You’re deciding between Sling TV and fuboTV, and you want to know which streaming service is better. The short answer is probably Sling TV, and the long answer totally depends on what you want from a streaming service.
We’re all about long, well-researched answers, so let’s pit Sling TV against fuboTV and see why Sling comes out on top.
Overall winner: Sling TV vs. fuboTV
|Base package price||$25/mo.-$40/mo.*||$44.99/mo.-$49.99/mo.**|
|Live channels available||20-50+||75+|
|Max. DVR hours||50 hrs.||500 hrs.|
|Max. picture quality||1080p||1080p|
|Max. simultaneous streams||4||2|
|Free Trial||Free Trial|
Winner: Sling TV
Let’s be real—you cut the cable cord because you want to pay less for TV. And that’s exactly what Sling TV lets you do. Compared to fuboTV’s $44.99 a month price tag, Sling TV’s $20- or $25-per-month packages are just too cheap to pass up.
Sling TV also gives you more package options with different packages and tons of add-ons on top of that, so you really have a lot of control over what you’re paying for. With fuboTV, it’s more of a what-you-see-is-what-you-get kind of thing.
fuboTV’s main edge over Sling TV comes down to channel count. You get more channels with fuboTV, but you also pay for more channels. We’ll go into more detail in the channels section below, but the fact that fuboTV doesn’t carry ESPN or ABC made giving the overall advantage to Sling TV even easier.
All in all, Sling TV’s cheaper base price, more customizable packages, and essential channels like ESPN get the nod over fuboTV.
Prices and plans: Sling TV vs. fuboTV
Sling TV channel packages
|Sling Orange||Sling Blue||Sling Orange + Blue|
fuboTV channel package
Winner: Sling TV
To the shock of no one reading this, Sling TV wins the better pricing award. Compared to most streaming services, including fuboTV, $20 per month for Sling Orange is profoundly cheap.
But you get what you pay for with Sling TV—the packages don’t come with many channels compared to fuboTV, DIRECTV NOW, or PlayStation Vue. Sling Orange hooks you up with 30 channels, and Sling Blue includes 45 channels, both of which are a far cry from fuboTV’s 90+ channels. The reason Sling TV can get away with such cheap prices is its small channel packages.
That means Sling TV may not be the best value, even if it’s the better price. So if you’re the type of cord-cutter who wants more channels, you’re better off with fuboTV. On the other hand, if you want the cheapest way to get your few channel favorites, Sling TV is calling your name.
What about combining channels and going for Sling Orange+Sling Blue?
In our professional opinion, the Sling Orange+Sling Blue combo that includes 50+ channels for $40 isn’t a great deal. Compared to fuboTV, which gives you 75+ channels for a few bucks more, or YouTube TV, which gives you 60+ channels for $40 a month, you can just find more value elsewhere. Our advice is to stick with the smaller Sling packages.
Sling TV and fuboTV deals
Most channels: Sling TV vs. fuboTV
|Total channels with base packages||50+||90+|
|Total with add-on channels||220+||110+|
Winner: Sling TV
Granted, you would end up paying a hefty monthly bill to get all those channels, but it’s nice knowing you have a lot to choose from.
In terms of base packages, both fuboTV channel packages nets you more channels than Sling TV’s, but it also costs double (at least, after the first month with fubo), so you’ll need to decide if it’s worth it to you. Our advice? Make a list of your essential channels, and take a closer look at Sling’s TV channel list and fuboTV’s channel list to see what gives you your favorites.
Before we go any further, here’s one thing you need to know about Sling TV—it can be really hard to get all the channels you want in a single package.
Sling TV does this cruel thing where it puts related channels on two different packages. For example: ESPN and TNT are in Sling Orange, but NBC Sports and FOX Sports are in Sling Blue. To get the complete sports experience, you’ll end up paying for both Sling Orange and Sling Blue for $40 a month.
Which streaming package is better for sports?
It really depends on what sports you want to watch.
We want to give the advantage to fuboTV because it has positioned itself as the ultimate streaming source for sports, but there’s one HUGE problem—no ESPN or TNT. That may be a dealbreaker for our NBA, NFL, and NCAA fans out there, but fuboTV does offer some hard-to-come-by niche sports channels. It offers BeIn Sports, the Pac-12 Network, Big Ten Network, and Univision.
International sports (good news for Chelsea fans)
The real prestige for fuboTV is the add-ons you’ve got at your disposal. Take a look at the International Sports Plus package, which offers Fox Soccer Plus, Chelsea TV, and TyC Sports. Rejoice, fans of English Premier League (more specifically Chelsea fans)—there’s an easy way to stream international soccer.
Sling TV offers tons of international add-on packages, but not necessarily ones that include sports. Where Sling TV aims to get international channels that cover news and pop culture, it’s clear that fuboTV focuses on hooking you up with international sports.
Let’s put it this way—if you’re an international sports fan, fuboTV was made for you. If you’re a fan of major US sports, Sling TV has everything you need (if you’re willing to pay for it).
