Pluto TV vs XUMO: The Ultimate Streaming Guide

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Jason Lin
Jason Lin

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Pluto Tv Vs Xumo

Discover everything you need to know to choose between Pluto TV and XUMO – the two leading free streaming services.

In this comprehensive guide, we dive deep into Pluto TV and XUMO to compare:

  • Content variety
  • User interface
  • On-demand libraries
  • Availability across devices
  • Ads and pricing models
  • Original programming
  • Live TV offerings
  • International content
  • Parental controls
  • And much more

By the end, you’ll have all the details to decide which free streaming option best fits your needs and preferences.

A Quick Look at Pluto TV and XUMO

Before we dive into the details, here is a high-level overview of Pluto TV and XUMO:

What is Pluto TV?

Pluto Tv
  • Free, ad-supported streaming service owned by Paramount
  • Offers over 250+ live linear channels
  • Covers categories like movies, TV, news, sports, comedy, lifestyle
  • Provides limited on-demand library
  • Available via web, mobile apps, streaming devices, and smart TVs
  • Intuitive channel guide user interface
  • Does not offer original programming
  • Recently launched Spanish language channels

What is XUMO?

Xumo Logo
  • Free, ad-supported streaming service owned by Comcast
  • Streams over 75+ digital broadcast live channels
  • Focused on news, sports, entertainment and lifestyle
  • Extensive on-demand library with movies, shows, web series
  • Accessible via web, mobile devices, streaming devices and smart TVs
  • Allows custom personalized recommendations
  • Creates some original programming
  • Primarily US-focused content

Now let’s explore these key differences in greater detail:

Content Variety: Depth vs Breadth of Programming

One of the most important considerations is the variety, depth and breadth of content available.

Do the channels cover genres you care about? Is there enough content to meet your on-demand needs?

Here is how Pluto TV and XUMO compare on content selection:

Pluto TV Offers Extensive Channel Variety

With over 250+ channels spanning a wide range of categories, Pluto TV aims to be a one-stop-shop for free streaming content.

You can find dedicated Pluto TV channels for:

  • Movies: Action, comedy, drama, horror, romance
  • TV: Reality shows, sci-fi, crime documentaries
  • News: Local news, world news, politics, business
  • Sports: NFL, MLB, NBA, MLS games, analysis shows
  • Kids: Cartoons, educational programs
  • Lifestyle: Food, travel, art, pets, weddings
  • Music: Hip hop, rock, country, pop music videos
  • Comedy: Stand up specials, sitcoms, improv
  • Gaming: Twitch streams, game reviews, eSports
  • And more! Popular brands like MTV, VH1, CBSN, NBC News
Pluto Tv Menu Categories

This makes Pluto TV a great mainstream option suitable for all household members. With such extensive variety, there’s likely something for everyone to enjoy.

It mirrors the experience of traditional pay TV channel surfing – allowing you to effortlessly bounce between entertainment options or leave something running in the background.

XUMO Offers Narrower But Quality Content

Unlike Pluto TV’s “quantity over quality” shotgun approach, XUMO selectively curates over 75+ digital broadcast channels focused primarily on:

  • News from NBC, FOX, Accuweather
  • Sports via NFL, FOX Sports, Stadium
  • Entertainment through celebrity and pop culture outlets
  • Lifestyle covering food, music, travel
Xumo All Channels

So you won’t find the same breadth of content spanning all genres on XUMO. But the channels it does provide deliver premium quality programming.

XUMO chooses depth over breadth – meticulously picking a diverse mix of the most popular and engaging channels. This leads to a more mainstream, mass appeal experience than niche interests.

But that refined scope may better suit viewers looking for a manageable channel lineup. Compared to 250+ options on Pluto TV, XUMO’s 75 curated channels reduce decision fatigue.

On-Demand Libraries: XUMO Leads in Depth & Size

If you prefer binging shows and movies at your own pace rather than flipping linear channels, the on-demand libraries also differ significantly:

Pluto TV’s On-Demand Offerings Are Limited

As Pluto TV focuses heavily on its live channel streaming service, the on-demand library is essentially an afterthought.

