Olympics live streams: How to watch 2021 Tokyo Games for free without cable

Written By Jacob Camenker
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(Getty Images)

The 2021 Olympics are set to be the most covered Summer Games in Olympic broadcast history, but cord-cutters need not worry. 

NBC and its affiliates are set to cover the event in the United States. The gargantuan task of broadcasting live and tape-delayed content will fall primarily to six stations — NBC USA, NBCSN, CNBC, Olympic Channel and Golf Channel — and NBC's streaming platform Peacock.

The good news for cord-cutters is that these networks are prominently featured on some of the most popular streaming options out there. As such, there will be plenty of ways to stream the Games after their year-long postponement. 

Below is a complete breakdown of live streaming options for the 2021 Tokyo Olympics.

MORE: Watch the 2021 Olympics live with fuboTV (7-day free trial)

Olympics live streams 2021

The Olympics is a huge broadcasting event and is far too big for a single station to carry it alone.

As such, NBC and its affiliates will have coverage of the events and are planning to broadcast 7,000 hours worth of action in the United States. NBC will showcase a lot of the big prime-time events — both live and on tape delay due to the 13-hour time difference in Tokyo — while other channels including USA, NBCSN, CNBC, Olympic Channel and Golf Channel will assist it.

Additionally, NBC's streaming service, Peacock, will provide coverage of select live events including track & field, gymnastics and basketball. The service, which is free with ads, will also provide more Olympics content including curated playlists, highlights and full event replays from the 2021 Tokyo Games.

A Peacock Premium subscription (no ads) costs $4.99/month.

Streaming option Cable subscription needed? Free? Cost Free trial?
Peacock No Yes
fuboTV No No $64.99/month Yes
AT&T TV Now No No $69.99/month No
Hulu Plus Live TV No No $64.99/month Yes
YouTube TV No No $64.99/month Yes

How to watch the 2021 Olympics for free without cable

There are plenty of options that cord cutters can use to stream the Olympics. Notably, they can watch select live events and rebroadcasts free on Peacock.

Additionally, streaming services like fuboTV, Hulu Plus Live TV and YouTube TV all carry the NBC family of networks and provide free trials.

What is on Peacock?

Peacock's Olympics coverage includes exclusive features, interviews, orginal content and studio shows that won't be shown on other platforms that simply carry NBC channels.

The streaming service's daily offering includes four live studio shows starting at 6 a.m. ET showing live event coverage. Tokyo Gold, a postgame-style show, reviews the competition from the day before showing encore coverage. On Her Turf — "a program focused on female athletes" — runs 7-7:30 p.m. ET and leads into Tokyo Tonight, a highlight-centric show (think ESPN's SportsCenter for the Olympics).

Here is Peacock's daily lineup:

  • Tokyo Live: 6-11 a.m. ET
  • Tokyo Gold: 11 a.m.-noon ET
  • Tokyo Gold (encorse): Noon-7 p.m. ET
  • On Her Turf: 7-7:30 p.m. ET
  • Tokyo Tonight: 7:30 p.m.-midnight

Can I watch the 2021 Olympics on YouTube TV?

Yes. YouTube TV carries all six of the channels that will be showing Olympic events — NBC, USA, NBCSN, CBC, Olympic Channel and Golf Channel. YouTube TV comes with a 14-day free trial.

Can I watch the 2021 Olympics on Hulu?

Yes. Hulu Plus Live TV's package includes NBC and it's affiliates, so users will have access to all six of the channels that will stream Olympic events — NBC, USA, NBCSN, CBC, Olympic Channel and Golf Channel. Hulu Plus Live TV comes with a seven-day free trial. 

Can I watch the 2021 Olympics on AT&T TV Now?

Partly. AT&T TV Now features four of the six channels for Olympic sports — NBC, USA, NBCSN and CNBC — in its $69.99 package. Olympic Channel and Golf Channel are available in the Ultimate package which costs $94.99. 

Can I watch the 2021 Olympics on fuboTV?

Yes. FuboTV includes all six of the channels that the Olympics will be on — NBC, USA, NBCSN, CNBC, Olympic Channel and Golf Channel. It comes with a free seven-day trial.

Can I watch the 2021 Olympics on Sling TV?

Partly. Sling TV carries NBC, USA and NBCSN, but it doesn't carry CNBC, Olympic Channel or Golf Channel.

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