You can easily run applications on your television these days — just buy a smart TV loaded with software or a video streaming mode that fits into your existing set. Whichever TV app you choose, you’ll find that the same programs you have on your smartphone work differently on a bigger TV screen. They spread their visuals over a much bigger TV screen. You will also need to control the TV using a remote control or gamepad instead of a touchscreen. We looked at the programs running on Apple TV, Android TV, or both, and selected those that really work well on a bigger TV screen.
9 Must-have TV apps that look great on your smart TV.
This is the best TV app for video-streaming and is the perfect example of how an app should operate through multiple platforms and devices without interruption. When you switch from television to computer, web browser and back, you’ll recall your preferences and hold your spot in all your favorite shows.
While viewing Netflix on your phone makes it easy, those videos on a tiny screen do not look great. You can watch your favorite movies and TV shows on a much bigger screen on your smart TV.
The app itself is free but unless you pay, you won’t be able to see it. The cheapest, most basic plan is $9 a month but at full resolution, you won’t be able to watch 4K movies and TV shows. To do that, you’ll have to switch to the $16 monthly premium pack. If you have a TV set that supports that sort of resolution, paying out the extra cash for a better picture might be worth it.
Netflix is available for Apple TV and Android TV.
Just think of Plex as Netflix for your personal video collection. This TV app organizes the movies and shows you own — whether on your computer or in the cloud — and beams them into your smart TV. All you’ll need is to make sure your location for TV and video storage is connected to the same wireless network.
Even if you don’t have a huge collection, Plex’s partnerships with companies including Lionsgate and Legendary Entertainment ensure it has thousands of movies and TV shows on demand. It’s also associated with Tidal, so you can also use it to listen to music.
All the Plex features stand out — including a sleek and reliable design, the ability to pick up where you left off on any video, simple library management, and the opportunity to download artwork and metadata directly from the web — make them work well on the big screen.
If you pay for the premium version, named Plex Pass, you will be able to sync your videos with your phone or tablet as well as your smart TV. In addition to saved videos, it will also enable you to watch computer-to-TV with live TV broadcasts online.
Plex is free for Apple TV and Android TV, with Plex Pass, offered at a cost of $5 a month, $40 a year, or $120 a lifetime.
Download and install the AccuWeather TV app on your smart TV, and enjoy a full weather view. It will give you all the details you need to learn about temperature for the rest of the day and week — without the distraction of a weather person.
Some of the apps of AccuWeather, like interactive radar maps and detailed predictor charts, really profit from that extra room. This TV app also offers visual updates and weather reports on a larger display which looks much better.
The standard version is free but recommends subscribing to AccuWeather Premium for more historical data, longer-range predictions, and more accurate radar information if the weather is important to you.
On Apple TV and Android TV, AccuWeather is free, with AccuWeather Premium offered at $8 a month or $80 a year.
4. Kitchen Stories
The cooking guide Kitchen Stories is definitely worth a download if you have a TV near your food-preparation area. Unlike some other mobile or computer display recipe apps, this one fits well with bigger TV screens.
This TV app highlights the recipes with plenty of simple, high-resolution images and video clips that look great on a bigger screen, helping you to keep up with the steps as you get your hands dirty with ingredients. Besides the tips, Kitchen Stories provides plenty of how-to cook videos you can use to take a course on your cooking skills.
Kitchen Stories is free for Apple TV and Android TV.
It might not be the first app you’re thinking of using with a smart TV, but on a big TV screen, Airbnb works pretty well. Whether you’re searching for a spare room to sleep in while exploring another city or renting out someone’s holiday home in a far-flung area, the show scales up beautifully so you’ll have plenty of time to browse through the huge number of locations.
When using Airbnb on a bigger screen it’s simpler to view charts of eligible rentals and flick through property images. This will give you a much better idea of wherever you plan on enjoying your holiday. It will also let the people you plan to share your rental with manage the deals.
Airbnb is free for Apple TV.
