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How to stream CW without cable in 2024

CW streaming options
Hulu + Live TV is our recommended service for watching CW. Best Provider
Free stream
CW does have their own mobile app.
CW app

The CW is an over-the-air local channel, so the easiest and cheapest way to get it is with an HD antenna. If that's not an option, you can watch CW without a cable subscription on a few different streaming services. We typically recommended Hulu + Live TV, DIRECTV Stream and Fubo. Good news is you can also stream CW for free via their own app. 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 CW.

Try an antenna first (no monthly fee)

Mohu 30 HD antenna
Mohu 30

Before you commit to a monthly charge to get CW, think about getting an HD antenna first. They've come a long way over the years. Most are now compact, extremely slim and picture quality comes in at very high quality HD (as long as the signal is strong enough). HD antennas range from $15 to over $100. Other than build quality, the big difference is signal radius. The more expensive antennas let you capture more channels in your area, and a bigger percentage in HD. There are also even services that let you view all the antenna channels in a streamlined program guide with the ability to record to a cloud DVR. For most uses, we recommend the Mohu antenna (30-60 mile radius), though there are a bunch of similar models. Check on Amazon.

Back to over-the-air coverage, CW is mostly available in or near the top 100 populated cities in the country. So, if you're out in the boondocks, you're not likely to capture its signal. Otherwise, an HD antenna should be able to find it.

CW on Hulu Live - our recommended service

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

Hulu + Live TV delivers all your local channels so if you're in a zip code that gets the CW, you qualify for it. Use Hulu's zip finder to view all your local programming, including CW. If you don't see it in the list, you're won't be able to get CW with Hulu. Option B is watching via CW's app. It's free though you'll need to put up with ads. Other local channels you're likely to get alongside CW include: Telemundo, ABC, NBC, Fox and more.

Price /mo
Free Trial
Hulu with Live TV
Free Disney+ & ESPN+


  • Good mix of 90 popular channels
  • 2 simultaneous connections
  • 50 hours of Hulu cloud DVR
  • Access to huge Hulu on-demand library
  • Disney+ and ESPN+ included free


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

We chose Hulu + Live TV as our top pick because it has locals, its plans are relatively cheap and you get a ton of value for the price. Not only do you get all those live channels but Hulu's on demand library with NBC programming is an excellent resource. Toss in free partner apps like Disney+ and ESPN+ and there's a lot to like here.

CW on Fubo

Streaming CW with Fubo
  • Channels: 261
  • Best price: $32.99
  • 7-day free trial
Fubo Program Guide Visit Fubo

Fubo started out as a leader in Spanish programming and sports. Its grown into a well-rounded service that also includes a full suite of local channels, including CW. In most places, you'll also get Univision, Unimas, Telemuno and more. The cheapest Fubo plan with CW is Pro ($79.99/mo for 185 channels). In most areas, you'll also get access to a good number of other local channels as well: ABC, CBS, Unimas, Telemundo, etc.

With regard to playback, fubo does a solid job in its program guide of breaking up CW shows into two main categories: "Live and Upcoming" and "On Demand". "Live and Upcoming" streams all the current programming and everything that will air in the coming days. If you missed it when it aired and didn't record it, "On Demand" lets you watch shows that aired the previous week (hundreds available at any given time).

Price /mo
Free Trial
1,000 hrs cloud DVR
7 days
1,000 hrs Cloud DVR
7 days


  • Most channels alongside CW
  • Best for sports fans
  • 1,000 hours of DVR storage
  • Watch on up to 10 Screens


  • CW not part of Latino plan
Live TVStreaming FuboFubo review

If you dig the CW and sports (especially soccer), Fubo is probably your best option. It has way more sports options than Hulu Live (including 6 beIN channels, 11 TUDNxtra channels, 1 fuboSports channel and Regional Sports Networks which broadcast your local teams' games). Those RSNs are hard to find via streaming - Hulu Live doesn't have them but the next provider, DIRECTV Stream, does. Overall, even non-sports fans will dig fubo and it has the most channels that complement CW.

CW on DIRECTV Stream

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

DIRECTV Stream was an internet spin-off of DIRECTV's satellite service. As a result, Stream customers benefit from DIRECTV's vast library of programming and licensing contracts. Those include getting all your local channels like CW. Other local channels you're likely to get include CBS, ABC, Fox, NBC, Univision, PBS and more. DIRECTV Stream has 4 plans and all of them include locals and Regional Sports Networks. So, the cheapest plan with CW is Entertainment (75 channels for $79.99/mo). If you prefer Spanish programming, their Optimo Más plan is exactly the same price and also includes CW (100 channels for $79.99/mo.)

