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Fubo TV

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fubo.tv

Many people think that cutting the cord correlates with missing out on a major chunk of the TV viewing experience. However, that’s not true. You can watch primetime shows, live sports, and much more without cable TV services. Not just that, you can either replicate or improve the existing experience.

If you’re a sports lover, you might know about Fubo TV already. It’s a live TV streaming service that offers 100+ channels which includes news, sports, and entertainment. Yes, it is true that it was once a pure soccer-only service, however, it has become a full-fledged multichannel service with a thin bundle competing with the likes of Sling TV.

I like Fubo TV primarily because of its sports coverage. It practically covers every major sport around the world – not just national or international but an event happening at the local level as well. Initially, it just offered a 24-hour soccer live feed. Since its relaunch, it has shown increasing interest in other forms of content such as entertainment and prime time television.

History

FuboTV is an American OTT television service launched in 2015 primarily as a soccer streaming service. In two years, it pivoted into all-sports service and then entered the virtual multichannel video programming distributor network. Currently, it focuses on providing sports content including coverage of MLB, NFL, NHL, NBA and MLS along with Plus News, International Soccer, Network television movies, and series.

Though FuboTV still carries a sports branding and refers to as the sports-first platform, it’s slowly testing the entertainment and primetime waters. With its services, FuboTV targets young and old sports viewers who are searching for the best cord-cutting alternatives. By increasing the variety of content, it’s trying to appeal to an additional chunk of audience who want to enjoy streaming through their mobile, tablets, and smart TVs.

In 2018, the Network announced that it has surpassed 250,000 subscribers and is experiencing growth at +100%. Each quarter it adds more than 30,000 subscribers. True to its sports heritage, Fubo TV’s extending user base highlights the need for a proper sports-oriented channel that acts as a one-stop-shop for all sports lovers.

Design

Fubo TVs’ commitment to sports is pretty evident in its website design. The moment you visit the website, the first thing you’d see is a live-tv video banner with a channel trailer with a light and dark blue combination which keeps you glued to the website. As you scroll down, you’ll see icons of all the channels available in your region. There are four categories for you to choose from – All, Sports, Entertainment and News.

As a sports lover, the first thing that catches my eye is the Sports tab. Even when you boot the app, that is actually the first thing you will see. A section that includes all upcoming sports broadcasts along with sub-menus for individual sports (similar to what we saw on Hotstar).

The Guide tab (a common feature on all channels) has a guide menu that aesthetically is pretty similar to the cable box. I streamed fuboTV through the app for Apple TV where the guide is listed horizontally rather than vertically. In a design sense, the interface might differ from device to device.

If you log on to the website from a Roku device, you will need to exit the live feed to access the guide menu. The only thing I dislike about these services with skinny bundles is that they don’t let you move up and down, channel by channel. There’s a menu you must use to navigate the network.

Content

Worth it if sports is your religion

If you’re a sports lover, FuboTV will definitely satiate your sports content desires. It is filled with a stellar sports lineup. A standard plan allows you to watch the national sports program from networks such as NBA, FOX, CBS, NBC, NFL, TNT, and TBS. A lot of people posted queries regarding how to stream All Elite Wrestling at the time of its premiere – TNT is the platform. Similar to AEW, I even streamed the latest El Clasico on Fubo TV.

Depending upon your location, you can access regional sports as well. With Regional Sports Networks (RSNs), you get access to local cable channels for specific geographic regions that cover sports events in that particular area. For instance, if you’re in NYC, you get access to YES, SNY and MSG. Apart from the local coverage, you get access to international sports channels such as GOL TV, TUDN, Fox Deportes, and beIN Sports.

If there’s a match or a game you can’t afford to miss, Fubo TV will likely carry it. No doubt, the network is not the most established one and there are few blackouts here and there but you get all sorts of sports content on the network.

News & Entertainment – Cherry on the Top

While it is true that Fubo’s sports lineup is its biggest strength, there’s no denying that it possesses a rich news programming and entertainment collection. Thanks to its partnership with Viacom, Turner Network and Discovery, you can enjoy a wide range of channels such as AMC, Discovery, Animal Planet, Food Network, HGTV, FX, SYFY, National Geographic, Travel Channel, Weather Channel, and USA Network.

