Updated January 14, 2021
How to Watch NESN without cable
fuboTV and AT&T TV are the only two streaming services that currently offer NESN and NESN Plus to New England based customers. NESN made a statement on Jan. 13 that there are no ongoing discussions with YouTube TV after the live TV service dropped NESN on Oct. 31.
Want to live stream NESN at home or on your iPhone? Here’s how…
There are a couple of dependable ways left to live stream NESN without cable.
The cheapest and most flexible option is through fuboTV.
If you live in the New England area, NESN and NESN+ is among 120+ in fuboTV’s family plan. You get 250 hours of Cloud DVR for recordings and a vast on-demand library of movies and TV shows.
A subscription costs $64.99 per month. You can try out fuboTV free for 7 days without any obligation. Just be sure to cancel before the free trial ends if you don’t want to keep your subscription.
With fuboTV, you can watch Boston Bruins and Red Sox games live on your TV using a Roku, Amazon Fire TV Stick (or Cube) or an Android TV device like a Chromecast.
For years, if you wanted to watch the Boston Red Sox play at home, or the Boston Bruins at the Garden, you were at the mercy of Comcast.
Maybe if you lived a little further north of Beantown, it was Charter or Spectrum that was tolling you hardcore every month with outrageous monthly bills that seemed to go up without notice.
Well, that’s over.
Now you can live stream NESN to your television or iPhone, and pay a lot less than what Comcast, Spectrum or any other cable company is charging.
This guide sets out to answer all the questions you might have about channel lineups, live streaming on a Roku and features like Cloud DVR.
By the time you finish reading this, you should have a decent rundown of everything you need to know, so you can finally kick Comcast to the curb and get NESN without cable.
What do I need to live stream NESN?
With live TV streaming services, you’re basically getting a cable channels that’s being fed to you through an Internet connection instead of a cable cord.
If you own a streaming device like a Roku, you already have what you need to live stream a Red Sox or Boston Bruins game. The same is true if you’re looking to stream NESN on Apple TV, Fire TV, Fire Stick, NVIDIA Shield TV, Chromecast with Google TV, iPhone, iPad, Android smartphones or PC.
A common complaint among would-be cord cutters is that you end up paying more for Internet when you drop for cable. Well, it’s time for you to bone up on your game. There’s a proven method for getting a decently-priced Internet-only deal.
Just read my guide about how to get Internet without cable, and you’ll learn how to get either at an introductory rate, or lower price than what’s being offered to you.
fuboTV: live stream NESN without cable
fuboTV started out as a sports-first platform, but has grown into a full fledged replacement for cable TV.
NESN and NESN Plus are among the latest regional sports networks included in the entry-level channel bundle.
If you’re a New Englander, you can expect to see WBZ (CBS), FOX 25, My 38, NECN, NBC Boston, NBC Sports Boston and NBCSN in your channel lineup. NBC Sports Boston has a number of Boston Celtics games throughout the season.
ESPN networks were recently added to fuboTV’s standard channel bundle. You’ll also be able to watch NFL games on CBS, NFL Network, FOX and NBC.
fuboTV also has TNT, TBS and other key networks for the rest of the NBA season.
The entry-level fubo bundle gives you 100+ channels for $59.99 per month. You can look over the channel lineup for your region before deciding whether to try it out.
fuboTV has been a key streaming service for soccer fans wanting beIN Sports, but it’s now expanding to offer a wide gamut of entertainment channels.
A&E, History, FX, FXM, FXX, National Geographic, Nat Geo WILD, Travel Channel and HGTV are part of the channel lineup. Sports channels include FS1, FS2, PAC-12, Big Ten Network, NBA TV and NFL Network.
fuboTV also has widespread support for activating apps on your streaming device. So you can activate the AMC app to catch up on an episode of Better Call Saul, or FXNOW for its vast menu of on-demand movies.
Baseball games on-demand with “look back”
A fubo bundlecomes with 30 hours of Cloud DVR. There’s a “lookback” feature, which shows games that played within the last 72 hours.
There are streaming apps for fuboTV on just about any streaming device, including Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV and NVIDIA Shield TV. The best app for fuboTV right now is on Roku, where you can find on-demand movies and an easy-to-use channel guide.
Here is a recent video I made about the best live TV streaming services, including a rundown of fuboTV. Note: The video shows the old price for fuboTV, but otherwise everything else is the same.
With the fuboTV mobile app, I can live stream NESN without any issues even when I turn off my WiFi and use my data. In other words, live streaming NESN when you’re away from home isn’t a problem. Just watch out for your data plan!
fuboTV has a free 7-day trial with no obligations or contracts.
AT&T TV: Live Stream NESN without cable
AT&T TV has NESN and NESN Plus in its Choice channel bundle.
And now, you can sign up for service, choose the “no contract” option and quickly start watching NESN live on a Roku, Amazon Fire TV Stick, Google Chromecast or Apple TV.
But at $84.99 per month, the 90+ channel bundle is the most expensive option. HBO Max and NBA League Pass Premium is included free for a year.
So if you’re looking for an alternative to fuboTV, this is your only other option to stream Boston Bruins or Red Sox games live on NESN.
If you do sign up, you should know that you have to choose the “no contract” option during the account setup process. It’s not automatic.
If you opt for a two year contract, then the price drops to $69.99 per month for the Choice plan.
What if I want NESN outside of New England?
If you live outside of New England, you’re best shot at watching Red Sox games is by subscribing to MLB Extra Innings or MLB.TV.
NESN National is offered on AT&T U-Verse, Verizon FiOS and a number of other pay-TV providers.
But according to NESN, you’re not going to get Red Sox games outside the home coverage area of Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Maine, Rhode Island, Vermont and Connecticut (excluding Fairfield County).
Can I live stream NESN on Sling TV?
No. Right now, there are no plans underway to add a NESN live stream to Sling TV. That could change.
Sean McGrail, NESN President and CEO, noted during an interview about the NESNGo app that live streaming is definitely part of the network’s long term strategic plan.
“For years, NESN has wanted to extend live streaming access to our viewers, so we couldn’t be more excited to launch NESNgo this season,” McGrail said. “This is a significant milestone in NESN history.”
Can I use the NESNGo app?
You can activate the NESNGo app and NESNGo.com using your fuboTV account credentials.
But if you’re using your fuboTV mobile app, then I might take a pass on NESNGo. I tried out the NESNgo app and website back when it launched, and I kept on having problems staying signed in. Things may have changed, but I think fubo provides a better viewing experience.
What’s the best way to live stream NESN without cable?
I think the better deal right now is with fuboTV because you’re getting NESN, NESN Plus and more local channels including CBS, FOX, My38, NECN, NBCSN and NBC Sports Boston.
You’ll get 100+ channels, 30 hours of Cloud DVR and the ability to sign in to apps on your streaming device. fuboTV has a unique “lookback” feature to catch up on games, and on-demand movies and shows.
You won’t have any restrictions with watching fuboTV on your iPhone or Android smartphone, so you can keep watching NESN while you’re outside your home.
* This article was originally published Dec. 14, 2017, and has been updated to reflect new prices and channel lineups.
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