Philo and Sling TV have pretty similar price points, so they're both good options for budget-focused cord-cutters. But which one is better? In this quick guide, we’ll compare Philo vs. Sling TV in 2022, discuss what makes them different from each other, and help you decide which streaming service may be right for you. Let’s get into the details.
Quick overview: Philo vs. Sling TV
Philo has always been a little bit more of a niche service compared to Sling TV. It doesn’t have any sports channels, news channels, or local channels. These are the most expensive channels for internet TV services to carry, so this means it comes in at a low price compared to lots of competitors. But that also limit’s Philo’s appeal somewhat, since it mostly focuses on entertainment, lifestyle, and educational content. It has more than 800,000 subscribers.
Sling TV is also pretty cheap, and it’s one of the most popular streaming services out there. It has more than 2.5 million subscribers, as of the last available publication data. Sling TV maintains its low prices by splitting channels between its Orange and Blue packages. It also has split off lots of lesser-known and less-popular channels into a variety of add-ons. This can make subscribing a little bit confusing, but you’ll still get a great deal if you find the right package of channels for you.
Best pricing: Philo vs. Sling TV
Philo is the overall winner when it comes to pricing. It costs just $25/month for live TV, which makes it the cheapest streaming service out there by a large margin. If you’re truly on tight a budget, Philo is a really good choice if you like its package of channels (more on that later).
However, Sling TV isn’t a bad value, either. It’s just $35/month for the Sling Blue or Sling Orange plan. Some competitors like Hulu With Live TV cost $70/month, so Sling TV is still a pretty solid deal for most cord-cutters.
Best free trial: Philo vs. Sling TV
Philo also wins this category by default. It has a week-long free trial, and Sling TV does not currently offer any kind of free trial. If you sign up and enter your credit card info at Philo, you’ll get a free week of service. As long as you cancel before your seven days are up, you won’t be charged for a subscription. Click here to learn more and sign up.
Sling TV has had some free trial offers in the past, but it doesn’t have any at the moment. However, it does sometimes have discounts on your first month of service and other special promotions for new customers. Click here to see what’s available, and see if Sling TV is right for you and your family.
Best channels and add-ons: Philo vs. Sling TV
Overall, Sling TV is the winner here. Compared to Philo, it has a more diverse set of channels. Even though the Sling Orange + Blue package doesn’t have quite as many channels as Philo, it has channels like ESPN, local channels, Fox News, and other “must-have” channels that cord-cutters are often looking for.
Sling TV also has more channel add-ons than Philo. Philo has only three add-ons which cost an extra fee and add a few extra channels. Sling TV has dozens of add-ons for sports, entertainment, international channels, and so much more. It’s a lot easier to customize your subscription and watch exactly what you want.
What to watch on Philo
As mentioned, Philo does not have any major news channels, sports channels, or local broadcast networks like NBC, ABC, CBS, and Fox. Instead, it focuses on lifestyle and entertainment channels, such as Food Network, HGTV, AMC, Paramount Network, Comedy Central, and Bravo. It also has plenty of on-demand content to watch from the various channels included in your package. Click here to take a look at Philo’s full list of channels.
What to watch on Sling TV
Sling TV has lots of top cable channels. Sling Orange comes with ESPN, CNN, Disney Channel, Food Network, HGTV, and TBS, to name just a few. Sling Blue has slightly different channels, such as Fox Sports, TLC, USA, and FX. You can also get Sling Orange + Blue to combine the channels offered by both packages, if you want.
Sling TV also provides plenty of on-demand content, which is sourced from the various channels that are included in your package. The available shows and movies rotate frequently, so there’s always something new to watch.
Best DVR and offline viewing: Philo vs. Sling TV
Philo wins this category, hands-down. It offers an unlimited DVR, so you can record as many shows as you want. The only limitation is that your oldest recordings will be deleted after a year, but that should be plenty of time to clear your DVR backlog.
In contrast, Sling TV only offers a 50-hour DVR by default. If you want more storage, you’ll need to pay $5/month. That still only gets you 200 hours. That’s not bad by any means, and should be plenty of space for most people, but Philo’s unlimited DVR is definitely tempting if you save a lot of content for later viewing.
Best device support: Philo vs. Sling TV
- Web browsers
- iOS and Android
- Amazon Fire
- Apple TV
However, Sling TV supports some other devices like AirTV, some set-top boxes and smart TVs, Meta Quest VR headsets, and quite a few others. If you have lots of different or obscure devices you want to stream TV on, Sling TV may be a better option.
Best simultaneous streaming: Philo vs. Sling TV
Philo is the winner in this category, though it’s a close call. Philo lets you stream on up to three devices at once. That should be enough for most families and households.
Sling TV is a little bit different. Simultaneous streams depend on the package that a channel is in. Sling Orange channels, like ESPN and Disney Channel, can only be viewed on a single device. Sling Blue channels, like Fox Sports and TLC, can be viewed on up to three devices at once.
These limitations remain in place even if you combine their plans to get Sling Orange + Blue. If Sling Orange + Blue share a channel, you can watch it on four devices (one from Sling Orange, one from Sling Blue). But if the channel is Orange exclusive, you only get one stream, and if a channel is Blue-exclusive, you only get three streams. Yes, it is a bit confusing, which is one of the reasons we’ve chosen Philo as the winner in this category.
Which is better: Philo vs. Sling TV in 2022?
Both Philo and Sling TV are great internet TV streaming services for cord-cutters. In our opinion, there’s no clear winner, because they serve very different audiences. If you’re very cost-conscious and you don’t care about sports, news, or locals, Philo is the clear winner. It’s an incredible value, but it’s a bit more niche than other streaming services.
In contrast, if you want to watch some major sports as well as top news channels like CNN and Fox News and local broadcast stations, Sling TV is a better option. Yes, it is a little more expensive, but you get access to quite a few channels that Philo simply doesn’t have – and with so many channel add-ons available, you can personalize your subscription to your heart’s content.
Eric Liston • Author
Eric Liston is a content writer based in Columbus, Ohio. Since 2015, he’s been writing about technology, cord-cutting, and helping everyday people save money. He also has expertise writing about medicine, dentistry, insurance, and a variety of other industries. No matter what he’s writing, his focus is always on simplifying complex concepts and making them approachable for everyone. When he’s not slamming away on his keyboard at his home office, you’ll find Eric reading sci-fi novels, improving his disc golf game (he just hit his first 400-foot drive) and playing video games on his gaming PC.