How to Watch March Madness Free on Xbox One

For years, we’ve heard stories of people trying to eek out savings in their household budget by cutting back on what the rest of us think as essential: cable. Chances are that any media industry insider you read will tell you about a new service coming that hopes to stop cable. In the video game console space there are two. The first is Sony’s PlayStation Vue service, which is slowly rolling out to cities across the United States. The second is Sling TV, a subscription service available right now and how you can watch March Madness free on the Xbox One.

sling tv


How to Watch March Madness Free on Xbox One – What is Sling TV

Before you settle down in front of your television to watch March Madness on Xbox One, you’ll need to sign up for Sling TV. The service works sort of like your cable operator did back when you had Comcast, Time Warner or Cox or Direct TV.

Sling TV users pay for one core essentials package that costs $20 a month. This gets them a basic set of channels to watch live. Users can then expand upon that core set of channels with $5 add-on packs. There are add-ons for children’s channels like Disney, upgrades for news-oriented channels like CNN and HLN. ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU, TNT and Universal Sports are all channels offered through Sling TV. In particular, TNT will offer blockbuster NCAA March Madness coverage beginning today at 2PM on the East Coast of the United States. Sling TV offers stunning picture quality, provided you have a robust internet connection.

Read: Free Sling TV Arrives on the Xbox One


So how does watching March Madness on Xbox One suddenly become free? Normally, Sling TV lets users test out their service for 7 days absolutely free. During this time they can subscribe to any channel line-up they want, including the Sports Add-On. First, that free trial still applies to the Xbox One, meaning that anyone and everyone can watch the next seven days of March Madness free on their Xbox One if they choose.


The savings goes a bit beyond that initial 7 day free trial though. For years Microsoft has offered exclusive discounts and cheap games to subscribers of its Xbox Live Gold service. When it revealed the Sling TV on Xbox One app earlier this week it also announced a month-long free trial for users who have an Xbox Live Gold account. On top of that, users who purchase an Xbox One directly from the Microsoft Store get a special three month trial of the service. Needless to say, that three-month free trial is more than enough to last March Madness.

How to watch March Madness Free on Xbox One – Download Sling TV

To download Sling TV and watch March Madness free on your Xbox One you’ll need two things: the Sling TV app on Xbox One and a Sling TV account.

You can create a Sling TV account online, but to be on the safe side and make sure you’re taking advantage of as much savings as you can, first download the Sling TV app on your Xbox One from the Xbox Store. Just use your controller or remote to navigate to the Store and search for Sling TV in the apps section. You can also simply say, “Xbox, Bing Sling TV” if you have a Kinect 2 sensor. The download shouldn’t only take a few minutes. Remember to be logged in with the same Xbox Live account that you configured your Gold subscription on.

When you’re signing up from the console you’ll need a credit card to attach to your account despite it being a free trial. It’s a good idea to set a calendar remind so that you remember to cancel the service when March Madness is over or before your free subscription expires.