10 Free Live TV Streaming Sites To Watch Shows, Sports, News

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You can use the login shared by your cable TV provider to stream live free TV content on your computer or phone, but that isn’t exactly what cord-cutters are looking for. Paying for a cable TV subscription and then watching those channels on your computer or phone doesn’t save you money. That’s why we have created a list of absolutely free and legal live TV streaming sites that don’t come with such stipulations.

Contrary to the premium Live TV options like YouTube TV, Hulu Live TV, AT&T TV Now, etc., most of the free services are ad-supported. Some of these websites also provide an option to order on-demand content and stream it at your convenience.

Tip:
You can use a VPN to bypass geographical restrictions and stream TV channels from different countries. Here are our top VPN recommendations.

1. Pluto TV

Pluto TV was launched in 2013 and acquired by Viacom in 2019. With its content partnerships and licensing deals with studios, Pluto TV has served more than 10 million monthly active users. The free TV streaming site has tried to give you the visual feel of a traditional TV interface and further categorized the content into 13 channel tiers like Movies, Sports, Comedy, Entertainment, Tech + Geek, etc.

Thanks to the recent merger of Viacom and CBS, Pluto TV has also gained access to the popular CBS Sports HQ as well. Other sports channels available to stream include Fox Sports, NFL Channel, Pluto Sports, etc. Overall, the service features more than 200 channels at the moment — no sign up needed. If you’re aware of The Roku Channel live TV service, Pluto’s own channels can be streamed there as well.

pluto tv streaming
Pluto TV App

Availability and supported devices

  • Live TV content on Pluto can be streamed on all popular platforms, including Web, Android, PC, iOS, Apple TV, Roku, Fire TV, Chromecast, etc.
  • Pluto TV can be watched in the U.S., Europe, Australia, and Canada (limited availability). This free live TV service will soon launch in Brazil as well.

Sign up needed: No

Pros:

  • 200+ free to watch live TV channels
  • User-friendly and neatly categorized interface

Cons:

  • Limited availability and geo-restrictions
  • No DVR feature for live TV

2. Plex Free TV

Plex Media Server is one of the most popular ways to store all the digital content in one place. With its live TV streaming, Plex offers a set of about 100 TV channels that you can enjoy without any antenna or tuner hardware. Since Plex is more than a live TV service, you get access to lots of free movies, news, documentaries, music, etc., via the Plex app without the need to create an account.

What makes Plex Free TV stand out is the control it offers; you can personalize your channel lineup, hide those that you don’t like, and choose to see the last three watched channels on the top. You can also limit access to Live TV for the managed users you’ve created on the account.

Plex TV Apps

Availability and supported devices

  • Plex Live TV can be watched anywhere in the world — in 220+ countries with Plex servers. Obviously, some content is geo-restricted and you can use a VPN to unlock it.
  • The Plex player app can be used to watch free live TV on Android, iOS, Windows, macOS, Plex Web App, Chromecast, Apple TV, Fire TV, etc.

Sign up needed: No

Pros:

  • Excellent personalization features
  • Individual profiles option

Cons:

  • Doesn’t work well with VPN

3. Sling TV Free

Sling TV’s is already one of the best cable alternatives that directly competes with YouTube TV and Hulu + Live TV. The service previously offered a Happy Hour deal that allowed you to watch free live TV at night. Going one step ahead, Sling TV has also launched its ad-supported free version that doesn’t even need an account to start binging.

Some of the popular TV channels that you can stream for free include the likes of ABC News, Fox News, Buzzr, etc., and shows like Hell’s Kitchen, Rick & Morty, Forensic Files, Samurai Jack, etc. Sling mentions on its official website the list of free movies and TV shows crosses 5,000, which is a pretty decent number.

sling tv free tier
Sling Free Tier

Availability and supported devices

  • This free live TV service is available only in the U.S.
  • Sling Free is available on Android, Chrome, Edge, Safari, Fire TV, Roku, Android TV, etc. Unfortunately, Sling Free can’t be accessed at the moment on Apple TV or iOS app.

Sign up needed: No

Pros:

  • A massive library of free to watch live TV channels
  • Multi-device support

Cons:

  • Only available in the U.S.

4. MX Player

MX Player is a media player that also features free live tv channels supported by advertisements. It began as a Korean company but soon, MX Player was taken over by an Indian company and now serves as an OTT platform. On MX Player, you can watch free-to-air channels, TV shows, and movies. They also have MX originals on the platform. The app has been designed meticulously and if you’re in to watch free live tv, you’ll be glad to know that MX Player features more than 180 free-to-air channels for you to watch.

