Why pay for a cable subscription when you don’t have to shell out a cent? For your viewing pleasure, here’s our curated list of the best free TV apps.
Using free TV is a great way to watch your favorite shows without the price tag of cable subscriptions. Through different free streaming platforms, you can easily access tons of digital content, whether sports, reality shows, news, lifestyle, documentaries, and more,
Most free TV apps offer features such as pausing and recording live programs. Depending on how much content you prefer to watch, an average household could save up to $217.42 per month with a cable subscription.
Here is a run-through of the best free TV apps that allow you to watch whatever, whenever, and wherever you choose—at no cost!
Bring in the popcorn, and let’s settle down for some great shows!
21 Free TV Apps and Websites to Save on Entertainment Costs
Now with over 2 billion monthly logged-in users and over 30 million channels on YouTube, it’s easy to find free content from music videos and educational resources to free TV.
Through a vast range of features like automatically suggesting related videos and steady streaming on all devices, YouTube makes watching and finding anything you want quick and fun.
Technical requirements for the app are low, but if you’re looking for an ad-free experience, you’ll need to upgrade to YouTube Premium. It’s always free, but there are some downsides—from inappropriate comments to copyright infringement.
Crackle is a free streaming app with no subscriptions required. It boasts over 70 channels of free content, ranging from comedy to drama to sci-fi and horror. You can also find classic films or exclusive originals that can’t be found anywhere else.
You can watch any time you please on almost any device: TVs, digital devices, gaming consoles, and mobile phones; all you need is an internet connection! The downside? Not all content is available everywhere – some are geo-restricted due to country legalities.
3. Freevee (IMDb App)
Freevee, previously known as the IMDb app, is a free TV app quickly becoming everyone’s go-to for entertainment. It offers 150 channels spanning genres, so you’re sure to find something to fit your taste.
There’s no need for additional hardware; you just need an internet connection, and you’re set.
Freevee guarantees excellent quality streaming, so you don’t have to worry about missing out.
4. Google TV
Google TV offers an aggregation of free channels from various sources, excluding top TV channels like ESPN, HGTV, TBS, or TNT. Instead, Google TV combines lesser-known free channels from services like Tubi, Pluto TV, and Plex into one place.
By accessing the “Live” tab on a Google TV device’s home screen, users can explore popular free channels like NBC News Now, CBS News, Reuters, FOX Weather, and CBS Sports HQ. This aggregation brings together over 800 channels, conveniently presented in a menu within the “Live” tab, allowing users to access a diverse range of content directly from their streaming device’s home screen without needing individual apps.
While premium channels are not included for free, Google TV still provides the convenience of discovering and enjoying a variety of content without the hassle of navigating multiple apps.
5. Live Net TV
Live Net TV is among the free platforms popular among users looking to stream free content on their phones and tablets. With over 800 content channels across regions, it’s easy to see why people choose Live Net TV.
The technical requirements are minimal; most devices support this app without issue. Live Net TV’s impressive selection and top-notch performance quality should be an option for your streaming needs.
Tubi is a free TV app with over 200 channels and a wide range of video content to stream and enjoy. Unlike some free TV apps, Tubi has some of the best movies and shows all in one place.
You won’t need complicated technical requirements to watch, just your device (mobile or tablet). You can have free access at any time.
The downside is that you’ll see ads as advertisement pays for free content, but this ensures nothing interrupts your streaming experience.
7. Pluto TV
Pluto TV offers access to over 200 free movie and TV channels with content ranging from sports and news to kid’s shows. And, if that wasn’t enough, Pluto TV also has the ‘lean back’ feature where you can watch live TV channels with its constantly streaming programs.
To top it off, free means you don’t have to pay subscription fees or sign up for long streaming contracts. The only catch is that you may quickly run out of new content as its library is limited compared to other streaming services.
8. Sling Free Stream
Sling Free Stream is the perfect free streaming service for budget-conscious TV viewers. It offers access to free apps from networks like ABC, NBC, Fox, TBS, and more—up to 210 channels of free content.
You can access these channels by downloading the Sling Free Stream app and start watching immediately.
What are the downsides to this free service? It has limited customization options and no ability to stream live sports.
9. Samsung TV Plus
With a rich library of over 200 free TV channels, the Samsung TV Plus streaming app has something for everyone. Whether you’re in the mood for cooking shows, live sports, outdoor activities, and more, you can find it all with just 1 click.
If your Samsung TV meets the technical requirements, getting started with Samsung TV Plus is simple and free.
And while the free content available is extensive, note that there are some ads. So, consider buying a paid subscription to skip those and have a more seamless experience.
Vudu is one of the most popular free apps for streaming TV and movies. Plus, you can access exclusive interactive content through the Vudu Extras+ platform.
You only need an internet connection to use Vudu: no additional equipment or setup is required.
However, a downside to Vudu is that, compared to those in the U.S., international viewers are limited in their selection, with only select programming available.
11. Roku Channel
Roku Channel is an innovative streaming service with 350+ channels, perfect for anyone looking to enjoy their favorite shows and movies. Roku stands out because of its detailed technical capability; you can access content and watch in amazing 4K resolution.
Plus, it’s compatible with almost all devices, so you don’t need to worry about compatibility. The downside may be that it doesn’t come with a live TV plan like other streaming services, but with so many other great features, it won’t make much of a difference to your viewing experience.
Peacock, a free streaming service, offers an impressive selection of up to 50 channels and requires only an internet connection and a compatible device. It caters to many preferences, whether you seek relaxation with beloved movies, elusive series, or staying informed with current news stories.
