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Spectrum TV® Review

Traditional and streaming TV plans

Spectrum
Price
$49.99/mo. for 12 mos.

Channels
125+

  • No contracts

Provider star ratings are based on user reviews and our independent customer satisfaction survey.

Data as of 3/23/22. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.

Best Spectrum TV® packages

Spectrum doesn’t offer traditional TV and internet bundles with huge discounts. Instead, you can pair its Spectrum TV Select service with any of its three internet plans. Both services have discounted pricing for the first 12 months, but all premium channels are extra. HBO® and SHOWTIME® each cost $15 each month, while EPIX is another $5.99 per month. There are seven premium movie channels in all.

Check out our top picks.

Best for budgets

Spectrum Internet® (up to 300 Mbps) + TV Select

Your basic combo pairing Spectrum’s base cable internet plan with Spectrum TV Select.

125+ channels

Speeds up to
300
Mbps download
(wireless speeds may vary)

From
$9998/mo

For 12 mos.

Limited time offer; subject to change; valid to qualified residential customers who have not subscribed to any services within the previous 30 days and who have no outstanding obligation to Charter. Standard rates apply after yr. 1. Price for TV Select and Internet is $99.98/mo for yr. 1; standard rates apply after yr 1. Installation, equipment, taxes, fees and surcharges extra; additional services are extra. General Terms: TV: TV equipment required, charges may apply. Channel and HD programming availability based on level of service. Account credentials may be required to stream some TV content online. INTERNET: Available Internet speeds may vary by address. Services subject to all applicable service terms and conditions, subject to change. Services not available in all areas. Restrictions apply. Enter your address to determine availability.

Best for speed

Spectrum Internet® Gig + TV Select

Spectrum TV Select paired with Spectrum’s fastest cable internet plan.

125+ channels

Speeds up to
1000
Mbps download
(wireless speeds may vary)

From
$13998/mo

for 12 mos.

Best overall

Spectrum Internet® (up to 300 Mbps) + TV Select + Voice

This bundle covers all your basics in one convenient package.

Speeds up to
300
Mbps download
(wireless speeds may vary)

From
$11498/mo

for 12 mos.

Limited time offer; subject to change; valid to qualified residential customers who have not subscribed to any services within the previous 30 days and who have no outstanding obligation to Charter. Spectrum TV ® Select promotion price is $44.99/mo; standard rates apply after yr. 1. Spectrum Internet® promotion price is $44.99/mo; standard rates apply after yr. 1. Spectrum Voice®: Price is $12.99/mo when bundled. Taxes, fees and surcharges (broadcast surcharge up to $16.45/mo) extra and subject to change during and after the promotional period; installation/network activation, equipment and additional services are extra. General Terms: INTERNET: Speed based on wired connection and may vary by address. Wireless speeds may vary. TV: TV equipment required; charges may apply. Channel and HD programming availability based on level of service. Account credentials may be required to stream some TV content online. HOME PHONE: Unlimited calling includes calls within the U.S., Canada, Mexico, Puerto Rico, Guam, the Virgin Islands and more. Services subject to all applicable service terms and conditions, subject to change. Services not available in all areas. Restrictions apply. Enter your address to determine availability. ©2021 Charter Communications.

How good is Spectrum TV service?

Spectrum TV is a solid service that doesn’t demand a contract. It gives you access to a decent number of channels and options for premium content. You can watch all your favorite shows anywhere, too, whether you’re at home on the couch or away on a business trip.

Pros:

  • No contracts
  • Decent savings for the first 12 months
  • Off-network viewing

Cons:

  • Rate increase after first year
  • Limited savings for combined services
  • Costly added fees

Spectrum TV packages

You can get Spectrum TV through the traditional TV receiver box provided by Spectrum, or you can use a smart TV, media streamer, or game console to access your service through the Spectrum TV app.

You can view the entire channel lineup on Spectrum’s website, but you must call 1-800-267-6094 to add standard and premium channels to your plan.

Spectrum TV vs. Mi Plan Latino TV

Spectrum TV Select starts you with 125 channels, but you can add other popular TV channels like Cartoon Network, Boomerang, Disney Junior, Freeform, MTV Classic, and many more. TV Select also includes more than 50 Music Choice channels at no extra cost to you. To add standard and premium TV channels, call 1-800-267-6094.

Spectrum’s Mi Plan Latino service includes 140 channels. It’s a slightly different TV lineup than the Select TV plan, offering channels like AyM Sports, Baby First TV, Bandamax, Canal Once, Cine Mexicano, and more. And like the TV Select plan, you can add standard and premium TV channels by calling 1-800-267-6094.

