YouTube TV: Everything you need to know

YouTube TV
YouTube TV (Image credit: Android Central)

If you're considering abandoning a traditional cable plan, YouTube TV is a viable alternative. While the service is one of the spendier streaming options and is only available in the United States, its selection of live channels and on-demand content make it a top contender. With that in mind, we've gathered everything you need to know about YouTube TV to make an informed decision.

What is YouTube TV?

YouTube TV is one of the most expansive cable replacement streaming platforms currently available in the United States right now. Like Hulu with Live TV, YouTube TV provides access to many live TV channels, including the Big Four broadcast networks and PBS in most markets. Both platforms also include on-demand video content, but only YouTube TV features unlimited cloud-based DVR storage.

YouTube TV subscribers also have access to various region-specific channels and programming, including a variety of professional sports, for one flat monthly fee. Most recently, YouTube TV announced it would start airing Discovery channels — including Animal Planet, HGTV, Food Network, and more.

How much does YouTube TV cost?

Hulu Vs. Youtube Tv

Source: Keegan Prosser / Android Central (Image credit: Source: Keegan Prosser / Android Central)

YouTube TV offers one plan for $64.99 per month and has 85 broadcast and cable networks, including ESPN, HGTV, and TNT. Additionally, YouTube TV's base plan includes unlimited Cloud DVR storage and an impressive lineup of live sports coverage.

YouTube TV also offers a variety of premium channel add-ons, which can be added to your monthly subscription for an extra fee. This includes the Sports Plus premium add-on, which costs an additional $11 per month, or the Entertainment Plus bundle for $30 a month. That bundle also includes HBO Max, Showtime, and STARZ and saves you about $5 compared to adding each channel separately.

YouTube TV users can also choose to add stand-alone premium channels EPIX for $6/month, AMC+ for $7/month, and HBO Max for $15/month.

What channels are on YouTube TV?

The sheer number of programs that are available to be watched, recorded, and rewatched is just a bit staggering. If you picked up a subscription to stay caught up on your favorite shows, then you'll need to know how to find them. With that in mind, we've compiled a list of all the channels currently available on YouTube TV, though these will vary slightly depending on your location:

YouTube TV standard channels:

Youtube Tv Channel

Source: YouTube TV (Image credit: Source: YouTube TV)
  • ABC
  • CBS
  • FOX
  • NBC
  • ABC News
  • ACCN
  • AMC
  • Adult Swim
  • Animal Planet
  • BBC
  • BBC World News
  • BET
  • BET Her
  • BTN
  • Bravo
  • CBS Sports
  • CNBC
  • CNBC World
  • CNN
  • Cartoon Network
  • Cheddar
  • Cheddar News
  • CMT
  • Comedy Central
  • Comet TV
  • CourtTV
  • Cozi TV
  • Dabl
  • Discovery
  • Disney
  • Disney Junior
  • Disney XD
  • E!
  • ESPN
  • ESPN 2
  • ESPN U
  • ESPNEWS
  • FOX Business
  • FOX News Channel
  • FS1
  • FS2
  • FX
  • FXM
  • FXX
  • Food Network
  • Freeform
  • Golf Channel
  • HGTV
  • HLN
  • IFC
  • Investigation Discovery
  • LAFC
  • MLB Game of the week
  • MLB Network
  • MSNBC
  • Motortrend
  • MTV
  • MTV2
  • MTV Classic
  • MyNetworkTV
  • NBA TV
  • NBC News Now
  • NBC Sports
  • NBC Universo
  • NBCSN
  • NBCLX
  • NECN
  • NatGeo Wild
  • National Geographic
  • NEWSNATION
  • NFL Network
  • Nickelodeon
  • Nick Jr.
  • Nicktoons
  • Olympics Channel
  • OWN
  • Oxygen
  • Paramount Network
  • PBS
  • PBS Kids
  • POP
  • QVC
  • SEC ESPN Network
  • SNY
  • Smithsonian Channel
  • StartTV
  • SundanceTV
  • SyFy
  • TBS
  • TCM
  • TLC
  • TNT
  • TYT
  • Tastemade
  • Teen Nick
  • Telemundo
  • The CW
  • Travel Channel
  • TruTV
  • TV Land
  • USA
  • Universal Kids
  • VH1
  • WE TV
  • YouTube Originals