You’ll find a small collection of movies and shows to choose from on-demand, but it lacks compared to dedicated platforms like Netflix or Hulu.

Pluto Tv On Demand

XUMO Has An Extensive On-Demand Catalog

Conversely, XUMO goes all in on providing an extensive, quality on-demand library to complement its live channels.

You can binge from a vast catalog of:

  • Popular movies
  • Buzzy TV shows
  • Web series
  • Documentaries
  • And more
Xumo On Demand

And XUMO continues expanding this on-demand catalog with fresh content.

So if having unlimited access to thousands of shows and movies at your fingertips is a priority – XUMO is the clear winner here.

But Pluto TV may offer enough on-demand supplemental content if you mainly care about the live channels.

User Interface: Simple vs Personalized

Navigating each streaming service and finding content also provides starkly different experiences:

Pluto TV Offers An Intuitive Traditional Guide

The Pluto TV interface greets you with a familiar, cable TV-like channel guide. Here you can simply scroll to see what’s playing now or coming up next for each channel over the next few hours.

It provides an easy lean-back experience for flipping between channels aimlessly like old-school television. This intuitiveness makes Pluto TV welcoming for less tech-savvy audiences.

Pluto Tv User Interface

But the simplistic interface lacks advanced features or personal customization options beyond browsing a raw channel guide.

XUMO Focuses On Custom Personalized Recommendations

Rather than a static channel guide, the XUMO interface tailors itself around personalization and recommendations.

When you first sign up, XUMO asks you to select interests across:

  • Genres (comedy, drama, etc)
  • Content types (movies, shows, web videos)
  • And your favorite channels

XUMO then populates your homepage with a personalized mix of content suggestions based on these choices.

The focus leans more towards interacting with specific on-demand shows and movies – rather than just passively browsing channels.

Xumo Home

So XUMO allows crafting a more customized streaming experience around your preferences. But the initial setup process creates a higher barrier to immediately dive in compared to Pluto TV.

Casual channel surfers may prefer Pluto TV’s simplicity, while more active streamers may enjoy XUMO’s personalization.

Availability: Where Can You Watch?

With any streaming service, it’s crucial to understand what devices allow you to watch on your TV.

Here’s how Pluto TV and XUMO’s device availability compares:

Pluto TV Works On Most Streaming Platforms

As one of the most widely-used free streaming services globally, Pluto TV goes out of its way to ensure availability across platforms.

You can stream Pluto TV on:

  • Web: Access Pluto TV directly on pluto.tv in any desktop or laptop browser.
  • Phones & Tablets: Download free Pluto TV apps for iOS and Android devices.
  • Streaming Devices: Apps available on Roku, Amazon Fire TV, Chromecast, Android TV
  • Game Consoles: Stream via dedicated apps on PlayStation and Xbox.
  • Smart TVs: Pre-installed Pluto TV apps available on many smart TV models from Samsung, Vizio, Sony, LG, HiSense and more.
Pluto Tv Device

With so many options, you can likely access Pluto TV across all your household devices.

XUMO Also Widely Available

Like Pluto TV, XUMO also ensures robust device availability – albeit through fewer app versions tailored for specific models.

You can watch XUMO on:

  • Web: Stream XUMO directly on xumo.tv through desktop/laptop browsers.
  • Mobile Apps: Download XUMO apps for both iOS and Android phones/tablets.
  • Streaming Devices: Compatible streaming devices include Roku, Android TV and Amazon Fire TV.
  • Game Consoles: No standalone XUMO game console apps, but you can cast mobile apps from Android or iOS to Xbox and PlayStation.
  • Smart TVs: Many recent Samsung, Vizio and LG smart TVs come pre-loaded with a dedicated XUMO app.

So while Pluto TV technically supports a few more niche platforms – XUMO checks the boxes for availability across mainstream devices.

Both provide reasonable device accessibility for most modern households – but Pluto TV inches ahead in breadth.

Advertising and Pricing Options

Given the extensive content provided for free, how do Pluto TV and XUMO pay the bills?