MX Player mostly focuses on Indian live tv channels. You can easily watch channels such as 9XM, IndiaTV, ABP News, DD National, Bflix Movies, and more. Moreover, you can start watching free live TV right away without registering on the website.

Availability and supported devices

  • This free live TV service is available only in India
  • MX Player free live tv can be watched on the official MX Player website and apps available on Google Play Store and Apple App Store

Sign up needed: No

Pros:

  • No sign up required to watch free live TV
  • 100+ free live TV channels available

Cons:

  • Only available in India
  • Mostly regional language channels are available for free

5. Disney+ Hotstar

Disney+ Hotstar is already one of the best and most affordable streaming options available in India. With just Rs. 1,499/year (~$20), one can enjoy new Indian movies, TV shows, sports events, Disney+ originals, and Hollywood movies. What makes this streaming service even better is its free offerings that don’t need to sign up.

The ad-supported free TV content is mostly from Star-owned channels like Star Plus, Star Bharat, Star Vijay, Star Sports, Star Maa, Channel V, etc. While the free subscription doesn’t let you watch shows as they air, they are uploaded on the site, usually the day after their broadcast. This one-day delay shouldn’t be an issue if you’re fond of domestic Indian content and wish to stream content free of cost. When it comes to news, you can watch free live TV channels like Aaj Tak, Fox News, Republic, etc.

disney+ hostar apps
Indian Content on Hostar

Availability and supported devices

  • Free content on Disney+ Hotstar is available only in India. Hotstar operates in the U.S., the U.K., and Canada as well, but it doesn’t offer free content.
  • Disney+ Hotstar free TV content can be watched on the Web, Android, iOS, Android TV, Fire TV, Apple TV, Chromecast, etc.

Sign up needed: No

Pros:

  • A large number of free to watch live TV channels
  • Categorized content and neat user interface

Cons:

  • Available only in India
  • One-day delay in TV series broadcast

6. The Roku Channel

Roku streaming boxes have been the go-to choice for cord-cutters for a long time, thanks to their ease of usage and tons of options to stream content at affordable costs. However, in recent years, the Roku software platform has driven more growth for the company. Apart from choosing from premium channels like HBO or Hulu, Roku also tons of free content on The Roku Channel.

The Roku Channel works just like any other channel on the Roku box, which means you just have to ‘add’ it. The selection of live channels includes ABC News, Newsy, FilmRise, etc.

the roku channel
The Roku Channel

Availability and supported devices

  • Roku streaming services are available in the U.S., Canada, Latin America, France, and the U.K.
  • The easiest way to stream free live TV from The Roku Channel is to use a Roku streaming device. You can also stream the content on Android, iOS, and the web. Since Roku is a direct competitor of Fire TV, Apple TV, and Chromecast, you can’t stream the content directly.

Sign up needed: No

Pros:

  • Highly intuitive user interface
  • Excellent customization options

Cons:

  • No support for non-Roku streaming devices
  • The free content is not exciting

7. Peacock TV

Peacock is a streaming service that is owned by Comcast’s NBCUniversal. Unlike other big names like Netflix and Hulu, Peacock offers a free tier that lets you watch more than 13,000 hours of content. Just like India-focused Disney+ Hotstar, Peacock airs episodes of current hits like The Voice, Saturday Night Live, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, Dateline, etc.

It also hosts some big hits like Parks and Recreation, Top Chef, 30 Rock, Downton Abbey, Roseanne, etc. On the visual front, Peacock features a big carousel layout, just like other streaming services. The only thing I didn’t like about it was the mixing of free and premium titles; I couldn’t find an option to filter all the free titles on one page.

peacock tv parks and recreation for free
Peacock TV Apps

Availability and supported devices

  • NBCUniversal Peacock is available in the U.S. and is expected to launch soon in the U.K.
  • Peacock’s free tier can be watched on the web, Android, iOS, Android TV, Apple TV, Roku, Chromecast, and all other major streaming devices.

Sign up needed: Yes

Pros:

  • No payment details needed, you can start watching right away
  • 13,000+ hours of free, ad-supported content

Cons:

  • Latest episodes are available one week after they are aired

8. Airtel Xstream

Airtel, India’s top telecom company, offers Airtel Xstream app that lets its subscribers watch more than 400 live TV channels and 10,000+ feature films for free. Other Indian telecom providers like Reliance Jio and Vodafone Idea (Vi) also offer similar services, but I liked Airtel Xtream the most.

