Since CBSN’s debut, CBS has not only partnered with a leading over-the-top cable alternative to bring CBSN to a new audience, but also launched standalone CBSN apps for several popular TV devices. There’s even a free live feed of CBSN on the CBS website. All this is great news for cord cutters because it means that there are now plenty of ways to get CBS news around the clock via the internet. Read on to learn everything you need to know about how to watch CBSN without cable.


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Source: fuboTV

fuboTV is one of the best options out there for accessing CBSN– especially if you like sports as much as you enjoy watching the news.

Roughly half the channels that fuboTV offers are sports channels. Recently, fuboTV started rounding out their channel menu by adding Bravo, USA, FX, National Geographic and many other popular basic cable channels to their menu.

When it comes to news, fuboTV has a very competitive mix of channels. In addition to CBSN, you can also get all the other popular news channels that you would get if you had a traditional cable TV subscription package. If you subscribe to CBSN through the CBSN app, you’ll have to shell out $6 per month. For $39 more, you get not only CBSN but also several other news channels and a generous mix of sports channels. fuboTV’s major weakness is its lack of extended account sharing features. You can share your fuboTV account with anyone, but the service only lets you watch two streams at the same time. If you don’t mind the extra cost and the limited account sharing, fuboTV is probably your best overall option.

Channels and Pricing

The plans that you can buy through fuboTV are less expensive compared to what the traditional cable providers offer. Other over-the-top cable replacers offer cheaper plans, but they also don’t carry as many channels. 90+ channels for $50 is not a bad deal.

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Simultaneous Streams2222
Fire TV SupportYesYesYesYes
Roku SupportYesYesYesYes

If fuboTV ever manages to strike a deal to broadcast ESPN, this internet-based TV service could rightfully proclaim itself to be the king of sports streaming. As mentioned above, fuboTV is a sports-centric cable replacer. About half of the channels you can get are sports-related. A few of those sports channels– like beIN and Eleven Sports Network– are available in crystal clear 1080p or 720p. This makes fuboTV an excellent choice if you have an HD-compatible TV or computer.

Other news channels that you can get with fuboTV’s base subscription package include Fox News, BBC World News, CNBC, BBC America, CNN, MSNBC and CNBC World. Because fuboTV streams many local TV stations, you may be able to get local news channels as well. This knowledge base article contains a table that will let you find out what kind of local TV coverage you can expect to get through fuboTV after you sign up.


fuboTV is available in both the US and in Canada. Canadians, however, don’t get quite as many channels as Americans. This knowledge base article contains a link that will take you to a page that explains the channels that are in fuboTV’s Canadian Basic Package.

With support for iOS and Android smartphones and tablets as well as Amazon FireTV, Android TV, Chromecast, Roku and Apple TV, fuboTV has better than average device support. The fuboTV website lets you access your fuboTV account from any mac or PC.

fuboTV’s biggest feature weakness is its 2-device simultaneous stream limit. If you have a small family or don’t plan on sharing your fuboTV account, this isn’t a big deal. However, if you have a large family or you intend to share your account with multiple people, this downside could be an occasional problem.

fuboTV makes up for its limited account-sharing features with its excellent cloud DVR (Digital Video Recorder). Every basic package gets 30 hours of recording time for free. You can save whatever you record as long as you want. In other words, fuboTV will never delete one of your recordings. If you need more recording time, you can upgrade to 500 hours for an extra $10 a month.

FuboTV Shortcode


CBS All Access

CBS All Access
Source: CBS

If sports isn’t your thing or if fuboTV’s subscription prices are too high for your liking, then it may make more sense to get CBSN by subscribing CBS All Access. The CBS All Access app lets you watch CBS live, gain exclusive access to original titles like Star Trek: Discovery and browse on-demand episodes NCIS, The Young and the Restless and other CBS-produced shows. In August of 2018, CBS All Access had over 2.5 million subscribers.

Almost all traditional cable TV providers offer their customers access to several 24-hour news channels. Those channels can be hard to give up if you’re thinking about cutting the cord. CBS All Access solves this problem by giving cord cutters an easy way to catch breaking news, no matter what time it is through CBSN. The base CBS All Access subscription is cheap, and the commercial-free upgrade gives you the ability to watch without interruptions.

Another demographic that can benefit from CBS All Access is people who already subscribe to some type of over-the-top TV service but aren’t satisfied with the news channels they have. Purchasing a $6 subscription to CBS All Access gives you the ability to quickly and easily pull up CBSN when you want to find out what’s happening in the US and around the world.

