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Can You Watch The History Channel On Discovery Plus?

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The History Channel is not available to watch live on Discovery Plus, but that doesn’t mean subscribers cannot watch popular History shows and content. While this might seem and sound confusing, it is the way the streaming service currently works. What’s more, it not only works this way for the History Channel, but the other networks as well. If History programming is important, Discovery+ may not actually be the best option for some individuals and households.

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Discovery Plus is a little different to many other streaming services. Instead of focusing on just one network or channel, it looks to offer something for everyone by bringing content together from a number of popular networks under the one plan. For example, a Discovery+ subscription includes access to shows and content from HGTV, Food Network, TLC, ID, Animal Planet, Discovery Channel and, of course, History Channel.

That said, a Discovery Plus subscription doesn’t actually provide access to the History Channel. For those that do want to watch the History Channel, a live TV subscription is needed. Instead, Discovery+ opens up select library programming from the History Channel’s extensive back catalog. While the exact selection of shows and programming will vary depending on when the service is accessed, there is usually a wide variety to watch at any given time. However, it is worth noting that Discovery doesn’t own History Channel, A&E Networks does. Due to this, the degree of History content that’s available through Discovery Plus could be significantly less than the content available from the other networks included with a subscription.

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New episodes and shows reserved for TV subscribers

As mentioned, those wanting to watch the live version of the History Channel will need to consider signing up to a live TV plan. This is also the case for anyone that’s hoping to watch any recent or premiere episodes of popular shows, as these are reserved for those with a subscription to a TV package that includes the History Channel. Those with a suitable live TV plan also have the option to sign in to the History website or the dedicated History TV app using their live TV credentials and access even more History content. This approach is not uncommon and highlights one of the major differences between streaming services and live TV plans.

Similar to services like Netflix, Discovery Plus is designed to be an on-demand service which makes it possible to watch episodes and features when the subscriber wants. Although Discovery Plus does include some live channels, there’s no real or traditional live element, which also means there is no option to watch episodes as they are shown live. Instead, subscribers do have to wait until the service adds those episodes to its catalog. When exactly that happens, will depend on the show. However, as the list of available episodes and shows on Discovery Plus is always changing, it is possible that certain episodes could be added at any time.

For those that are specifically interested in History Channel content, it might also be worth considering History Vault instead of Discovery+. History Vault is essentially a standalone streaming service that costs $4.99 per month (or $49.99 per year) and unlocks a wide selection of History Channel content. Again, this won’t solve the problem of watching new History Channel shows and episodes without a live TV subscription, but it may prove more worthwhile than trying to watch lots of History Channel programming through Paramount Plus.

History Channel on Discovery+ summary

A Discovery+ subscription brings together plenty of shows and episodes from a variety of popular networks, including the History Channel. However, a subscription does not include access to the live History channel. Instead, it simply unlocks select programming which changes over time. For those that want to watch History live, the best option remains a live TV plan that includes the channel. Subscribers to one of these plans can not only watch shows and episodes as they are shown live, but can also use TV Everywhere support to access the History TV app. Logging in to the app doesn’t cost anything more and makes it possible to stream even more shows, episodes and exclusive content on demand.

There is also the History Vault app. This is a standalone streaming service that requires a separate subscription, but unlocks even more History content. Whether a Discovery+ subscriber or not, a History Vault subscription may prove to be more useful for those specifically looking for access to History content. However, just like Discovery Plus, a standalone History Vault subscription won’t make it possible to watch the very newest episodes and shows that are shown on the History Channel.

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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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