The 2018 Winter Olympics are here. Not all of us live in the Peyongchang Time Zone, so catching up on the Twenty-Third Winter Olympiad is a problem. My wife and I currently use Hulu Plus for streaming, but the layout of the Hulu Plus Olympic tab made it difficult to find out what events are scheduled. After a little poking around, we found that the NBC Sports App is the best way to stream the Olympics for cord cutters.
NBC Sports App Olympics Features
Unlike Hulu Plus, the NBC Sports App is laid out well. It offers a good amount of content and is easy to use. There are different sections for live and upcoming events. You can watch full event replays. If you heard how great the Finnish curling team was last Saturday, you are in luck. Condensed event highlights are available.
Interviews and features stories of different Olympic athletes are also on the App.
If you are a fan of Alpine Skiing or the Skeleton, you are in luck. Users can also filter video by individual sports. If you want to see more mainstream sports (i.e. hockey) are on the docket, you can sort by that too.
NBC Sports App Streaming Quality
The streaming quality of the NBC Sports App is reliable. One drawback to the streaming abilities of Hulu Plus is that the broadcast is frequently interrupted. It is merely inconvenient when watching Saturday Night Live, but this is a problem when trying to indulge in speed skating. The Hulu Plus stream constantly interrupts to reload. Those ten seconds of buffering can ruin any live match.
The quality of the stream has not been an issue for the NBC Sports App, which we use through a Roku device. The only drawback to watching events has been that the commercial breaks come at inconvenient moments during the broadcast. The commercials have not interrupted an Olympic event we are watching, but they will cut away as the announcers are breaking down what just happened. That can be an issue for viewers who are not familiar with the minutiae of ice dancing twizzles.
The same commercials do tend to repeat with great frequency. Prepare yourself for loops of Winter Olympics, Geico caveman, and Koch Industries commercials.
NBC Sports App Availability
The NBC Sports App is available on a number of platforms. At least for the Olympics, the NBC Sports App is free.* It does not require a pay subscription. It is available for both Apple and Google Play stores. Roku, Amazon Fire TV, Chromecast, Xbox, and Samsung all host the NBC Sports App.
*2/14/18 Update: I have found that the app is in fact not free. A subscription is required to sign up for the app. I now believe that my Hulu Plus subscription synced with the NBC Sports App.
www.flatcircleblog.com is a Philadelphia pop-culture blog that covers television, music, podcasts, and movies. Follow along on Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest, or subscribe by e-mail to catch all posts and conversations.