Saturday, October 1, 2022

Watching college football games this weekend: Week 5

College football season continues, this week feature two battles between ranked unbeaten teams.

If you want to watch all of the games this season, you need access to most of the networks, which can get expensive. Of course, you might not want to be able to watch all the games.

This weekend, only one game will not be on these networks. Here are the networks carrying games:

  • ABC
  • ACC Network
  • Big Ten
  • Big 12 Network
  • CBS
  • CBS Sports Network
  • ESPN
  • ESPN 2
  • ESPN 3
  • ESPN U
  • SEC Network
  • ESPN+
  • Fox
  • Fox Sports 1
  • Longhorn Network (No games this week)
  • NBC (No games this week)
  • NFL Network
  • Pac 12 Network
  • Peacock (No games this week)

Here is how to watch these networks:

ABC

  • Antenna, over the air, free.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

ACC Network

  • Sling Orange, with Sports Extra, $46/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, with Sports Extra, $65/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Choice, $90/month.

Big Ten Network

  • Sling Blue, with Sports Extra, $46/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, with Sports Extra, $65/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Choice, $90/month.

Big 12 Network

Big 12 Network games are available through ESPN+.

CBS

  • Antenna, over the air, free.
  • Paramount+ Premium, $10/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

CBS Sports Network

  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Ultimate, $105/month.

ESPN

  • Sling Orange, $35/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, $50/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

ESPN2

  • Sling Orange, $35/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, $50/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

ESPN U

  • Sling Orange, $35/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, $50/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.
  • Fubo TV Elite, $80/month.

ESPN3

ESPN3 is usually included with a service that carries standard ESPN/ESPN2.

  • Sling Orange, $35/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, $50/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

ESPN+

ESPN+ is a standalone sports programming service. It is not the same thing as regular ESPN that you get with cable or one of the live streaming services. Some content from ESPN, ESPN2, or other ESPN networks may be available on ESPN+, but often, it's content that is only available on ESPN+.

  • ESPN+, $7/month.
  • Disney Bundle, $14/month.

Fox

  • Antenna, over the air, free.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

Fox Sports 1

  • Sling Blue, with Sports Extra, $46/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, with Sports Extra, $65/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

Longhorn Network

  • Sling Blue, with Sports Extra, $46/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, with Sports Extra, $65/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.

NBC

  • Antenna, over the air, free.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

NFL Network

  • Sling Blue, with Sports Extra, $46/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, with Sports Extra, $65/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.

Pac 12 Network

  • Sling Blue, $35/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, $50/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • Fubo TV Pro, with Fubo Extra, $78/month.
  • Fubo TV Elite, $80/month.

Peacock TV

Peacock is a standalone streaming service that carries NBCUniversal programming, including much sports from NBC as well as exclusive sports programming. Peacock Premium is $5/month, but is included with Xfinity Internet plans.

SEC Network

  • Sling Orange, $35/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, $50/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Choice, $90/month.
  • Fubo TV Ultimate, $100/month.

This list of networks covers all the games airing today. It also covers games next week through Friday, as the early games next week are all on one of these networks.

NOTE: Longhorn, Peacock, and NBC are not needed this weekend.

To watch all the games, having an antenna won't really matter, as in order to get all the networks carrying games, the services also carry the OTA stations. So, how much to watch them all?

The services necessary will cost $85. That's $78 for Fubo TV Pro +Fubo Extra, along with $7 for ESPN+.

If you want college football in your Streaming Life, you have options, though it can get expensive depending just how many games you want to watch.

Friday, September 30, 2022

New Fire TV Cube coming

It's still nearly a month from actual release, but Amazon did recently announce that a new edition of the Fire TV Cube would be available soon.

I know that most people opt for the Fire TV Stick -- commonly called "Firestick" by many users -- but the Fire TV Cube is the top of the line of Amazon's streaming devices. Personally, I use the Fire TV Cube because of my previous experience with the Fire TV Sticks.

The first Fire TV Sticks were simply inferior devices, especially when compare to the Roku devices. However, the Fire TV Stick 4K Max is a very good device, and completely changed my mind about the Sticks. But, if you do want the top of the line experience, the Fire TV Cube is the way to go.

