Thursday, August 12, 2021

ESPN+

As a sports fan -- mostly college football -- I've been through the difficulties of finding sports I'm wanting to watch online. In the early days of streaming, there was nothing when it came to live sports. Today, there are a lot of options.

You can watch ESPN and Fox Sports on many live streaming services: Sling TV, Vidgo, Hulu+Live TV, YouTube TV, Fubo, and AT&T TV. Bally Sports is on AT&T TV. There are other sports networks available through streaming services. Oh, and there are some that are not available on any streaming service.

Those that are available streaming have something in common: they're a part of a streaming package, a cable replacement service, if you will. You can't get ESPN standalone. You can't get Bally Sports networks standalone. If I want ESPN, I have to pony up at least $35 for the cheapest streaming service that carries it.

Now, what about ESPN+ you say? Well, it's a standalone service, but it doesn't include ESPN. You can't subscribe to ESPN+ and watch what's playing on ESPN right now. It's a supplemental service, adding additional content but not including basic ESPN.

That's not to say that ESPN+ isn't a good service. It is actually, but it's not ESPN. Still, you can get a lot of good content. Maybe that's why the price is going up.

Starting on Aug. 13, the price of an ESPN Plus subscription will rise to $6.99 a month and $69.99 a year, up from $5.99 a month and $59.99 per year.

Today is the last day at the old price. Am I recommending you get it? No, but I'm not saying wait either. If I get it for college football -- lots of games will be on ESPN+ -- it'll be cheaper to get the service now. But, in order to watch the games, I'll have to subscribe longer. So, is it a good deal for me? Actually, no. It'll be cheaper to subscribe for one less month at the higher price. Only about a dollar cheaper, but still cheaper. And I'm a cheapskate.

The other thing is that ESPN is putting more and more content on ESPN+. Maybe they'll eventually have a standalone service for ESPN, similar to the HBO Max standalone service, or any of the other services.

When that day comes, and I think it will, just not soon enough for me, it will make my Streaming Life so much better.

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