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DAZN Review: More Than Just Boxing, But Not A Knockout

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At $20 per month, DAZN is an expensive streaming service. So much so that retaining a subscription over the long term is probably only going to be worth it to the most avid of boxing fans. For everyone else, it is more likely to end up being a subscription that they jump in and out of, as and when access to a live event is needed.

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DAZN is a little different to many other streaming services as it comes with a very specific focus on boxing and MMA content. It does offer some additional sports coverage, including soccer and darts, but these are more supporting acts rather than the main event. In reality, the only real reason why someone should consider signing up to DAZN is for the boxing.

DAZN
  • Experience
  • Content
  • Device Support
  • Price
3.5

Our opinion

DAZN is a really good streaming service for those wanting more access to boxing content, along with a side of soccer, esports, and more. However, it is not a cheap monthly subscription and subscribers still need to pay additional fees to watch certain live fights. With no free trial, there’s also no way to test out the service before having to pay.

Pros

Great for boxing fans
Live boxing events
Full replays and classic fights
Good device support
Reliable apps

Cons

Expensive
No free trial
Some fights require additional payment
Live limited to 720p
Limited non-boxing content

Even for boxing fans, a DAZN subscription does not automatically open up access to all of the boxing content available on the platform. Instead, some live events remain locked behind a PPV cost, which varies depending on the fight. This can greatly increase the cost of DAZN, and especially over the course of a year.

For those that do opt to sign up, the standard DAZN subscription costs $19.99 per month. There is also the option of signing up on an annual basis with the yearly subscription priced at $149.99. Compared to other annual plans, this represents a fairly significant discount, making it a much better option than paying the monthly rate each month for 12 months.

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What you get with DAZN (and don’t get)

DAZN is officially advertised as a premium sports subscription, and while true, it is certainly tailored more towards some sports than others. Specifically, boxing is the dominant offering here, and for boxing fans, there’s a good degree of content available. A standard subscription not only includes big, live fight nights, but plenty of exclusive pre and post-fight coverage as well. This is all on top of a wealth of on-demand boxing content to keep subscribers happy in between main events.

Dazn home screen shows
DAZN offers plenty of pre and post-fight content

While many of these big-name events are included with a subscription, just as many are not and require an additional PPV purchase to watch. There seems to be at least one PPV event each month so how much a subscriber actually ends up paying per month will not only vary between subscribers, but also on the month, who’s fighting, and how many fights a subscriber wants access to. In addition, ads are shown during live broadcasts. Not many in comparison to other services and live TV in general, but occasional split-screen ads are shown in between rounds.

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When it comes to PPV events, subscribers can simply wait until after the event has come to an end and watch a full replay without having to pay the individual event cost. While it remains unclear exactly how long it takes for a PPV event to be added to the general library, they did become available a day or two later during our testing.

Outside of boxing, the service does also offer access to some additional sports including soccer, darts, pool, and even eSports, with all of the sports filters accessible through a drop-down Sports button on the home screen.

DAZN additional sports
DAZN offers more than just boxing

Compared to boxing, there is far less of a variety of content for each of these sports. Due to this, a DAZN subscription is less likely to appeal to any fans of these specific sports that don’t also want access to boxing. For example, if wanting to mostly watch soccer, there are better ways to spend the $20+ per month. For additional content on top of the boxing content, however, DAZN does offer additional value to subscribers.

Device support and app experience

There are no major issues in terms of device support. The DAZN app is available to download on a wide variety of devices including mobile devices, smart TVs, streaming players and even game consoles. Due to this, those signing up to the service shouldn’t encounter too many issues in finding a device to watch on.

Generally speaking, the app experience on the TV was also pretty reliable. The interface (tested on Google TV, Android mobile, and via the DAZN website) is easy to use and navigate with very clear categories and routes through the content. As to be expected, these navigation elements are more catered to boxing. For example, while it is possible to filter by ‘darts‘ or ‘soccer‘, boxing content can further be filtered by things like individual fighters. It is also even possible to follow specific boxers within the app, so that you never miss any new content that becomes available.

DAZN pick fighters
DAZN lets you filter by fighter

Regardless of filters, the home screen does a good job of surfacing lots of content, and especially ahead of big-name events. There is also a Guide section which makes it possible to quickly narrow down any live events that are due to be shown soon. In truth, the guide is a little basic and doesn’t list much most of the time, indicating how often live content is actually available to watch. Furthermore, the guide only tended to show up to ten days in advance, so users are limited in how far ahead they can see and bookmark. Still, for those looking for something live to watch, the guide is an easy and quick way to check and tune in.

DAZN live guide
DAZN live guide

The TV app is also pretty basic in terms of playback. Other than playing and pausing, the only real option is to enable subtitles. This does mean that there are no ways to further find-tune the experience, including making adjustments to the resolution or the quality of the video.

DAZN playback
A basic playback experience

Speaking of which, DAZN mostly broadcasts in 720p. While there were no major issues with streaming quality or reliability, a couple of drop-offs we’re experienced during one of the live fights. Of course, this could be unrelated to DAZN.

A positive of the app experience is that, once actually watching something, the interface makes it super easy to check through the rest of the library while continuing to watch what’s playing in the background. Also, when watching back full events, PPV or otherwise, the interface allows users to not only skip to a specific fight on a card, but also specific rounds within a fight.

DAZN PPV full replay
Jump to a specific fight or even a round

What was slightly less positive with the app experience is that the signing up/in process on the TV is a little more laborious than it needs to be. There’s no option to sign in using a desktop/mobile browser so subscribers do need to go through the motions of inputting their email and password manually using the clunky in-app keyboard.

DAZN sign up
DAZN sign up/in can be slow

This does make the process of signing up on a TV a little too long. For anyone that is considering starting a subscription, and watching on a TV, they really should sign up through the DAZN website and then use their account details to log in on the TV. This will still require a bit of typing, but it is going to be quicker than signing up on a TV.

Small grievances aside, DAZN offers a pretty good user experience on all devices. The interface is well constructed, content is grouped together in a way that makes binging similar content easier, and there’s plenty to watch in general. While some of the more mundane elements, like signing up or changing settings, are a little too basic, these are unlikely to be aspects that users need to encounter on a regular basis.

DAZN review summary

DAZN is a boxing-first service and that’s the only real reason to sign up for a subscription. If not that interested in boxing, the same monthly subscription cost can be better spent on other streaming services that provide coverage of the live sports a home is interested in. For boxing fans, however, DAZN is worth signing up to. It offers plenty of live events and related coverage as well as a good amount of year-round on-demand content.

That said, whether boxing fans need to stay subscribed all year is another question. Live events are few and far between and only the most avid of boxing fans will want to watch all of the events that are shown. For many causal boxing fans this is more likely to be a subscription they jump in and out of, depending on the events. This is also probably why DAZN offers such a heavy discount on the annual subscription compared to other services. If happy to pay $150 outright for the entire year, DAZN becomes better value. At $20 per month, it is a little expensive, and especially when considering some fights still require an additional one-off payment to watch.

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John Finn

By John Finn

John started Streaming Better to help consumers navigate the live TV streaming and subscription service landscape. John has been writing about technology and TV-related services and devices since 2014 and believes the best streaming approach is to bounce between services as needed. Contact John via email at john@streamingbetter.com or on Twitter

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