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Sling TV Was the Real Winner of the National Championship

SlingSling TV has a reputation for poor performance during major events like the season premiere of the Walking Dead and Game of Thrones, but they may have overcome these issues. Now it seems that Sling TV stood up well under the pressure of the College Football National Championship and did even better than WatchESPN.

When we talked with Sling TV about last nights big game they said “We set a new record last night for the number of simultaneous Sling TV users. Our teams have been working diligently to continually improve our service performance and to scale for big events like last night’s game.”

Here are a few comments from our readers:

Mark Agnew: “Changing between WatchESPN and ESPN on Sling on my Roku 3, I had no buffering issues with Sling but did encounter several ‘error codes’ and no loads with the WatchESPN channel. Also, as has been my previous experience when comparing the two, the Sling ESPN gives me a flawless hi-def picture while the WatchESPN channel looks like I’m watching a movie of the game instead of a live event.”

Justin Kearns: “Working fine here on Roku stick. Sling has been really rock solid as of late.”

We did receive several complaints that WatchESPN was having buffering issues throughout the game.

Eric Holstein: “I just tuned in at 10:35pm CDT in WatchESPN. Got buffering during the commercial break after Alabama scored with 9:45 left in Q4.”

We had two copies of the game running: one was WatchESPN on the Roku 4 using Ethernet plugged in to a 70 Mbps down. The WatchESPN Channel often had issues with buffering and sound sync. We also ran the Sling TV app on a $49 Amazon Kindle Fire tablet, and it performed flawlessly.

It seems that for the most part Sling TV is able to hold up well to the onslaught that comes from major events. I used Sling TV for college football this year and was impressed with the performance. Although I mostly used the WatchESPN app I did use the Sling TV app often and had zero issues.

So how was your experience? Any issues? How has Sling TV been for you over the last month or two?

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4 Responses to Sling TV Was the Real Winner of the National Championship

  1. Avatar
    Dick Kusleika January 12, 2016 at 6:00 pm #

    I signed up for Sling’s 7 day trial for the semi-final round of the playoffs. We watched Sling for 20 minutes or so, but the buffering was brutal. Every few minutes it would stop and buffer for a few seconds to a few minutes. I switched to WatchESPN and it was remarkably better, although still not rock solid. I canceled before the trial was up.

    Last night someone else signed up for the trial and we watched the game on WatchESPN. Normal buffering issues, but very watchable. We didn’t try it on Sling.

    From what I understand, WatchESPN is one of the few services that accept Sling credentials. If the buffering was unique to New Year’s Eve (and based on the ratings, I can’t believe it was) then I’d probably sign up. But if all I get is ESPN and ESPN2 via WatchESPN because all the other channels are unwatchable, it’s not worth it.

  2. Avatar
    Noah A January 14, 2016 at 10:13 pm #

    The xfinity TVGo app sideloaded on my FireTV Stick worked perfectly. No buffering issues at all.

  3. Avatar
    Susie January 16, 2016 at 10:03 am #

    Sling works great for me, but my only issue with ESPN via Sling is their inability to air commercials. At first I thought that would be awesome, but it’s ended up being incredibly annoying. It’s a licensing issue, I think–I’m not completely sure, but I just know I feel like I’m wearing out my mute button to avoid hearing the jazzy but crazy-making music they play during commercial breaks. It also makes the breaks seem like they last 5 min.

  4. Avatar
    Scott January 18, 2016 at 2:11 pm #

    Sling TV still has issues on XBOX One. My usual process is to start up the XBOX, wait 2-3 minutes after it’s up and running, restart the XBOX via the settings menu, than start the Sling TV app. Otherwise, only half the channels work and or the channels are a pixelated mess.