Youtube TV premium add-ons:

Youtube Tv Premiums

Source: YouTube TV (Image credit: Source: YouTube TV)
  • Acorn
  • ALLBLK
  • AMC+
  • Cinemax
  • CONtv
  • CuriosityStream
  • Docurama
  • Dove
  • EPIX
  • Hallmark Movies Now
  • HBO
  • HBO Max
  • IFC Films Unlimited
  • Law & Crime
  • MLB.TV
  • NBA League Pass
  • Showtime
  • Shudder
  • STARZ
  • Sundance Now
  • WE tv +
  • YouTube TV Entertainment Plus
  • YouTube TV

What devices support YouTube TV?

YouTube TV is accessible on most streaming devices, including Roku, Chromecast with Google TV, and Apple TV. You can also stream YouTube TV on a selection of smart TVs from Samsung, LG, Vizio, Hisense, and Sharp. Here's what other devices are compatible with YouTube TV:

Swipe to scroll horizontally
PlatformYouTube TV
AirTV Players✔️
Android phones/tablets✔️
Android TV✔️
Chromebook✔️
Chromecast✔️
Google Nest✔️
Apple TV✔️
Fire tablets✔️
FireTV devices✔️
Roku✔️
Xbox One, Xbox Series X✔️
PS4, PS5✔️
Google Nest Hub✔️
Nintendo Switch
Oculus Quest
TiVo Stream 4K
Echo Show
Smart TVsVizio SmartCast TVs
Roku TVs
Samsung (select models)
LG TV
HiSense TVs

You will also be able to access YouTube TV on mobile devices via web browser and by downloading the YouTube TV app on your computer.

YouTube TV also launched a 4K streaming add-on in June 2021, bringing higher resolution content to several networks already available on the platform for an extra $10 per month for the first year and $20/month after that. The 4K Plus add-on also allows subscribers to download content for offline viewing, which wasn't previously available on YouTube TV.

Account limits, profiles and parental controls

Youtube Tv Live

Source: Android Central (Image credit: Source: Android Central)

Like various other streaming platforms, each YouTube TV subscription allows for up to six separate user accounts. This allows each viewer in a household to customize suggestions and private DVR libraries within their individual account. Regarding simultaneous streaming, YouTube TV allows users to stream on up to three different devices at the same time.

YouTube TV also offers the option to add parental controls, blocking certain content from younger viewers on the account. All you need to do is tap the lock icon in the top corner of any page in the app and enter the numbers that appear. You can also set a custom passcode, which must be entered when selecting more mature content.

Are there any YouTube TV deals?

When it comes to everything you need to know about YouTube TV, that also includes deals. While YouTube TV usually offers a seven-day free trial, the service sometimes offers 14-day and 30-day free trials for new users throughout the year. You'll just have to check and see which trial is being offered when you're interested in trying the service. Signing up for the free trial will give you access to all YouTube TV channels and the service's unlimited DVR space for a limited time. Once the free trial expires, you'll automatically be charged $64.99 per month.

Verizon Wireless is also currently offering 30 days free of YouTube TV (opens in new tab) for new customers who signup for Verizon mobile or Verizon Fios home internet plans. After your trial ends, you will be charged the discounted rate of $49.99 per month. Existing Verizon customers can also consolidate their bills by adding YouTube TV to their wireless or internet plan for $64.99/month.

Ara Wagoner was a staff writer at Android Central. She themes phones and pokes YouTube Music with a stick. When she's not writing about cases, Chromebooks, or customization, she's wandering around Walt Disney World. If you see her without headphones, RUN. You can follow her on Twitter at @arawagco.

