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November 07, 2018

Hey cord-cutters, free local broadcast television launches – antenna-free – in Philadelphia

Television Cord-Cutters
11072018_cordcutter_Flickr Steve Johnson/via Flickr Creative Commons

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Yet another cord-cutting opportunity has arrived for Philadelphians: they can now watch local broadcast channels even though they may not be able to receive an over-the-air signal.

Locast.org, a “public service to Americans” run by a New York-based non-profit, has launched its free local television broadcasting service in Philly.

The service offers 15 broadcast channels from the Philadelphia market over the Internet for free: CBS3, ABC6, NBC10, WHYY, FOX29, CW, Telemundo, Univision, PHL17, WDPN, WDPN-4, WFMZ, WFMZ-2, WYBE, and WBPH.

Locast is operated by Sports Fans Coalition NY, a nonprofit formed in 2017. With Locast’s latest expansion, the service now offers free television in seven cities. It’s already up and running in New York, Chicago, Boston, Houston, Dallas and Denver.

You can access Locast from a computer-based web browser, a smartphone web browser, or through apps on Roku and Apple TV streaming devices, as long as you are located within the Philadelphia local market.

LocastScreenshot/Locast.org

Locast's user interface on a laptop web browser.

As a result, users who want to give Locast a try will have to provide their email address on sign-up and allow their web browser to access their location.

It took us about five minutes to go from clicking “create new account” to watching CBS3’s live broadcast on a MacBook Pro on Wednesday afternoon.

The service is attractive to more than just cord-cutters.

“Local broadcasters who want to reach viewers online now have a digital translator service to boost their reach,” said David Goodfriend, chairman of Sports Fans Coalition NY, in a release.


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