You can watch HBO live without cable with one of the following four options: Playstation Vue, Hulu with Live TV, DirecTV Now or HBO Now. In this article, we’ll help you decide which streaming option is best for you. Let’s get started!

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Watch HBO on PlayStation Vue

No PlayStation needed to get Vue
Source: PlayStation Vue

Sony’s PlayStation Vue isn’t limited to people with game consoles. Across a wide range of platforms, the streaming service delivers rich features and a large channel lineup.

PlayStation Vue Pricing and Packages

PlayStation Vue’s subscriptions start at $45. The most expensive plan is still only $80, which is below what you probably pay your local cable company now. It includes HBO and Showtime and 85+ channels. You can get HBO with any plan for an extra $15/month.

Access
5-Day Free Trial
$44.99/ month

50 channels

5 simultaneous streams*

ESPN and Disney

Premium sports

EPIX and FXM

HBO and SHOWTIME

SIGN UP
Core
5-Day Free Trial
$49.99/ month

75 channels

5 simultaneous streams*

ESPN and Disney

Premium sports

EPIX and FXM

HBO and SHOWTIME

SIGN UP
Elite
5-Day Free Trial
$59.99/ month

96 channels

5 simultaneous streams*

ESPN and Disney

Premium sports

EPIX and FXM

HBO and SHOWTIME

SIGN UP
Ultra
5-Day Free Trial
$79.99/ month

98 channels

5 simultaneous streams*

ESPN and Disney

Premium sports

EPIX and FXM

HBO and SHOWTIME

SIGN UP
* You get 3 streams to use in-home or out-of-home streams and 2 extra streams to use in-home.

For more information about PlayStation Vue’s plans, click here.

PlayStation Vue Channels

In addition to HBO, PlayStation Vue has a very strong sports lineup. These include NBA TV, all the ESPN channels, several FOX Sports channels and more. You’ll also find a great selection of news channels like CNBC World, CNN, FOX, BBC World News and many others.

Click here to see the full list of PlayStation Vue channels.

PlayStation Vue Supported Devices

PlayStation Vue has an app for just about every TV device except Xbox, which is understandable given the competition between the two game consoles.

  • TV streaming media players: Apple TV (4th gen and up), Android TV (all gens), Amazon Fire TV and Fire TV Stick (all gens), Chromecast (1st gen and up) and Roku (firmware 8.0 and up).
  • Smart TVs: Amazon Fire TV (all gens), Android TV (all gens) and Roku (firmware 8.0 and up).
  • Mobile devices and tablets: Android OS 5.0 and up, iOS 9 and up, and Amazon Fire HD6 tablets and up
  • Game consoles: PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4
  • Desktop browsers: Chrome, Firefox, Safari and Microsoft Edge are recommended (most recent versions will work).

Click here to learn more about devices that work with PlayStation Vue.

PlayStation Vue Simultaneous Streams

You can stream to up to five devices at once on your home network through one PlayStation Vue account. There’s no way to upgrade if you need more flexibility, though.

Click here to learn more about PlayStation Vue’s account sharing policy.

PlayStation Vue DVR

PlayStation Vue comes with a free DVR that lets you record an unlimited number of hours of TV programming. Recordings expire after four weeks. There’s no upgrade that will let you keep your recordings for a longer period of time.

Click here to learn more about how PlayStation Vue’s DVR works.

PlayStation Vue On-Demand Library

PlayStation Vue’s on-demand library has both “catch-up” programming from the channels it carries and content provided by individual over-the-top services. In markets where local stations aren’t available, on-demand content from the local station often serves as a substitute for the missing live feed.

Free 5-day Trial

Subscribe Now

Watch HBO on Hulu with Live TV

Hulu
Source: Hulu

Hulu isn’t just on-demand TV anymore. Hulu with Live TV provides a complete alternative to cable TV. Your $40 subscription includes a cloud DVR that records up to fifty hours of content. For $15, you can also get HBO.

Another $15 upgrade lets you stream to an unlimited number of devices at home and up to three devices at the same time while away from home. You can buy both of these upgrades as a package for $20 per month.

Hulu with Live TV Pricing and Packages

Hulu with Live TV offers three different subscription plans. As mentioned above, you’ll have to pay $15 extra to add HBO to your menu of channels.

Hulu + Live TV
7-Day Free Trial
$44.99/ month

67 Channels

2 simultaneous streams

ESPN and Disney

SIGN UP

For more information about Hulu with Live TV’s plans, click here.

Hulu with Live TV Channels

The core Hulu with Live TV lineup comes with 60+ channels, including several ESPN channels, plus Food Network, Disney, TLC, TNT and many other cable TV favorites. There are also two add-on channel packs you can get to expand your TV lineup. These include a general entertainment pack called Entertainment Add-on and a Spanish-language add-on called Espanol Add-on.

