Philo review

Philo highlights

Philo review

If you’re looking for entertainment on a budget, Philo is a great way to get the content of cable without breaking the bank. Philo is what is known as a “skinny bundle” provider because it solely focuses on entertainment and lifestyle channels, but at a much lower price than cable. So while you don’t get sports channels like ESPN or NBCSN, it’s still one of the most affordable options for entertainment-only live streaming.

Not factoring in the missing local, premium and sports programs, the Philo channel lineup is pretty solid, giving you 60 channels for just $20/mo. Get access to top cable channels like A&E, AMC, BBC World News, Food Network, HGTV, MTV, Nickelodeon and TLC, to name a few.

When it was initially founded in 2009, Philo mainly targeted college campuses, but it has since shifted its focus toward the general consumer market. In spite of minimal marketing, the TV streaming provider has seen continuous growth, ending 2017 with approximately 50,000 subscribers. In 2018, it saw a 40 percent month-over-month increase in subscriber count.

Sign up for Philo
Start a 7-day free trial

Philo is definitely the cheapest way to enjoy cable channels after you’ve cut the cord. Besides offering 55+ cable channels are included for just $20 per month, Philo TV also provides unlimited cloud-DVR.

Why Philo may be the right streaming service for you

If you’re a huge entertainment fan and don’t watch much else, the Philo TV package is an excellent option. It gives you access to all the leading lifestyle and entertainment channels such as Comedy Central, Discovery Channel, Game Show Network, Oprah Winfrey Network, PeopleTV and VH1. Plus, it helps you cut costs since you won’t be spending on things you don’t watch.

Compare Philo packages and pricing

So how does Philo stack up against competitors? Compared to leading live TV streaming services like fuboTV and Hulu + Live TV, Philo is among the most pocket-friendly options. The basic fuboTV Standard and Hulu + Live TV plans both currently cost $54.99/mo. (fuboTV will soon bump its monthly price up to $59.99/mo.). But keep in mind that these two services have some content that Philo doesn’t offer— fubo offers extensive sports coverage and a Hulu + Live TV subscription also gives you access to the extensive Hulu on-demand streaming library.

Philo holds up well on the lower end of the spectrum, where it competes with less expensive services like Sling TV. Sling costs $10/mo. more at $30/mo., but it still doesn’t compare to the Philo channel lineup with just over 50 channels.

Pro tip: Compare Philo vs Sling TV in-depth to decide which service is right for you.

Philo previously offered two different service tiers for $16/mo. and $20/mo., but has since consolidated these packages into one that offers everything.

Here’s a quick look at the available Philo package:

Monthly price$20/mo.
Free trial length7 days
Number of channels60
Number of simultaneous streams3
Cloud DVR storageUnlimited for 30 days
Offline viewingNo
Ad-free optionNo

Philo bundles, deals and free trials

Even though Philo doesn’t offer any service bundles, there are still some great deals on devices and add-ons to satisfy your inner bargain-hunter. For those who are a little hesitant to get their feet wet with a full subscription, Philo offers a 7-day free trial to give the service a go before you buy.

Get a deal when you add-on

Philo is currently offering lower prices for its Epix and Starz add-ons for the first three months. Epix is now an additional $3/mo. (usually $6/mo.) and Starz is now $5/mo. (usually $9/mo.). There is a 7-day free trial available for each add-on.

Buy a Roku, get a deal on Philo

Need a device to stream at home? If you buy a Roku before August 2, 2020, you also get two months of Philo, free. That puts $40 back in your pocket.

Start watching with a 7-day free trial

If you’re not totally sure about Philo, test it out! Philo offers every new customer a 7-day free trial. All you need to do to start your trial is enter your phone number or email address—no credit card info required. Yep, it’s that simple.

Device compatibility

Philo streaming is compatible with the following devices:

Pro tip: Compare the best video streaming devices of 2020 to build your best entertainment set-up.

Philo features

Record your favorite content with unlimited hours of DVR storage

Don’t have time to watch a live broadcast or a new episode when it airs? Save it to watch at your leisure. With its DVR storage, Philo lets you save unlimited shows and store them for up to 30 days.

Stream from multiple devices

You can stream Philo from up to three devices at a time. This lets the whole family (or roommates) watch what they want, when they want.

Restart a live broadcast at any time

Tuned in a bit late to a live show? Choose between starting your show live or watching it from the beginning—even if the event hasn’t ended yet.

Get more content from your favorite shows with TV Everywhere

Sign in to TV Everywhere with Philo to access your favorite shows. Select Philo as your TV provider and enjoy digital originals, exclusive clips and extras from the service’s network partners.

Refer a friend and get a reward

Share a unique Philo referral link with your friends and family. If someone ends up subscribing through that link, they get $5 off on their first month and you get $5 off on your next payment.

What to watch on Philo

Philo has a handful of news channels like BBC America, BBC News and Cheddar News. But this lineup may be a little too modest for those who regularly tune into that sort of programming. The same goes for avid sports fans because there aren’t any sports programs in the Philo TV package. The short list of add-ons means that some big networks and premium channels are left out of the Philo channel lineup.

On the other hand, entertainment fans don’t have much to worry about. Enjoy the massive collection of entertainment content from Philo’s 60 channels. Learn to cook delicious dishes from the Food Network or explore different cities through the Travel Channel. Watch reality TV, game shows and documentaries or tune into movies on AMC and Comedy Central.

Our hot take

If you want affordable entertainment and lifestyle content and only watch the news on occasion, Philo makes a great choice. You’ll get an extensive range of entertainment programs to choose from, but not much else. Sports lovers are better off with a service with more extensive offerings like fuboTV and those who want the chance to really customize their plan with add-ons and extras should check out services like Hulu + Live TV.

Sign up for Philo
Start a 7-day free trial

Philo is definitely the cheapest way to enjoy cable channels after you’ve cut the cord. Besides offering 55+ cable channels are included for just $20 per month, Philo TV also provides unlimited cloud-DVR.

Sign up for Philo
Start a 7-day free trial

Philo is definitely the cheapest way to enjoy cable channels after you’ve cut the cord. Besides offering 55+ cable channels are included for just $20 per month, Philo TV also provides unlimited cloud-DVR.

Jacqueline Zote

Jacqueline Zote is a digital marketing and entertainment writer who makes regular contributions to Sprout Social and Recreation Insider. Her interests range from pop culture and mythology to social activism. When she’s not writing, she goes on food adventures and binges on crime drama. Her short fiction has been published by HarperCollins Publishers and Zubaan Books.