There are various legitimate options available for watching Indian TV channels.
- Sling TV : This is the most popular and highly recommended service for live Indian TV channels. They have packages of Indian channels ranging from $10 – $45 to choose from. You can subscribe the packages from month-to-month and requires no long-term contracts. SlingTV apps are available for XBOX, Roku, Smart TVs, desktop & iphones (and growing support for other devices). Most of the channels are high quality HD content and the streaming quality and reliability is quite good too. Also, their app allows us to pause live TV, watch from beginning or watch shows from upto a week back (which I think is a pretty unique and cool feature). You can also subscribe to US cable channels if you wish to though I just used them while my parents visited me for few months. Being a cricket fan, I have subscribed to their Sports package (for $10) which includes Willow TV (a direct subscription on willowTV costs $15 per month). They have a free 7-day trial too (and do checkout their promotional offer of free Roku express with new subscription signups). Erstwhile known as ‘DishWorld IPTV’.
- Yupp TV : Yupp TV also has wide range of channels and packages to choose from. They have an extensive support for devices and good options for regional/South Indian TV channels. Their packages range from $10 – $25. For Hindi packages though, they DO NOT offer Sony, Star and Colors TV channels in USA as they have exclusive tie-ups with SlingTV only.
- Hotstar USA: Hotstar recently launched their service for USA/Canada region. Their plans start from $10/ month and includes all STAR channels like Star Plus, Star World, Channel V, Life OK etc. Their app is currently available on Apple TV, chromecast, Roku, iOS and Android devices. They also feature ‘Hotstar Originals’ (inspired from Netflix originals) and some of the shows are quite popular (like Sarabhai vs Sarabhai Season 2, On Air with AIB etc). They do have plans to add more original content soon. The disadvantage of Hotstar is that they only feature STAR channels. If you want to view other channels like Colors, Zee or any other news channel, you will have to subscribe to one of these other services like Sling or Yupp TV.
- Jadoo TV: Its an IPTV set top box that aggregates content from all over internet and packages them nicely into respective channels. From what I have heard, the video quality is not though. And there is a 30-second commercial everytime you change a channel which can be annoying. It is however a cheaper option as you pay just a one-time fee with no monthly subscription fees. This service is loosing its popularity since arrival of Sling and Yupp. Do your research before choosing this option.
- MyIndianTV: MyIndiantv supports multiple ways to watch Indian channels: SetTop box, Android TV, Apple and Android tablets and Kodi plugin. Unlike Jadoo TV, you are not required to buy a set top box (of ~$200) and you can pay as you watch for $14.95 per month with no contracts. They offer approx 100 channels for that price which is quite decent. I tried them recently and was quite happy with their quality and buffering speed. They do not offer packages with varying no. of channels and prices though.
Apart from these services, you can also try out following options:
- Youtube: Subscribe to official channels of Indian TV providers. Most of them upload full episodes with 1-2 days of delay. If you are fine with the delay, its a great place to catch up with Indian TV serials.
- Most of the news channels are streamed for free in US. NDTV 24 x 7, CNN IBN, Aaj Tak etc can be viewed live on their respective websites.
- Willow TV owns most of the cricket content in US. You will have pay a monthly subscription upto $15. Supports lots of streaming devices.
- Netflix has added some Indian TV series to its content recently like CID, Crime Patrol, Maharana Pratap.
- There are some providers that provide streaming for cheap but I haven’t had any experience with them. Try them at your own risk: www.enteroku.com.
- There are few other providers available as well who offer Indian TV channels without having legitimate rights to distribute them. Checkout this link: www.CheckYourBox.com which is a ‘not-for-profit’ effort from an association of number of service providers and channels who are fighting against piracy. It’s helpful to avoid buying set-top boxes that are either geo-blocked or stream content illegally.
- Stay away from Kodi and its illegal plugins to watch copyrighted channels. I have read about content providers taking legal actions against them.