► How to Watch 4,500+ Channels in HD With No Satellite Dish & No Cable Bill
By now you’ve probably heard rumors about “online TV software” that will instantly transform your PC or Mac into a “Super TV” letting you watch live sports, live news, movies, TV shows, and thousands of channels from all over the world… They claim you can download the software for a small one-time fee and then never have to pay for any recurring monthly charges, saving you big bucks on your entertainment bills…
Should you believe the hype? That’s exactly what we wanted to know, so we did the obvious best thing… Our investigative team purchased and tested nearly a dozen popular TV softwares and evaluated each product based on a number of criteria such as overall quality, channels, ease of use, support, guarantee, bonuses, and affordability. Our results were mixed, but much better than we expected. Some of these sites have developed quality products that provide a great deal of entertainment “bang for your buck”. The following page contains our detailed reviews and comparisons of the leading Internet TV softwares on the market. Demo photos are included with each review.
Products tested: StreamDirect, LiveTV, SatelliteDirect, SatellitePCpro, OnlineTV, StopPayingCableBills, DontPayTV, SatelliteTVforPC, DigitalTVforPC2, iSoftwareTV.
If you have questions about any TV related website, feel free to contact us.
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Are these products legal? Despite how it sounds these products are legal because the channels are being broadcast directly by the original copyright holders. Most major TV networks are comprised of numerous smaller networks (for example ABC has about 20) which broadcast local content over the air and via live Internet streams. These software products simply provide a convenient method for streaming all this content via one interface.
Live streaming works well as long as you have a decent Internet connection. Resolution varies from channel to channel, starting at 800×600 pixels and going up to 1920×1080 (full HD). Some channels are widescreen and others are in the 4:3 (standard) aspect ratio. Click the following image to view a demo of a live TV stream embedded into HTML (courtesy of SatDirect):
Content: Depending on which software you download you can watch up to 4,500 channels including movies, local and international news, live NFL games, worldwide sports (every sport), TV shows, music videos, special events, documentaries… It’s a wider variety than what you’ll get from your local cable company. The video quality is a slight compromise but the cost savings make up for it. It’s about $50 to download the software (one-time fee), however there are no monthly fees or subscriptions, and no special hardware needed, making it an attractive alternative to higher priced cable TV services.
Review: Recently enhanced with more channels and features, SatelliteDirect is our top choice for watching TV online. The software does what it promises, allowing you to watch over 3,500 channels in high resolution. The interface is well designed, and it just feels a bit more refined than the competition. It also has a few unique features:
1) Provides a search tool that allows you to find specific content quickly and avoid endless channel surfing.
2) Includes premium channels (Movie Channels, Food Network, NFL Network, ESPN, ESPN 2, FOX, ABC, CBS, NBC, TNN, PBS, NBA TV, BBC, HDTV1, many more).
3) When you move your cursor over a channel name it gives you a pop-up text description of the channel. This is a huge time saver because the channel names don’t always make it obvious what they’re about.
4) Another nice thing is the speed at which channels appear on screen. They appear almost instantly, whereas the other softwares all have a 5 to 10 second lag when changing channels, which feels like a long time if you’re looking for something to watch.
Channels For Watching Live Sports:
Because there are so many channels, and because the quality varies so much from channel to channel, it’s very important to take the time to go through the entire list and add the ones you like to your list of favorites. This will give you one click access to what you want, versus having to channel surf through thousands of channels. If you’re mainly looking to watch live sports including live NFL games here are some of the best channels included:
ESPN 2 Sat-1, ESPN 2 Sat-2
ESPN America Sat-1, ESPN America Sat-2
ESPN America Sat-3, ESPN America Sat-4
CBS Sat-1, CBS Sat-2
ESPN 2 American Football
MLB Network Sat-1
NCAA College Football Channel Sat-1
NCAA College Football Channel Sat-2
NCAA College Football Channel Sat-3
Content Summary: 199 sports channels, 258 news channels, 385 TV show/movie channels, 20 channels from the BBC… Then about 2,500 more in various categories like comedy, politics, documentary, music, cartoons, community, games, science, culture, lifestyle, shopping, cooking, business, travel, etc. You also get 82 live web-cams from famous places all over the world such as zoos, aquariums, beaches, clubs, museums, historical landmarks, etc.
