Sling has launched Freestream, a free live and on-demand streaming service. Technically, Freestream is not a completely new service. Instead, it is an evolution and rebranding of the older Sling Free experience. Still, for those wanting to avoid paying for a live TV subscription, it is another free streaming service to keep in mind.
Sling TV has been around for some time now. It was this day in 2015 when it launched in the United States offering consumers the ability to stream live TV for just $20 per month. Now, on its eight birthday, Sling is once again looking to make a move by expanding its free offering. In recent years, the free, ad-supported streaming market has proven very popular.
As mentioned, Sling already offered a free product called Sling Free. Going forward, that product is now known as Sling Freestream. Similar to before, Freestream offers access to a selection of free live channels and a variety of on-demand content.
The main difference between Freestream and Sling Free is that Freestream is now more of a robust product overall. For example, while Sling Free offered access to more than 150 live TV channels, Freestream ups the number to more than 210. Likewise, the on-demand catalog has also expanded considerably.
Another expansion is that Sling TV is making it easier for Freestream users to sign up to premium services without having to sign up to one of the live TV plans. YouTube also made a similar move recently with the ability for users to sign up to premium subscriptions through YouTube TV without also needing to sign up to its base live TV package.
Sling TV is likely to take its approach further, and in particular by integrating its Freeview Weekends program. Essentially, this would make it possible for free users to check out different premium networks for free for a little time and without committing to a payment.
Also similar to before, there is no need to create an account let alone pay a monthly subscription charge. Instead, users can just head over to the Freestream website and start watching. There is an option to create an account and this does come with some additional benefits, such as a watchlist and the ability to continue watching, but signing up is optional.
For now, device support is the main concern with Sling Freestream. At present, the free service is only officially accessible through the Sling app on Roku devices as well as through the Freestream website.
Sling does explain that Freestream is currently in the process of rolling out to Comcast, LG, Samsung, Vizio and Xbox devices, and is expected to become available on all of Sling’s supported devices in the coming months.