Olympics Live Stream: Watch the 2018 Winter Games free or cheap online
The 2018 Winter Olympics are here and you don’t want to be left in the cold when it comes to live streaming your favorite events.
A lot of people are looking for a singular portal for an Olympics live stream. But coverage of the games will be scattered among four channels: NBC, NBCSN, USA and CNBC.
If you don’t have cable or a satellite subscription, you have plenty of good options to watch all the Olympic events live. You can pick up a free 7-day trial, or briefly subscribe to: DirecTV Now, fuboTV, PlayStation Vue, Sling TV or YouTube TV.
What’s the best way to watch the 2018 Olympics?
fuboTV has launched a new feature, updating its sports navigation bar to include a breakdown of Olympic programming, sorted by sport, in order to help viewers find specific live events more easily. fuboTV also offers a free 7-day trial, and lets you add Showtime to your trial for free.
NBCUniversal’s coverage of the XXIII Olympic Winter Games from PyeongChang, South Korea, will begin on Thursday, Feb. 8, and run through Sunday, Feb. 25. There will be a combined 2,400 hours of Olympic programming.
There’s going to be dazzling figure skating by Nathan Chen. And you won’t want to miss the deft snowboarding skills of Shaun White or skiing feats by Lindsey Vonn as it happens live from PyeongChang. So the Olympics might be a good opportunity to jump around and try out a couple of these services if you’re considering a cable alternative.
Here two FAQs and a breakdown of all your choices to get an Olympics live stream.
Can I watch the 2018 Olympics with an antenna?
Yes, but you will only be able to get NBC over the air with a TV antenna. All other events are on channels NBCSN, USA and CNBC. So to get full coverage, you will need either a cable subscription, a satellite subscription like DirecTV or the live streaming services mentioned above.
If you’re wondering whether you get a free NBC broadcast over the air, just punch in your zip code into a search tool like AntennaWeb or TVFool. You can also get some pointers on how to choose the best antenna for your home.
Will the Olympics Channel have live sports events?
Good question. (The answer is no.) The Olympic Channel will be dedicated to exclusively to the Winter Games, but coverage will be news, highlights and interviews. So it will be a good channel for catching up on events.
Get an Olympics Live Stream with DirecTV Now
DirecTV Now has the most flexibility for watching live Olympic events as they air.
You can watch all the live channels you need for the Winter Games, including NBC, NBCSN, CNBC and USA Network. You can use your DirecTV Now account either on a streaming device like a Roku, or on your iPhone when you’re not at home.
Having that kind of flexibility might be worth it if you’re keen on watching events like Snowboarding that air late on Saturday night.
DirecTV Now lets you watch on up to two devices at once simultaneously. It works with all major streaming devices, including Roku, Amazon Fire TV and Apple TV. There is a very easy way to check whether NBC is offered in your area with the DirecTV Now local channel search tool. Just type in your zip code and you’ll quickly find out whether NBC is offered in your area.
About 70 percent of U.S. TV watching households can watch their live, local channels with a DirecTV Now subscription. You can also use your DirecTV Now username and password to sign into more than 50 TV Everywhere apps. Those include NBC Sports and NBC.
Try out DirecTV Now free for 7-days. Prepay for one month and DirecTV Now will give you an Amazon Fire TV. If you prepay a little more, you’ll be given an Apple TV. There’s no requirement to keep your subscription after, and you can easily cancel online.
Watch Olympics Live Stream on fuboTV
fuboTV, a sports-first TV service, will get you access to NBCUniversal’s unprecedented 2,400 hours of Olympic programming, including live coverage of all competition sessions. fuboTV just launched a new feature to its sports navigation bar that includes a break-down of Olympic programming sorted by sport.
