YouTube TV vs DIRECTV STREAM (2023): What Service Offers the Best Options?


Are you ready to cut the cord, but aren’t sure which service is for you? Check out this comparison of YouTube TV vs DIRECTV STREAM to see if either service is the one you want.

Looking for a good streaming service can be hard whether you’re new to cutting the cord, or not. It takes time to go over each service, pick a few that might be worthwhile, and narrow them down from there. That’s the whole point of this comparison, to help you remove some of the work! In the sections below, you’ll find out all about YouTube TV and DIRECTV STREAM. If you’ve been considering these services, this should help you pick one to enjoy. You’ll find out all the details on pricing, channel availability, sports networks, included features, and more.

YouTube TV and DIRECTV STREAM have been available for awhile so they both have earned some reliable reputation points in the streaming world. Both services offer large channel lineups with good access to both local and sports networks. They also offer some decent package features that are worth checking out. Keep reading to find the right service for you!


What is YouTube TV?

YouTube TV is a live streaming service that offers a legal alternative to cable. One package is available that includes 85+ channels for $65 a month. Some add-ons are available for an additional fee. YouTube TV is a good choice for newer streaming users because most people are familiar with the YouTube setup. You can stream YouTube TV on mobile devices, Chromecast, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, computers, and more.

In addition to live networks that include local channels and ESPN, you’ll receive an on-demand library and access to YouTube Originals. If you want to save content to watch on your own schedule, you’ll have access to a private cloud-based DVR. Families can make up to six profiles per account. You can find out more in our YouTube TV review.

YouTube TV offers a free 7-day trial!



DIRECTV STREAM offers a cable-like experience without the hidden fees or forced contracts. Unlike cable, you can cancel DIRECTV STREAM whenever you want. DIRECTV STREAM offers multiple packages, starting at $75 a month. The smallest package includes more than 65 channels. Local channels are included in most parts of the country in every package. You can stream DIRECTV STREAM on computers, mobile devices, Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Chromecast, Roku, and other devices.

DIRECTV STREAM is popular with many new households to streaming because the look and feel is incredibly similar to cable. In addition to live channels, DIRECTV STREAM offers an on-demand library that is filled with content and access to TV Everywhere apps. A cloud-DVR is also included. Our DIRECTV STREAM review has even more information.

Try DIRECTV STREAM free for 5-days!


Pricing Options: YouTube TV vs DIRECTV STREAM

YouTube TV offers one plan, which is available for $65 a month after a free 7-day trial. Each plan includes more than 85 popular local and premium cable channels. Additional channel and feature add-ons are available for a fee. You can cancel your plan straight through your online account any time you want.

DIRECTV STREAM offers multiple packages, starting with 65+ channels for $75 per month. Larger packages are available for an additional fee. You can also add several packages and bundles for a price. Every subscription begins with a free 5-day trial. You can cancel DIRECTV STREAM whenever you want.

Winner: Tie (Both services offer large plans at a similar price and start you off with a free trial period.)


Channel Selection: YouTube TV vs DIRECTV STREAM

For a lot of sports fans, the way to pick a live streaming service depends on the sports networks that they offer. Of course, that doesn’t mean that they won’t want to watch other things or that their family won’t want to watch something else. This section is for the non-sports channels that each service offers. After we look at the general entertainment options, you can find out all about which sports channels are available.

YouTube TV and DIRECTV STREAM offer some of the top networks at similar prices. Both services offer some of the most popular channels and they both include local channels in most areas. If you’re looking for details on a specific channel (not related to sports) you’ll find it here.

YouTube TV’s channel lineup includes:

Local channels (ABC, CBS, FOX, NBC), ABC News, AMC, Animal Planet, BET, Bravo, Cartoon Network, CMT, Comedy Central, Discovery, Disney, Freeform, E!, Food Network, FX, HGTV, ID, MTV, National Geographic, Nat Geo Wild, Nickelodeon, OWN, Oxygen, TBS, TNT, truTV, USA, and more!

Here’s what DIRECTV STREAM has to offer:

Local channels (ABC, CBS, FOX, NBC), A&E, AMC, Animal Planet, BBC America, Boomerang, Cartoon Network, Destination America, Discovery, Disney, Food Network, Freeform, Hallmark, HGTV, History, ID, Lifetime, National Geographic, Nickelodeon, Syfy, TBS, TNT, truTV, USA, and more.

*DIRECTV STREAM’s channel lineup will depend on the package you choose, but all channels that are mentioned are available in one of the available DIRECTV STREAM plans.

Both streaming services offer impressive lineups, but like every service, each one has something missing. The missing channels you won’t find on YouTube TV include A&E, Destination America, History Channel, and Lifetime Network. You will find all of those channels on DIRECTV STREAM, but what you won’t find is NFL Network.

