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How to watch CNN without cable in 2024

Sling TV is our recommended service for watching CNN. Best Provider
Free stream
CNN does have their own mobile app.
CNN app

You can watch CNN without a cable or satellite TV subscription on a handful of streaming services. Our recommended providers include Sling TV, Hulu Live and DIRECTV Stream. Tubi is the only free way to stream CNN. Read on for all the details...

Note: For all sections below, a checkmark A checkmark below means that it's our favorite. next to a plan means that it's our favorite way of getting CNN.

Streaming services with CNN

3 different pay services and 1 free option

From Anderson Cooper 360° to the best election coverage on TV, CNN is a must-have for even the occasional news watcher. Since CNN is considered basic pay cable, it's nearly impossible to find for free (other than Tubi). They have a solid app and website and subscription to any of the services on this page give you access to all their features (simply find the provider during sign-up and enter your login). The big upside with the app/website is, in addition to the live feed, you can watch a ton of on-demand political clips or interviews whenever you want.

CNN on Sling TV - our recommended service

Streaming CNN with Sling
  • Channels: 46
  • Best price: $40
  • 7-day free trial
Sling TV Program Guide Visit Sling

Owned by DISH satellite TV, Sling TV is a streamlined and inexpensive way to watch live TV. They conveniently break up their library into two different plans, Blue and Orange. They're each priced at $40/mo . Orange is the one with CNN, along with TNT, ESPN, etc (total of 32 channels). The Blue plan has 39 channels but not any Disney properties (ESPN, ESPN 2, Disney, etc). You can combine both plans (50 channels) for $50/mo, all fees included.

Price /mo
Free Trial
Prepay and save
7 days
Prepay and save
7 days


  • Cheapest pay service with CNN
  • 50 hours of DVR storage
  • Device streams: 1 (Orange); 3 (Blue)
  • No long-term contracts
  • Good set of add-on plans


  • The plan w/ CNN (Orange) only allows one device stream
  • Limited local channel coverage (only FOX and NBC)
Live TVStreaming Sling TVSling TV

Overall, Sling is the least expensive way to live stream CNN. There are trade-offs though. Local channels are restricted to FOX and NBC and only available to folks in major markets. Otherwise, you'll need to buy an HD antenna and integrate it with Sling. The other downside is the Orange plan (which includes CNN) only allows one simultaneous stream at a time. So, if multiple people will use the service, consider upgrading to the Sling + Orange combined plan ($50/mo).

CNN on Hulu Live

Streaming CNN with Hulu + Live TV
  • Channels: 90
  • Best price: $76.99
  • Free Disney+
Hulu + Live TV Screenshot Visit Hulu

Hulu used to be just an on-demand service but now you can stream a bunch of live channels, including CNN. Hulu with live TV gives you a total of 90 channels for $76.99/mo, no contracts or extra fees involved. The rest of the channel lineup is pretty solid and, in our opinion, gives you the best value on this list. Sports-wise, in addition to regional sports networks, you also get ESPN, CBS Sports Network, FS1 and the NFL Network.

Price /mo
Free Trial
Hulu + Live TV (w/ ads)
Free Disney+ & ESPN+
Hulu + Live TV (no ads)
Free Disney+ & ESPN+


  • Solid mix of 90 high-demand channels
  • Simultaneous connections: 2
  • 50 hours of Hulu cloud DVR
  • Access to huge Hulu on-demand library
  • Disney+ and ESPN+ included free


  • More expensive than other options with CNN
Live TVStream Hulu LiveHulu Live

Overall, Hulu live brings a ton to the table and with the recent addition of ESPN+ and Disney+ included for free, there's a lot to like for folks looking for a full replacement to cable. At $76.99/mo, it's not the cheapest way to watch CNN but if you want a bunch of live AND on-demand options, look no further.

Stream better: find the fastest internet providers near you


Streaming CNN with DIRECTV Stream
  • Channels: 140
  • Best price: $79.99
  • 5-day free trial
DIRECTV Stream Screenshot Visit DIRECTV Stream

The revamped version of AT&T TV, DIRECTV Stream is the lightweight alternative to the DIRECTV satellite TV service. CNN is part of the Entertainment package and above. With DIRECTV Stream, there are no equipment or installation issues, so setup is a breeze. And as with most of the providers on this page, you can watch via any streaming device you'd like (Fire TV, Roku, iPad/iPhone, Chromecast, etc). There are also no contracts so cancel anytime it's no longer a good fit.