Click here to see the full list of Hulu with Live TV channels.

Hulu with Live TV Supported Devices

Hulu with Live TV has excellent app support. In fact, it’s one of the only streaming services that has an app for Nintendo Switch.

  • Living room devices: Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, Chromecast and Roku.
  • Smart TVs and Blu-ray players: Certain Samsung and LG televisions as well as some devices based on Amazon Fire TV or Roku.
  • Mobile devices and tablets: Android and iOS.
  • Game consoles: Nintendo Switch, Xbox One and Xbox 360.
  • Desktop browsers: Most browsers.

Click here to learn more about devices that work with Hulu with Live TV.

Hulu With Live TV Simultaneous Streams

Hulu with Live TV limits you to two simultaneous streams unless you pay extra for the Unlimited Screens upgrade. Currently, this upgrade costs $10/month.

Click here to learn more about Hulu with Live TV’s simultaneous stream capabilities.

Hulu with Live TV DVR

Unlike other services, Hulu’s standard cloud DVR won’t let you record more than one program at the same time and won’t let you fast forward through commercials. A $15 cloud DVR upgrade removes those limits and boosts the capacity to 200 hours.

Hulu with Live TV On-Demand Library

Most live TV streaming services provide on-demand content as an afterthought. But with Hulu with Live TV, you get access to the entire Hulu catalog of on-demand shows and movies. Many show episodes appear the day after they air.

Free 7-day Trial

Subscribe Now

Watch HBO on DirecTV Now

directv now dvr
Source: DirecTV Now

Being a subsidiary of AT&T, DirecTV Now offers the largest channel selection of all the streaming services.

Compare DirecTV Now’s most expensive plan to a typical cable bill. You’ll be paying a third to half as much to stream the same channels. You can also take advantage of special promotions that will get you a free Apple TV or other streaming box.

DirecTV Now Pricing and Packages

DirecTV Now’s cheapest plan comes with HBO and 40+ other channels. The most expensive plan costs $135, which is a bit pricey. However, very few other streaming services offer such a huge amount of channels.

  • Plus: 40+ channels / $50 per month. Includes HBO
  • Max: 50+ channels / $70 per month. Includes HBO, Cinemax
  • Entertainment: 65+ channels / $93 per month
  • Choice: 85+ channels / $110 per month
  • Xtra: 105+ channels /  $124 per month
  • Ultimate: 125+ channels / $135 per month

For more information about DirecTV Now plans, click here.

DirecTV Now Channels

Very few other streaming services have as many channels as DirecTV Now. From friendly channels like Cartoon Network and Disney to cable TV staples like E! and Oxygen, DirecTV Now has got it all. In addition to HBO, HBO Family and HBO Latino are available.

Click here to see the full list of DirecTV Now channels.

DirecTV Now Supported Devices

DirecTV Now provides apps for a wide range of streaming devices:

  • Living room devices: Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, Chromecast and Roku.
  • Smart TVs and Blu-ray players: None.
  • Mobile devices and tablets: Android and iOS.
  • Game consoles: None.
  • Desktop browsers: Chrome and Safari.

Click here to learn more about devices that work with DirecTV Now.

DirecTV Now Simultaneous Streams

DirecTV Now lets you stream to two devices at once through one account. A paid upgrade improves that number to three devices.

To learn more about DirecTV Now’s simultaneous streams, click here.

DirecTV Now DVR

A recent upgrade called DirecTV Now 2.0 added a 20-hour DVR to DirecTV Now’s feature lineup.

Click here to learn more about how DirecTV Now’s DVR works.

DirecTV Now On-Demand Library

According to the DirecTV Now website, DirecTV Now has 40,000 on-demand shows and movies. That means that you’ll likely always be able to find something to watch, even when the live channels don’t spark your interest.

How to Watch HBO on Amazon Fire TV

You can watch HBO on Amazon Fire TV with PlayStation Vue, Hulu with Live TV and DirecTV Now. Just click whichever app you want to try and follow the wizard to complete the setup process. The HBO Now app is also available, which is a great choice for people who just want HBO.

How to Watch HBO on Roku

You can watch HBO on Roku with PlayStation Vue, Hulu with Live TV and DirecTV Now. You’ll find them all in Roku’s app store. HBO Now is available as well.

How to Watch HBO on Apple TV

You can watch HBO on Roku PlayStation Vue, Hulu with Live TV and DirecTV Now. Just search the app store and download the streaming service of your choice. If you don’t want a complete cable replacement service, just get HBO Now.