Pluto TV and XUMO Are Free With Ads

The base streaming service on both Pluto TV and XUMO costs nothing to access. However, ads regularly interrupt your content to generate revenue.

So you’ll encounter:

  • Commercial Breaks – Periodic 3-5 minute traditional video ad breaks, usually when switching between programs or films.
  • Banner/Overlay Ads – Static display ads briefly popping up at the bottom of the screen.
  • Sponsored Content – Infomercial-like shows promoting brands interspersed between normal programming.

This allows them to provide quality content without charging subscription fees. But it may prove distracting switching frequently between programs and ads.

Pluto TV Offers An Ad-Free Premium Option

Pluto TV does provide the option to remove ads through Pluto TV Premium.

For $4.99/month, Pluto Premium provides an ad-free viewing experience – giving you uninterrupted access to all the same 250+ channels.

This gives value-conscious viewers the flexibility to remove ads if willing to pay a small subscription fee. Or keep enjoying the base service free.

XUMO Lacks A Paid Ad-Free Offering

Unlike competitor Pluto TV though, XUMO does not offer any paid ad-free tiers at this time.

So while expanding on-demand content library options, XUMO has opted not to provide ad-free plans.

If you want to avoid all ad interruptions, Pluto TV Premium becomes the better choice over purely ad-supported XUMO.

Original Content: Pluto TV vs XUMO Originals

In the battle to attract streaming audiences, exclusive original programming becomes a key differentiator.

How often are Pluto TV and XUMO releasing fresh, new shows and movies you can’t stream anywhere else?

Pluto TV Lacks True Originals But Hosts Exclusives

To date, Pluto TV itself has invested little in funding true original content or producing its own new shows.

However, Pluto TV does strike exclusive deals to become the only free ad-supported platform for some content.

For example, hit reality show The First 48 streams only on Pluto TV rather than competitors.

So they position themselves as the best destination for select existing “exclusive” shows – without directly developing much brand new IP.

XUMO Invests Heavily In Original Content

Unlike Pluto TV, XUMO actively produces and licenses a growing library of original films, series, and specials.

Some of XUMO’s most popular original programs include:

  • Heathers – An exclusive continuation of the cult classic dark teen comedy airing only on XUMO.
  • Theingestible – An outrageous widly-shared original cooking show focused on outlandish recipes.
  • XUMO Special Events – From live concerts to comedy events, XUMO streams performances you can’t watch anywhere else.

And XUMO continues earmarking budget to develop new original IPs – while also acquiring exclusive rights to extended director’s cuts and bonus features for existing blockbuster films.

So while still focused on licensing mainstream TV/movies, XUMO sets itself apart in the streaming landscape by directly funding exclusive original programming you won’t find on any other services.

Channel Surfing vs Tailored Recommendations

We touched on this when discussing the user interfaces – but it’s worth reiterating a core viewing experience difference:

Pluto TV Recreates Channel Surfing

The Pluto TV model emulates the traditional cable TV model of flipping linearly between channels on a guide.

With nearly endless content spread across 250+ niche channels, Pluto TV aims to recreate the “zone out and see what’s on” experience akin to old-school channel surfing.

Pluto Tv Live Tv Channels

You may organically stumble upon hidden gems based on whatever is playing rather than actively deciding on a specific show to watch.

XUMO Focuses On Personalized Picks

Contrastly, XUMO avoids the barrage of channel surfing altogether with its advanced personal recommendations system.

The entire XUMO interface stays focused on spotlighting specific shows and movies you are most likely to enjoy individually.

Rather than offering broad channel variety, the content visibility remains tailored to your tastes.

So XUMO reduces choice paralysis in favor of predictive picks just for you. But this limits the potential for chance discoveries outside your interests like channel surfing provides.

Availability of Live TV Channels

While on-demand streaming garners attention, linear digital live TV channels emulate cable television.

How do Pluto TV and XUMO compare regarding live sports, news and other programs?

Pluto TV Centered On Live Channel Streaming

As outlined, the core of Pluto TV’s value proposition revolves around linear digital live channel streaming – boasting over 250+ options.

These encompass both immediately viewable live content as well as looping streams of older library shows and movies.

