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CBS Live Stream: How to Watch CBS Online without Cable

Best Streaming Providers for CBS

1

Package

All-Access Plan

CBS All Access gets you your local CBS station for only a few bucks a month.
$5.99/mo.
See Plans
2

Package

Limited Commercials

Hulu Live hooks you up with the most CBS coverage out of all the streaming services.
$39.99/mo.
Free Trial
3

Package

America's Top 120

DISH gets you CBS and tons of other channels for a reasonable price.
$59.99/mo.**
See Plans

Upcoming Prime Time Shows

Fans of The Big Bang Theory, Criminal Minds, and NCIS—you’ve come to the right place. CBS is one of the powerhouses of network television with tons of shows we all love to watch. And we haven’t even mentioned live sports airing on CBS, like March Madness, NFL games, and golf tournaments. Yeah, after listing all that, let’s make sure you can watch CBS.

Best ways to get CBS

Best Budget Pick

Package

All-Access Plan

CBS All Access gets you your local CBS station for only a few bucks a month.
$5.99/mo.
See Plans
Best Value Choice

Package

Limited Commercials

Hulu Live hooks you up with the most CBS coverage out of all the streaming services.
$39.99/mo.
Free Trial
Best Traditional TV

Package

America's Top 120

DISH gets you CBS and tons of other channels for a reasonable price.
$59.99/mo.**
See Plans
**After $5 autopay/paperless bill discount.
All pricing valid as of August 31, 2018.

These are the top three best options for watching CBS, but each for different reasons. Let’s zoom in on each option and see what fits best for you.

#1 CBS All Access: The cheapest way to get your local CBS station

Best Budget Pick

All-Access Plan

Sim. Streams
2
Price
$5.99/mo.

This service is available on these devices

See Plans

What we like: Can’t beat $5.99 a month

Drawbacks: Only CBS content

Who it’s perfect for: Viewers who want CBS and nothing else

CBS All Access gets you guaranteed access to your local CBS station for $5.99 a month. Just so you know, that’s an extremely(!) inexpensive number when it comes to livestreaming.

You can stream CBS for free with a CBS All Access 7-day trial.

$5.99 a month for your local CBS station

For around the price of a double-double burger at In-N-Out, (or if you’re an east coaster, a SmokeShack burger from Shake Shack) you can get CBS All Access each month. You won’t find a better price for streaming CBS out there.

Your subscription gets you access to your local live CBS feed plus over 10,000 on-demand episodes of your favorite CBS shows. There are even CBS All Access originals like Star Trek: Discovery and The Good Fight. Both come very highly recommended from IMDB, so you’re getting extra bang for your buck.

But if you don’t care about any of those shows, and you just want to watch the NFL, golf, or college basketball, this service still has you covered. CBS All Access will hook you up with all that sports content as well.

Most CBS access across the country

Here’s the tricky thing about most streaming services and local channels—there’s usually no guarantee that you can stream CBS in your area.

Fortunately, that’s not the case with CBS All Access. If you have a CBS station at all in your area, you will pick it up with CBS All Access. That’s what you get when a network decides to launch its own app.

Just know that CBS All Access gets you only CBS. So, if you decide CBS All Access over Hulu with Live TV or DISH, you won’t get any extra channels. But sometimes, less is more in life, and with TV.

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CBS Sports comes with CBS All Access

Along with CBS coverage, CBS All Access gets you CBS Sports too. How many times can we say CBS in a single sentence? Three, apparently. Enjoy all the sports.

Does CBS All Access have a DVR?

Sadly, CBS All Access doesn’t have any form of cloud DVR storage. You’ll need to rely on on-demand shows to catch anything that already aired. Basically everything that airs on CBS All Access will get saved as on-demand, so you really won’t even need DVR.

CBS All Access device compatibility

You can stream CBS All Access with any of the popular streaming devices, like Apple TV, Chromecast, and Roku.

#2 Hulu with Live TV: Strong CBS coverage and lots of other channels

Best Value Choice

Limited Commercials

Channels
57+ Channels
Price
$39.99/mo.

This service is available on these devices

Free Trial

What we like: Access to Hulu’s entire on-demand library

Drawbacks: Relatively weak DVR

Who it’s perfect for: CBS streamers who also want a complete package

Besides CBS All Access, Hulu Live gives you the most CBS coverage across the country. Plus, it comes with lots of other cool bells and whistles (and naturally, channels).

You can watch CBS for free with Hulu Live’s 7-day trial.

$39.99 for CBS and over 55 other channels

Hulu with Live TV offers only one channel package, and it just so happens to come with the most CBS coverage. In other words, Hulu Live is your best bet for streaming CBS in your area (other than CBA All Access, of course).