For children’s entertainment, you can find channels such as Nickelodeon, Nick Jr., Cartoon Network and Universal Kids. Apart from that, for news content, you can enjoy a solid lineup from channels such as CNN, CBSN, BBC American, Fox Business, NBC and MSNBC.

Desktop/Mobile experience

Clean and compact is the best way to describe Fubo TV’s website interface. The mix of light and dark blue colors with a hint of orange accents makes the website appealing. The top menu has five organized sections – Sports, Series, Movies, Guide and Recordings. The default page as mentioned above has four categories. Apart from that, there are options to access Help Center and Account Settings.

Immersive App experience

It’s not just the website that I liked but its app as well. The Fubo TV app provides an immersive experience with an easy download and sign-in option. All you need to do is give permission and grant access to your location (for tuning into local events). Rest, it makes sure that your viewing experience is amazing. The sleek app has a dark theme with a white and orange accent which is in line with the website interface.

Main View Content

In the main view, you can find featured sports events with attractive thumbnails. Below that you can find Live & Up Next Content, Replays of sports events and a category list for various types of sports. At the bottom, you can switch from sports section to movies, guide or My Fubo section with a simple tap. The Shows and Movies section is designed and organized in the same way as the Sports section.

My Fubo Section

If you visit the My Fubo Section, you can access scheduled recordings, recorded content and Continue Watching section which allows you to watch on-demand and live programming. If you click on the profile icon, you’ll get an option to connect your Google or Facebook account. The only thing I’m not a big fan of in this app is that you can’t manage your subscription via the mobile app.

Streaming Quality

Fubo TV’s streaming performance of live streams, on-demand, and DVR content are reliable, to say the least. Whether you’re streaming from the website or through an app, you can easily meet the bandwidth requirements. For instance, you can stream 1080p streaming at a download speed of just 10Mbps for each device you stream with. Thus, streaming from simultaneous devices won’t be much of a problem.

I tested it completely and even after ramping the stream to full quality, I didn’t find any lags. With that said, I’d like to say that do not try streaming over your cellular network – that won’t be a pleasant experience.

Compatible with mainstream devices

If a streaming service is compatible with major devices, it simply adds to the overall offering. Fubo TV is compatible with devices such as Apple TV, Chromecast, FireTV, and Android phones. You can visit FuboTV’s website to learn more about the supporting devices. It supports 4K content and thus is also compatible with Apple TV 4K, Chromecast Ultra, FireTV Cube, Roku and Fire TV 4k.

Plans & Pricing

There are three plans for you to choose from – Family, Ultra and Latino Quarterly.

Family

The Family Plan costs $59.99/month and allows you to access 64 channels with 130+ events in 4K. It offers Cloud DVR Plus with 500 hours of recording. With the family plan, you can share 3 screens at once.

Ultra

Ultra-Plan costs $74.99/month and allows you to access 131 channels with 130+ events in 4K. It offers 36 entertainment channels i.e. Fubo Extra, 9 channels with on-demand content i.e. SHOWTIME, 22 additional channels i.e. Sports Plus. Apart from that, it provides a similar Cloud DVR and screen sharing capabilities.

Latino Quarterly

Latino Quarterly plan is the most affordable plan with 29 channels and coverage of 130+ events in 4K. You get the cloud capabilities similar to Family and Ultra plan but can only share 2 screens at once.

Suggestions I have for Fubo TV

I love the initiative and can totally understand why Fubo TV has been able to carve out its own niche. I’d love for the developers to add more channels to their network. If it adds ESPN, that can make it a complete package but that’s not realistic as it’s ideally competing with ESPN’s own streaming network ESPN+.

Conclusion

If you’re a sports fan, you can cut the cord and rely on Fubo TV to back your needs. It has a wide variety of sports content and is slowly shifting towards the entertainment and news niche to offer diversity to its audience.

Likes & Hates:
Vast sports network
On-demand news and entertainment library
Amazing interface
Capable DVR functionality
4K Experience
Expensive
No ESPN
No offline viewing options
Mobile app can be improved