Thursday, August 11, 2016

Playstation Vue

Playstation Vue is another streaming video option for non-cable-subscribers (similar to Sling TV, which I dropped a few months ago). I decided to try it out while the Olympics are on.
I'd not really considered Vue before, largely because I'm not a Playstation owner. (Well, technically I still have a PS2 someplace. But nothing recent.) I barely even knew it existed, to be honest. It showed up when I was searching for Olympics-watching options, though. Since it has a free week trial, I figured it was worth a try.

My first impression is that Vue has all the polish that Sling TV was lacking, back when I was using it. Signing up was very smooth, once I'd created a Sony Playstation Network account. There's an app for the Amazon Fire TV, which I had no trouble installing and found easy to navigate. I was prompted right away to set up DVR functionality for watching live TV. There's a straightforward guide grid to use for browsing what's on various channels. Things that required effort to get working in Sling were no problem in Vue.

I don't know yet how well the service will hold up as far as performance and quality, but the first few days have been great. I assume that usage is pretty heavy for the Olympics, so that bodes well for being able to actually watch big events (rather than looking at connection errors or stuttering video, as happened regularly with Sling).

Vue costs a bit more than Sling did, at $30/month for the basic tier. It includes more channels than the basic Sling tier, though. Most channels that I'd watch are in the list, particularly the sports networks, Cartoon Network, Comedy Central, and Syfy. The only notable exception is the local regional FOX Sports network - it's available for another $15, but I don't think it's worth that much.

I'll likely keep Vue for at least the next six months or so. That covers the rest of the Olympics, baseball playoffs, and the football season. Maybe longer, if I find other things to use it for.

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