So you can easily find an upcoming Olympic event, watch it on-demand or even use 30 hours of Cloud DVR to record it. No more trying to figure out when Nathan Chen takes to the ice or what time Lindsey Vonn competes for the gold.
fuboTV will have coverage by all the networks of NBCUniversal, including NBC, NBCSN, CNBC, and USA Network. That also includes all the daily news and highlight coverage on the Olympic Channel. fuboTV offers 75+ channels of local channels, sports channels like NBA TV, PAC-12, and entertainment channels like HGTV and A&E.
fuboTV has a huge number of local NBC stations, which covers 70 percent of U.S. households. You can do a quick check of all the NBC stations that fuboTV offers. fuboTV has apps for Roku, Apple TV, Android TV and Amazon Fire TV. And it gives you a lot of flexibility with how to want to watch.
Live stream from a PC, an iPhone or Android smartphone or watch all the action from PyeongChang when you’re not at home. Just use your fuboTV credentials to login to NBCOlympics.com and the NBC Sports app.
“The Winter Olympics is a great example of the breadth and depth of live sports that our subscribers can stream, with thousands of hours of premium content available this month thanks to our partnership with NBCUniversal,” said Ben Grad fuboTV’s head of Content Strategy & Acquisition.
fuboTV offers a free 7-day trialand lets you add Showtime for free as part of your trial. If you keep the service, your first month will cost $19.99 before going to regular rate of $44.99. Showtime costs an additional $10.99 per month.
Live Stream Olympics 2018 on Sling TV
Sling TV offers all the channels you’ll need to watch the Winter Games. You’ll just need the Sling Blue channel bundle, which carries NBC in select markets. You’ll also need to subscribe to the News Extra bundle for another $5 per month if you want live coverage from CNBC.
Sling TV has a FAQ section on its Olympics offerings along with a search tool that tells you whether a local NBC station is available in your area. Sling Blue gives you 45 channels for $25 per month. That bundle includes three Epix movie channels, National Geographic and A&E.
You will be able to stream on up to three devices at once. Sling TV has apps for Apple TV (4th generation), Roku, Amazon Fire TV and Android TV devices. Get a free 7-day trial of Sling TV to see if it’s a good fit for you.
PlayStation Vue: Watch Olympics Online without cable
PlayStation Vue carries NBC in select markets across the U.S. The entry-level Access bundle has all four key channels you need, and unlimited Cloud DVR. So you can easily get your Nathan Chen fix as he competes for the Gold.
As part of a 48 channel bundle, you’ll also get AMC, BBC America, Fox News and the Science Channel. The Access bundle costs $39.99 per month, and you can take try the service with a free 5-day trial.
YouTube TV: Live Stream Olympics 2018 on Roku, Apple TV
YouTube TV just expanded its app support for Roku and Apple TV, and offers NBC channels in a number of markets across the U.S. For $35 per month, YouTube TV offers 40+ live channels including NBC, CNBC, NBC Sports and USA Networks in many markets. Read my review of YouTube TV for a broader overview of the service. You can try YouTube TV free for 7-days.
What’s the best way to watch the Olympics without cable?
If you want to watch the Winter Games on your iPhone or from the couch using a Roku, I’d suggest trying out DirecTV Now. You’ll get all the channels you need for live Olympic events.
DirecTV Now gives you the better overall value with its entry-level bundle of 60 channels. And you can check it out free with a free 7-day trial. There are offers to get an Amazon Fire TV, or an Apple TV if you’re willing to prepay for two to three months of service.
My budget pick is the Sling Blue channel bundle. Even if you skipped adding the News Extra channels to get CNBC, then you can get most of your channels for $25 per month. Sling TV offers a free 7-day trial.
If you want to pick through events in a dedicated menu, then try out fuboTV’s special sports sectionfor the Winter Games. You can get it free for 7-days and even add Showtime for free if you want to catch the season premiere of Homeland.
Are you ready to live stream the 2018 Winter Olympics? What events are you going to watch this month? Tell fellow readers in the comments below.
Founder and Editor of The Cord Cutting Report. Before launching the site in 2016, he worked for more than two decades as a staff writer or correspondent for a number of daily newspapers, including The Boston Globe. His enthusiasm for tech began with the Atari 2600. Follow @james_kimble