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


  • All local channels, including CW
  • Unlimited cloud DVR storage
  • Unlimited connections at home
  • 30+ Regional Sports Networks (RSNs) included
  • HBO, Showtime, STARZ free for 3 mths.


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

No one has more Regional Sports Networks than DIRECTV (even Fubo). So, for folks in areas that feature a smaller RSN, you still may not get it with other providers. You definitely will with DIRECTV Stream. Prices are competitive with other providers though their taxes are a bit higher than some. Overall, DIRECTV Stream for CW stacks up roughly in the middle of the pack.

Stream CW for free with their app

Other than via an HD antenna, the other way to watch CW for free is with their app. While not the snazziest TV app on the market, the CW app still provides plenty of value (we prefer it to most cable apps). Of course, the best feature is the ability to watch CW for free -- no login or registration required. Like Tubi and Pluto TV, it's all subsidized with ads. You won't see the old school 8 minutes of ads during a 30 min show -- it's closer to about 4 min, depending on the show. The app is free and available for iOS and Android.

The iOS version has an aggregate rating of 3.1/5 (20k reviews). That's a bit below average compared to the industry (most of that was due to bugs, most of which are now squashed). The Android version has a 4.1/5 (370k reviews) -- that's solid and, as you can see with the 20x more reviews, the Android app is more popular and better maintained by the fubo team.

Streaming services with and without CW

The CW channel is only available on streaming providers that offer a full suite of local channels. Other than the three we already profiled above, only YoutubeTV also has it. Sling TV doesn't as they've removed all local channels to keep costs down. Sometimes, channels can be purchased as part of an add-on but that's not the case with CW on any current provider.

CW streaming options
Stream Hulu LiveHulu Live
Streaming DIRECTV StreamDTV Stream
Streaming FuboFubo
Streaming Sling TVSling TV
  • $40/mo
  • 7-day trial
Streaming YouTube TVYouTube TV
Streaming PhiloPhilo
  • $25/mo
  • 7-day trial
Streaming Peacock TVPeacock TV
  • $4.99/mo
  • 7-day trial
Streaming Paramount+Paramount+
  • $4.99/mo
  • 7-day trial

Devices that work with CW

Since it has its own app and is found on a handful of streaming services, CW has wide compatibility with devices and operating systems. For example, Roku and Apple TV both carry it as direct downloads from their app libraries. iOS and Android both work equally well. Cable providers like Xfinity that carry CW have their own mobile apps but, in general, streaming services seem to do a better job of showcasing on demand stuff. Of all the ways to watch it, we prefer going direct via the CW app on an Android phone.

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

Similar channels to The CW

Streaming CW

Since it launched in 2006, CW has been mostly geared to the 18 to 35 year-old demographic. So, dramas (superheroes!) and reality shows make up a big chunk of their programming. Some of their classics include Supernatural, The Flash, Smallville, Roswell, Riverdale, etc.

If you're looking for similar programming, especially with other local channels, Fox's lineup stacks up pretty well. Newcomers like The Cleaning Lady and classics like the Simpsons and Family Guy have a huge following, especially among young adults.

Not many know that the CW also has live sports. The recently inked a deal to broadcast LIV Golf. Channels like ESPN have been in the golf game for decades. They feature a bunch of the major tourneys like the PGA Championship and the ESPN sister channels do a solid job of covering smaller PGA/LPGA events. ESPN+, a free part of Hulu Live TV, carries a BUNCH of PGA throughout the year (they have more air time to dedicate to it on weekends).

Upcoming events on the CW

With new licensing deals and original programming, The CW has really increased its programming scope over the past few years. Just in the past year, they became the home of LIV golf and signed a deal to broadcast ACC sports (including college football games).

ACC on CW thru Jan 2024

The ACC is now on the CW! The new broadcast agreement kicked off 9/16/23 and at least one CFL game will exclusively be shown on the CW every Saturday. You'll also get to see a variety of other NCAA events as well.

LIV Golf Adelaide 4/26/24

The upstart LIV Golf association resumes after a winter break. It tees off in late April with the Adelaide 2024 tourney (in Grange, SA). After the PGA and LIV golf surprisingly merged,, it's anyone's guess how that shakes out for new tourneys. Expect some crossover events and mixed tourneys. Either way, should calm things down and get the focus back on what counts... good tee shots!

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