July 24, 2017
On Thursday, Google launched its YouTube TV service in 10 new markets, including Atlanta, Detroit, Houston, Phoenix and Washington D.C. The company says it is now streaming live local programming to more than a third of the U.S. The $35-per-month Internet TV service offers live local feeds from major broadcast networks ABC, CBS, FOX and NBC, in addition to cable networks such as AMC, ESPN, IFC and USA. The new service, which initially launched in April, is now available in 15 U.S. markets.
Last week’s expansion also included Minneapolis-St. Paul, Miami-Ft. Lauderdale, Orlando-Daytona Beach-Melbourne, Charlotte and Dallas-Fort Worth.
“The service competes with Dish’s Sling TV, AT&T’s DirecTV Now, Hulu’s live TV service, and Sony’s PlayStation Vue, among others,” reports Variety. It offers nearly 50 networks, “a cloud DVR and the ability to watch up to three concurrent streams per account.”
While it is still missing some key cable networks, early reviews for YouTube TV are largely positive. Wired suggests “the possibilities are there to inspire a whole new generation of viewers to actually pay for TV, and advertisers seem eager to give it a shot.”
“If you’re in the market for an alternative to cable and need to have the big four networks and live sports, this is definitely one of the strongest options available,” adds The Verge, noting that “the experience of YouTube TV on a smartphone is impressive.”
“If YouTube TV can offer as many channels as basic cable does, without the need for a cable box and 12-month contract, we’ll consider it a win,” reports TechRadar in its review. “If it can do all that, offer Cloud DVR, a plethora of apps for devices like Roku, Apple TV and the various game consoles and video-on-demand, it will be one of the best streaming services on the planet.”