How to Watch the MTV Video Music Awards and Pre-Show Online for Free Without Cable

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The 40th annual MTV Video Music Awards are here. Nicki Minaj returns to host and perform at the 2023 MTV VMAs, which air live from the Prudential Center in New Jersey tnoight, starting at 5 p.m. PT/8 p.m. ET.

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The 2023 VMAs pre-show airs live from 3:30 p.m. PT/5:30 p.m. ET until 5 p.m. PT/8 p.m. ET on MTV, MTV2, CMT and Logo. The main show will also be simulcast live on UniMás and MTV sister networks BET, BET Her, CMT, Comedy Central, Logo, MTV2 Nickelodeon, Paramount Network, Pop, TVLand and VH1, with an encore airing on Univision at 9:30 p.m. PT/11:30 p.m. ET.

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Unlike past years, the 2023 MTV VMAs will not stream live on Paramount+. Instead, the best way to watch the VMAs without cable is through a live TV streaming service that carries MTV and its sister channels, such as DirecTV Stream, FuboTV, Hulu with Live TV, Philo or Sling.

Keep reading for everything you need to know ahead of music’s big night, including how to stream the 2023 MTV VMAs online without cable, the nominees, performers and more.

How to Watch the MTV VMAs and Pre-Show Online Without Cable

Cable subscribers can watch the 2023 MTV VMAs and pre-show live on MTV or on (by signing into a TV provider account) starting at 5 p.m. PT/8 p.m. ET tonight.

Cord cutters can stream the ceremony online on any live TV streaming service that carries MTV, including DirecTV Stream and FuboTV, both of which offer free trials to let you watch the VMAs live online free. Note that Paramount+ will not stream the MTV VMAs live this year; instead, the show will be available to watch the following day on Wednesday.

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Other ways to livestream the VMAs on MTV include Hulu with Live TV ($70 and up monthly; includes Disney+ and ESPN+), Philo ($25 and up per month) and Sling, which is currently offering 50 percent off its live TV streaming plans. Sign up for either Sling Blue or Sling Orange and add the Entertainment Extras package for $6 to get MTV.

How to Stream the MTV VMAs Online Free

As mentioned, you can livestream the MTV VMAs for free with a trial to DirecTV Stream or FuboTV. Cancel before your free trial is over and you won’t be charged.

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MTV VMAs 2023: Nominees and Honorees

This year’s MTV VMAs mark the first time that women dominate the top categories, while a record-setting 35 artists are first-time nominees. Fifteen categories, including video of the year, artist of the year and the newly-created best Afrobeats, will be decided by fan votes; the best new artist category is still open for voting.

Shakira will receive the Video Vanguard Award, and Sean “Diddy” Combs will be honored with the Global Icon Award; both will also perform at the event.

Related: Taylor Swift, SZA Among Top Nominees at 2023 MTV Video Music Awards

Taylor Swift leads the nominees with a total of 11 mentions, followed by SZA with eight; Blackpink, Doja Cat, Miley Cyrus, Minaj and Rodrigo with six; Kim Petras and Sam Smith (five each), Beyoncé, Diddy, Drake, Ice Spice, Karol G, Metro Boomin, Shakira and Tomorrow X Together (four each). The first-time nominees include Ice Spice, Peso Pluma, Burna Boy, GloRilla, Boygenius, Eslabon Armado, Reneé Rapp, PinkPantheress, Fifty Fifty and Saucy Santana.

Video of the year nominees are Swift (“Anti-Hero”), SZA (“Kill Bill”), Miley Cyrus (“Flowers”), Minaj (“Super Freaky Girl”), Rodrigo (“Vampire”), Doja Cat (“Attention”) and Kim Petras (who identifies at nonbinary) with Sam Smith (“Unholy”).

Up for artist of the year are Beyoncé, Doja Cat, Karol G, Minaj, Shakira and Swift. Song of the year nominees are Cyrus for “Flowers,” Rodrigo for “Vampire,” Rema and Gomez for “Calm Down,” Petras and Smith for “Unholy,” Steve Lacy for “Bad Habit,” SZA for “Kill Bill ” and Swift for “Anti-Hero.” Album of the year nominees are Beyoncé for Renaissance, Drake and 21 Savage for Her Loss, Metro Boomin for Heroes & Villains, Miley Cyrus for Endless Summer Vacation, SZA for SOS and Swift for Midnights.