Most local channels: fuboTV
It’s about time that fuboTV won one of these categories. Say what you want about fuboTV, but it certainly owns Sling TV when it comes to local channels. Here’s a breakdown of the local channel coverage for fuboTV and Sling TV.
|ABC||8 local affiliates||0 local affiliates|
|CBS||0 local affiliates||73 local affiliates|
|FOX||17 local affiliates||136 local affiliates|
|NBC||11 local affiliates||80 local affiliates|
|Total||36 local affiliates||289 local affiliates|
There are two glaring things we need to discuss with local channels for Sling TV and fuboTV. As you can tell from the table above, fuboTV has zero ABC coverage, and Sling TV has zero CBS coverage.
Considering the fact that 289>36, fuboTV easily wins the local channels category. Still, there are no guarantees that fuboTV will carry CBS, FOX, or NBC in your area. Check out fuboTV’s channel list, enter your ZIP code, and see what local channels you can stream in your area. While we’re on the subject, here’s Sling TV’s ZIP finder. Unless you live in a big city, don’t get your hopes up with local channels and Sling TV.
Streaming pro tip: Antennas can make your life much easier when it comes to watching local channels. If you pair your Sling TV or fuboTV subscription with an antenna, you’ve got the best of both worlds—cable channels and local channels. Take a look at our favorite TV antennas and see which one you like.
Premium channels: Sling TV vs. fuboTV
Winner: Sling TV
This one was pretty easy. The only premium channel that fuboTV offers is SHOWTIME, and it costs an extra buck a month! Advantage goes to Sling TV for having much more premium channels and offering a better price.
Streaming Quality: Sling TV vs. fuboTV
|Max picture resolution||1080p||1080p|
|Streaming quality (our rating)||3/5||3/5|
On paper, the streaming quality comes out to be the same between fuboTV and Sling TV. However, every streaming service has its quirks, so it’s possible that you’ll have a better streaming experience with one over the other.
Both services had occasional issues of the stream buffering while watching something or the stream falling well behind real time. Despite those issues, the streams generally looked great with HD-level quality, but neither is quite as smooth as a PlayStation Vue or YouTube TV, for example.
Best DVR: Sling TV vs. fuboTV
|Included with package||50 hrs.||30 hrs.|
|Available with add-on||50 hrs.||500 hrs.|
Everybody likes free things, and nobody likes paying for things that should be free—which is the big difference between fuboTV’s and Sling TV’s DVRs.
fuboTV’s service comes with 30 hours of cloud DVR included in the monthly price. Sling TV’s cloud DVR gets you 50 hours of storage, but you have to pay an extra $5 a month for it. Extra fees for such a basic service just leave a bad taste in our mouth, so fuboTV wins this round by a landslide.
Upgrading to 500 hours of cloud DVR storage
There’s another thing fuboTV has going for it—you can (we’re not saying you should) pay $9.99 a month to get 500 hours of cloud DVR storage.
If you’re going to pay extra for something, make sure you get a lot in return, and 500 hours of cloud DVR is a lot in return. Sure, other streaming services like YouTube TV and PlayStation Vue offer unlimited cloud DVR storage, but the catch there is that your content deletes automatically after a certain amount of time. With fuboTV, your 500 hours of storage is yours to keep however long you want.
Most compatible devices: Sling TV vs. fuboTV
Winner: Sling TV
It’s really a numbers a game between Sling TV and fuboTV. 25>10, so Sling is the unequivocal winner of the compatible devices section. Of course, that will depend on what streaming device you already have. If you rock a Chromecast, then it won’t matter what streaming service you choose, but if you want to stream on your Xbox, you’ll need to go with Sling TV.
Everything else: Sling TV vs. fuboTV
|Live playback features|
|Automatic commercial skipping|
|Max. simultaneous streams||4||2|
|Usability (our rating)||2/5||2/5|
Winner: Sling TV
Both fuboTV and Sling TV have guides, but they’re both a little hidden. When you log in to your account on your laptop, phone, or streaming device, the first thing you’re greeted with is recommendations and what’s on now. That can be helpful if you what you’re looking for pops up, but if not, you’ll need to navigate to a guide tab. Once you get there, everything should look pretty easy.
One of our favorite things about Sling TV is the fact you can generally do what you want. You see something funny on TV and want to rewind 15 seconds to see it again? You can do that. You want to skip commercials on your recorded content? You can do that too.
fuboTV does a lot of those things too, but the system can be a little glitchy. For example, we recorded an NBA game last night, and when we went to watch it, the stream would take a while to fast forward through commercials.
Automatic channel skipping
Neither service automatically skips commercials on your recorded content, so you’ll need to keep pressing that fast forward button for now.
Credit to Sling TV for offering more simultaneous streams than fuboTV. Granted, to get those extra streams, you either need to sign up for Sling Blue and pay an extra $5 for three simultaneous streams or sign up for Sling Orange+Sling Blue and pay an extra $20 per month for those four simultaneous streams. Yes, paying extra for things is never fun, but it’s nice to have the option to add more streams for bigger families.
Sling TV takes the podium
We can sit here and argue about cloud DVR and simultaneous streams all day, but what matters the most is that Sling TV costs $20 (or $25) a month, and fuboTV costs $44.99 a month. Cutting the cord is mostly about saving money, and that’s exactly what Sling TV allows you to do—with your favorite channels to boot. Add in all the channel add-ons and compatible devices, and we gotta give it to Sling TV.
If you’re interested in trying out Sling TV or fuboTV, we recommend checking out a free trial before you commit to anything. You can watch fuboTV for free here, and you can watch Sling TV for free here.