Along with CBS, you get over 55 other channels, like ESPN, FX, and Food Network. Oh, and thousands of on-demand titles too.

Let’s say there’s nothing worth watching on TV at the moment. You can go right to watch Hulu on-demand content. For example, the NFL Sunday game on CBS ended, and you feel like watching something funny to calm yourself down—you can switch over to an episode of Seinfeld, Brooklyn Nine-Nine, or The Good Place.

How to make sure you can watch CBS in your area

We’ll save you the pain of subscribing to Hulu with Live TV only to find that you don’t get your local CBS station. Here’s how you can make sure you get CBS in your area with Hulu Live before signing up:

  1. Go to Hulu’s website.
  2. Scroll down to where it says “View all channels in your area” right below the channel logos.
  3. Enter your ZIP code and make sure you see CBS pop up afterward.

If you see CBS, you’re gold. If you don’t, then you probably need to go with CBS All Access, DISH, or even an antenna.

50 hours of cloud DVR storage

You get 50 hours of cloud DVR storage automatically included in your subscription. That’s a decent amount, but nothing spectacular.

Sure, you can get by with 50 hours as long as you remember to delete your stuff after you watch it. But every NFL game takes about four hours of storage, every episode of Criminal Minds takes an hour, and Big Bang Theory takes half an hour. Trust us when we say that your recording storage will sneak up on you faster than you’d expect.

Don’t trust yourself to delete everything after you watch it? We don’t blame you. Another option is upgrading to 500 hours of cloud DVR storage, but it’ll cost you an extra $14.99 a month on top of your bill. It’s more of a last resort for all the DVR hoarders out there.

Check out our full Hulu with Live TV review if you want to dig a little deeper into this streaming service.

Hulu with Live TV device compatibility

You can stream CBS with Hulu Live on basically any streaming device, such as Apple TV, Chromecast, and Roku.

#3 DISH: Watch CBS with no internet connection required

Best Traditional TV

America's Top 120

Channels
190 channels
Price
$59.99/mo.**
**After $5 autopay/paperless bill discount.
See Plans

What we like: No need for internet

Drawbacks: Considerably more expensive

Who it’s perfect for: People wanting a traditional TV experience

Looking for an option where your internet speed has nothing to do with watching CBS? DISH is your best bet. It gets you CBS and tons of other channels, but it does cost a bit more than streaming options.

$59.99 a month for CBS

Yeah, if you compare DISH with CBS All Access, then it really looks like you’ll pay a lot more. Well, yes, you definitely will pay much more, but you also get much more.

The package carries over 120 channels, which more than doubles the streaming options’ packages. Channel flippers rejoice!

Along with CBS, you’re pretty much guaranteed to get all of your local channels. Check out the full DISH channel list here and make sure the $59.99 a month will be spent on channels you actually care about.

Best DVR out there

We’re not exaggerating—the DISH Hopper 3 comes with 500 hours of HD storage and allows for 16 simultaneous recordings at a time. In other words, you can record pretty much anything and everything whenever you want.

The Hopper 3 costs an extra $15 a month, and it’s $15 well spent. But if you don’t feel like paying extra, you can go for the included Hopper Duo. The Hopper Duo gets you 125 hours of HD storage and allows for two recordings at once. Just make sure you don’t get in the bind where an NFL game, The Bachelorette, and an NBA game are all on at the same time. Only the Hopper 3 could help you then.

Want to learn more about the ins and outs of DISH? Check out our DISH review for more details.

Wildcard: Antenna—Watch CBS without any monthly subscription costs

Considering CBS is a local channel, you can always just buy an antenna and pick up your local station that way. With an antenna, you can avoid racking up monthly costs and watch CBS just like you would with another TV service.

You’ll have to live without all the fun bells and whistles that come with other TV services, like built-in DVR, extra channels, and on-demand options to enjoy whenever. But if you’re on a mission to watch CBS for the cheapest price, an antenna is the answer.

Now you’re probably wondering what antenna you should get. We’ve written up a whole guide on the best antennas, but if you want the short version, we recommend the Mohu Leaf 50 on Amazon. It’s got a wide range, picks up signals reliably, and just so happens to be eco-friendly.

Start watching CBS now

You’ve got options for watching CBS—now you just need to choose the best option for you. There are the super cheap methods (CBS All Access, antenna), streaming package options (Hulu with Live TV), and last but not least, the best satellite TV provider for watching CBS (DISH).

Choose whatever works best for your situation, and remember us fondly the next time you watch CBS live.

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