The video and sound quality are pretty good for the majority of the channels. Some are widescreen (16×9) and others are in the standard (4×3) aspect ratio. The video streams smoothly and most channels are in high resolution. Some are in full HD. Note: You need a high speed Internet connection such as DSL or cable in order to watch HD channels. Dial-up won’t work.
Complaints: The only complaint we have about SatelliteDirect is the lack of documentation, or instruction manual. But the controls are easy enough to figure out, so you’ll probably become an expert within a few hours anyway. Also, about half of the channels require you to watch a short advertisement before the channel will start streaming. Fortunately you can just close the ads without watching them all the way through.
At the time of this review (August 2012) SatelliteDirect is on sale for $49.95 (one-time fee) which is 70% off. You’re able to download the software immediately after checkout.
Review: DigitalTVforPC2 is another good piece of software for watching TV on the Internet and it’s quite popular due to a flashy website and an excellent price ($29.99). The overall design is clean, professional and the channel list seems to be almost 100% up to date (only a few dead channels). The software has a gray and purple color scheme, with basic controls on top, and a sleek pop-out channel menu to the left. You can filter channels by Most Popular, Genre, Country, and you can also save your own list of favorites.
Unique to DigitalTVforPC2 are the “On Demand” and “Movies” content menus. The On Demand menu lets you watch pre-aired episodes of shows from ABC, NBC, CBS and FOX. And the Movies section lets you stream a large lineup of movies from various free movie sites. Yes, you can already get all that content for free directly on the websites of those networks and movie sites, but it’s still nice to be able to access it right from within the player.
The only real disappointment with DigitalTVforPC2 is that it only comes with 2,300 channels, and about half of those channels are foreign. Our #1 choice SatelliteDirect comes with over 3,500 channels, and over 1,500 are in English, so it provides quite a bit more entertainment. Other than that this product works well, and it may be a good choice for you if you speak several languages, or if you really enjoy foreign programming. But if you’re like us and you primarily want to watch English/American content you’re going to have a limited selection. Hopefully in a future update they’ll include more content for English speaking users.
Review: Don’tPayTV is another good product for streaming live TV online. The picture quality is great, the interface outperforms many of the softwares we tested, and it’s just as easy to use as our #1 and #2 choices. We just have a few complaints that prevent it from getting a higher rating:
1)There are a lot more “dead” channels in the menu, meaning that the channel list isn’t being updated when channels change or go off the air. This means it has significantly fewer channels than the 5,000 they’re claiming, and it can be a bit annoying if you’re channel surfing and you keep trying channels that don’t work.
2) Our other complaint is the $79 price tag. Yes, it’s still a better deal than paying for cable every month, but it doesn’t make any sense to pay $79 when SatelliteDirect is a better product for less money.
If you want to watch TV on the Internet there are websites like hulu.com that will allow you to freely stream recent episodes of many popular TV shows, but that’s not watching live TV, it’s downloading old TV. If you want to watch actual live television on your computer, such as live sports, live news, etc. you can download TV software for a one-time fee and you’ll never have to pay for any recurring subscriptions. These solutions provide a large selection of channels including content from over 80 countries. SatelliteDirect is our top choice because it works well, includes premium channels, sets up in 2 minutes, and does it all for only $49.95… We still can’t believe how much entertainment it provides for less than one month of cable. It will be interesting to see the next generation of Internet TV solutions, which will probably include 100% high definition programming, optional premium channels, and a highly interactive TV/shopping experience.
NOTE: A lot of people have been asking us if they can set this software up to watch all these channels on their regular TV, instead of their computer. The answer is “yes” you just need the right cable to connect your computer to your TV. And the cable depends upon what video inputs you have on the back of your TV. If you do a little bit of research on this you will be able to get the cable you need on amazon.com for about $10.00.
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