If you’ve given up on cable subscriptions, it doesn’t mean that you have to miss on one of the most important sports events of the year, the Super Bowl. Here are five ways cord-cutters can still watch it using devices that most probably they already own.
There’s a bit over 24 hours left until Carolina Panthers and Denver Broncos will kick off this year’s Super Bowl, probably the most watched sports event of the year. This is obviously a great opportunity for companies to make their products known to a great number of people, while paying as much as $150,000 per second to get their ads broadcasted. Some companies have found a strategy that relies on YouTube to show their ads to possibly even more people, while paying nothing at all: they create either intentionally or accidentally ads that are unfit for a general audience, which gets them banned from the television. As no one can stop them from posting those banned ads to YouTube (where there’s a great chance people will share these with their friends, thus helping the number of views to skyrocket), the companies are getting the entire benefit with none of the cost. Now that I’m done with this piece of trivia, let’s see what you can use to watch the event if you’re not subscribed to cable television.
Stream on Roku, Xbox One, Apple TV, Android TV, Amazon Fire TV or a Windows 10 mini PC
This is probably the easiest approach. If you own any of the following devices (Roku, Xbox One, Apple TV, Android TV, Amazon Fire TV or a Windows 10 mini PC), head over to their respective app stores and download the CBS Sports app.
That’s all you have to do. After that, tune in Sunday, February 7, 2016 at 6:30 PM ET and enjoy the game. The app’s functionality goes beyond that, as a matter of fact, as it allows you to watch content for more than just NFL. After all, it’s called CBS Sports, so you can expect a lot of video from MLB, NBA, NHL, NCAA, and more.
Mirror a Smartphone’s Screen to Chromecast
Smartphones and tablets are ubiquitous in developed countries, and Chromecast HDMI dongles are not that far behind in popularity, given how affordable they have always been. They typically retail for $35, but on Black Friday and other such events, you could have bought one for much cheaper. The investment is definitely worth it, even if only for watching such sports events.
This solution relies on the aforementioned CBS Sports app, as well. You’ll have to download that on your Android mobile device and establish a connection between the smartphone or tablet and Chromecast, so that whatever is displayed on the screen gets mirrored to the TV or monitor the HDMI dongle is connected to. Bear in mind that to cast the game to your TV you need to use a Wi-Fi connection, as streaming over a cellular data connection is limited to a single carrier, which brings us to the next way cord-cutters can enjoy the Super Bowl.
Have Verizon as Your Carrier
AT&T users are not getting any love in this department, as only the ones subscribed to Verizon will be able to stream the game on their smartphones or tablets using a cellular data connection.
The reason behind that is that only Verizon has an NFL Mobile app. This is how the carrier explained it in a press release: “Super Bowl 50 will be streamed live through NFL Mobile from Verizon, available for all Verizon users at no additional charge on Windows, Apple and Android smartphones. NFL Mobile will also offer up-to-the-minute scores, stats, highlights and Super Bowl commercials. Verizon will also bring the game to life in go90 by live streaming the game through NFL Mobile on go90 for Verizon Wireless customers.”
Combine Verizon with a Chromecast
Sure, you’re free to stream the game using NFL Mobile from Verizon, but how does a smartphone or tablet’s screen compare to a fully-fledged TV? Do you actually prefer not being able to distinguish the players to having the impression that you’re on the field yourself?
TVs offer a much more immersive experience, so if you’re subscribed to Verizon and happen to own a Chromecast, why not combine the two in order to watch the game properly? Install NFL Mobile on your Verizon Android smartphone or tablet, launch the app, connect the device to the Chromecast and start mirroring the screen. The best part about NFL Mobile from Verizon is that it allows you to stream the entire game, so you don’t have to miss out on the impressive commercials that will be broadcast on this special occasion. Sure, you’ll be able to find most, if not all of them on YouTube later on, but what’s the point?
Use Placeshifting Tech
The following method assumes that you don’t have access to none of the aforementioned options, which really is hard to believe in this day and age. However, there is still hope for you, assuming you’re a social person and you’ve befriended people whose cable login you’re going to use for watching the Super Bowl. Besides the cable login, you’ll need a TV with component outputs. In case yours sports only HDMI, you can get an HDMI to component converter box to deal with the problem. Now this solution might come a little too late for the Super Bowl, but if you’re a cord-cutter, it’s worth keeping it in mind for future reference.
Slingbox streaming media players start at $43 on Amazon, but you’ll probably want to get a newer model, since you’re going to use it for more than just watching the Super Bowl.
Cutting the cord enabled a lot of people to get rid of unnecessary content. If you haven’t done it already, you should think if you’re comfortable with the above options, and if so, jump right into streaming.