Categories
Live TV Sling TV

Sling Free: What You Get (And Don’t Get) Without Paying

This post may contain affiliate links and we may earn a commission. Learn more

Sling Free is a service that offers the option to watch episodes and movies for free. Provided by Sling TV, Sling Free can be a good way to watch videos without having to worry about paying for a subscription. However, being aware of what is and isn’t included can help to decide if Sling Free will be a useful addition to a home’s existing streaming setup.

Advertisement

Sling TV is primarily a live TV streaming service similar to Hulu live TV and YouTube TV. One of the major differences between Sling TV and many of the other live TV options is the price. With plans starting at just $35 per month, Sling TV is a more affordable way to stream live TV over the internet than many other services.

In addition to the Sling Orange and Sling Blue live TV plans, the service also provides a free tier called Sling Free. This really is a free service that not only doesn’t require a monthly payment, but doesn’t require the user to sign up either. Consumers can simply head over to the Sling website and check out the selection of shows and movies that are available for free. Then, and without having to create an account or sign in, the user can simply select one of the channels or videos and start watching.

Advertisement

What you get with Sling Free

Sling Free makes it possible to watch shows and movies for free. The exact selection of available videos changes over time, but Sling says it offers “thousands of free TV shows and movies” at any given time. The interface and experience is nicely broken down into usable sections with consumers able to choose between Guide (for live programming) and On Demand for everything else. Once in the On Demand section, content can also be filtered by Movies or TV Shows to further narrow down the results. There is also an option for Sling Free users to add shows and movies to a watchlist.

While Sling Free does include some free live TV programming, it is limited and consumers should not expect to be able to watch many of the specific channels included with a subscription for free. Instead, the live TV collection mainly consists of a variety of news and entertainment channels that can be accessed through other free streaming services. Still, there is live TV, and the Guide section makes it easy to see what’s on now and tune in.

Generally speaking, this is an unlimited free service in the sense that there are no caps on viewing. While there is plenty of content that does require a paid subscription, users are able to watch as many of the free shows and movies as they like. Sling Free users do also have the option of renting and purchasing videos as well, but this does require the user to create an account and a payment method to be linked.

What you don’t get with Sling Free

As useful as Sling Free is, it does have its limits. The service essentially acts as a gateway to a paid Sling TV subscription and can be viewed as a permanent free trial where users can get a taste of what Sling TV has to offer. However, unlike an actual Sling TV free trial where consumers can watch whatever they want without paying, the vast majority of what Sling TV offers is reserved for paying subscribers. This includes the most popular live TV channels, so consumers should not view Sling Free as a possible replacement for a live TV service.

Sling TV provides paid subscribers with a cloud DVR and that’s not available to Sling Free users. With no option to record shows or movies and watch later, any live content that’s available will need to be watched live. In addition, on-demand shows tend to be limited in terms of the number of episodes that are available. So while a consumer may be able to watch popular shows without paying, they will likely find that only select episodes are available for free, and shouldn’t assume all seasons or even all episodes within a season are available.

Another caveat to be aware of is device support. In general, the Sling TV app is available to download on a fairly wide selection of smart TV, streaming players and other devices. There is also the option to watch through the Sling website. However, Sling Free is not currently quite as widely supported. Although this is expected to change over time, some consumers may find that Sling Free is currently unavailable on their preferred devices.

Sling Free summary

Sling Free can be a good option for those looking to stream show episodes and movies for free. The service does not require a monthly subscription or a payment method to be registered. In fact, users don’t even have to register at all and can simply stream any of the available free content without signing up or signing in.

Advertisement

However, Sling Free is not going to be a replacement for a live TV service, including Sling’s own Blue and Orange plans. Instead, it is more of a way to test out what Sling TV has to offer without having to worry about a free trial being available, or the need to cancel a subscription before the free period ends. That said, if already signed up to a live TV service, Sling TV or otherwise, some individuals and households may still find value in using Sling Free as a complement to their existing streaming setup.

Advertisement
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

Leave a Reply

Streaming can be frustrating but please be respectful and avoid personal information. All comments are moderated according to our comment policy.