Seven eight teams. Seven rounds. Sixty seven games. Easy elimination. A winner. Buzzer-beating shots, disturbances and Cinderella stories; Mars Madness is back, people.
This year's television schedule is divided into the four traditional channels: CBS, TNT, TBS and TruTV. If you're at work or on the go and can't spend your day happily parked in front of the TV or if you don't have a TV and cable package, the tournament is available through apps, media devices, and streaming video platforms.
Mind the App
NCAA has made things a little less chaotic in recent years by centralizing all the tournaments in the March Madness Live browser. For desktop viewers who block games directly at the super important email or spreadsheet tab, the main web is your best bet. It works on both the desktop and mobile web.
However, in the March Madness Live app, some considerations depend on which network is broadcasting which game. The games played by CBS will all be available for free via the app without the need for a cable login, but for the three Turner-owned channels (TNT, TBS and TruTV) you will need a cable or satellite logon to access the live stream.
Unfortunately, even if you do not even own a TV anymore, you are still subject to its desires. Make sure you are not just watching the full TV schedule for which time games start during the first rounds of the tournament, but which network sends them.
Fortunately, Final Four at CBS this year so these games will all be free to watch without cable connection. Half year of this year's Sweet 1
If you have a cable login, this is still the best and most accessible way to stream March Madness games. You also get extras such as Fast Break, which breaks down all the games that are played in one place, plus matchup splits with the BracketIQ tool, highlights and statistics and real-time statistics and analysis.
The Best Media Streaming Devices
March Madness Everywhere
If you're not looking at a desktop computer, the NCAA and Turner Sports make live streaming games available on a variety of other officially supported devices and platforms.
You can download Mars Madness Live app for your smartphone, tablet, smart TV, streaming device or even VR headset. Check out the full list of supported devices and services below, with links to download the app on your optional platform:
Another way to stay in the last March Madness news and ratings is through your Amazon Echo device. The NCAA released an official Mars Madness skill you can activate to ask Alexa what games are on, the score for a particular matchup, or even how your console does.
There are also more virtual reality options this year. These 360-degree gaming experiences provide viewers with multiple camera angles, living statistics, and comments powered by Intel True VR technology. Only 21 games will be broadcast in VR, and you will need to purchase separate "tickets" if you want the experience.
You can buy a full tournament card for access to all 21 games, or buy a single ticket. The VR programs allow you to watch live games, check your console and real-time results, and access "exclusive on-demand content" of any kind.
- Samsung Gear VR : Available for download from Oculus
- Oculus Go : This app is a new VR add-on this year, and you can also download it from the Oculus store.
The VR programs are only available in the US, US territories and Bermuda.
The Best Video Streaming Services
Options for Cord Cutters
But as mentioned, all of these apps require a cable login or separate VR package to access all games. For the real wires, there are some other options, most of which have free samples if you are really desperate to stream the games without paying:
- Sling TV is available on a variety of streaming devices. Sling Blue Package subscribers have access to all three Turner channels -TBS, TNT and TruTV and Sling Orange customers have TNT and TBS and can add TruTV for $ 5 a month with the Comedy Extra supplement. Sling TV also comes with a weekend if you just want to sign up for the tournament, and both base plans start at $ 25 / mo.
- CBS All Access subscribers can live all games broadcast on CBS. CBS All Access is priced at $ 5.99 a month with limited commercials or as an ad-free version for $ 9.99 per month.
- DirecTV NOW has a $ 50 / month base Plus package that gives you access to TBS, TNT and TruTV and a channel search tool to find a live CBS stream in your area.
- Sony Playstation Vue lets you access both multi-view streaming and live results available on PS4 and other supported devices for $ 44.99. You can sign up for a five day trial.
- YouTube TV is another option that lets you log into the March Madness Live app with a free trial or pay for the $ 40 per month package.
- Hulu With Live TV you get all four channels for $ 44.99 per month and there is a one week trial. After mocking availability in previous years you can now get every single game flowing through Hulu.
If you look outside the United States and games are inaccessible in your country, set up a VPN. Enter the region into a US location to access locally-flowing content. If you look down the road, check out our best-selling VPNs for iPhone and Android devices.
Whether you are at work, on the go or at home without a cable subscription, there is a streaming app or service combination for everyone if you are creative enough. Go out and binge a little college basketball.