Spectrum TV package tiers

There are no package tiers with Spectrum TV. Instead, customers can choose between TV Select with 125 channels, or Mi Plan Latino with 140 channels and then build their channel lineup from there. The premium channels are extra as are premium sports channels like NBA LEAGUE PASS and NHL Center Ice.

PlanIntroductory priceRegular priceChannel lineup
Spectrum TV Select$49.99/mo. for 12 mos.$76.99/mo.125+
Spectrum Mi Plan Latino$34.99/mo. for 12 mos.$54.99/mo.140+

Spectrum bundles

Spectrum doesn’t offer bundled services at a discount. Instead, you can combine Spectrum’s three services, which have a discounted price for the first 12 months.

BundleChannelsSpeedPhoneStarting price
Internet (up to 300 Mbps) + VoiceN/AUp to 300 Mbps (wireless speeds may vary)Spectrum Voice$64.98/mo. for 12 mos.
Internet (up to 300 Mbps) + TV Select125+Up to 300 Mbps (wireless speeds may vary)N/A$99.98/mo. for 12 mos.
Internet (up to 300 Mbps) + TV Select + Voice125+Up to 300 Mbps (wireless speeds may vary)Spectrum Voice$114.97/mo. for 12 mos.
Internet Ultra + TV Select125+Up to 500 Mbps (wireless speeds may vary)N/A$119.98/mo. for 12 mos.
Internet Gig + TV Select125+Up to 1,000 Mbps (wireless speeds may vary)N/A$139.98/mo. for 12 mos.
TV Select + Voice125+N/ASpectrum Voice$64.98/mo. for 12 mos.
Internet (up to 300 Mbps) + Mi Plan Latino TV140+Up to 300 Mbps (wireless speeds may vary)N/A$84.98/mo. for 12 mos.
Internet (up to 300 Mbps) + Mi Plan Latino TV + Voice140+Up to 300 Mbps (wireless speeds may vary)Spectrum Voice$99.97/mo. for 12 mos.

Judging by that chart, it might look like Spectrum has a ton of bundle options, but there are basically just three types.

  • Internet and TV
  • Internet and home phone
  • Internet, TV, and home phone

However, keep in mind that you must have a Spectrum Internet or Spectrum TV Select plan to get Spectrum Voice. Also, Spectrum charges a broadcast TV service charge of up to $21 per month that’s not part of the base price.

Spectrum TV tech

Spectrum doesn’t use just one specific receiver model across the US. In fact, there are more than 60 models listed on its website, so we can’t compare its hardware with other cable internet providers. The list of manufacturers includes Arris, Motorola, Cisco, Scientific Atlanta, Pace, and Samsung.

If you don’t want to use Spectrum’s hardware, you can log in to your Spectrum account through the Spectrum TV app and watch your favorite channels on any compatible device. You can also set Spectrum as your default TV provider in devices like Apple TV and standalone apps for HBO Max, Showtime, and more.

Picture quality

Spectrum’s receivers support digital content up to Full HD (1080i). Broadcasters control the visual fidelity, not Spectrum, so channels will have different resolutions. If you want to watch 4K content, then you must stream it over the internet using a compatible media streamer, like the Apple TV 4K with the Spectrum TV app.

Unlike other TV providers, Spectrum doesn’t include both HD and SD versions of the same channel to pad its channel count. If it’s available in HD, it just goes with that. We appreciate this no-nonsense approach, and it’s something to take into account when comparing channel counts.

DVR

Spectrum’s DVR service costs  $12.99 per month if you have one receiver, or $19.99 per month if you have 2–4 receivers. All receivers have built-in DVR capability, but the storage and multi-record capability depends on the model.

For example, the Arris DCX3520e-M receiver used by Spectrum has a 500 GB drive. So, if a 60-minute TV show in standard definition (SD or 480p) requires 1 GB of hard drive space, then you can record 500 hours of SD programming. If the same show is in high definition (HD or 720p) and requires 5 GB of space, then you can record 100 hours of programming.

Ultimately, the amount of time you can record depends on the show’s quality, how it’s encoded, and the amount of storage space on the receiver.

Spectrum also provides a Cloud DVR service for customers who don’t have a receiver. Instead, you can record and watch stored content through the Spectrum TV app.

Where are you finding this information? I don’t have anything in what Spectrum has sent us and I can’t find it on their website either. Everything says Free On Demand with TV service.

