Streaming live TV on your Firestick offers a convenient and affordable way to access news, sports, and entertainment channels without an expensive cable subscription. With the right apps and services, you can watch tons of live content for free or a low monthly fee.
In this comprehensive guide, we’ll cover everything you need to know about watching live TV on your Firestick device. We’ll share the best free apps, top subscription services, how to install them, and tips for getting the most out of live TV streaming.
How to Get Live TV on Firestick
There are a few different ways to access live TV channels on your Firestick. Here are the main options:
Use the Live Tab
The Firestick Live tab offers a selection of free live TV channels right on your home screen. Just scroll over to the Live tab to browse available channels like CBS News, ABC News, Bloomberg TV, and more.
The selection is somewhat limited, but the Live tab is a quick and easy option with no additional apps to install. You can also integrate streaming services like YouTube TV for additional live channel options.
Install Free Streaming Apps
Your best bet for a wider range of free live TV is to install dedicated streaming apps on your Firestick. Apps like Pluto TV, Samsung TV Plus, and Xumo offer 100+ free live channels spanning news, sports, movies, and more.
Most of these free apps can be installed directly from the Amazon Appstore. We’ll cover the top options in detail below.
Subscribe to a Live TV Streaming Service
For the most robust selection of live TV, consider subscribing to a streaming service like YouTube TV, Hulu + Live TV, fuboTV, or Sling TV. These offer channel lineups similar to cable with 60+ to over 100+ options.
Most services offer free trials so you can test them out. And you can cancel anytime since there are no contracts. Pricing ranges from $35 to $65+ per month.
We’ll highlight the best live TV streaming services for Firestick later in this guide.
Best Free Apps for Live TV on Firestick
If you want to watch live TV for free, these streaming apps offer some of the best options:
1. Pluto TV
Pluto TV is one of the most popular free live TV streaming platforms available today. It provides over 100 free live channels spanning categories like news, sports, movies, comedy, reality TV, and more.
Pluto TV has a simple, easy-to-use interface and also offers thousands of hours of free on-demand content. It’s ad-supported, so you’ll see some commercials as you watch.
Popular live channels on Pluto TV include CBS News, NBC News, CNN, MTV, Spike, Bloomberg, NFL Channel, Stadium, and many others. Local news is also available in select markets.
Pluto TV can be installed via the Amazon Appstore or sideloaded onto your Firestick device. It’s also available on Roku, Apple TV, Android, iOS, and via web browser.
Overall, Pluto TV is a must-have for free, ad-supported live TV on your Firestick.
2. The Roku Channel
Owners of the Firestick 4K and 4K Max models can install and use the Roku Channel app for free live TV viewing.
The Roku Channel offers over 100 free live linear channels spanning categories like news, sports, movies, entertainment, and more. There are also tens of thousands of free movies and shows available on demand.
Some standout live channels include ABC News Live, CBSN, People TV, TMZ, Comedy Dynamics, Hallmark Movies & More, as well as a variety of sports channels like fubo Sports Network, Stadium, and more.
As a bonus, you can even sync content from other streaming services with your Roku account for centralized access. The Roku Channel is ad-supported.
3. Samsung TV Plus
Samsung TV Plus offers over 100 free live channels, focused primarily on news, entertainment, and sports.
Some popular channels include PBS Kids, ChiveTV, Bon Appetit, Now This, NBC News Now, Filmrise Movies, Crime 360, and more. There are also quite a few sports channels like Pac-12 Insider, Stadium Sports, and more.
Since Samsung TV Plus doesn’t have an official Firestick app, you’ll need to sideload an IPTV player app like Ott Navigator and add the Samsung TV Plus playlist URL. We have a full guide on how to install Samsung TV Plus on Firestick here.
Overall, Samsung TV Plus has a great selection of live news, sports, movie and entertainment channels worth checking out.
4. XUMO TV
XUMO is another popular app for free, ad-supported live TV. It offers over 160 live channels spanning categories like news, sports, kids, entertainment, lifestyle, and more.
Some of the most popular XUMO live channels include ABC News Live, NBC News Now, NFL Channel, Crime 360, TMZ, Bon Appetit, Hallmark Drama, and various movie channels like Western TV and Horror 24/7. There is also a decent selection of sports programming.
