The power of PLEX – a low-cost, DIY streaming service
Plex is doubling down on its support for capturing over-the-air signals from digital antennas this morning, with the announcement that it will now not only let users record TV programs, it will also allow them to watch live TV. The result is a low-cost, do-it-yourself version of a live TV streaming service – a popular new category in the streaming market, which offers a pay-TV live experience over the internet.
To be clear, Plex only offers official channels that you can get over the air – that means, broadcast stations like ABC, NBC, CBS, FOX, PBS, CW, Univision, etc. That’s not to say you cant purchase a subscription from one of the many sellers across the UK to fill your Plex setup with Shows / Movies / Live Streams & Sports channels… But that’s a topic for another day.
Once setup it really can be a great rival to the similar Kodi giving users a great experience across all there devices. With no installs (Only a server setup that can be online or on a PC at your house or even on your Nvidia Shield) So well worth checking out if you haven’t already & are a TV Nerd or a Streaming fan.
The company, whose background is in organizing users’ personal media collections, expected to go after the cord cutter market last fall with the introduction of DVR capabilities for recording over-the-air TV.
Today, with the added support for live TV, Plex is also expecting its lineup of supported vendors for digital tuners beyond the HDHomeRun. Users can now take advantage of USB tuners from Hauppauge & Avermedia, for example, among several other brands. (A full list of supported tuners will be posted here.)
As for the live TV interface itself, you’re able to filter the available programming by channel, genre, year, content rating or even actor. You can also click to see “Shows on Now,” which lets you see which movies, sports, news, or TV series are currently airing.
The Program Guide also helps you find something to watch by making recommendations, based on what else you’ve been watching on Plex, & it will alert you to upcoming movies, sports, & other items of interest – like shows with new episodes or those starting soon.
Plex’s plan in venturing the live TV space is to offer consumers interested in cutting the cord a way to complement their Netflix or Amazon Prime Video subscriptions with access to the sort of television they would otherwise miss – especially local news & sports.
Plex is not exactly a full alternative to the higher-priced live TV streaming services like Sling TV, DirecTV Now, Hulu’s live TV service, YouTube TV, & PlayStation Vue. Those services bundle cable TV channels into packages & offer premium channels like HBO, while also, in many cases, include DVR recording functions but as way say that can easily be changed by purchasing a subscription from one of the many UK sellers (bear in mind we cant recommend this truly due to the legality) and cant guarantee a service would be as good as you imagine! Your talking about a very populated market. Do your research!
But many consumers are tempted to subscribe to these services not for specific content, but because they miss the “always on” & passive nature of browsing live, linear TV for something to watch. In that case, Plex could fill their needs.
Plex also wants to target cord cutters because of that market’s potential for growth, the company says. 25 percent of U.S. homes are opting not to subscribe to traditional pay TV, a 2016 study found. & many who haven’t cut the cord are hanging on because they would miss their local broadcast stations – an area where Plex is poised to help.
The company tells us it now has 13 million registered users, though the active number is lower. The recent DVR feature was adopted by tens of thous&s of subscribers, &, with support for live TV, Plex aims to grow its cord cutter audience to the hundreds of thousands.
Live TV, like the DVR recording option, isn’t offered at additional charge. It’s still covered by the usual Plex Pass subscription price of $4.99 per month. Plex also offers its subscription at discounted rates for yearly ($39.99) or lifetime ($119.99) subscribers.
The new feature will first be supported on Plex on any iOS or Android TV platform, including Nvidia Shield’s, with Android mobile & Apple TV to follow. Support for Plex’s additional platforms will roll out soon after, the company says.
So fancie a break from Kodi? Something a little different? Very easy to fill Plex with beautiful content if you know where to look! But well leave that one for you to google away.
Let us know what you think guys! & if you have a second please give this a share! Its all about community here.