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Published on October 30th, 2018 | by Brad Gibson

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Looking for the best deal for multiple live streams? It’s all in the numbers

One of the greatest thing about today’s live streaming services is the ability to watch not only on multiple televisions, but in multiple locations anywhere in the U.S. For a family or group of people on one account, a real key to convenience is having access for not just one or two streams but many simultaneously. 

But depending on the service and the package you subscribe to will mean the difference between being restricted to only one stream or as many as five. 

Here’s what you need to know to make sure you’ve got the right service and subscription package for your needs.

One Stream

If multiple streams are what you need, then stay away from AT&Ts Watch TV live streaming service and Sling’s Orange package as they offer only one simultaneous stream. While their costs – at between $15 and $20 a month – are bottom line, their barebones offerings are synonyms with the phrase, “you get what you pay for.”

Two Streams

If you need only two streams, Fubo TV, Hulu with Live TV, and DirecTV Now are right for you. Having said that, it’s somewhat disappointing that three services with thousands of subscribers and more than 50 channels each have such a limited (and some would call ‘lame’) policy of only two consecutive streams. 

Although BESTAppleTV concentrates on watching these services on an Apple TV device, most everyone is wanting the convenience of watching on multiple devices like smartphones, tablets, and PCs of all kinds, which most of these live streaming services offer.

To restrict these services to two streams is limiting its users at the same time more and more the importance of multiple streams will become crucial. Their two, limited simultaneous streams is a reality, but we can’t recommend more highly for users to look at their overall needs and seriously consider other live streaming services that offer more flexibility in this important feature.

Three Streams

Philo launched in July of last year as the sports-free, entertainment-focused ‘skinny bundle’ streaming service. With up to 46 channels and two packages at $20 a month or less, Philo offers three streams on multiple devices. We’re impressed, especially for a service that many see as ‘bare bones’. 

Sling TV and its $25 a month Blue package also has three multiple streams, which is a good deal when you consider you’re getting more than 40 channels and a cloud DVR. 

YouTube TV – also with three multiple streams – does things a little different. Each YouTube TV plan allows for six different user accounts, so each person in the family can have their own Cloud DVR and recommendations on any device, including Apple TV. While the flexibility of six accounts is great, up to three consecutive streams for an entire household can have its problems. Users will have to pick and choose exactly who can watch TV all at once and realize that this limit also includes streaming content from each user’s Cloud DVR, so the ability to watch recorded programs at the same time will be limited. Regardless, the ability to have six accounts and three multiple streams is a convenient feature.

Five Streams

Simultaneous streaming is one of the things that makes PlayStation Vue different than the rest. PS Vue has the most generous multiple streams option of any service. You can stream on up to five devices at the same time so that everyone in the house can watch what they want. You can also create up to 10 different profiles on your account with personalized DVR and recommendations.

In Conclusion…

If you’re watching a live streaming service on multiple devices and you have multiple people in your home or on your account, determining your needs and what you want to pay should include figuring out how many simultaneous live streams you’ll need. As we’ve shown, there is a difference when it comes to multiple streams and live streaming service on Apple TV has its ppluses and minuses. 

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About the Author

Brad is co-founder and editor-in-chief of BESTAppleTV.com. He has been a technology reporter since the late 1980s having previously worked for MacUser, MacFormat, and iCreate magazines, as well as MacNN.com, MacObserver.com, MacCentral.com, MacMinute.com, and Macworld.com. He hosted and produced the MacFormat This Week podcast for three years. He was also a reporter, editor, and producer for the Associated Press and United Press International.



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