48 Comments
  • The below statement is incorrect. YouTube TV isn't available everywhere in the US. "While much of the base programming available through YouTube TV is available everywhere, there are specific regions that will be able to access local programming."
  • I think the author meant that most of the channels that are in the line up are available everywhere, but some aren't and only in major cities. For example, I live in NYC. I have YouTube TV, which includes the CW, but in NYC, CW is only on-demand. And whereas I have the local NBC channel live, some cities don't have it all. I think the intent was right, but the wording is misleading.
  • Yeah I live in Richmond VA the Capital of Virginia and no YouTube TV here for local channels and still not app on my Android TV
  • Capital of VA, but only VA's third biggest metropolitan area, but I'm sure they'll get there soon
  • Is an app really needed tho? Just cast it to the TV?
  • True that,it would be nice
  • That's crazy! I live south of you (Hampton Roads) and I just got it last week.
  • You guys should really do one of these for Hulu TV which in my experience is a much better service.
  • Not without AMC!
  • No support for Android TV makes YouTube TV a non-starter for me and it is disappointing since they are both Google products. I don't want to have to Cast everything from a device to my television.
  • This plus the lack of several channels I watch regularly means it's not even a consideration for me.
  • Agreed. No comedy central, tbs,tnt, discovery and a few others
  • Weird no support for another Google product. I suspect they'll eventually roll out apps for other streaming devices if they want traction. I signed up but immediately canceled once I discovered no support for Roku or Xbox, the 2 smart tv devices I own. They do offer a free Chromecast with a month paid sub but I don't want/need a 3rd device
  • I've never heard of this service before but you might did it's in the t&pc's in broadcasting the channels with there apps being on them boxes and Google need to keep talking to them to let the apps on other devices.
  • I cut cable TV years ago, why should I pay YouTube to get the same crap again. There was a reason people went to YouTube, to get away from the garbage on cable TV networks.
  • well, you know you DON'T have to buy it just like you don't HAVE to buy cable. That'w why it's called alternative.
  • I think people cut cable more due to price rather than content. $40 isn't very cheap though.
  • I just signed up for the free 14-day trial. So far I have access to all of my shows except Mr. Robot and Sherlock. I am hoping that is because previous episodes are only available through Amazon Prime and once the shows air, the current episodes will be available.
  • I've been using You Tube TV for a couple weeks now. It is annoying that there is now app for android tv or roku. I don't like casting from my phone. Maybe I am stubborn, but I expect Google to have an app for their product on all of their current platforms. My preferred solution is to run You Tube TV through my HTPC. I don't really like it, though. There is no easy remote control solution. I think I am with a lot of other users when I say Google needs to at least have an Android TV app for You Tube TV. Anyone have any insight to when/if this will happen?
  • Im in the same boat. where is the Android TV native support? Casting is ok but why would you not be supporting the device that is used to watch TV mostly? I would have thought the app for Android TV would have been the first one they did. There is a reason why I have a 75" tv after all.
  • As widely reported, Google's own Android tablet, the Pixel C, is NOT compatible with YouTube TV. The YouTube TV website says they're working on it, but when is this going to be fixed? Really!
  • regarding price increase... it does sound like they are getting Turner channels as well as some sports networks, so that $40 does include a lot more channels. I'm glad I'll be in on the $35 moving forward:
    https://9to5google.com/2018/02/13/youtube-tv-new-turner-sports-channels-...
  • Just got in for $35 as well...I've dabbled in many of the other streaming cable providers, as I cut the cord over a year ago...the YouTube TV app is by far the best for mobile viewing!
  • To much money better off getting SetTv 20 bucks a month get over 500 channel's including pay per view events all the sports channels and more
  • Love YTTV. latest article update here buries the headline a bit. They did not mention that they are adding all of the Turner channels. Only that they will be raising the price $5 per month. They are adding TNT, TBS, CNN, TruTV, and others supposedly
