Philo vs YouTube TV: What You Need to Know (2019)

The online streaming industry seems to be expanding quite rapidly. With more and more streaming services popping up, it can become difficult to keep them straight! Two popular options are Philo and YouTube TV, both of which provide live TV streaming. In this article, we compare Philo vs YouTube TV to help you narrow down your search.

Both of these services are viable alternatives to cable TV, letting you watch live TV from many of your favorite channels. That said, there are some significant differences between the two – mainly in the type of channels they offer. We’ll give you the full scoop in the guide below.

Similarities Between YouTube TV and Philo

Let’s start with the basics. What are these services, and how are they similar to one another?

  • Both Philo and YouTube TV are alternatives to cable TV
  • Both provide live TV streaming from 50+ channels like Comedy Central, AMC and more
  • Both are available with no contract and can be cancelled at any time
  • Both work on your favorite devices – streaming players, smartphones, computers and more
  • Both focus on live TV but also offer some on-demand (as well as DVR recording)
  • Both are far more affordable than cable TV or satellite

So, as you can see, these two services do share a number of similarities. Both are among the best streaming services currently available. Additionally, each service offers a free trial!

Since it’s possible to try each service for free, you could potentially do your own YouTube TV vs Philo comparison if you wanted to!

Now that we have covered the basics, let’s move on to the differences between YouTube TV and Philo.

Philo vs YouTube TV: At a Glance

Philo is a super-affordable streaming service that has mostly entertainment & lifestyle channels. There are 55+ channels in total, and Philo costs $20 a month. There’s not much coverage of sports or news, however. It offers a free 7 day trial.

YouTube TV is a well-rounded service that has a wider selection of channels, but costs more. There are 85+ channels, and YouTube TV costs $64.99 per month. There’s coverage of news, sports, entertainment and more. It offers a free 7 day trial.

Given that information, here are our broad recommendations:

If you want a very affordable solution for lifestyle and entertainment channels, go with Philo. You’ll save a ton of money and still enjoy a wide selection of networks like Comedy Central, AMC, History, TLC, MTV and many more. See our Philo review for details.

If you want a full cable replacement with news, local channels and sports, go with YouTube TV. You’ll pay more, but you’ll have a wider selection of channels covering sports and news – like FOX News, ESPN, FS1 and many more. See our YouTube TV review for details.

YouTube TV vs Philo Pricing

How will these two services affect your wallet?

Philo is the cheapest by far – offering 55+ channels for just $20 a month.

YouTube TV is more than twice the cost – 85+ channels for $64.99 a month.

However, the comparison is not quite so straightforward as it might look.

The main reason for the huge difference in price is that YouTube TV has sports, while Philo does not. Sports programming costs are huge, and often make up as much as 40% of the cost of cable packages. By cutting out sports, Philo is able to keep prices super-affordable.

This also means that Philo is a fantastic deal for some people – and not really a viable option for others (namely sports fans). You’ll want to weigh the pros and cons of Philo and YouTube TV based on your viewing preferences.

We’ll go over an overview of the channels on YouTube TV and Philo in the section below.

Philo vs YouTube TV Channels

In a lot of ways Philo and YouTube TV are quite similar – but there are huge differences in their channel lineups. Full details are available in the YouTube TV channel list and Philo channel list – but for an overview, check out our thoughts below.

Channel Overview

Philo offers just one package, which costs $20 a month for 55+ channels. No add-ons are available at this time.

In general, Philo focuses almost exclusively on entertainment/lifestyle channels like Comedy Central, AMC, A&E, Discovery, Hallmark, HGTV and Food Network. There are no dedicated sports channels, and only a handful of news networks.

YouTube TV has one main package, costing $64.99 a month for 85+ channels. It also has some add-ons available.

YouTube TV offers a more traditional lineup of channels, covering everything from local sports to entertainment to news. Highlight channels include ESPN, AMC, TNT, FS1, FOX News, CNN, FOX, NBC and more. Local channels are included in most areas.

