The number of people who are subscribing to stream bundles to watch local channels free is on the rise for the past few years. Different research data shows that last year over 5 million Americans have cut off their cable TV connections. This is the highest number of people turning to live stream for local channels free than 2018 when this number was approximately 3 million.
It is expected that in coming years more people will prefer live stream of local channels than traditional cable connections. Various companies providing streaming for TV channels like Amazon Prime and Netflix seeing an increase in their subscriptions.
Internet connection is compulsory for streaming local TV channels, instead of standard cable connection or subscription of the satellite. Now the question is about free of cost service and the quality of local channels on the live streaming? These days, most people are staying at home due to the pandemic of COVID-19, therefore, they are spending most of their time in front of the TV. While spreading most of their time in front of the TV, definitely they will be thinking of the best way for online streaming of local TV channels without spending any money.
An important perk of streaming live local TV Channels for free is that you will be able to use them on different kinds of devices like a smartphone, computer, laptop, or tablet.
Basic Requirements for Streaming Local TV Channels
1) Fast Internet
The speed of the internet plays an important role in the quality of TV channels on live streaming. Therefore, it is the best option to get rid of cable connection for TV by acquiring an affordable fast internet connection that allows you to stream your favorite local TV channels free of cost. Recommended speed for live streaming of local TV channels is 15Mbps, if you have such an internet connection, then enjoy live streaming otherwise upgrade your connection.
The number of persons using online streaming also matters, if more than one person is using the internet for the same purpose then an internet connection with a speed of 50Mbps would be necessary. So, with a speedy internet connection, you only have to pay for internet and not for TV channels which would not be heavy on your pocket and you will be watching TV channels free of cost.
2) Smart TV or Plugin Device
If you have a smart TV, you will get a lot of benefits like you will be able to stream your desired local TV channels online through in-built Wi-Fi of smart TV. However, in case you don’t have a smart TV then try some other options which are also affordable for your current TV.
You can choose a streaming stick that is suitable for different services like Amazon Fire and Roku, it can be plugged in the HDMI port of the TV for establishing a connection with the internet. Devices like this one make the home network of any home for seamless streaming of local TV channels and smart TV streaming.
3) Good Streaming Bundle
Make sure that live streaming for local channels which you are accessing has a variety of all-important programs which you want to watch. When you are searching for a good and affordable streaming package then must keep all things in mind which you want to watch. For example, if you like sports and news, then make sure that your streaming package has good access to all these while searching.
Available Options for Streaming Local TV Channels
1) Purchase an Antenna
If you are residing in suburban or urban areas of your country, then the best option available for you to get access to live streaming of your local TV channels is an antenna. An antenna is a one-time purchase with lifetime free streaming of TV channels. TV antennas are cost-effective because they have a very less price which you have to pay once and then there will be no charges.
However, the quality of local TV channels you are streaming is correlated to the power of the TV antenna and your distance from local TV channels and their transmission towers. If you are living near TV towers then you need an antenna which has rage from 30 to 50 miles while for long-distance you need a more powerful TV antenna.
2) Subscribe to Live Streaming
If you want streaming of your all favorite TV channels by cutting traditional cable connection, then a live streaming service would be necessary for you. Most of these live streaming services offer a maximum number of your local TV channels free of cost with a one-time subscription. Hulu + Live and YouTube TV offer access to most local TV channels which is included in their monthly subscriptions.
3) Buy Video Streaming Services
Video streaming service is an emerging and new option that provides access to local TV Channels. If you are unable or unwilling to purchase a TV antenna or not ready to pay for one time live TV channels’ streaming service, then it would be the best option for you to get whatever you want.
4) Try to Use Locast
Locast is a cost-effective solution for streaming local TV channels free, however, it is unfortunate in terms of its availability because it is not available everywhere. Locast is operating without any profit, it takes local TV channels’ broadcasting signals from their towers and transmits them on the internet free of cost with access to its customers. However, it is only available in thirty-two (32) television markets.
5) Try Freebie Services
If you love to watch local news channels, then you can grab them from a new emerging streaming service free of cost. In eighty-eight (88) United States’ markets, the best and latest free service for local news channels is Amazon News. For availing of this service, you have to install the Amazon News app.
When you will open the app, a list of local news channels will appear from which you can choose the one you like. However, channels offered on this app are those which are close to your current location.