Cloud DVRCloud DVR Plus
Storage duration90 daysOne year
Storage spaceUp to 50 live showsUp to 100 live shows
Cost$5.00/mo.$10.00/mo.

Remotes

Spectrum TV uses more than 60 remote models, all of which are pretty standard universal remotes. You can also use the Spectrum TV app’s Send to TV feature to tune the receiver to the channel or On Demand content you want to watch using a smartphone or tablet.

Spectrum TV App

If you don’t want to rent Spectrum’s equipment, use the Spectrum TV app on a device you already use at no additional cost to you. You can access all your standard and premium channels no matter where you are—including live TV and on-demand content. All you need is your Spectrum account’s login credentials.

Spectrum TV installation

Spectrum TV installation costs $49.99. The process will go something like this:

  1. You schedule your installation appointment when you sign up for a new service.
  2. Spectrum will text, call, or email you (depending on your preference) to confirm your appointment the day before or the day of.
  3. Before the technician arrives, prepare a work area for them. Clear the space around any existing cable outlets, and make sure your pets are out of the way.
  4. At any point during your appointment window, a technician will show up to set up your TV service. Someone over the age of 18 has to be present to let them in.
  5. The installation appointment can take up to three hours. If the job requires more time, you’ll unfortunately have to set another appointment so the technician can stay on schedule.
  6. After everything is installed, the technician should check to make sure everything works correctly. Now’s the time to ask any questions about how to use your TV service.
  7. Get the stranger out of your house, and enjoy your Spectrum TV!

If your home is already wired for cable service, you can self-install your equipment. It’s cheaper, and you don’t have to wait around for an appointment. We recommend reading through the instructions before making your decision if you’re unsure whether you can handle it. The biggest downside of self-installation is that nobody’s there to help if you need to troubleshoot an issue.

Our verdict

Spectrum TV is adequate for a cable TV package. It’s cool that you don’t need a receiver to enjoy your favorite shows and movies—you just need the Spectrum TV app and a compatible device. We also like that Spectrum keeps your choices simple rather than throw tons of confusing options at you. Just keep in mind that the promotional pricing ends after 12 months, so all the TV and premium channels you stack on top of the base plan can lead up to a jaw-dropping experience when you get the bill.

Check out Spectrum packages and bundles.

Spectrum TV FAQ

How do I program my Spectrum remote?

Specific steps for programming your Spectrum remote depend on the remote model and the brand of your TV. You can find the manual and instructions for programming your remote on Spectrum’s support site.

 

Usually, programming a TV remote involves turning on the TV, pressing a “program” button (sometimes remotes use a button sequence to put it into programming mode instead of having a single button), and entering a code that corresponds with your TV.

What is Spectrum TV?

Spectrum TV is a TV service offered by Charter Communications’s Spectrum brand, which is a result of merged services with Time Warner Cable and Bright House. You can get Spectrum TV through the traditional receiver provided by Spectrum, or stream the service through the Spectrum TV app on any compatible device.

How do I install the Spectrum TV App on Fire TV Stick?

The Spectrum TV app is not available for the Fire TV Stick through Amazon. But like any Android device, you can sideload Spectrum’s app by toggling on Developer Option, allowing apps from unknown sources, and using ES File Explorer to install the app. You open up your Fire TV Stick to possible malware, however, so be careful about where you find the Spectrum TV app. We also can’t guarantee the Spectrum TV app will work as intended on the Fire TV Stick.

How much is Spectrum TV?

Spectrum TV Select starts at $49.99 per month for the first 12 months. After the first year, the base price increases to $76.99 per month.

Mi Plan Latino starts at $34.99 per month for the first 12 months. After that, the base price increases to $54.99 per month.

What devices are compatible with the Spectrum TV App?

The Spectrum TV app officially works with the following platforms:

  • Android 5.0 and newer
  • Amazon Kindle Fire, Fire HDX 2nd Gen and newer
  • Apple iOS 12 and newer
  • Apple iPadOS 12 and newer
  • Apple TV 4th Gen or 4K and newer
  • Chromecast (via the Cast icon in the Spectrum TV app)
  • Samsung smart TVs 2012 and newer
  • Xbox One game consoles (original, S, X)
  • Xbox Series game consoles (S, X)
  • Roku devices:
    • Roku 1, 2, 3 or 4 streaming player
    • Roku Express and Roku Express+
    • Roku Premiere and Roku Premiere+
    • Roku Ultra streaming players (excluding first and second-gen)
    • Roku Streaming Stick (excluding first and second-gen)

You can also access the Spectrum TV web app on any computer by visiting SpectrumTV.com.