The content in the app is listed under different categories: Live TV, Movies, Kids, and News. While Disney+ Hotstar stream Star channels in India, Airtel Xstream is for Sony and Zee channels. On the sports front, you get a complete catalog of Sony channels, including Sony Six, Sony Ten, etc.

airtel xtream web
Airtel Xtream On Laptop

Availability and supported devices

  • Airtel Xtream is available in India.
  • Xstream free live TV can be watched on the web, Android, iOS, and Airtel Xstream Box.

Sign up needed: Yes

Pros:

  • A large number of live sports channels

Cons:

  • Only available for Airtel subscribers

9. ABC TV

ABC TV is a popular free live TV streaming app that allows you to watch popular shows from ABC Network. On this free live TV streaming site, you can watch modern shows as well as classics. Some of the popular titles featured on ABC TV are Dancing With the Stars, Modern Family, and Black-ish. ABC TV is currently available only in the US but you can use VPN if you want to access this streaming service from outside the US.

To watch free live TV on ABC TV, go to their website or app and visit the dedicated live TV section. You need to sign up on the website to start watching free live TV. The user interface of the app/website is quite simple and you could feel the traditional cable TV vibes from it.

Availability and supported devices

  • ABC TV is available in the US.
  • You can watch ABC Live TV on Android, iOS, Amazon Fire Tablet, Fire TV, Android TV, Roku, Samsung Smart TV, Amazon Fire TV, and Google Chromecast.

Sign up needed: Yes

Pros:

  • A large number of classic and modern TV shows as well as movies to watch for free
  • No payment information is required for free live TV

Cons:

  • Limited availability due to geo-restrictions

10. USTV Now

Developed for US diplomats and soldiers living outside the country, USTV Now is one o the best free live TV streaming site if you want to watch US TV shows. This is a completely legal and free site to watch live TV. Here you can watch more than 80 live channels for free. Since this service was intended for diplomats and soldiers, it never received as much attention as other streamign services did. It might be the reason why USTVNow has a primitve user interface with blue links and gray tones.

In terms of channels, you can watch on USTV Now, there are six major networks you can find on this service namely ABC, CBS, CW, FOX, NBC, and PBS. There is not much to complain about this streaming service and you can use it as a perfect cable TV replacement if you want to watch live sports and some basic TV channels.

Availability and supported devices

  • USTV Now can be accessed from anywhere around the world
  • There is no app available for Android and iOS but you can access the streaming site using the browser.

Sign up needed: Yes

Pros:

  • USTV Now can be accessed for free from anywhere around the world
  • You get a decent collection of classic movies and TV shows

Cons:

  • User-interface is outdated
  • Streaming issues while choosing the quality of the content.

How to unblock live TV streaming sites?

Usually, ISPs block live tv streaming sites for users and there are several geo-restrictions as well that might prevent you from accessing these sites. To counter such a situation, you can use a VPN service to bypass such restrictions. You can find VPNs offering dedicated features to unblocking streaming sites. By using a VPN, not only you can access these blocked sites easily, it also makes your connection more secure.

Free Live TV Sites 2021: Our Recommendations

The options we have presented above are 100% working as we have checked them thoroughly. Now, if you as us which is the best live TV streaming site, then we must say that it depends upon the content you want to watch. If you want to watch classic movies, we recommend using Pluto TV, and for live sports matches, our recommendation will be Peacock TV.

More on cord-cutting and free content streaming:

What is cord-cutting?

The term cord-cutting refers to giving up traditional cable TV subscriptions and opting for internet-based video streaming services. This is being done by viewers all around the world to reduce costs or stream content free of cost.

Can I give up my cable subscription to stream free Live TV via internet?

Before making the decision to cancel cable, make sure that you have a reliable and fast internet connection. The other consideration should be your favorite TV shows, which might not be available on a free live TV option.

How can I watch Live TV on my phone for free?

Free TV services like Pluto TV, Peacock TV, or Disney+ Hotstar have user-friendly mobile apps for Android and iOS. You can download their app and start watching.

Do I need a VPN to watch free TV?

You don’t need a VPN to watch free content on services that are available in your country. However, if you’re concerned about sharing data with third-party companies and willing to access content available in other countries, using a VPN is recommended.

Adarsh Verma

Adarsh Verma

Fossbytes co-founder and an aspiring entrepreneur who keeps a close eye on open source, tech giants, and security. Get in touch with him by sending an email — [email protected]
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