How to Stream NESN and NESNPlus for Red Sox games
Living without cable got a lot easier when there were a couple options for streaming live Red Sox games on NESN.
Both streaming services carry NESN and NESNPlus in their channel lineups. But pricing and the fine print are different.
So if you’ve already cut the cord, but still want to watch Red Sox or Boston Bruins games, you need to weigh the pros and cons of each service.
NESN is available to subscribers in the New England market, including Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Maine, Vermont and most of Connecticut. The only exception is Fairfield County, Connecticut, which is considered part of the New York City market.
Stream Red Sox, Boston Bruins games on Roku, Fire TV Stick
Watching live Red Sox games on NESN without cable is pretty simple. You just need a few things to start streaming Red Sox or Bruins games on your TV.
Once you pick a live TV streaming service, you just need an Internet connection and a streaming device connected to your TV.
fuboTV and AT&T TV work have apps for Roku, Amazon Fire TV Stick, Chromecast with Google TV, iPhones, iPads and Android smartphones.
fuboTV: Live stream NESN without cable
fuboTV carries 120+ channels including NESN, NESN Plus, ESPN and local channels.
If you’re a New Englander in Massachusetts (like me), 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.
Subscribers get 250 hours of Cloud DVR for recordings. And you can use fubo’s “lookback” feature to watch sporting events that aired in the last 72 hours. fuboTV is the only live TV streaming service that has select live sports and on-demand shows in 4K.
fuboTV works on Roku, Amazon Fire TV, Google Chromecast with Google TV, Apple TV, Samsung and Hisense Smart TVs, and XBox One.
You can look over the channel lineup before deciding whether to try it out.
The entry-level fubo bundle is called the fubo family package and costs $64.99 per month. fuboTV says there is an additional $5 sports fee for New England residents to pay for regional sports networks. So your actual total is $69.99 per month. There is a free 7-day trial that you can sign up for without any obligations.
AT&T TV: Watch Red Sox games without cable
AT&T TV has NESN and NESN Plus in its Choice channel bundle.
The Choice plan, which carries 90+ channels, is $84.99 per month. Subscribers get a free year of HBO Max (usually $14.99 per month), and a free year of NBA League Pass Premium (usually $250).
The Choice bundle has a wide variety of sports channels including ACC Network, Big Ten Network, ESPN, ESPN2, regional NBC Sports and SEC Network.
All of your local ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX, Telemundo and Univision channels are included. And you get top cable TV channels such as ESPN, ESPN2, ACC Network, TNT, History, CNN and A&E.
And you don’t need to pay for a cable box.
AT&T TV works with Roku, Amazon Fire TV, iPhones, web browsers, tablets and Samsung Smart TVs.
AT&T TV still has one advantage over paying for DIRECTV, DISH or Spectrum. It now offers a no contract option. You can subscribe month to month and cancel whenever you want.
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.
Why can’t I stream NESN on YouTube TV?
YouTube TV dropped NESN from its channel lineup on Oct. 31, 2020. The decision was due to a disagreement about the cost of carrying the channel.
While Red Sox fans around New England have been hoping that the two companies could come to an agreement before Opening Day on April 1, a NESN spokesperson said that it’s unlikely to happen.
Does NESN have a streaming app?
NESN has an app called NESNGo that’s available on Roku, mobile devices and tablets. The NESN app does not offer a standalone subscription, and you can’t watch Red Sox games for free.
You can activate the NESNGo app and NESNGo.com using a cable TV account. A subscription to AT&T TV or fuboTV will also activate the NESNGo app.
Can I live stream NESN on Hulu + Live TV?
No. Right now, there are no plans to add NESN to Hulu + Live TV.
But streaming services regularly stay in contact with networks about possible deals. Since NESN was once on PlayStation Vue and YouTube TV, there is clearly a desire by the network to be in the streaming TV space.
What’s the best way to watch NESN without cable?
For New England sports fans, there are two ways to get comprehensive Red Sox coverage without a cable subscription.
fuboTV is the cheaper of the two services at $69.99 per month. That price includes the $5 per month sports fee. Subscribers get 120+ channels, including NESN, NESN Plus, ESPN and local NBC, FOX, ABC and CBS stations.
fuboTV has a free 7-day trial, and works on Roku, Amazon Fire TV, Google Chromecast and Apple TV. FuboTV has mobile apps and you can watch live TV on a PC as well.
If you’re already paying for HBO Max, then AT&T TV might be a better fit. AT&T TV has 90+ channels, including ESPN and local stations, but you’re also getting a year of HBO Max and NBA League Pass included. You have the choice of signing up for a no contract option, or get a discount of $69.99 per month by opting for a two year contract.
* 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