6) Access via Apps and Websites
Final and the simplest way to access the streaming of local TV channels for free is the internet. Go to internet surf or install the app of TV channel which allows live streaming. Most of the time you will be able to watch your favorite TV channels with on-demand replay which would be ad-supported.
It is also possible that most of your local TV channels may have their websites and apps, you can access live streams, clips, highlights, and articles of your local TV channels. With the help of these websites and apps, you will be able to access content without any charges.
10 Best Free Streaming Sites
The number of sites offers a range of live streaming for traditional local TV channels free of cost. The majority of live TV channels on these sites are related to news and sports both local and national. Use of these sites is very easy, you have to load them on your computer, tablet, laptop, or smartphone to start watching local TV channels immediately. A few important sites are:-
PLEX has thousands of TV shows and movies for free, it is one of the best and first sites people have been using. It has a partnership with big names like MGM, Lionsgate, and Warner Brothers. It also possesses international agreements for licensing, therefore, has some outstanding shows and movies to stream.
Kanopy is quite useful for book worms and university students because it requires a university login or active membership of the local library. With this access, you can stream thousands of your favorite local TV channels and movies for free on your computer, laptop, tablet, or smartphone.
3) Pluto TV
It is owned by Viacom and is a mash-up of local TV channels. It’s free of cost but an ad-supported video on demand (VOD) service with more than 250 channels. It also has a collection of some older classic movies like James Bond.
Sony Pictures backed Crackle contains both older favorites and original TV shows such as Charlie’s Angels, Roseanne, The Facts of Life, and 3rd Rock from the Sun. One of the wonderful benefits of Crackle is access to all TV shows without any login or creation of an account.
5) IMDb TV
IMDb TV has many great shows of TV channels and few great movies from the last 5 to 10 years. It is quite easy to browse content for streaming, however, to access free streaming of local TV channels, you have to make a free account.
You are right, it is Netflix. Netflix is now allowing limited streaming free of cost, it is a great stop to watch something within budget. Netflix offers those shows and movies which they have created.
PopcornFlix is designed for old-school cartoons.
Although Redbox is new in TV streaming, however, you can start streaming local TV channels without any log-in.
The efficiency of Reelgood makes it a cool streaming service because it has been designed to provide access to more than 60 streaming services. You need not pay anything. You have to sign up, then by filter option, it will sort all free content for streaming later.
STIRR provides secrecy as your actual areas will not be located when you are watching local TV channels. You can select any city from the whole country with one click on “City Select”. Selection of city is a very cool option especially during travel because you can watch any local news channels you want even if you are not in your area.
Best TV Streaming Services
The few best TV streaming services available during 2021 are YouTube TV, Hulu + Live TV, Philo, fuboTV, Sling TV, AT&T TV, Netflix, Prime Video, Peacock, ESPN+, Disney+, HBO Max, Paramount+, Apple TV+.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Is there any possibility of streaming programs of my choice?
Most of the live streaming providers are free with easy access through an antenna. You can stream programs of your choice through these service providers. However, if you want to stream programs that have been broadcasted, then you have to access those programs through internet streaming.
Is there any possibility of accessing sports streams for free?
The best way for accessing free live sports streaming is a TV antenna. Almost all games are always broadcasted through local channels, therefore, it is easy to access them through a TV antenna. Access to sports only suffices casual sports fans, however, if you want to follow your favorite team or sport, then you may need a cable connection. To avoid charges of cable connection, a live streaming service is the cheapest way.
How much speed of the internet is necessary for live streaming?
The required speed of internet for standard definition streaming of local channels is 3 to 4 Mbps, for HD streaming internet speed should be 5 to 8 Mbps, and for 4K videos, internet speed should be 25 Mbps. However, keep in mind that the speed of the internet also depends upon the number of devices using the internet, when there would be more devices using the internet, more speed of internet would be required. Internet speed can be checked through Ookla Speed Test.
What would happen if I download or stream video illegally?
Although streaming legality is still questionable or ambiguous, however, most of the sources agree that it is legal now.
In today’s world, every person has access to HD TV Channels through different services that charge fees. Although there are many ways to stream local channels for free, however, you can try anyone from the above-mentioned options to stream local channels free. There is no requirement of contract for live streaming and until finding the required channel you can switch.
It is pertinent to mention that there is no specific requirement of time, unlike cable TV. Live streaming also allows you to watch your favorite TV channel with convenience which is not available on cable TV. However, there is one requirement at your end to avail uninterrupted streaming of local TV channels that are streaming devices which you have to connect with your TV so that it works well.