV, HBO NOW, and Showtime are just a few apps that you can access for a small monthly fee (no cable plan required). Plus, there are many apps that do not require a cable subscription like NBC News, Crackle, and Pluto TV that let you access even more content for free.


Use our guide to learn more about your options and estimate your monthly costs.

What Can I Watch Live?

If you don’t have cable and want live TV for local news or sports, or to flip channels or have the TV on in the background, you can get a subscription to an app like Sling TV, Hulu, DirecTV Now or Sony Playstation Vue that lets you watch many popular cable channels live. With Sling TV, you can just turn on ESPN, HGTV, Cartoon Network, Disney Channel, Food Network, and more and enjoy your favorite shows.


Another option: add an HD antenna to your living room. Local networks like ABC, NBC, CBS and Fox broadcast a free HD signal, so an HD antenna will let you watch local news, morning shows, live sports, prime-time shows, and late-night programs. Shop popular HD antennas now.

More Frequently Asked Questions

Without a cable subscription, a $20/month Sling TV subscription will let you watch ESPN and NBA on TNT, plus most major sports leagues offer subscriptions for online viewing. If you add an HD antenna to your setup, you’ll be able to watch live games that are broadcast on local networks like NBC, ABC, CBS or FOX. Other options include apps like NBA, MLB.tv, Fox Sports Go, Tennis Channel and more.
With a cable subscription, you can download the WatchESPN app to your streaming media player to get access to many major sports games, live and on-demand.
There are many solutions for watching TV in many rooms of your home without a cable box. Most streaming media players only work on one TV at a time, so you will need to get a streaming media player like Amazon Fire TV for each TV. A Fire TV Stick is also a good option for secondary TVs. And while it’s possible to hook up one HD antenna to multiple TVs, the installation can be complex, so it may be easier to set up an HD antenna for each TV.
The channels you’ll be able to get with your HD antenna are dependent on how close you are to a major city as well as the location of your home and where you plan to place the antenna. For example, if your home faces away from the direction of the signals, or if your home is surrounded by trees, your channel selection may be more limited. This site will tell you what channels are available in your area, but the only way to really know what channels you’ll be able to watch is to try an HD antenna yourself. Shop popular HD antennas now.
Streaming is a great option for a secondary TV. You’ll avoid the expense of installing a new cable outlet and renting another cable box, plus you’ll be able to use your cable subscription to access many of your favorite shows and movies on-demand via streaming apps like WATCH ABC or HBO GO.
Use our guide to help you select which streaming apps are right for you, and add up your monthly estimated subscription costs.
Some apps, like WatchESPN and Watch HGTV, require a cable subscription for you to use them. So, depending on the shows and channels you want to watch, it might make sense for you to transition to a basic cable package so that you can still access these kinds of apps. The interactive guide below can help you determine if the apps you want need a cable account login.
If you’re interested in saving money on your cable bill, you have a few options. If you want to keep cable, then you could potentially lessen your costs by downgrading to a more scaled back, basic package and streaming more often. If you decide not to have cable, you can still get many of the same TV shows, sports and movies with a streaming media player, an HD antenna, and subscriptions to services like Netflix, Amazon Video, Hulu, and Sling TV. Use this guide to find out what your total app subscription costs would be.

Interactive Guide

Use this guide to find out which apps you need to get all of your favorite TV shows and movies. Select whether or not you have cable, then choose the apps that you are interested in. We’ll tell you how to get them and how much they cost.


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