Winner: Tie (Both networks are missing something, but they offer most popular channels, good access to local channels, and a variety of package add-ons.)


Sports Coverage: YouTube TV vs DIRECTV STREAM

Sports coverage is a big part of both the YouTube TV and the DIRECTV STREAM lineup. Both services offer local channels and most of the major sports networks that sports fans enjoy. Not only that, but they both offer additional sports options, should you need to add them.

The YouTube TV sports lineup includes: Local channels (ABC, CBS, FOX, NBC), ACCN, BTN, CBSSN, ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU, ESPNews, FS1, FS2, MLB Network, NBA TV, NBC Sports Network regional channels, NFL Network, Olympic Channel, SEC Network, and SNY.

YouTube TV’s base plan includes over 20 sports channels. An additional, Sports Plus bundle is available for $11 per month. This add-on package includes FOX College Sports, FOX Soccer Plus, GolTV, MAVTV, NFL RedZone, Stadium, and TVG.

The DIRECTV STREAM sports lineup includes: ABC, ACC Network, Big Ten Network, CBS, CBS Sports Network, ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNews, ESPNU, FS1, FS2, Golf, MLB Network, NBA TV, NBC, NHL Network, Olympic Channel, SEC Network, Sportsman Network, Tennis,

DIRECTV STREAM includes around 20+ sports channels, depending on the package that you choose. Unlike YouTube TV, DIRECTV STREAM doesn’t offer any additional sports bundles with multiple channels. You can however add NBA League Pass to your account for $40 per month.

Winner: Tie (Both services are missing one of the major sports networks. For YouTube TV, you won’t have NHL Network. DIRECTV STREAM is missing NFL Network. The better service could come down to which sport is your favorite.)


Package Features: YouTube TV vs DIRECTV STREAM

Now it’s time to look at what features that both services offer. A feature is basically anything that is added to your account as part of the service, but that’s not live TV. Some examples might be an on-demand library, access to TV Everywhere apps, or the ability to stream on multiple devices at the same time.

YouTube TV includes some of the top features for live streaming services. They are family friendly, offering six profiles per account, and the ability to stream on three devices at one time. Other features include TV Everywhere app compatibility, an on-demand library, and a cloud-based DVR that offers unlimited space.

DIRECTV STREAM offers a lot of the same features that YouTube TV does. You’ll be able to stream on three devices at once and your account comes with an unlimited cloud-DVR. You will also be able to use a variety of TV Everywhere apps. An on-demand library is also included.

Winner: Tie (Most of the features offered through YouTube TV and DIRECTV STREAM are so similar it would be hard to choose a service based on the features alone.)


Pros & Cons: YouTube TV

Here we look at each service individually so that you can determine if one of them will really be able to offer what you want. First, we will look at YouTube TV:


  • Local channels in most areas
  • 20+ sports channels including ESPN & NFL Network
  • Many top networks in cable news and general entertainment
  • $65 per month is cheaper than cable and no contracts are included
  • Unlimited cloud-DVR is included
  • Stream content on the most popular streaming devices
  • YouTube Originals are part of your plan
  • YouTube TV includes a free 7-day trial


  • A few key non-sports channels are missing including A&E, History, & Lifetime
  • With Bally Sports missing, regional sports coverage is lacking

Now that you know more about YouTube TV, let’s look at DIRECTV STREAM.



YouTube TV offers an impressive channel lineup, plenty of sports, and decent features. Let’s see how DIRECTV STREAM stacks up.


  • Most of the top cable channels are included
  • Local channels in most areas
  • Multiple plans to suit a variety of needs
  • Plenty of add-on channel options
  • An on-demand library and unlimited cloud-DVR is included
  • Stream on three screens simultaneously
  • DIRECTV STREAM starts you off with a 5-day trial


  • Multiple plans could be confusing for some
  • Larger packages are great, but they also mean that this service could cost more than others like it

 Winner: Tie (Both services offer more pros than cons and they both offer good local and sports coverage, making them great options for sports fans.)


Conclusion: What’s Better? YouTube TV or DIRECTV STREAM?

In the battle of YouTube TV vs DIRECTV STREAM, it could come down to the sports you want to watch. If you love football, you won’t find NFL Network on DIRECTV STREAM, but it is available on YouTube TV. If you’re a hockey fan, you’ll find NHL Network on DIRECTV STREAM, but its missing from YouTube TV. Otherwise, both of these services offer local channels in most areas and most of the top networks in television. The package features are similar, too. All in all, either of these live streaming services would be a great way to watch sports online without cable!

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