XUMO is easy to use with a straightforward channel guide and on-demand section. You can install it via the Amazon Appstore or by sideloading. It’s also available on other streaming devices and mobile apps.
Plex is actually a full-featured media server app. But it also offers a selection of free live TV channels and on-demand content.
There are over 80 free live channels on Plex spanning categories like news, sports, movies, entertainment, food and music. Some popular options include Reuters, Toon Goggles, Gravitas Movies, Power Nation, TMZ, Tastemade, and more.
You’ll need to create a free Plex account to access the live TV and on-demand features. The selection is somewhat limited but can make a nice addition to other live TV apps.
Plex can be installed via the Amazon Appstore or sideloaded onto your Firestick.
6. The CW
The CW offers its own dedicated live stream and on-demand app. This is a must-have for fans of CW shows like Walker, The Flash, Riverdale, DC’s Legends of Tomorrow, and more.
The CW app offers a 24/7 live stream of the east coast CW channel. So you can watch hit shows live or on demand the next day after they air.
It’s totally free but you’ll have to sign in with your cable provider credentials. If you don’t have cable, you can access the app with a live TV streaming service login from YouTube TV, Hulu + Live TV, DirecTv Stream or FuboTV.
The CW app can be installed from the Amazon Appstore or sideloaded onto your Firestick.
7. Haystack TV
Haystack TV aggregates live news streams from dozens of sources like CNBC, Bloomberg, Cheddar, Yahoo Finance, Newsy, and more. It’s a great way to watch and compare news coverage from a wide variety of outlets.
The app provides over 200 local news streams from places like LA, Chicago, NYC, San Francisco, and more. There are also live streams for topics like business, politics, technology, sports, and weather.
Haystack TV is free and ad-supported. You can install it via the Amazon Appstore or sideload it onto your device. It‘s also available on iOS, Android, Roku, Apple TV, and via web browser.
NewsOn provides live local news streams from over 275 affiliates in over 190 markets across the United States. So it’s a great way to watch local news, weather, traffic, and highlights no matter where you live.
The app offers an easy-to-browse channel guide organized by location. Just tap your city or state to see available local affiliate streams from ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX and other broadcasters.
NewsOn is completely free but you’ll need to verify your location by entering your zip code. It contains ads but the selection of local news makes it worth a look for cord-cutters.
You can install NewsOn from the Amazon Appstore or sideload it. It’s also available on other platforms like Roku and iOS/Android mobile apps.
Best Live TV Streaming Services for Firestick
For the biggest selection of live channels, a paid streaming service is the way to go. Here are some of the best options available for Firestick and Fire TV devices:
1. YouTube TV
YouTube TV is one of the most robust live TV services available with over 100+ channels covering entertainment, news, and sports. The base plan is $64.99 per month.
YouTube TV offers popular channels like ESPN, TNT, TBS, CNN, MSNBC, HGTV, Food Network, and many others. Local channels like ABC, CBS, NBC, and FOX are available in most areas. There are also add-on channels like HBO Max, Showtime, and Starz.
Unlimited DVR storage is included so you can record any show or game airing live. YouTube TV also supports up to 6 user profiles and 3 simultaneous streams.
The YouTube TV app comes pre-installed on most Firestick devices. Or you can download it from the Amazon Appstore.
Right now, YouTube TV is offering new users a free two-week trial. So you can test it out risk-free before committing.
With its channel lineup and features like unlimited DVR, YouTube TV is one of the best options for live TV streaming on Firestick.
2. Hulu + Live TV
Hulu + Live TV offers 75+ live channels starting at $69.99 per month. The on-demand Hulu streaming library is also included.
For live TV, Hulu provides popular channels like ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX, ESPN, CNN, TNT, Discovery, TLC, FX, USA Network, and more. Local affiliate channels are available based on your zip code.
Hulu + Live TV includes 50 hours of free DVR storage to record your favorite shows. There’s also support for 2 simultaneous streams. Premium channels like HBO Max, Showtime, and Starz can be added for an extra fee.
The Hulu app comes pre-installed on Firestick and Fire TV. You can sign up for a free 7-day trial to test the Hulu + Live TV service.