Price /mo
Free Trial
  • Free Sports Pack
5 days
$83.99 $108.99
  • Save $50 over 2 mths
  • Free Sports Pack
5 days


  • Full suite of local channels
  • Unlimited cloud DVR storage
  • Simultaneous connections: 3
  • Fast-forward through commercials
  • Multiple recordings at one time
  • Hey Google voice remote


  • Extra taxes on top of prices above
Live TVStreaming DIRECTV StreamDTV Stream

Overall, there's plenty to like about the relatively new DIRECTV Stream. Its DVR tech is cutting edge and the user experience is top notch. Not surprisingly, these plans are the closest to mainstream cable or satellite TV. The big difference here is the lack of a contract. You're able to cancel anytime, no fees or penalties apply. New customers can even cancel anytime within the first 5 days and receive a full refund, so plenty of time to give the service a whirl.

How to watch CNN for free (Tubi)

As of this writing, the only place we've found that has a live stream of CNN for free is Tubi. Owned by FOX and like all the channels on the free platform, it's ad-supported. So, you'll need to sit through a fair share of commercials but, hey, can't beat free. The main downside here is there isn't a way to record via Tubi so if you're used to catching up on CNN on your time, this option may not work for you. Either way, Tubi is a great way to find niche or older content (popular shows are often setup as dedicated channels airing 24/7). 30+ million subscribers can't be wrong. Check out Tubi here.

Upcoming events

U.S. Presidential Election 2024 11/5/24

From the primaries and all the way to the election date of November 5th, 2024, get a full breakdown of all the candidates, rallies and key debates. Key Dates:
3/5: Super Tuesday (Primaries in multiple states).
3/7: Biden's State of the Union.
4/2: New York Primaries.
7/15: Republican National Convention.
8/19: Democratic National Convention.
9/16: First Presidential Debate.
10/1: Second Presidential Debate.
10/9: Third Presidential Debate.
11/5: Election Date.

Popular shows on CNN

CNN's Anderson Cooper 360°
Anderson Cooper 360°

From world-class election coverage to timely interviews and analysis, CNN is still the go-to place for breaking national and political news. Regardless of your political inclination, CNN generally does a good job of straddling that fine line between objectivity and propaganda. Over the years, they've developed a ton of original programming, a good percentage of them cultural staples. With all the exclusive content, they recently tried to launch a stand-alone streaming app, coined CNN+. It launched with a bunch of fanfare but the apparent lack of demand for having to pay for just news coverage, forced it be shelved a few months later. So, for now, CNN's shows are still only available via TV providers.

Here's a quick list of some of the most popular:

  • Early Start - the first show in the early AM, it recaps the hot news stories of the day. Currently hosted by Christine Romans, it's more of an unscripted morning show, with a relaxed look at life and politics.
  • The Lead - currently hosted by Jake Tapper, it's CNN's mid-afternoon intro show. It doesn't get as in-depth as the evening programs but does a solid job of covering all the major stories.
  • Anderson Cooper 360° - originally launched in 2003, CNN's flagship anchor delivers his unique views on news and politics. It's live and airs daily - CNN's most popular show for at least a few years now.
  • CNN Tonight - first seen in 2009, it's CNN's nightly news show of record. Anchored by a variety of hosts, it's currently led by Alisyn Camerota. If you just need the facts, go here first.
  • Erin Burnett OutFront - hosted by Erin Burnett since 2013, it airs after the prime-time news shows and delves deeper into high profile current affairs.
  • The Situation Room - a mainstay since 2005, Wolf Blitzer delivers his unique perspective on (mostly) the top political news of the day. Especially during election time, it's a great place to track the hour-by-hour results.

Streaming devices with CNN

Wherever CNN is available online, it can be streamed via just about any mobile app, device or operating system. All the compatible devices are below. In most cases, you'll be able to watch pre-recorded, on demand shows as well. Our favorite way to stream CNN is via their own app. It's intuitive and customized to CNN's brand of programming (breaking and in-depth news).

Stream it on:
Roku TV
Apple TV
Fire TV
Xbox TV
Nvidia TV
Web browser
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