For those that have been looking for a way to stream their local TV stations without a premium live TV streaming service like YouTube TV or Hulu with Live TV, there might just be another option for you.
Locast is a live TV streaming service that enables you to stream your local stations online for free. Right now, the service is only available in select locations, but thankfully for me, I am now in the viewing area of Sioux City, Iowa, which is not where I live, but because I am in its viewing area, I still get access to the service.
Current markets of availability at this time
One thing that Locast does well with is that you can stream not only your local news for free, but that you can watch sporting events and important events like the Oscar’s. When it comes to watching NFL games, the game that you are watching is based on regional coverage, so it will be whichever game is available in your viewing area.
Also, some believe that YouTube TV is the exclusive provider of PBS, but you can stream PBS on Locast too.
The first thing that I like about the service is that it is free. That might sound stupid to some, but for someone like me who is always trying to cut costs and someone who is obsessed with streaming content, the fact that I can stream my local channels and do it for free is something that I will always appreciate.
Another cool feature is that when streaming on a Mac, you can use Picture-in-Picture on it. While this is not a native feature of the service, you can do so by using the PiPifier Safari extension. It can come in handy for those that are streaming and doing work at the same time.
Picture-in-Picture of Locast during Super Bowl 54 via PiPifier
Right now, there is no option for DVR or on-demand content. The service is merely all about streaming local channels live.
The only thing that I do not like is that whenever you change the channels on the service, there is a 10-15-second ad about the service and its features.
Thankfully, there is a way to get past it, which is by donating $5 a month to Locast. The money from that donation is so that Locast can pay for its costs. You cannot do it through Apple Pay or Apple, but it can be done through PayPal, so there is no need to worry about having your credit/debit card hacked.
I’m giving Locast 4/4 stars for this review. It does exactly what I want and need it to do and then some. Yes, it would be nice to have the on-demand content, but that would likely end up raising the cost of the service and make it less convenient for everyone.
Locast is available to download and use on the iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad and Apple TV.
Rating: 4/4 stars