Philo isn’t one of the big players in the live TV sector. The leaders in the market have millions of subscribers in the USA, but Philo has only 50,000. Nevertheless, Philo is still worth considering and it is expected to grow to greater prominence over the next few years.
With some of the biggest media companies in the USA as investors, Philo doesn’t have difficulty sourcing content. However, the managers of the system want to keep the price of the service low. The play-off between price and content is a difficult one. The Philo price point is less than half the price of industry leader Hulu with Live TV and also cheaper than YouTube TV. The Philo system is even cheaper than Sling TV, which is one of the lowest-priced live TV streaming service available.
How is Philo different?
Philo manages to provide prestigious TV channels, while maintaining a low price. Channels on Philo include AMC, BBC America, Food Network, Lifetime, MTV, HGTV, Comedy Central, Nickelodeon, Nick Toons, and Nick Jr.
Unlike the major live TV streaming services, Philo doesn’t include the big for networks: ABC, NBC, CBS, or Fox. It also doesn’t have any sports channels and there is only one news channel – BBC World News.
Who is Philo best for?
The channel lineup of Philo will appeal to young adults and first-time home owners. There are a lot of music channels and other stations on the service, such as Trvl, Comedy Central, Sundance TV and TVLand tend to appeal more to twentysomethings more than senior citizens.
As a very cheap live TV system, Philo’s main rival is Sling TV. These two systems are very suitable as cable TV replacements. The advantage of Philo and other live TV streaming services is that the don’t have the upfront costs of satellite and cable TV systems. There is no special equipment needed and no installation fee.
Other features of Philo will appeal to cord cutters. There is no deposit requirement and no credit check to start the service. Philo doesn’t require a contract. Each customer just pays per month, so there is no possibility of early termination fees, late payment penalties, or reconnection fees.
The customer just pays for a month and then watches as that credit ticks down. If the customer doesn’t pay again at the end of the month, the service stops being available, when lapsed customers wants to take up the service again, they just have to make a payment and the service starts working again.
How to get Philo
You will need an internet connection in order to stream live TV with Philo. For one screen, your internet service should have at least 3 Mbps of bandwidth. The Philo service allows three simultaneous streams, so if several people are going to be streaming Philo on the same internet service, you will probably need around 7 Mbps download capacity from your internet provider.
You don’t need any special equipment to stream Philo – it can be streamed onto the gadgets that you already own. The system plays through a media player on the Philo website, which means you can stream live TV through a web browser, no matter whether your computer runs Windows, Linux, or Mac OS. The browsers that are compatible with Philo are Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Internet Explorer, and Safari.
Philo produces apps for mobile devices, so you can get live TV streams on iOS devices, including the iPhone, the iPod Touch, and the iPad. An Android app for phones and tablets will also run on Kindle Fire tablets.
Shows can be streamed from browsers and mobile apps onto TV sets with a Google Chromecast., Other streaming systems that will get Philo onto your TV are Roku, Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, and Android TV set-top boxes.
The registration process for Philo is a little different to other live TV streaming services. The new user has to enter a mobile phone number or email address into a field in the Philo website. The site then sends a link to the registration form.
Philo offers a 7-day free trial, but that is a little different to what anyone would expect as well. The initial free trial lasts for two days. During that period, you need to enter your billing details. Once you do that, you get five more days of the free trial. At the end of the trial you will be charged and the first paid month begins. The system rebills automatically at the end of each month unless the user deletes billing and card information. In order to avoid the free trial rolling on automatically to the paid service, the user needs to cancel the service before the free period ends.