PlayStation Vue Review
Last year, PlayStation Vue announced that they would be shutting down the Live TV Streaming Service on January 30, 2020.
For current, subscribers, you can compare PlayStation Vue alternatives with our handy guide.
We tested PlayStation Vue and other live TV streaming services for more than 100 hours. PlayStation Vue is compatible with Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Google Chromecast, Roku, Android TV, iPhone/iPad, Android Phone/Tablet, Mac, Windows, PlayStation, LG Smart TV, Samsung Smart TV, Sony Smart TV, and VIZIO Smart TV.
Unlimited Cloud DVR
PlayStation Vue has Unlimited DVR storage, but you can only keep shows for 28 days. You can only record entire series of shows (not single episodes); this can clutter your DVR.
If you start recording after you tune into a channel, the recording will start from when you first started watching. You can watch the recording from the beginning while it is still recording.
If you are outside your home network, you can only watch recorded shows that are also available on demand.
HBO, Showtime, Cinemax, and some CBS broadcast stations cannot be recorded. See all DVR restrictions.
Up to 5 Devices
This service allows for five simultaneous streams: one PS4 console, two PS3 consoles, and 3 others devices (such as a phone, tablet, or computer). See playback details.
If you go over your device limit, you cannot add a new device for a few hours.
56 TV Everywhere Apps
Similar to traditional cable and satellite subscriptions, PlayStation Vue includes “TV Everywhere” logins for various channels’ apps (including Watch ABC, Bravo Now, Watch ESPN, FOX NOW, and NBC App).
List of Compatible Apps
- AHC Go
- AMC App
- Animal Planet Go
- BBC America App
- Bravo Now
- Cartoon Network App
- CNBC App
- CNN App
- Destination America Go
- Discovery Go
- Discovery Life Go
- E! Now
- FOX Business App
- FOX News App
- FOX Now
- Fox Sports Go
- Freeform App
- Fusion TV
- FX Now
- Golf Live Extra
- Hallmark Channel Everywhere
- HBO GO
- IFC App
- Investigation Discovery Go
- MLB At Bat
- MSNBC Now
- Nat Geo TV App
- NBC App
- NBC Sports App
- NFL Mobile
- Oxygen Now
- Science Channel Go
- Showtime Anytime
- SundanceTV App
- Syfy Now
- Telemundo Now
- TLC GO
- Universal Kids App
- Universo Now
- USA Now
- Watch ABC
- Watch Cooking Channel
- Watch DIY
- Watch ESPN
- Watch Food Network
- Watch HGTV
- Watch OWN
- Watch TBS
- Watch TCM
- WATCH TNT
- Watch Travel Channel
- Watch TruTV
- WE tv App
A majority of channels offer on demand content, but you cannot skip or fast-forward through the content.
No Parental Controls
There are no parental controls for PlayStation Vue.
Only DIRECTV STREAM, Hulu Live TV, and Sling TV have parental control features.
Catch Up Feature
Catch Up allows you to watch shows that you didn’t record, for up to three days after it aired. This feature adds a lot of additional shows that aren’t normally available on demand.
On PlayStation 4 consoles, you can watch three live channels—all at once—on a single screen.
PlayStation Vue is compatible with these devices:
- Amazon Fire TV
- Apple TV
- Google Chromecast (Google Cast)
- Android TV
- iPhone/iPad (iOS 9+)
- Android Phone/Tablet (4.4+)
- LG Smart TV (AirPlay)
- Samsung Smart TV (AirPlay)
- Sony Smart TV
- VIZIO Smart TV (AirPlay/Google Cast)
PlayStation Vue is not compatible with Xbox or Nintendo devices.
The PlayStation Vue television app has one the best user interfaces among all the streaming services. It is available on all major platforms including Apple TV, Chromecast, Roku, Fire TV, Android TV, and PlayStation 3 & 4 Consoles.
The app launches to a personalized home screen that has a similar design to the standard PlayStation 4 interface.
The TV app has a feature called “Timeline,” which has a live stream of your most recently watched channel, a list of recently viewed shows, saved cloud DVR content, favorite channels, and other popular live shows.
Throughout the interface, helpful badges indicate if a show is “Live,” “Coming Up,” or available “On Demand” and whether it’s a new episode.
On Fire TV devices and PS4 consoles, a picture-in-picture (PIP) of the live channel appears while you browse the through the app; on Apple TV devices, the live channel plays in the background.
Phone & Tablet Apps
The PlayStation Vue phone and tablet apps have a very similar interface to the TV apps.
You can watch Playstation Vue on Mac or Windows computers, with any popular browser.
All PlayStation Vue plans offer the same set of local channels, including ABC, CBS, Fox, NBC, and Telemundo.
Live local channels are available only in certain markets. However, on demand content is available in all areas the following day.
You can get free access to CW shows with The CW apps with no subscription needed.
Local Channel Restrictions
You cannot stream NFL games on smartphones or tablets.
When you travel outside of your home market, you will receive the locals of the city you are visiting. However, any shows you record to your DVR though will be from your home market.
Top Cable Channels
PlayStation Vue offers up to 26 of the top 35 cable channels. The service is noticeably missing Viacom channels (such as Comedy Central, MTV, Nickelodeon, Paramount Network, and VH1).
The top 35 cable channels are listed below. For a list of all channels, look at PlayStation Vue’s full channel lineup.
National Sports Channels
All PlayStation Vue plans include all the national sports channels, such as ESPN, ESPN2, FS1, Fox Sports 2, TBS, TNT, and USA Network.
