ESPN+: All your questions answered about ESPN's streaming service

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  • ESPN+ is a sports streaming platform with original video content, live games, and in-depth news and analysis.
  • The service is also home to exclusive UFC pay-per view events, including UFC 251 on July 11. 
  • You can access ESPN+ via the existing ESPN app on a variety of streaming players, mobile devices, and smart TVs.
  • It costs $4.99 per month or $49.99 annually, saving you $10 on the monthly price. You can also bundle ESPN+ with Hulu and Disney+ for $12.99 a month. 
  • See also: Disney Plus: Everything you need to know about Disney's ad-free streaming service

 

Streaming has largely overtaken cable and satellite as the preferred method to watch movies and TV shows at your leisure. Low price points and the ability to watch on the go are primary reasons for the migration, but one sector has largely resisted any such paradigm shift — professional sports.

If you're a sports fan, you might be shelling out for traditional cable just to watch your favorite team. Hefty deals between sports leagues and TV networks have prevented services like Netflix from streaming games, but ESPN now has a low-cost service that should satiate many sports fans' appetites. 

Updated on 07/10/2020 by Steven Cohen: We've revised this article to include details about upcoming UFC events on ESPN+, including UFC 251 on July 11.

What is ESPN+?

ESPN+ is a streaming subscription service that's considered a complement to existing ESPN content, not technically a separate platform. Think of it as an add-on to the standard ESPN app with live games, exclusive on-demand videos, and access to what was formerly known as ESPN Insider.

Previously, ESPN Insider offered subscribers exclusive written articles for a monthly $4.99 fee. ESPN decided to add video to the mix and created ESPN+ for the same price, giving subscribers access to stories, live streaming, and on-demand videos.

What's included with ESPN+?

ESPN+ includes a bevy of exclusive video content from live games to on-demand shows and exclusive stories. Unfortunately, the live games come with commercials — just like regular TV.

Subscribers can watch live games from the MLB, NHL, and MLS when their seasons are active; there are no live NBA or NFL games. There's also PGA golf, UFC, college football, international soccer, and tennis.

In addition to games, ESPN+ also features original shows, including in-depth game recaps and analyses hosted by Peyton Manning and Daniel Cormier, and a shorter version of "NFL Primetime." Documentary programs, like "30 for 30," as well as full replays of historic NFL games are also available to stream on-demand.

Does ESPN+ offer UFC PPV and UFC Fight Night events?

If you're a fan of UFC or boxing, ESPN+ will often offer exclusive pay-per-view (PPV) matches so you'll get even more content from the service. The PPV events cost $64.99 for existing subscribers. The next UFC PPV event will be UFC 251 on July 11.

In addition to PPV matches, ESPN+ also features access to UFC Fight Night events, including a trio of events set to take place on UFC's Fight Island in Abu Dhabi. Fight Night events are typically included as part of a regular ESPN+ subscription for $4.99 per month.

What's not included with ESPN+?

ESPN+ is technically separate from ESPN, ESPN2, and ESPNews, so a subscription will not grant you access to live games being broadcast on those networks, including any live games during Monday Night Football and Sunday Night Baseball. That said, MLB games are still available to be streamed.

New docuseries currently airing on ESPN, like "The Last Dance," are also not included with a subscription. With that said, programs like this could be added to the ESPN+ library at a later date.

Your ESPN+ account is not the same as a cable login with access to the ESPN networks, so there's no way of getting around it either. 

How much does ESPN+ cost?

An ESPN+ subscription will only run you $4.99 per month, or $49.99 annually — $10 less than what you'd pay if you go month to month.

There's also a combo package that bundles ESPN+ with Hulu and the new Disney Plus streaming service for just $12.99 per month — a $5 savings each month compared to getting all three services separately.

Where can I watch ESPN+?

One of the cool things about ESPN+ is that you can access it through the current ESPN app.

Instead of launching a separate app, all the ESPN+ content is unlocked in the ESPN app once you subscribe. The app is available on virtually every platform you can imagine — phones, tablets, laptops, Roku players, Fire TV products, Apple TV, Android TV, Chromecast, PS4, Xbox One, and Samsung smart TVs. 

You can also stream on up to three devices simultaneously with one account.

How do I sign up for ESPN+?

Head over to the ESPN+ website and create an account, or open your existing ESPN account and you'll be prompted to sign up.

 

Read more about ESPN+ on Insider Reviews:

  • A full price breakdown for ESPN's streaming service, ESPN+ — here's everything you need to know
  • How to watch UFC pay-per-view events on ESPN+
  • 15 must-see '30 for 30' sports documentaries streaming on ESPN+ right now — a monthly subscription is only $5
  • ESPN+ has a ton of new original shows — here are the 5 best ones to stream

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