According to the Amazon Fire TV Blog, the new Fire TV Cube will be available on October 25 and have some improvements in power and speed, plus an HDMI input:

An industry-first, Fire TV Cube includes an HDMI input port, giving customers the flexibility to bring their entertainment devices together by directly connecting compatible cable boxes, Blu-ray players, and more devices. Now, customers can just say, "Alexa, tune to ESPN on cable" instead of manually changing inputs to get to the content they want. With Fire TV Cube, customers can easily control live TV, cable boxes, and on-demand streaming via Fire TV's Alexa Voice Remote or hands-free with Alexa. Fire TV Cube also features a USB port for easy connection to compatible webcams for video calling with Alexa Communications — simply say, "Alexa, call mom" to connect with family or friends from the largest screen in the home.

This may pressure other streaming manufacturers to do the same. Until that happens, the Fire TV Cube will be the only major streaming device to offer a feature that's normally reserved for a full smart TV.

The features are interesting, and if someone has been thinking about getting a Fire TV device, this, to me, is worth waiting for. I don't think I'm going to upgrade my current Fire TV Cube however. If you have an older Cube, then I can see that. But as I don't have need of the HDMI port, I don't see it bringing anything to the table for my Streaming Life. But the device sounds great for someone who doesn't have a current Fire TV Cube.

Thursday, September 29, 2022

Hallmark content on Pluto TV

Back in August, Pluto TV announced that they would be adding several channels in September, including content from Hallmark.

This week, I finally saw the Hallmark Movies & More channel on Pluto TV. And that is a welcome addition.

Hallmark has been a favorite source of content for family members for as long as I can remember. When I was younger, specials from Hallmark on TV were something that my mother would often enjoy watching.

In later years, family members enjoyed Hallmark's content, particularly their Christmas movies. Having it on cable was nice, and when we dropped cable, the various streaming platforms that carried Hallmark content were things I regularly subscribed to.

Hallmark content has been on some very low-priced streaming platforms, both on-demand and linear streaming. A favorite has been Frndly TV, which at $7/month is the lowest price of the live streaming services that carry the actual Hallmark Channel. Philo, at $25, is another low priced streaming service with Hallmark Channel.

But, you can find Hallmark content for free, though not Hallmark Channel. Hallmark does offer a secondary catalog, still Hallmark Channel content, just not current content. It's almost like Hallmark Classic. Not everything is really old content, just stuff that has rolled off of Hallmark Channel rotation.

For some time, Hallmark Movies & More has been available as a live streaming channel on Xumo and Roku Channel. This month, it finally appeared on Pluto TV.

I've mentioned before about Hallmark content being on Xumo and Roku Channel, but Pluto TV is the big dog when it comes to FAST (free ad-supported streaming television) content.

If you want to watch some Hallmark content, you now have another option to improve your Streaming Life.

Wednesday, September 28, 2022

A new PayPal scam

We're going off-topic here for something I think is important, and may be a new scam. At least, it's new to me. I've never seen this, and I can see people falling for it.

Last night, a family member received an email from PayPal about a charge against her account. It was for $899 for an iPhone, or so it said.

What seems to have happened is that someone submitted a PayPal charge against her PayPal account, and PayPal sent an email notifying her.

To be clear, the email itself was legit. The problem was twofold, however, and it was within the email.

The first problem was, of course, that she had not ordered an iPhone. The seller/scammer had submitted an unauthorized charge. PayPal has no idea if it's legit or not, so they sent the email notifying her of the submission, for her to decide to pay it or cancel it.

The second problem was within the body of the email, and that's the other part of the scam.

Note the part in the "Seller note to customer." That is content that the seller/scammer sent along with the submitted charge. It's for any communication a normal PayPal seller wants or needs to communicate to the buyer.

However, look at the contents of that:

We've detected that your PayPal account has been accessed fraudulently. If you did not make this transaction, please call us at toll-free number +1 (888)-224-7574 to cancel and claim a refund. If this is not the case, you will be charged $499. 00 USD today. Within the automated deduction of the amount, this transaction will reflect on PayPal activity after 24 hours. Our Service hours:(06:00 am. to 06:00 pm. pacific Time, Monday through Saturday)

Again, and this is important, that is not legitimate! DO NOT CALL THAT NUMBER!

