directv-now-on-demand-screen-900pxWhat are the best streaming TV services? There are many options these days for TV services that are provided over the internet. Traits of internet-based TV services tend to include on-demand access to movies and shows, live-streaming of networks, and access to purchase premium channels or bundles of channels.

Features of streaming TV services also include the ability to stream on other devices besides TVs like PCs, streaming media players, tablets, smartphones, and gaming consoles, and Smart Blu-ray players.

There are also distinctions between streaming video services like Netflix and CBS All Access. Netflix has a huge library of both original and licensed TV shows, series, and movies. Sling TV follows more of a traditional television service model, only delivered via the internet rather than cable or satellite.

As such, the lines between the two types of streaming TV services are slightly blurred, but below we rank the Best Streaming TV services and indicate what may be the most important distinction — whether or not the service provides live TV programming.

Best Streaming TV Services

  1. Netflix
    (plans start at $8.99 per mo.)
  2. Hulu
    (plans start at $7.99 per mo.)
  3. Amazon Prime Video
    (bundled with Prime Shipping $99 per yr.)
  4. DirecTV Now
    (plans start at $35 per mo.)
  5. PlayStation Vue
    (plans start at $64.99 per mo.)
  6. CBS All Access
    ($5.99 per mo.)
  7. YouTube
    (free or à la carte)
  8. Sling TV
    (basic plan $19.99 per mo.)
  9. Apple TV
    (free or subscriptions to premium channels)
  10. Crackle
    (free ad-based)
  11. HBO Now
    ($14.99 per mo.)
  12. Showtime
    ($10.99 per mo.)

How do you stream TV?

In order to stream television you must have a consistent internet connection with enough bandwidth for the video format requested. Most services will auto-adjust video resolution to what is available. For bandwidth requirements, refer to this bandwidth recommendations.