However, it’s important to note that Peacock’s coverage of international programming is limited.
13. Funny or Die
Are you looking for free streaming apps to keep you laughing and entertained? Look no further than Funny or Die, a great go-to place for free premium comedy content. You won’t be short of options, from hilarious videos they’ve produced in-house to hours of other shorter videos.
They have recently launched their Quarantine Binge list with unique content tailored to those needing an extra funny pick-me-up.
Xumo is a free TV app that offers over 290 channels filled with free movies, shows, news, and sports coverage. You only need an internet connection and an iOS or Android device to watch Xumo’s unique content library. Accessing the service is free, so you must download the free app and start watching immediately.
Xumo has no commercials or hidden fees, making it one of the best free TV apps. Whether you’re looking for a few episodes here and there or 24/7 round-the-clock entertainment, Xumo has you covered.
Airy has some excellent features, including the ability to pause, record and replay live TV. You can watch on 2 devices simultaneously and take advantage of 10,000 hours of free VOD (video-on-demand) content.
This app makes watching free TV so easy! You only need a high-speed internet connection and an Android device or Chrome browser.
However, Airy only works in certain countries, so check the list before making any decisions.
Plex is a versatile streaming platform with a wealth of content from over 200 channels, such as AMC, for viewers to peruse. Not just limited to films and television series, Plex also provides music albums and podcasts, ensuring that there’s always something for everyone.
Note that watching content on Plex requires a 1-time payment or monthly subscription to take advantage of the service’s full range of features. But with its expansive library, it is worth it.
17. PBS Kids
To access PBS Kids for free, you have a few options.
First, you can watch PBS Kids programming over the air by connecting an antenna to your TV and performing a channel scan to locate your local PBS station.
Second, visit the official PBS Kids website (pbskids.org), where you can enjoy a wide range of free educational games, videos, and activities without needing a subscription or log-in. You can also download the free PBS Kids app on your mobile device or tablet, available for iOS and Android.
Remember that the availability of PBS Kids content and access methods may vary depending on your region.
18. Hoopla Digital
To access Hoopla Digital for free, obtain a library card from a participating library.
Visit their website or download the Hoopla app, create an account using your library card details, and start enjoying a diverse range of eBooks, audiobooks, music, movies, and TV shows. Stream online or download for offline access.
Remember that availability may vary depending on your library’s participation. It’s always a good idea to check with your local library to ensure they offer access to Hoopla Digital.
FlixTor is a streaming service that provides an incredible array of content from over 200 free channels. It is unique because of its remarkable picture quality and intuitive interface to help users easily navigate and find what they want.
To get started with FlixTor, you need one of the supported browsers, and you are ready to go. However, one significant downside is that it doesn’t offer mobile device compatibility.
20. FREECABLE TV
FREECABLE TV is a great app that will revolutionize how you watch television. With over 300 TV channels, you can access free on-demand content of 2,000+ shows. It’s definitely worth checking out.
It is available worldwide and compatible with major devices so that you can enjoy all your favorite shows from just about anywhere. One slight drawback is the requirement for a fast and reliable internet connection.
21. Freeform TV
Take your TV viewing experience to the next level with Freeform TV. With this amazing service, you can explore up to 40+ live and on-demand streaming channels on all your devices. Freeform TV offers unique features like parental control, profile support, and more.
It requires a compatible streaming device with a high-speed internet connection for smooth operation. So, before switching to this service, remember to check if your device is supporting this service.
Frequently Asked Questions – Free TV Apps
What Is the Best App to Watch Live TV for Free?
Many excellent apps, such as YouTube, Crackle, and Freevee, can be used to watch TV for free. But, your best option would be the one best suited for you based on your gadgets and viewing preference.
How Can I Watch My TV for Free?
You can watch TV for free by downloading a free TV app from this list from Google Store or Apple. Make sure you read the fine print to get the best platform for your maximum enjoyment.
What App Is Like Netflix but Free?
Like Netflix, Vudu and Tubi offer a wide variety of video content for free—from blockbuster movies, K-dramas, reality shows, sports, and even exclusive content. They also all have a certain amount of advertisement and may provide selected, limited content to international audiences.
What App Can I Download for Free TV?
As mentioned in this article, you can download Crackle, Freevee, Google TV, and Tubi, among others, for free.
Conclusion – Free TV Apps
To be clear, not all apps in this list will allow you to watch every TV channel completely free. Some may offer limited or selected programming for free; some may require compatible streaming devices. Many free TV apps have ads that will take up your time watching or just clicking skip.
Regardless of these limitations, using these free TV apps is far better than paying for a monthly cable subscription; it would add to your savings on utility bills.
It’s best to research and use the app that best suits your needs; you can even download several apps to cover your varied preferences. Check out these other cable TV alternatives, too.
Founder of Spark Nomad, Radical FIRE, Journalist
Expertise: Personal finance and travel content
Education: Bachelor of Economics at Radboud University, Master in Finance at Radboud University, Minor in Economics at Chapman University.
Over 200 articles, essays, and short stories published across the web.
Experience: Marjolein Dilven is a journalist and founder of Spark Nomad, a travel platform, and Radical FIRE, a personal finance platform. Marjolein has a finance and economics background with a master’s in Finance. She has quit her job to travel the world, documenting her travels on Spark Nomad to help people plan their travels. Marjolein Dilven has written for publications like MSN, Associated Press, CNBC, Town News syndicate, and more.