If you don’t want to watch the news from cable TV but like watching the latest video and news updates, check out News360. The latest clips are collected from sources including Reuters, The Guardian, The Washington Post, and others. This TV app is also excellent at personalizing the news and focus on what appeals to you, evaluating the issues and story styles you like in an effort to make better choices for you.
You will have simple buttons to view, click online, and queue up news videos on the bigger screen of your smart TV. You may scan for the top stories by category. News360 often contains text posts, and to function on the larger display, it presents them for your TV in big bold text.
News360 is free for Android TV.
7. Daily Workouts
Yes, there are plenty of fitness and exercise apps available for your smartphone. But while you’re being bent over or going through burpees, you won’t want to strain your neck to see the display. So instead add Regular Workouts to your smart TV.
Regular Workouts are usually one of the best exercise apps on sale. Videos show more than 100 different exercises that the software will incorporate into complete-body workout sessions that last from 5 to 30 minutes. But, where it really shines on a smart TV. It has the ability to scale up to a larger display so that its digital coaches can perform exercises on the big screen. It helps you to concentrate on becoming on exercise.
You will get three full-body workout workouts, which last 10, 20, or 30 minutes, plus 10 shorter 5- to 10-minute choices, free. Spend $20 on the Pro version, and you’ll get three extra-long and 39 short exercises plus the ability to create personalized workouts.
8. Alto’s Odyssey
Gaming may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think about TV apps — but plenty of quality titles suit the wider model. One of the best gaming apps you can put into your smart TV screen is Alto’s Odyssey.
You slide down an endless landscape of rocks, animals shipwrecks, chasms, hot air balloons, and unpredictable weather conditions in this video. Essentially, without dropping, you’re trying to keep going as long as possible. You will take advantage of the trick jump chances and other rewards along the way when you pick up speed. New characters and superpowers can also be activated to drive you down the slope.
The depth and complexity of the visuals of the game also stand out on a bigger screen. This will help you avoid some of the challenges on the slope.
9. Asphalt 8: Airborne
If you are searching for something more high octane to watch on your smart TV screen, we suggest the Asphalt 8: Airborne racing game. It is a fantastically heady mix of super-fast cars and beautiful-looking tracks in a variety of landscapes.
You can customize your drive, unlock new stages, battle with other players online, and drive through various types of challenges including a fun Gate Drift stage, as you work your way through the game. The excellent graphics and genuine sounds work much better than they could ever on your smartphone on a TV screen. It makes the gameplay particularly interesting, though it’s just about keeping on the addictive fun side. It’s nearly enough to make you doubt if you really need a PlayStation 4 after all.
Asphalt 8: Airborne is free for Apple TV and Android TV, with in-app purchases for car upgrades and faster progression.
9 Best TV Apps that let you watch your favorite shows for free
When cable subscription prices rise higher and higher and ratings of customer satisfaction crash harder and lower, cable cutting has never been more common. Yes, there are the usual big names eligible for a monthly fee through streaming services, but the rental fees can be thrown off altogether.
Thankfully there are more choices to replace the traditional cable setup than ever before. Several online video streaming devices have stepped up to provide access to content that the subscription-based services.
There are of course some rather questionable choices out there downloading illegal content. But there are plenty of free, legal streaming apps that provide cable cutting solutions.
Check out these TV apps for free that will help you cut the cable cord but still let you enjoy your favorite TV shows, videos, and movies.
Crackle is one of the go-to icons not only in free streaming but more commonly in streaming video. The cost-free service has a variety of content, spanning from classics such as “Bewitched” and “All in the Family” to the latest series of “Snatch.” It also includes hundreds of major studio films.
Crackle’s collection is truly impressive to offer a free streaming service. Crackle even has the signature on a range of original series. Best of all, Crackle works on almost all mobile devices, smart TVs and streaming boxes.
