Cord-cutters now have more options than ever to cancel cable while still having access to their favorite channels. Online streaming services are popping up left and right, and it can be hard to keep them all straight! Philo is a relatively new service that’s quickly gaining steam. But what is Philo, and is it worth subscribing to? Our full Philo review will explore the service in-depth.
What is Philo?
Philo is an online streaming service for live TV. It offers a bundle of 55+ channels that you can watch live, over the internet – without cable. It aims to provide a more affordable alternative to cable TV, and it does just that as it’s priced at just $20 per month. There are some important differences to understand, however.
Here are the basics of Philo:
- Just $20 a month
- No contract – cancel any time
- Over 55 channels to stream live
- Watch live TV over the internet
- Most channels focus on lifestyle and entertainment
- There are no sports channels, and few news networks
- Highlight channels include AMC, A&E, Comedy Central, Discovery, HGTV, Food Network and many more
- You can also watch some content on-demand
- Philo also includes a built-in DVR feature that lets you record live TV to watch later
- Philo works on most devices, from streaming players to smartphones
- Offers a free 7-day trial to test out
Essentially, Philo is an alternative to cable TV that gives you a lot of what you love about cable – access to live TV from popular networks – without the huge expense. It also skips the need for a long-term commitment, as Philo can be canceled at any time!
Philo keeps costs down primarily by avoiding sports channels. Sports programming is very expensive for providers to carry, making up a significant portion of the average cable bill. By skipping sports, Philo offers a competitive selection of entertainment channels at a rock-bottom price.
So, to sum up – what is Philo? It’s an online streaming service with 55+ mostly-entertainment-and-lifestyle-channels to watch live on all your favorite devices, for only $20 a month!
How does Philo work, though?
How Philo Works
If you’ve recently canceled cable, you may not be familiar with how these online streaming services actually function. Here’s the lowdown on how Philo works.
First and foremost, it’s important to understand that since this service works online, you will need a good internet connection in order to use it.
Second, you’ll need a good streaming device to use. Philo works on devices like Roku, Apple TV, computers and mobile devices.
Here’s how you can get started with Philo:
- Click here to sign up for Philo (you will get a free 7-day trial)
- Start your free 7-day trial by entering your phone number
- You don’t need to enter payment details yet – Philo is completely free to try!
- After 48 hours, you enter your billing information to get another 5 days free
- After the 7 days, if you decide to keep it you will be billed $20 per month
- You can watch live TV on Philo via your computer’s web browser
- Or, download the Philo app on your smartphones and streaming devices
- Sign in to your Philo account on any device you want to use Philo
- Enjoy live streaming on all your favorite devices!
- Browse channels, save favorites, set up automatic recordings and more!
- You are free to cancel Philo at any time, as the service is non-contract
Those are the basics. Once you’re signed up, you’ll find the experience to be fairly similar to cable, albeit with a different channel selection and a much lower price tag.
Philo keeps it simple by only offering a single package of channels. Note that they used to have two separate channel packages, so you may see older Philo reviews mentioning this. They are out of date – there is now only one package (55+ channels) to choose from.
So now you know the basics – but what about specific features that Philo offers?
Philo Technical Features
What is Philo bringing to the table in terms of features?
Streaming quality – up to full HD (1080p). Your streaming quality will vary depending on the speed of your internet and other factors.
Frames per second – Most channels are in 30fps. Since Philo doesn’t offer sports, the higher 60fps frame rates are not really necessary.
Device compatibility – Philo devices include web browsers on PC & Mac, streaming devices like Android TV, Roku, Fire TV and Apple TV, and mobile devices from iOS and Android.
DVR recording – Philo has a built-in DVR that doesn’t require any special equipment on your end. It lets you record live TV to watch later, and storage is unlimited.
Simultaneous streaming – Philo lets you watch on up to 3 devices at once. This means that 3 different household members could watch 3 different channels on 3 different devices – at the same time!
On-demand streaming – The focus is certainly on live streaming, but Philo does also offer a limited on-demand section. And remember, you can always record using the cloud DVR feature!
Philo Channel Lineup
Philo has only one channel package available, and no add-ons at this time. Here’s the Philo channel list:
A&E, AMC, American Heroes Channel, Animal Planet, Aspire, AXS TV, BBC America, BBC World News, BET, BET Her, Cheddar Business, Cheddar News, CleoTV, CMT, Comedy Central, Cooking Channel, Destination America, Discovery Channel, Discovery Family, Discovery Life, DIY, Food Network, FYI, GSN, Hallmark Channel, Hallmark Drama, Hallmark Movies & Mysteries, HGTV, History, IFC, Investigation Discovery, Law & Crime, Lifetime, Lifetime Movies, Logo, Motortrend, MTV, MTV2, MTV Classic, MTV Live, Nick JR, Nickelodeon, NickToons, OWN, Paramount, People TV, Revolt, SCI, Sundance TV, Tastemade, TeenNick, TLC, Travel Channel, TV Land, UpTV, VH1, Viceland, and WE tv.
As you can see from this list, the focus is mostly on entertainment, lifestyle and kid’s channels.
Philo is not a good way to watch sports online, because it offers no dedicated sports networks. It’s also not great for news, as it doesn’t offer any of the big mainstream news networks (although Cheddar News and BBC World News are included). Local/regional networks are also excluded.
What Philo is excellent for is keeping up with your favorite shows, movies, and reality TV at a rock bottom price. No other service comes close to the $20 price tag of Philo. While Sling TV starts at $25/month, it offers only a fraction of the channels on Philo.
So, if you’re looking to save money and don’t care too much about sports, Philo is an excellent option!
How Much Does Philo Cost?
Philo is an affordable service with only one package. The Philo price is $20 a month.
There is no contract, so you can cancel at any time!
Philo Pros & Cons
Is Philo worth it? What do other Philo reviews have to say about the service? Let’s review some pros and cons.
- Excellent selection of entertainment, lifestyle and kids channels
- The cheapest price in the industry
- Just $20 a month
- Compatible with most popular streaming devices
- No contract – you can cancel any time
- Easy to set up and use
- DVR with unlimited recording is included
- Up to 3 household members can watch simultaneously on their own devices
- No dedicated sports channels
- Missing most mainstream news networks
- No local channels (NBC, FOX, CBS, etc.)
- No add-ons to expand your selection
Philo reviews from other experts and customers alike are largely positive.
Obviously, the service is great for non-sports fans and not really an option for those who want to watch sports online. This is the biggest difference between Philo and some of its competitors.
Is Philo Worth It?
In the end, is Philo worth it?
For most people, yes – absolutely!
Philo is incredibly affordable, and offers many of TV’s most popular channels for just $20 a month. You really can’t beat that bargain, so for cord-cutters looking to save some money this is usually a top recommendation.
For sports fans, Philo doesn’t bring much to the table, unfortunately. Sports are just not a focus of Philo.
While Philo’s selection is not as diverse as a competitor like Hulu with Live TV, it’s price really can’t be beaten.
So, in short – if you don’t mind not having access to sports, Philo is a fantastic deal. If you need sports in your life, you may want to look into other sports streaming options.