HBO Now – Programming on Demand

HBO Now is an anywhere, anytime on-demand streaming service for subscribers in the United States and “certain U.S. territories”. The service does not offer a live streaming option. Instead, it posts movies and episodes of TV series to HBO Now the minute they premiere on HBO in the Eastern time zone.

This has important implications for people who want to avoid spoilers on social media. People living in the western time zones can watch the latest episodes on HBO Now before the programs air on cable.

Some of HBO’s content takes a little longer to appear on HBO Now. Unscripted programming like news, sports and reality TV may take as much as twenty-four hours to appear as on-demand options.

What’s On HBO Now?

HBONow Content
Source: HBO Now

The catalog gives you access to complete series of HBO Originals, documentaries, a rotating catalog of movies and more.

HBO Originals

Over the past twenty years, HBO-produced TV series like The Sopranos have driven the network’s success both in the ratings and with critics. From the pretty-vampires-with-problems in True Blood to Lena Dunham’s Girls, you can watch every episode of the complete seasons.

HBO Exclusives

HBO also broadcasts content produced by other companies. The licensing agreements with those companies, however, can make it hard to predict which of them will be available on-demand. Take as an example Last Week Tonight with John Oliver – only the most recent thirty episodes are available.

The sports reality show Hard Knocks is another casualty of licensing rules. Only the most recent series with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers is available.

HBO Kids & Sesame Street

The kid-friendly TV shows and movies from the HBO Kids channel are available in the Kids section of HBO Now. This includes new episodes of Sesame Street which is now a shared production of HBO and Sesame Workshop.

Right now kids can watch Sesame Street episodes from the new 2017 series, the previous six seasons as well as classic episodes from the past four decades.

Parental control features can restrict kids’ access to the Kid section.

Documentaries

You can watch many hard-hitting documentaries produced by HBO like Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief.

As with the fiction side of things, not every documentary that airs on HBO stays available on-demand. The recent bio-pic Spielberg, for example, premiered on HBO in early October but is scheduled to leave on-demand in November.

Movies

HBO Now maintains a constantly-changing catalog of on-demand movies. The titles range from recent releases like Hidden Figures to classics like Rush Hour 3.

Subscribing to HBO Now

HBONow FreeMonth
Source: HBO Now

HBO set a universal $14.99 price for its streaming service which you can pay directly by subscribing to the HBO Now website after the one-month free trial. There are other ways to get HBO Now, however, by subscribing through one of HBO’s streaming providers.

App stores on mobile devices and set-top boxes offer another avenue for subscribing. Just download the HBO Now app and use the in-app purchasing system to start the subscription. Apple’s App Store and the Google Play Store both offer one-month free trials with the subscription.

If you already subscribe to the streaming video services Amazon Video, Hulu and PlayStation Vue, you can add HBO as a premium option. It also enrolls you in HBO Now and gives you full access to the on-demand features. All three services offer a 7-day free trial, but PlayStation Vue’s offering may be the best deal. For $15.00 per month (a penny more than everyone else) you get live streams of HBO’s east coast and west coast broadcasts as well as full access to HBO Now.

You can also check your internet service provider to see if it offers HBO Now as a premium subscription.

Devices for Watching HBO Now

HBONow Devices
Source: HBO Now

HBO Now offers a solid range of support for devices in the home and on the go.

  • Set-top Boxes and Streaming Sticks: Amazon Fire TV and Fire TV Stick, Apple TV, Roku and Google Chromecast.
  • Smart TVs: Android TV and Samsung Smart TV.
  • Game Consoles: PlayStation3, PlayStation4, Xbox One and Xbox 360.
  • Mobile and Tablet: Android, iOS and Amazon Fire Tablets.

Unlike other services, HBO Now has standardized its features across all devices. What you get on one device appears on any other device.

HBO Now lets subscribers stream simultaneously to multiple devices, but caps the number of devices. The number is high enough to let typical households share a single account but not so high that people treat it like a friends-and-family giveaway.

Should I Get HBO Now?

HBO has made it as easy as possible for people to watch HBO without cable by offering its HBO Now on-demand service across devices and providers. At nearly $180 per year, however, that subscription takes a big bite out of your entertainment budget.

If your interest in HBO starts and stops with Game of Thrones, then you might as well save your money for the 4K Blu Ray Directors Final Edition box set. Wait until the ninth season starts and take advantage of the free trial.

The monthly subscription makes more sense if your family wants the wide range of on-demand programming from Sesame Street to documentaries to movies that HBO Now offers. Parental controls and support for multiple simultaneous streams makes the service a great option for households that want to watch HBO without cable.

Alternatively, if you already subscribe to one of the live TV streaming services we discussed above, then you should consider adding the HBO premium subscription. You’ll save about 30% off the HBO Now price and get access to the live and on-demand content HBO produces.