Online streaming is a rapidly expanding and changing industry, with more services than ever competing for your business. Two very popular LIVE streaming services are Sling TV and Philo. But how do they compare? Our Philo vs Sling TV comparison explores just that.
Both Sling TV and Philo are focused on the budget side of online streaming, with prices from $25 and $20, respectively. But obviously there’s more to this comparison than just price. What about channels, features, devices, etc.? We’ll cover all these details in our Sling TV vs Philo review.
Similarities Between Sling TV and Philo
First off, let’s cover the basics of these services. How are they similar?
Both Sling TV and Philo are:
- Online streaming services available without cable
- Useful ways to watch live TV without cable TV
- Available without contracts, so you can cancel either at any time
- Priced WAY less than cable/satellite
- Provide bundles of TV channels to watch live
- Compatible with most devices, from smartphones to streaming players
Additionally, both services offer free 7 day trials.
Since the trials are free, you could potentially sign up for both and do your own Sling TV vs Philo comparison!
Now that we’ve got the commonalities out of the way, we’ll explore the differences between Sling TV and Philo in more detail.
Philo vs Sling TV: At a Glance
Philo is an affordable streaming service that focuses on entertainment channels. There are no sports channels included, but you’ll get more than 55 channels for just $20 a month – with no contract. It offers a free 7 day trial.
Sling TV is more of a full-service streaming platform, which offers everything from entertainment to news to sports. Plans start at $25 a month, and there are TONS of customization options to expand your selection. There’s a free 7 day trial.
Based on these descriptions, here’s our basic recommendation:
If you want sports coverage or mainstream news channels, Sling TV is really the only option between these two. Philo does not offer any sports channels, and only a couple less-popular news networks. Sling, on the other hand, has ESPN, FS1, CNN and much more. See our Sling TV review for details.
If you want entertainment channels at the lowest price possible, Philo is a fantastic option. This service is really unbeatable when it comes to live entertainment networks, as it offers 55+ channels for only $20 a month. See our Philo review for details.
Sling TV vs Philo Pricing
When it comes to the cost, things are a bit more straightforward: Philo is cheaper, but Sling TV has way more options.
Philo has only one plan – and it costs $20 a month. This gives you 55+ channels, mostly focused on entertainment.
Sling TV has three “main” plans, then all sorts of add-on packages. See the Sling TV pricing guide for more info. Sling’s plans look like this:
- Sling Orange – 30+ channels for $25/mo
- Sling Blue – 40+ channels for $25/mo (different channel lineup)
- Sling Orange + Blue – 50+ channels for $40/mo (combines both packages)
- Many different add-ons, mostly costing $5/mo extra to add 5-15+ channels each
At first glance, Philo seems like a much better deal. However, again you have to keep in mind that Philo doesn’t carry sports channels, while Sling does. Since sports are so important for many people (and so expensive for services to offer), the price difference makes sense.
Here’s some good news: BOTH of these services are the cheapest options out there for online live streaming. Other live-streaming competitors among the best streaming services cost around $40-$50+ a month for the smallest packages. So, both Sling TV and Philo offer a pretty incredible bargain.
And compared to cable TV – well, there’s really no comparison. The average cable bill now costs $107 per month. That means you could subscribe to BOTH Sling TV and Philo and still save more than 50% over cable TV…
Philo vs Sling TV Channels
Here’s the meat-and-potatoes of our Philo vs Sling TV comparison – the actual channels offered! Keep in mind that this is a brief comparison – for the full lists, see our Philo Channels List and Sling TV Channel List.
Philo offers 55+ channels for $20 a month, focusing on entertainment networks. This is the only package available.
Sling TV offers anywhere from 30+ to 100+ channels, depending on the package and add-ons you choose. There are many customization options.
Coverage of Entertainment Networks
When it comes to entertainment networks, Philo is a clear winner. This service really shines when it comes to entertainment, covering networks like A&E, AMC, BET, Comedy Central, Food Network, HGTV and MANY more. The bulk of Philo’s 55+ channels are all entertainment related.
To be fair, Sling TV offers most of these channels – but many are only in add-ons, which means you’ll pay more for them. If entertainment is what you’re after, click here to try a free 7 day trial of Philo today!
Coverage of Sports
When it comes to sports channels, Sling TV is a clear winner. Really, there’s no comparison, as Philo doesn’t cover any dedicated sports networks. Sling TV carries ESPN, ESPN2, FS1, FS2, NBCSN and many more.
If you’re looking to watch sports online, Sling is the way to go. Click here to start a free 7 day trial!
Coverage of Local Channels
For local channels, Sling TV comes out on top. Sling offers (in select areas) NBC, FOX and CBS, while Philo offers no local channels. So if you’re looking for these networks for local news coverage or important sporting events, Sling is a better bet. Click here to start a free 7 day trial!
Keep in mind that you can also watch local channels with an antenna, so some people opt to go that route. Sling TV has a special deal where you can get a free antenna when you sign up and prepay for a few months of Sling. Alternatively, Philo combined with a good antenna would be a great solution as well!
Coverage of Premium Channels
If you want to get premium channels like HBO or Showtime, Sling TV comes out on top. Philo does not offer any premiums, while Sling offers HBO, Cinemax, Starz, Showtime and others. Keep in mind that these are all offered for an additional fee.
So, to wrap up – overall, Sling TV has FAR more channels than Philo. For pure entertainment networks, Philo dominates with a fantastic value bundle of 55+ channels. For everything else, Sling tends to be a better option.
Both of these services work over the internet, without cable TV. You’ll need a compatible device to use the services – but don’t worry, they work on most major devices!
Sling TV devices include:
Philo devices include:
As you can see, Sling TV covers more devices at this time. Both services work on web browsers, Apple TV, Roku, Fire TV, Android TV and iOS/Android mobile devices. Additionally, Sling TV works on Chromecast, Xbox One, AirTV, LG & Samsung smart TVs, and Oculus.
Sling TV is an older service, so it makes sense that they currently cover more devices. We expect Philo to keep expanding device compatibility as the service grows.
What about special features?
Both services offer the ability to record live TV to watch later. On Philo it’s included in the price, and on Sling it’s $5/mo extra.
Philo wins in this battle, as it offers unlimited recording for free, while Sling TV charges $5/mo for only 50 hours of space.
Both services offer a limited on-demand selection. The availability of shows will vary from channel to channel.
Both services are pretty similar when it comes to on-demand, so there’s no clear winner here.
Simultaneous streaming refers to how many different devices can be using the service at once. So if you have 2 simultaneous streams, that means the kids can be watching cartoons in the living room while dad watches sports in the bedroom.
Philo offers 3 simultaneous streams, while Sling offers 1 or 3, depending on the package. Philo wins this round!
Which Service is Right for Me?
Now that you’ve seen our full Sling TV vs Philo review, you should be armed with the tools you need to make an informed decision!
To sum things up, here are our recommendations:
If you want sports channels, news channels or local networks, you should go with Sling TV. Click here to try Sling TV free for 7 days
If you just want entertainment networks at a great price, Philo is likely the better choice. Click here to try Philo free for 7 days
Again, keep in mind that since both of these services are no-contract, and since both have free trials, you don’t have to be 100% certain about your decision yet. You can try one, and if it’s not right for you, just cancel and switch! Some of our readers even try both at once, to do a direct comparison of their own.
Thanks for reading, and if you have any questions please drop a comment below!