Entertainment Channels

Entertainment channels

When it comes to entertainment channels, both services bring a lot to the table. However, particularly considering the low price point, Philo comes out ahead in this fight.

Philo offers many of the most popular lifestyle and entertainment networks for a super-cheap $20 a month. In addition to those pictured above, Philo has CMT, MTV, Travel Channel, TLC, Animal Planet and much more. YouTube TV carries most of these networks as well, but the cost is much higher.

Sports Channels

watch sports online

When it comes to sports – there’s no comparison between Philo and YouTube TV. Philo just doesn’t offer any dedicated sports networks (which is the reason it’s so affordable).

YouTube TV, on the other hand, has ESPN, FS1, NBCSN, NBA TV, TNT, SEC Network, and many more. It also offers regional sports channels and local NBC/FOX/CBS affiliates for local sports coverage.

See our guide on how to watch sports online to learn more.

Local Channels

stream local channels

If you want to watch local channels to get your fix of local news stories, big sports games and major events, then you’ll want to go with YouTube TV. The service carries CBS, FOX, NBC and The CW in most areas. Philo does not have local channels at this time.

See how to watch local channels without cable for more tips & tricks!

News Channels

newsFor news, both services have some options. Philo carries Cheddar News and BBC World News, while YouTube TV has some more mainstream options like CNN and FOX News. Overall YouTube TV has a better selection of news networks.

Need more info? See our guide on how to watch news online!

Premium Channels

Premium channels

Premium channels like Showtime, Starz and others are offered through YouTube TV. HBO is not available. Philo does not currently carry any premiums.

This isn’t really a huge consideration, as most premium channels offer their own standalone subscription services. So, premium channel availability should not be a primary consideration when comparing Philo vs YouTube TV.

Device Compatibility

These two services work over the internet, without a cable box. Thus, they will require a compatible device.

YouTube TV devices include:

YouTube TV devices

Philo devices include:

Philo devices

Both services work on many of the best streaming devices, such as Roku, Apple TV, Android TV, etc. Both also work on mobile devices from iOS and Android, as well as on computers.

Philo also works on Amazon Fire TV, while YouTube TV does not.

YouTube TV works on Chromecast, Xbox One and select smart TVs, while Philo does not.


We’ve covered the basics – but are there any specific features that set these two options apart?

DVR Recording

DVR recording is useful for recording shows to watch later. Thankfully, both services offer it. Even better, both have UNLIMITED storage for the DVRs – so you can store as many shows as you want!

On-Demand Streaming

Both services focus on live streaming, but also offer on-demand libraries. Both are fairly similar, and are about what you may be familiar with from cable’s on-demand offerings. You basically get a rotating selection of limited on-demand options, which vary from channel to channel. There’s not much difference between Philo and YouTube TV in this regard (although they obviously have different channels). Philo also has a 72-hour catchup which lets you replay just about anything that’s aired in the last 72 hours.

Simultaneous Streaming

This feature refers to the number of devices that can be logged in and streaming at once, per account. Both Philo and YouTube TV offer 3 simultaneous streams, so there’s no difference here. YouTube TV does have more customization options, though, as it lets you set up up to 6 different profiles on one account.

Which Service is Right for Me?

To wrap up this comparison, here are our bottom-line recommendations.

If you want to save money and mostly want entertainment channels, Philo is an excellent choice. No other service offers this much entertainment for such a low pricetag. Sign up for Philo’s free 7 day trial today!

If you want access to sports, local news, etc. then YouTube TV is a better bet. It’s more expensive, but offers a more complete viewing experience over Philo. Sign up for YouTube TV’s free 7 day trial today!

Lastly, remember that since both services are non-contract, you don’t necessarily have to commit to either long-term. If you end up not liking one, it’s easy to cancel and switch!

Austin Meadows