If you are the type of person that can’t watch enough live sporting events, it must be frustrating just how few streaming options are available. In many cases, they’re one of the only options to follow your favorite teams. Unfortunately, many streaming services offer poor quality video and audio in addition to frequent freezing and buffering of the stream. While companies such as Hulu and Netflix have started to adapt to the needs of live streaming on the go, few services that work with sporting events are reliable.
The following are some of the best apps, websites and services that you can use for live streaming sports in 2016:
Android TV Box
An Android TV Box is one of the cheapest ways of watching high-quality content without paying for cable. It can act as an internet set-up box, games console, digital media player and TV tuner. You can stream live sporting events on Android TV Boxes through the Kodi platform. Kodi has several live streams or live stream aggregators such as BBTS, Sports Devil and Vdubt25. I would recommend Sports Devil as it does not require a monthly subscription like the other options.
Unfortunately, Android TV Box will not give you HD quality, as it does not support 1080p. If you need HD quality, you have to either subscribe to premium add-ons such as BBTS and Vdubt25 that charge between $5-20 a month, which is not that much for a diehard sports fan. While an Android TV Box will give you access to many streams, you will encounter buffering if you do not have premium add-ons. Switching through the streams may get you a better result, since most buffering results from a large number of people viewing one stream.
Over the Air Antenna (OTA)
Many streams are usually illegal and choppy at best. Nevertheless, many legal streaming services provide quality at too high a cost. If you are someone that just disconnected their cable and you are looking for a free streaming alternative, then Over-the-Air Antenna (OTA) is one of the best for getting free HD content.
A local OTA HD antenna will pick up the signals from the major TV channels that are free to air. While this option will not offer as many options as compared to alternatives like Android TV box, you can still watch your local television in HD without needing a monthly subscription.
If you have an Android device, you can stream live programs and sports on your device through apps. To gain access to live streaming on your Android device you need to find a website or go to Google Play to find apps that will connect you to the live streaming events you want to watch. There are several paid and free options available for streaming live sports on Android including Sport Live Stream, Sport TV Original and SopCast. Television stations also offer apps for live streaming such as WatchESPN and CBS Sports.
While you may need a paid subscription to watch some of the streams such as WatchESPN, most are free. You will simply need to download the apps from Google Play Store, install Adobe Flash Player and you are ready to go. For baseball fans, MLB.tv at $19.99 offers live video feeds to premium subscribers. Basketball lovers will enjoy NBA League Pass Mobile at $16.99 a season.
One of the most innovative streaming services on the market is the Roku Streaming Player. Roku is a digital media player set-top box that aggregates top quality content from multiple channels. The Roku player gets the data feed from the broadcasting channel via WiFi or a wired connection to the internet. The device is compatible with HDMI, video or audio cable, which means that you can watch your favorite sports from practically any device that allows these input options.
What I like best about Roku is the extensive catalog of channels available on the multiple services that it is compatible with. With Roku, you can watch anything from news to sports to family programing. It’s worth checking to see a complete list of channels available to see if there’s anything you might like.
Up until very recently, you had to watch favorite events by logging into your satellite or cable subscription when on your Apple device. However, many networks now allow you to stream major events such as the Super Bowl on your iOS device without having to subscribe to cable. It seems networks are acknowledging live streaming as a major component in reconnecting with consumers that had severed ties with cable companies.
After NBC aired Super Bowl XLIX on the TV Everywhere live stream, other networks have joined the live streaming bandwagon. Major organizations that now support apps for live streaming include the NCAA, CBS, HBO, Apple TV, Showtime, PGA and NBC.
The most popular freestanding live streaming apps include Sport TV Live, TV Listings, Livestream, Slingplayer for iPhone, YO TV Guide, ESPN and Ustream. Installing some of these will give you access to most of the live stream events that the major broadcasters do not have on their catalogs.
There you have it. While this isn’t an exhaustive list, it will have a solution for most of your live streaming needs. What are you using for streaming in 2016? What services work better and which ones no longer work? Leave a comment below and help a fellow streamer.