But you can always find curated live channels for:

  • Local and world news
  • Regularly scheduled MLB, NBA, NFL, MLS games
  • Home shopping, comedy specials and more
Pluto Tv Live Tv

Pluto TV invests heavily to ensure fresh live stream availability – retaining the appeal of traditional television.

XUMO Mixes Live Channels Amongst On-Demand

At just around 75 total channels, XUMO offers significantly less live channel options than Pluto TV.

You can still find some live news and sports. But live channel availability takes a back seat to XUMO’s expansive on-demand library appeal.

Xumo Live Channels

So while nice supplements when available, XUMO no longer prioritizes live channel streaming as its primary draw.

Viewers wanting reliable around-the-clock live channel access will be better served by Pluto TV. But XUMO provides enough sparse live options for a mix of both worlds.

International Content Offerings

Thus far we’ve focused primarily on US streaming content. But do Pluto TV and XUMO provide any options for international viewers?

Pluto TV Expands To Global Channels

In 2022, Pluto TV launched a series of global localized channels tailored to different international regions.

Some countries with Pluto TV foreign language channels include:

  • Latin America – Pluto TV Latino channels in Spanish
  • Brazil – Pluto TV Brazil with Portuguese programming
  • France – Pluto TV France with French series and films
  • Italy – Pluto TV Italia presenting Italian favorites
  • Germany – Pluto TV Deutschland localized German content
  • Spain – Pluto TV Espana brings Spanish hits
Pluto Tv Foreign Language Channels

By embracing foreign language niche channels, Pluto TV adapts streaming for international and multicultural audiences better than regional competitors like XUMO.

XUMO Sticks To English-Centric US Content

Thus far, XUMO has minimally invested in expanding internationally or providing foreign language options.

A few exceptions include some Spanish soccer matches or occasional Telenovela titles on the on-demand catalog.

But the overwhelming majority of XUMO’s channels and content remains US-centric and English only.

This limits the appeal and accessibility for global viewers and immigrant communities compared to Pluto TV’s worldwide channel expansion efforts.

Until further dedicated international rollout, XUMO lags for non-US audiences.

Parental Control Options

When selecting a free streaming service delivering endless content, parents may have concerns around appropriate kids viewing options.

Do Pluto TV and XUMO offer any parental control features or filters?

Pluto TV Enables Custom Content Restrictions

In the Pluto TV settings menu, you can enable a special Parental Controls PIN.

Once configured, Pluto TV allows parents to restrict access to:

  • Channels covering adult topics like horror or sexuality
  • Movies and shows beyond a selected MPAA rating threshold like PG-13
  • Entire channel categories such as news or reality TV

This allows parents to selectively limit the visible channels and video titles to curate a kid-friendly viewing experience.

XUMO Also Provides Parental Controls

Like Pluto TV, XUMO allows parents to set restrictions using a Parental Control PIN within account settings.

You can customize filters to limit available:

  • Channels
  • Movies above PG/PG-13 ratings
  • TV shows above TV-14 ratings

XUMO also automatically filters more mature content within the kids section of the on-demand catalog.

So both options provide reasonable parental control flexibility to safely customize your household’s viewing permissions.

Others may debate going beyond basic free streaming to unlock more premium features. For example, explore Pluto TV vs Sling TV for channel comparisons.

Pricing and Hidden Fees

When evaluating “free” streaming platforms, watch for pesky hidden fees driving up the costs:

Pluto TV and XUMO Entirely Free

The base streaming tier of Pluto TV and XUMO costs $0. You can access all movies, shows, and standard channels at no charge whatsoever.

As ad-supported services, these platforms rely on advertisements rather than subscriptions to pay for content licensing and streaming delivery.

The only potential fee arises if choosing to upgrade to the Pluto TV Premium package to remove ads. This optional paid tier runs $4.99/month.

But Premium remains completely optional. The core free viewing tier will never incur financial billing or surprise fees.

Considering combining Pluto with a paid streaming service? Understand key differences covered in this Pluto TV vs Plex battle.