Best new artist nominations go to GloRilla, Ice Spice, Kaliii, Peso Pluma, PinkPantheress and Reneé Rapp. Other awards include push performance of the year, best collaboration, best pop song, best hip-hop song, best rock song, best alternative song, best Latin song, best R&B song, best K-pop song, video for good, best Metaverse performance and more. See the full list of nominees here.

MTV VMAs 2023: Performers

The 2023 MTV VMAs will include performances by honorees Shakira and Diddy, who will play a medley of their top hits. Other artists (including nominated ones) who will take the main stage include Olivia Rodrigo, Tomorrow X Together, Cardi B and Megan Thee Stallion, Demi Lovato, Diddy, Doja Cat, Fall Out Boy, Boogie Wit Da Hoodie, Anitta, Future, Karol G, Kelsea Ballerini, Lil Wayne, Måneskin, Metro Boomin, Peso Pluma, Stray Kids and Swae Lee.

There will also be live performances beyond the main event. The 90-minute pre-show will be hosted by Saweetie, Nessa, Dometi Pongo and Kevan Kenney. Sabrina Carpenter and NLE Choppa featuring Nelly will play at the pre-show, and the Doritos Extended Play Stage will feature Kaliii, Renee Rapp and the Warning.

2023 VMA Live Streaming Options, Plans

Here are more details about all the ways you can stream the VMAs online, using a live TV streaming service.

DirecTV Stream

Watch the MTV VMAs online with DirecTV Stream’s Entertainment package ($65 monthly, guaranteed for the first two years), which offers online TV, on-demand content and more than 75 other channels, including CNN, Disney Channel, Nickelodeon, AMC and others. Other plans offer over 105-150 channels, with prices ranging from $84-$155 per month. New subscriptions include a free five-day trial. For a limited time, new subscribers who get a DirecTV package and who purchase an NFL Sunday Ticket from YouTube can earn up to a $400 Visa gift card; learn more here.

DirecTV Stream Subscription

Price: $70 and up monthly

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FuboTV starts at $75 per month for access to MTV and more than 170 other news, entertainment and sports channels under the Pro Plan. You can record over 1,000 hours of TV shows, movies, games and more, and watch on your smartphone, tablet or TV.

Other plans include the Elite package (254 channels for $85 monthly) and the Ultimate tier that comes with 298 channels, NFL RedZone, Showtime and 4K quality for $100 monthly. The online TV streaming service offers a seven-day free trial for new subscribers, so you can technically watch the 2023 MTV VMAs online during that period.

FuboTV Subscription

Price: $75 and up monthly

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We like the affordability of Sling’s live TV plans, which currently start at just $20 for 30+ channels. Sling lets you watch live television on your phone, laptop, tablet or smart TV through the Sling TV app. Your package also includes Cloud DVR so you can record your favorite shows to watch back on-demand.

Sling TV Subscription

Price: $20 and up monthly

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Hulu with Live TV

Watch MTV more than 75 other major cable news, entertainment and sports channels on-demand with a Hulu with Live TV subscription, which comes bundled with Disney+ and ESPN+ and costs $70 and up for the ad-supported plans or $83 for the ad-free package. The bundle also lets you watch thousands of popular TV shows, movies and original content, and you can add Cinemax, Max, Showtime, Starz and other channels for an extra monthly fee.

Hulu with Live TV Subscription

Price: $70 and up monthly

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As mentioned above, the 2023 MTV VMAs will not stream live on Paramount+; however, you can watch the awards ceremony the following day on Wednesday.

In addition to MTV, Paramount+ subscriptions include access to CBS, BET, Comedy Central, Nickelodeon and the Smithsonian Channel. Through Sept. 20, the streamer is 50 percent off for new subscribers, bringing the price down to $2.50 per month for the ad-supported Essential plan or $5 monthly for the ad-free Premium option. Subscriptions come with access to thousands of hours of movies and TV series, including Sonic the Hedgehog 2, South Park: The Streaming Wars, the entire Star Trek franchiseYellowstone prequel show 1883 and more, and the Premium tier includes your local CBS station, live CBSN news and NFL and the ability to download content to watch later. There’s also a seven-day free trial period for new subscribers.

Paramount+ Subscription

Price: $5 and up monthly

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Philo‘s live TV subscription costs $25 per month and includes MTV and over 50 other classic TV, lifestyle and news channels. Subscribers can stream on up to three devices simultaneously, create up to 10 profiles and save unlimited live or future shows for up to one year. The streamer offers a free seven-day trial.

Philo Subscription

Price: $25 monthly

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