2. Tubi TV
Tubi TV app for free deals with major studios such as Paramount Pictures, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM), Lionsgate and others. It also includes lots of independent and foreign productions. Tubi TV’s collection is regularly updated, and the company promises each week to add new content. The Tubi TV app for free works on all devices such as Android and iOS, Roku, Apple TV, Xbox, Samsung Smart TVs, and Amazon Fire TV.
3. Pluto TV
In the free streaming market, Pluto TV stands out in that the company provides traditional entertainment channels much like a cable package. There are hundreds of movie channels, sports channels, news — and even a few highly curated niche information sources.
Pluto TV offers a wide range of supported devices including iOS and Android phones, Amazon Fire TV, Roku, Apple TV, and Android TV. Pluto TV has updates, as does Tubi TV. It’s very much like a normal TV ad load.
Video streaming is not always about only content. The NewsON TV app provides hundreds of local and national news sources for the more serious-minded cord-cutters out there. News broadcasts both live and on-demand can be streamed from over 275 local news affiliates in 160 markets. The broadcasts are available up to 48 hours after broadcasting.
Then users may pick which parts of the news they want to watch from categories such as sports, weather or entertainment. NewsON TV app is compatible with iOS, Android phones, computers, and Roku.
5. Funny Or Die
Undoubtedly, Funny or Die is the go-to online device for entertainment content. It was created in 2007 by contemporary entertainment stars Will Ferrell and Adam McKay and has since developed into a full-blown production house of original content from some of the biggest names in the show business.
It also has broadcast network content In 2018, the channel started publishing on the Chorus of Vox Media, and is now using the YouTube Game.
6. PBS Kids
Kids too need free streaming content. However, PBS has a PBS Kids TV app for free that includes hundreds of hours of instructional and enriching material just for kids. The app has a colorful, child-friendly interface, which makes it easy for kids to take control of themselves.
Videos from many of PBS are the most popular series are available for streaming like “Curious George” “The Cat in the Hat Knows a Lot About That” and “Sesame Street.” Android, Windows and iOS phones and tablets are compatible with the PBS Kids TV app for free.
Fans of anime and manga probably already know Crunchyroll. The name influenced by sushi stems from the fact that Crunchyroll is specializing in mostly Japanese entertainment but also includes videos and TV shows from around the world. Crunchyroll TV app offers a library containing thousands of anime movies and series that are difficult to find on other streaming services.
There is a paid premium option, but the free Crunchyroll service has thousands of popular series such as the “Dragon Ball” movie, “Assault on Titan,” “Naruto,” and “One Bit.” Ios, Android, and Windows mobile devices and gaming consoles, Chromecast, Apple TV, and Roku help the Crunchyroll software. Crunchyroll is a great TV app for free anyone who has an anime desire. Of course, you have to be watchful with your younger kids when it comes to anime content, as much of it is targeted towards teens (and sometimes even adults).
Twitch is a great TV app for free streaming service for anyone with even a passing interest in games and esports. Twitch hosts user-created video games and other gaming channels and sources. It includes an integrated chat feature, so users can talk real-time with other streamers.
Although there are thousands of free streams, Twitch also offers a monthly subscription with premium features. Twitch games are compatible with devices such as Windows, iOS and Android, game consoles, Chromecast and Fire TV. Although Twitch is popular for children, parents should be careful: Twitch streams are somewhat uncontrolled and may include adult language or content at times.
Actually, it’s YouTube. Without it, there would be no list of cost-free streaming video services. YouTube apps are compatible with any smartphone that has a screen out there and the service offers videos to choose from almost every possible subject on.
Many of these videos are not premium content, but there are still plenty of full-length movies, documentary series and selected channels that provide the entire family with cost-free entertainment services. While there are ways to access YouTube content for offline viewing, be careful: Many of these sites and apps are loaded with malware issues.
With so many free streaming choices out there, it’s easier than ever to cut the cord and save big. Whether you’re trying to keep up with the news, find a movie for late-night dinner or entertain your kids with educational content, there’s a streaming service available to make sure you can do that without paying money. Check them, and see what works best for you.