With strong channel offerings and on-demand content, Hulu + Live TV is a top choice for live and on-demand streaming.
fuboTV focuses heavily on sports channels but also provides entertainment and news. Pricing starts at $69.99 per month with over 100 channels available.
Sports fans will appreciate fuboTV’s lineup including national sports networks like NFL Network, MLB Network, NBA TV, NHL Network, The Olympic Channel, and more. Fox local sports affiliates are also included based on your location.
For entertainment, fuboTV offers popular channels like AMC, FX, HGTV, TBS, TNT, and others. Plus news channels like CNN, Fox News, MSNBC. An Extra add-on can be purchased for more channels.
fuboTV allows you to stream on up to 10 devices simultaneously. You also get 250 hours of cloud DVR storage to record games and shows. Family sharing is supported as well.
Download the fuboTV app on Firestick/Fire TV from the Amazon Appstore or sideload it. Then sign up for a free 7-day trial before deciding.
With its sports-focused lineup and robust DVR, fuboTV is a top pick for live TV streaming on Firestick – especially for sports fans.
4. DIRECTV STREAM
DIRECTV STREAM (formerly known as AT&T TV) offers competitive channel packages starting at $69.99 per month. With add-ons, you can get up to 140+ channels.
Some popular channels include ESPN, TNT, TBS, USA, FX, Bravo, FOX News, MSNBC, HGTV, and many more. Local ABC, CBS, NBC and FOX affiliates are available based on your location. Regional sports networks can also be added on.
The DIRECTV STREAM service and apps integrate seamlessly with Firestick and Fire TV devices. DVR storage and simultaneous streams vary by plan. But you can stream on up to 20 devices at home.
Right now, DIRECTV STREAM is offering new users a 5-day free trial to test it out. Then if you decide to subscribe, get your first two months for just $49.99 each with unlimited DVR included.
With competitive pricing and a robust channel lineup, DIRECTV Stream is a great option for live TV on Firestick.
5. Sling TV
Sling TV offers one of the most affordable live TV streaming options, with base plans starting at just $35 per month. Channel add-ons are available for customization.
With Sling Orange and Sling Blue base plans, you’ll get 30+ channels like ESPN, CNN, TNT, TBS, HGTV, A&E, Food Network and more. There are also lots of add-on packages, from comedy to lifestyle to sports.
Sling offers 50 hours of free DVR storage space to record shows. You can stream on up to 3 devices simultaneously. Discounts are available if you pre-pay for 2 or 4 months upfront.
The Sling TV app can be installed via the Amazon Appstore or sideloaded onto Firestick/Fire TV devices. Sign up through their website to get the latest new user promotions.
For an affordable live TV option, Sling TV is tough to beat. The plans are customizable so you can opt for just the channels you want.
Tips for Watching Live TV on Firestick
Here are some tips to help you get the most out of streaming live TV channels on your Firestick:
Take advantage of free trials before subscribing – Most streaming services offer 5-7 day free trials so you can test the channels, features and streaming quality before paying.
Get an OTA antenna for local channels – An over-the-air (OTA) antenna lets you watch ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX and other local channels on your Firestick for free. Just connect an antenna to your device.
Use a VPN for privacy and to bypass blackouts – A VPN like Surfshark or NordVPN can mask your location to avoid sports blackouts. It also prevents your ISP from seeing your streaming activity.
Check channel lineups before subscribing – Live TV services vary widely in terms of channels offered. Compare lineups to ensure your must-have channels are included before paying.
Hardwire your Firestick for faster speeds – For best performance, use an ethernet adapter to connect your Firestick to your router with a wired connection instead of WiFi. This prevents buffering and instability.
Adjust video resolution settings – In your Firestick video settings, lower the maximum resolution to 720p or 1080p if you experience buffering at higher resolutions.
Thanks for taking the time to read this complete guide on how to watch live TV on Firestick. With the best free apps, top streaming services and helpful tips provided here, you have everything you need to cut the cord while still enjoying live news, sports and entertainment.
The Firestick makes it easy and affordable to access tons of great live content. So ditch your overpriced cable package and start streaming!