Regional Sports Networks (RSNs)
You will need to upgrade to at least the “Core” ($55) plan to get access to regional sports networks (RSNs), which are generally from Fox and NBC/Comcast.
You will have access to them even when you are outside your home market.
RSNs in Other Markets
You should check the PlayStation Vue RSN lookup tool before subscribing to make sure it has the regional networks you need.
The “Core” ($55) plan (and above) includes all pro sports channels—MLB Network, NBA TV, NFL Network, and NHL Network. You can include the Sports Extra ($10) add-on for NFL RedZone (“Core” and above).
Big Ten Network, ESPNU, and SEC Network are available on the “Core” ($55) plan and above. No Channels is available on the “Elite” ($65) plan and above.
You can get the Longhorn Network if you add the Sports Extra ($10) to your subscription (“Core” and above). PlayStation Vue does not offer Pac-12 Network.
Other Sports Channels
ESPNEWS and Golf Channel are available on the “Core” ($55) plan and above, whereas Olympic Channel is on all plans.
You can add Fox Soccer Plus to any plan for $15/month.
“Core,” “Elite,” and “Ultra” subscribers can can add the Sports Extra ($10) which adds ESPN Bases Loaded, ESPN Goal Line, Longhorn Network, and MLB Network Strike Zone, and the national feeds of NESN and NBC Sports/Comcast SportsNet.
You can add Cinemax ($15), HBO ($15), and Showtime ($11) to any PlayStation Vue plan.
HBO and Showtime are included in the “Ultra” ($85) plan.
If you are a PlayStation Plus member, you may receive promotional discounts or some premium channels bundled.
- The only service currently with 720p / 60 fps across all channels.
- Almost no buffering or playback issues in our testing.
- Changing channels only takes 2 seconds, which was faster than most services.
All live streams are broadcast in 720p HD.
To reduce playback interruptions, PlayStation Vue will adapt the stream quality to match your network connection.
Most video streams in 60 FPS.
All live TV content has standard stereo audio. Some on demand content has Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround.
PlayStation Vue has reliable on demand performance.
Live content is about 20 seconds behind cable TV, which is faster than half of the other services.
It takes about 2.5 seconds to switch between channels, which is faster than most of the other services.
- Intuitive design across all devices (except Roku)—echoing the standard PS4 interface.
- Channel guide is informative, but feels odd because it lists channels horizontally.
- Search works well and offers quick access to both live and on demand content.
The PlayStation Vue app’s home screen has a live stream of your most recently watched channel, a list of recently viewed shows, saved cloud DVR content, favorite channels, and other popular live shows.
The PlayStation Vue standard channel guide lists all available channels alphabetically in horizontal list. This layout may feel odd because you have to scroll sideways to see more channels. Your favorite channels appear at the beginning of the guide.
The PlayStation Vue search interface is very intuitive. Search results appear quickly as you type.
The show details page displays all available episodes with “Live,” “Coming Up,” and “On Demand” badges. You can automatically record future airings by clicking “Add to My Shows”.
You can pause and skip forward and backwards on most channels on PlayStation Vue. There is a nice feature that lets you tap and hold to jump back to your previous channel.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
How much does PlayStation Vue cost?
PlayStation Vue is available starting at $50 / month. See the full list: PlayStation Vue Pricing & Plans
Does PlayStation Vue have a free trial?
PlayStation Vue does not have a free trial.
Does PlayStation Vue have a DVR?
PlayStation Vue includes Unlimited of Cloud DVR storage.
What channels are on PlayStation Vue?
PlayStation Vue includes 50 channels including 25 top cable channels. See the full list: PlayStation Vue Channels.
How many streams are allowed at once on PlayStation Vue?
PlayStation Vue allows up to 5 devices at the same time. See more details: PlayStation Vue Simultaneous Streams
Does PlayStation Vue have local channels?
PlayStation Vue includes ABC, CBS, Fox, NBC, and Telemundo in most, but not all markets. See the full list: PlayStation Vue Local Channels.
Does PlayStation Vue have live sports?
PlayStation Vue includes live sports from ESPN, ESPN2, FS1, Fox Sports 2, MLB Network, NBA TV, NFL Network, NHL Network, TBS, TNT, and USA Network. See the full list: PlayStation Vue Sports Channels.
Does PlayStation Vue offer premium channels?
PlayStation Vue offers premium channels like Cinemax, HBO, Hi-Yah, and Showtime for an additional fee. See the full list: PlayStation Vue Premium Channels.
Does PlayStation Vue offer on demand content?
PlayStation Vue includes on demand content from most of the channels they offer. Unlike content on your DVR, you won’t be able to skip ads.
Does PlayStation Vue support TV Everywhere apps?
PlayStation Vue includes access to many TV Eveywhere Apps with your PlayStation Vue credentials. See the full list: PlayStation Vue TV Everywhere Apps.
Does PlayStation Vue have a TV Guide?
PlayStation Vue includes a TV Guide similar to what you would get with your cable or satellite set-top box.
Does PlayStation Vue have ads?
PlayStation Vue includes ads during live viewing of shows, as well on all on-demand content. You can skip ads when you watch shows recorded to your DVR.
Does PlayStation Vue offer 4K streaming?
PlayStation Vue does not include 4K content as part of the service.
Does PlayStation Vue offer Dolby Digital 5.1 surround sound?
PlayStation Vue does not include Dolby Digital 5.1 surround sound as part of the service.