Live TV services run the gamut from free to expensive, with Fubo TV at the upper end of the market. It's not cheap, but it might be the right cord-cutting choice if you want a lot of channels and if you like to watch sports.
Starting price: $69.99 per month
Supported devices: Roku, Fire TV, Apple TV, Vizio and Samsung Smart TVs, web browsers, iPhones and iPads, Android phones and tablets, Chromecast, Xbox
Cloud DVR: 250 hours
Simultaneous streams: 3
FuboTV launched in 2015 with a focus on soccer, but it has evolved since then into one of the best cable TV alternatives. The lowest tier Pro Plan costs $70 and comes with over 120 channels, including the major broadcast and cable networks, and supports 4K streaming for select content (some of its competitors do not).
FuboTV's interface is slick and well-designed and comes with 250 hours of Cloud DVR. Ultimately, this FuboTV review concludes that it's right for you if you're willing to spend an extra few bucks a month to build a more complete channel guide.
FuboTV review: Pricing
FuboTV offers a free, seven-day trial of its default Pro plan, which costs $69.99 a month for over 120 channels, 1,000 hours of Cloud DVR storage and three simultaneous streams.
The Elite plan costs $79.99 and adds 53 more channels.
All plans come with six profiles per account, so friends and family members can customize their preferences.
On top of one of the plans, Fubo users can pay for add-ons, like Showtime and Starz. There are also over a dozen add-on bundles and premium channels, which we outline below.
Fubo's base plan costs the same as its two main live TV rivals, YouTube TV ($64.99 per month for 80-plus channels) and Hulu with Live TV ($69.99 per month for 70-plus channels). Both of those services stream local networks in most areas, as does Fubo.
Other streaming services are cheaper, but their prices are also going up. Take for example Sling ($35 per month) and Philo TV ($25 for 59 channels), though neither of which such an expansive channel lineup.
FuboTV review: Availability and platforms
FuboTV is available on most major platforms:
- Web browsers (Chrome, Safari, Firefox)
- Most iPhones and iPads (iOS 10 and later)
- Most Android phones and tablets (OS 5.0 and later)
- Apple TV (4th gen and later)
- Roku (model 3600X and later)
- Samsung Smart TVs
- Fire TV (all models)
- Vizio Smartcast TVs
- All Chromecast devices
- Xbox consoles
The only typical streaming device missing is PlayStation 4 (which has Hulu with Live TV and YouTube TV).
FuboTV review: Interface
Fubo's interface is slick and well-designed. The black, gray and white color palette is more attractive than YouTube's stark, utilitarian look, though not quite as pleasing as Philo's interface.
The menu is divided into a handful of tabs (which differ slightly between platforms). On the web, those tabs are Home, Sports, Shows, Movies, Guide and Recordings. On mobile, the Shows and Movies sections are combined into Entertainment, while Recordings is labeled My Fubo.
The Home tab is broken down into sections, like Live TV, 4K on Demand, Live Sports, Popular Shows and Popular Movies. The Sports tab shows all the games that are airing that day or on future days. The Shows and Movies tab highlights popular titles and content on demand.
The Guide tab features the typical cable-like grid with a vertical list of networks and horizontal times. The networks are not alphabetized, so you may need to hunt for your preferred channels. But you can also favorite channels, so they always live at the top of the Guide.
The Recordings tab houses all the shows and movies you have recorded as well as a marker for how much Cloud DVR storage you've used.
FuboTV's search functionality is very fast, with results populating as you type, but it isn't as extensive as YouTube TV (which pulls in related video content from regular YouTube) or even Philo (which includes episodes as well as shows in results).
The show profile pages are fairly typical. They display upcoming episodes and give the option to record the series. (And you can choose to record all episodes or just new episodes.) And the playback window features the usual controls.
FuboTV review: Content and channels
Fubo's channel lineup is huge. The largest among the higher-priced streaming services, FuboTV includes almost all of the local networks as well as top cable brands. In summer 2020, they added Disney-owned channels like ABC and ESPN, but took away Turned-owned channels like CNN and TNT. Fubo is also lacking the A&E networks.
Fubo does offer the Viacom-owned networks, like MTV, Comedy Central and Nickelodeon. For their full channel lineup, check here.
The add-ons include two premium channels and several packages geared toward different interests, primarily niche sports. The service recently added MLB Network + MLB StrikeZone and the NHL Network.
Here's a look at the add-on packages you can get from Fubo:
- Showtime ($10.99)
- AMC Premiere ($4.99)
- $10.99 for Sports Plus (NFL Red Zone, NBA TV, Tennis Channel, GolTV)
- $11.99 for Fubo Cycling
- $5.99 for International Sports Plus (Zona Futbol, Fox Soccer Plus)
- $4.99 for Adventure Plus (Outdoor Channel, Sportsman Channel, Outside TV)
- $7.99 for Latino Plus
- $7.99 for Rai Italia
- $14.99 for Portuguese Plus
- $4.99 for Entretenimiento Plus
- $5.99 for Fubo Extra (Cooking Channel, Game Show Network, Logo, TeenNick)
Fubo also lacks original programming, which two of its competitors — YouTube TV and Hulu With Live TV — have. Those services are similarly priced yet offer original shows (and in Hulu's case, award-winning titles like The Handmaid's Tale). Not to say Fubo should get in the originals game — honestly, there's too much stuff out there anyway — but it does make that high cost a bit less justifiable.
FuboTV review: DVR
One of the main knocks against Fubo used to be the low amount of Cloud DVR storage. But a recent package overhaul changed for several of the plans. Now, the Pro Plan comes with 1,000 hours. But consider that YouTube TV and Philo both give unlimited storage.
Fubo's Recordings tab has a handy tracker to gauge how much DVR space you are using.
FuboTV review: Video quality
FuboTV supports up to 1080p, depending on the channel and program. Most of the content I watched was only available up to 720p.
Fubo also offers limited events in 4K (currently more than 130 of them) and only on devices that can stream 4K content such as the Apple TV 4K, Chromecast Ultra, FireTV Stick 4K, Roku Premiere and Android mobile phones with HDR10 displays.
The 4K content is not available to be recorded. None of the other live TV services stream in 4K. Philo offers 720p streaming and 1080p on-demand content, while the other companies don't say.
FuboTV review: Verdict
Fubo is a decent option for cord cutters looking to get rid of cable television. And while it used to be one of the most expensive streaming services in the market, competitors have now risen in price to match that $70 a month basic plan. None of the three streamers is the complete package; they all lack something, be it certain channels or enough DVR storage. Basketball fans will raise an eyebrow at the lack of TNT in Fubo, for example.
As this FuboTV review explains, it offers a ton of channels and storage with its Family plan and flexibility with add-ons. If you're looking for something cheaper, then go with Sling or Philo — just know that you won't have access to many networks. But if your preferred channels are only in Fubo's lineup, it may be the best cable replacement service for you.