  • I recently cut the cord. I've been trying Directtv Now, Sling TV and Youtube TV simultaneously to see which one I used the most. Youtube TV is by far my favorite. Sharing the account with 5 other family members is great and unlimited DVR is huge. Case in point, Youtube TV is recording all the Olympic broadast for me. I've been binging on hockey, ski jumping, luge, snowboarding and curling (Don't judge me. Curling is very compelling.) the whole time drinking a hot beverage and skipping commercials. The limited channel selection is the only downside. You can add Showtime, Fox Soccer and a couple other obscure channels for an additional fee.
  • Yes, I too under appreciated the unlimited DVR until the Olympics.
  • O snap they have cw?!!! Wow when i was looking at sling i was upset they didnt have cw lol
  • Didn't know about the price increase. Thanks, will sign up one day before as my directvnow expires in March.
  • The $5 price increase in March is due to YTTV getting the Turner networks, MLB Network and NBA TV
  • I have about 13 local HD channels OTA (not shopping networks) and 9 live channels on YouTube. WatchESPN + Youtube + Amazon Prime + few other apps for everything else I think $40 is too much. Google has several products now, Project Fi, Google Music, Youtube Red, Youtube TV....they should have a discount bundle or something.
  • I don't understand why this is better than Sling, for $20 you get pretty much everything on youtube tv. Even if you add on the sports and kids packs it's still cheaper than hulu, youtube and directvnow.
  • Local channels is the main reason. Sling only has NBC, Fox, and ABC in select markets with no CBS at all.
  • What's the audio like? That's what has me hesitant to switching to YTtv. I'd like to be able to use my home theatre set up and all the audio codecs is this available using YTtv?
  • Minus not having A&E YouTube TV has been the best streaming service I have ever tried.
  • When will they be supporting digital (surround sound) audio? I'll miss that from cable once I completely switch.
  • Per a tech, 5.1 surround is scheduled for 1st half of 2019 with 5.1 for VOD coming before the live streaming.
  • Oh that would be so great. But I'll believe it when I see it.
  • I have had it for about 2 months and along with Philo I/we have everything we had on Dish and more than my GF had on cable so we canceled both. YTTV & Philo are $56 per month which we use at both houses and Dish & Cable were $198 per month, a $1,700 annual savings plus we can watch everything remotely on our phones & tablets. I don't know how Dish, Direct TV and Cable will survive. They have been screwing us for years and Karma is for real. When I canceled Dish they told me I had accumulated $500 in credits and miraculously they said they could drop my monthly service down to $60 per month from $112. I had been with them since 1997.
  • I thought about adding Philo myself, but the only channels I ever watched that I'm missing are HGTV, Comedy Central, Food Network, and WGN (which Philo doesn't have). I just can't see paying $16 a month for 3 channels. Especially since I've gotten used to not having them and it's college basketball season!
  • Piece of advice. You can change your home area to get local channels wherever you are, HOWEVER, if you change it 3 times in a 12 month period you are stuck on whatever area your 3rd change was for. I found out the hard way after a flight that arrived at 12:30 am and put me back at home at 1:30 in the morning wide awake from the airline coffee needed to drive home, you cannot go back to your actual home area if it wasn't your 3rd change. That being said if you cancel your account and sign back up, all of your settings, including recordings, are still there.
  • If only it had the Scripps networks, then I could finally cut cable.
  • I use Hulu Live, would like to switch due to DVR envy, but there are channels still missing. HGTV and Food Network at least or my wife would never agree. The Hulu interface is way more attractive imho and works on every platform I own including Xbox. It's almost there but not quite for me.
  • HGTV and Food Network are included now. I realize it is an old comment but wanted to clarify if someone new was reading it.
  • Great. Now they just need to overhaul the app. Excellent service/options with a horribly unintuitive interface makes for a JUST OK experience at best.
  • Hmm. No mention of the 4K add on. Odd that they re-purposed this old article and posted it again today, but still left out the 4K piece .. Anyway, it's expensive but very good IMO. The included unlimited home streaming with the 4K add on s helpful in my house as well ...
  • I love YTTV! Works great on my Shield and also Roku. Apps run fine. No casting required. Unlimited DVR seals the deal. The feud with Roku is unfortunate. I had the app installed before they started that crap. I use the phone app to refine and train the algorithm so that the shield and Roku versions present better selections. Also to order the channels to my taste.
  • All local channels work fine in Savannah, GA area too.