Channels and pricing

Anyone in the US can sign up for CBS All Access and watch CBS content. However, whether or not you can stream your local CBS affiliate depends on where you live. Because CBS has already inked deals with most of the CBS affiliates, chances are high that you’ll be able to watch your local CBS station through the app. In July of 2015, CBS announced that 75% of its affiliates had agreed to allow their audiences to watch their station through CBS All Access. Over the past three years, that percentage has continued to rise.

The cost for subscribing is the same across all platforms. The basic subscription costs $6, but if you want commercial-free access you have to pay $4 additional dollars each month.


CBS has a CBS All Access app for nearly every type of TV app on the market, including smartphones (Android and iOS), Fire TV, Apple TV, Android TV, Chromecast, Roku, Samsung Smart TVs, Vizio Smart TVs and both of the major video game consoles (Xbox One and PlayStation 4). In addition, CBS All Access is compatible with Amazon Alexa and Google Home.

With CBS All Access, you can watch CBSN and your local CBS affiliate– if that affiliate has agreed to let CBS All Access subscribers stream its live feed. In addition, you can also watch CBS on-demand content. The CBS on-demand video library consists of more than 10,000 show episodes. You can also watch NFL content through CBS All Access.

Several months ago, CBS All Access subscribers could not watch NFL games on their mobile devices, but CBS seems to have changed that policy recently. According to this knowledge base article, you can now watch NFL on CBS on both mobile devices and tablets.

CBS All Access does support account sharing, but there’s a catch: you can only watch two streams at the same time at once. In other words, if someone in your house is using your account to watch an on-demand episode of a CBS show on their computer, you won’t be able to access the CBS live stream if you try to open the live feed on your living room TV.

CBS All Access lacks any type of cloud DVR. However, this downside is somewhat offset by the fact that the subscriptions are cheap. Moreover, almost all of the shows are available on-demand. However, it would be nice to be able to record live feeds of sports games through this service.

CBS All Access Signup


CBS All Access vs. fuboTV: Which is Better?

CBSN launched CBSN in 2014 to help distribute CBS news to digital platforms. CBS President and CEO Leslie Moonves explained the significance of CBSN in a press release:

“CBSN is an important example of how CBS is able to leverage the unique strengths, talent and competitive advantages of its businesses to create exciting, highly competitive new services that meet evolving audience preferences for content consumption.”

fuboTV and CBS All Access are two completely different types of TV replacement services. CBS All Access is not a full-featured solution for cutting the cord, like fuboTV. It’s designed to fill in the gaps and meet certain niche needs. It lacks a cloud DVR and it only gives you access to CBS content.

On the other hand, CBS All Access is much cheaper compared to fuboTV. The basic fuboTV subscription package costs $45/month. That’s inexpensive compared to the packages that traditional cable companies offer, but several times pricier than CBS All Access. If you’re on a budget or if gaining access to CBSN is your main priority, then it makes sense to get CBS All Access subscription instead of fuboTV.

How to Watch CBSN for Free

If you want to watch CBSN on a device, you have to install the CBS app and then subscribe to gain access. If you just want to watch CBSN on a web browser, however, you can do so for free through the CBS News website or via Pluto TV.

CBSN on the web

To watch CBSN on the CBS News website, just go to and then select Live from the menu on the top of the screen. This will take you to a free live feed of CBSN, which you can access by pressing the play button. The gear icon on the bottom right side of the embedded video gives you the option to toggle or configure closed captions.

Pluto TV

Pluto TV is a totally free live TV service that gives you access to a wide range of TV content. CBSN, NBC News, CNBC, Sky News are just a few of the 13 news channels that are available on Pluto TV. You don’t even have to create an account to watch. All you have to do is open the Pluto TV website and click whatever channel you want to view.

Pluto TV has an app for just about every TV device under the sun, including Roku, Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Chromecast, Android, iPhone, Android TV, Samsung, Vizio TV and Sony smart TVs.

Final Thoughts

There are now so many options for watching TV on the internet that it can be hard to decide which service to choose. If you don’t have much money to spend, Pluto TV is probably the best way to watch CBSN. It’s a free live TV service that has apps for nearly every type of TV device. The main downside of Pluto TV is that it makes money by showing its users ads. Those ads can get annoying, particularly if you plan on tuning into CBSN every day.

If you’re a Star Trek fan and/or hate ads, you may want to check out CBS All Access. A subscription to CBS All Access is the only way to watch Star Trek: Discovery. On-demand episodes of other popular CBS shows is a nice perk, as well.

fuboTV is the best solution for those who are thinking about cutting the cord but haven’t yet made the move. A subscription to fuboTV will let you keep all the main cable channels you’re used to watching, and several excellent sports channels that you won’t find anywhere else.