That reads like a message from PayPal, right? Only, it's not a message from PayPal. That is a message from the seller/scammer pretending to be from PayPal.

Note that it also has several of the earmarks of a scam email. First, the amount in the note does not match the amount of the charge. Next, the punctuation is incorrect in many places. And the capitalization is wrong in several places.

Finally, and it says it right in the email but can easily be overlooked, that is A MESSAGE FROM THE SELLER, not from PayPal. The seller is saying the transaction is fraudulent and to call the number.

That last bit got past her briefly (understandable) and she called the number. The person who answered pretended to be from PayPay. Then he gave her a lot of BS about needing her to sign a form but he couldn't email it for security reasons. To get her to sign it, he wanted her to connect to their servers.

I'm gonna stop for a second and bring up a point some might miss here. If an item cannot be sent via email for security reasons, there is no way on earth that any legitimate company is going to let someone's home computer connect to their servers. That would truly be a security risk. Rather, they'd have her connect to a secure Website, not download some software that gave full access to a server.

As an alternate note, the software they asked her to download, TeamViewer, is a legit software package, but it would have granted the person on the phone full access to her computer. Nobody ever needs full access to someone else's computer.

Anyway, this is when red flags started going off and I became a part of the conversation. She added me to the call, and I listened to the scammer tell me the story of why he was needing this. And, like most scammers, was getting pushy.

People who know me know that I don't care for pushy types. And since I'm quite capable of being a little pushy myself, can deal with them on an equal basis. I was calm and polite and said the whole thing was bullshit and suggested to her that she end the call. So the call ended.

She had sent me a copy of the email (you saw a screen shot of that earlier) and noted the note from seller. We had a discussion, and she gave me permission to log in to her PayPal account.There, I found the legitimate way to dispute and cancel the submission. It was easy and only required a single click, much to PayPal's credit.

We both learned something about a new -- well, new to us, anyway -- type of scam. And I thought it might be worth sharing.

Again, this doesn't have anything to do with your or my Streaming Life, but I thought it was worth sharing.

Tuesday, September 27, 2022

Bally Sports has launched

Well, sports fans, the big day has arrived. Yesterday, in fact.

Bally Sports+ launched yesterday, making the service available nationwide. Well, mostly.

Back in June, the service launched in five markets: Detroit, Kansas City, Miami, Milwaukee, and Tampa (or Tampa Bay). Those are the five baseball markets where Bally Sports+ carry the baseball games. None of the other markets that carry Major League Baseball have agreements for the teams to be broadcast over the streaming service.

For example, I live in an area where I would get Bally Sports South and Bally Sports Southeast. And, I would normally get Braves baseball, which is carried on those regional networks.

Yesterday, I became capable of subscribing to Bally Sports+, and can get both Bally Sports South and Bally Sports Southeast, but it states "Braves baseball and related content are not currently available on Bally Sports+."

I can still get all the other programming, just not Braves baseball. And for me, Braves baseball is what I want. NBA and NHL games are available. In fact, from what I'm reading, everything normally carried on the Bally Sports regional networks in my area is available except Braves baseball. And it's that way for the areas covered by all 19 of the Bally Sports networks. Well, except for the five markets -- Detroit, Kansas City, Miami, Milwaukee, and Tampa Bay -- that got the early launch and have agreements for the baseball teams.

It is expected that Bally Sports will be able to negotiate agreements with the other Major League Baseball teams for next season, but it's unknown if any agreements could happen to allow the remaining current season to be carried. Probably not.

The service is $20/month or $190/year. Whether or not that's enough value without baseball is a decision each streamer that is a sports fan will have to make. I would subscribe if they had Braves baseball. And next season, if they carry Braves baseball, I will. Of course, if I was big into NHL and NBA, it would certainly be worth it to me. But I'm me, and it's not.

But for you and for others, Bally Sports+ may be a great addition to your Streaming Life.

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