Pros and Cons Comparison

Before deciding between Pluto TV vs XUMO, let’s recap some core pros and cons of each service:

Pluto TV Pros

  • Extensive variety across 250+ channels
  • Intuitive, easy-to-use interface
  • Flexible Premium package to remove ads
  • Robust device availability for web/mobile/TV streaming
  • Expanding globally w/ localized foreign channels

Pluto TV Cons

  • Limited on-demand library for binge viewing
  • Lacks true original exclusive programming
  • Potential ad frequency/density without Premium

XUMO Pros

  • Highly curated channel selection quality over quantity
  • Advanced personalization algorithms
  • Massive on-demand show/movie catalog w/ exclusives
  • Actively produces compelling original content
  • Optional registration simplifies setup

XUMO Cons

  • Narrow channel focus limits overall variety
  • No paid ad-free tier option available
  • Primarily US-focused content only
  • More ads than competitors like Pluto

So in summary – Pluto TV likely better suits casual channel surfers wanting maximum variety and live TV mimicry.

But streaming power users may prefer XUMO’s increased personalization and robust on-demand library depth despite more limited channel breadth.

If Pluto TV seems lacking, review expanded Pluto TV alternatives for free streaming.

FAQs: Key Questions About Pluto TV and XUMO

Here are answers to some of the most frequently asked questions for comparing Pluto TV vs XUMO:

Q: Is Pluto TV or XUMO 100% free?

Both Pluto TV and XUMO offer completely free ad-supported base streaming tiers. No charges or fees required to watch movies, shows and standard channels.

Q: What’s better for live TV – Pluto TV or XUMO?

Pluto TV focuses heavily on simulating a live cable-esque TV channel flipping experience – offering 10x more 24/7 live channel options than XUMO across news, sports, movies and more genres.

Q: Which has bigger on-demand library – Pluto TV or XUMO?

While Pluto TV strengths lie with live channel streaming, XUMO offers a vastly larger on-demand catalog of movies, shows and web series to watch anytime.

Q: Is Pluto TV or XUMO better for ads?

Both stream ads regularly to fund free viewing. But Pluto TV provides the Premium paid package option to eliminate ads entirely. XUMO lacks any ad-free upgrade tiers currently however.

Q: What devices support Pluto TV and XUMO apps?

You can watch both Pluto TV or XUMO across web browsers, smartphones, streaming devices (Roku, Fire TV, etc), game consoles and many smart TV models either through pre-installed apps or casting screen mirroring from mobile.

Q: Does Pluto TV or XUMO have original shows?

Pluto TV recently began licensing some “exclusive” programs – but doesn’t directly produce much owned original IP yet. XUMO actively invests in developing wholly new exclusive films, series and specials you won’t find elsewhere.

Q: Can kids watch Pluto TV or XUMO?

Both platforms offer reasonable parental control options to restrict channels and filter age-inappropriate content. But parents should still monitor viewing habits.

The Verdict: Which Is Better – Pluto TV vs XUMO?

So which free streaming service reigns supreme – Pluto TV or XUMO?

The best streaming option comes down to personal viewing preferences:

  • If you want an expansive channel lineup for casual discovery akin to old-school live cable TV, Pluto TV can’t be matched.
  • But streaming addicts seeking more robust on-demand offerings, custom personalization and enticing originals will better enjoy XUMO.

Fortunately, since both streaming platforms are free, you can easily try them both yourself. Toggle back and forth between Pluto TV and XUMO to determine the best fit.

Just dive in to start streaming instantly without any subscriptions or charges required on either service. Flip through Pluto TV’s 250+ channels or binge XUMO Originals to your heart’s content.

If still undecided, consider combining Pluto TV for live sports and news coverage supplemented with XUMO’s on-demand catalog depth. That hybrid approach maximizes access to the best of both services free.

Now grab your remote, pick a streaming device and start enjoying unlimited access to premium movies, energizing shows and fresh original series. The decision to cut the cord and conquer costly cable TV bills forever just got much more exciting thanks to Pluto TV and XUMO raising the bar for free streaming.

The future of television ensures unlimited choice without charging a premium. A revolution providing quality viewing options directly to the people.