Family Watching Television Together Arguing Over Remote

The Top 5 Free Streaming Services Everyone Should Try


Family Watching Television Together Arguing Over RemoteWhile paid services may be dominating the digital content industry, there are many free streaming services available for those who want to cut the cord. Check out the free streaming services below to get started with digital streaming, or to supplement the subscriptions you already have.

  1. Crackle

When it comes to free digital content, Crackle is at the top of the list. You won’t find the same extensive collection of TV shows and movies that you would get with a paid subscription, but Crackle does have a solid list of notable titles and lesser known content. The company has also been working on original programming, including legal drama Sequestered and Jerry Seinfeld’s Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee.

The Crackle interface is user-friendly and easy to navigate. You’ll have the option to search by genre, length, or to view a full list in alphabetical order. When you sign into your account, you’ll also be able to set up a Watch Later list, allowing you to set up a playlist without continuously searching for new movies or TV episodes.

As with most free services, the content on Crackle comes with ads. The frequency of the breaks and length of ads are on par with most other services. While some users have complained about video quality and buffering time, those issues seem to be more of an internet connection problem than an issue with Crackle itself.

Crackle can be used with all of the major devices, including

  • iPhone and iPad
  • Android phones and tablets
  • Amazon Kindle
  • Windows phones
  • smart TVs
  • Roku
  • Apple TV
  • Chromecast
  • Amazon Fire TV
  • PS3, PS4, PSVita
  • XBox One, XBox 360
  1. Tubi TV

The company that has vowed to “unlock Hollywood” is connected with major studios like Paramount, MGM, and Lionsgate. That gives the service access to some more in demand movies and TV shows that you won’t find with other apps. Tubi TV also embraces the factors that set their service apart and showcase it with unique categories, including “Not on Netflix.”

You can watch content on Tubi TV without creating an account. However, some content will require you to verify your age, which will require creating an account. Creating an account is free. Once you’re signed up, you’ll be able to see a list of what you’ve already watched, along with being able to stop a movie and pick back up where you left off later.

The interface offers large cover photos and descriptions for each video, making it easy to see exactly what your choices are. Again, the service does include ads. For the most part, users haven’t had an issue with buffering or connection.

Tubi TV works with the following devices:

  • iPhone and iPad
  • Android phones and tablets
  • Amazon Kindle
  • Samsung Smart TV
  • Roku
  • Apple TV
  • Chromecast
  • Amazon Fire TV
  • PS3, PS4, PSVita
  • XBox One, XBox 360
  1. Pluto TV

While many service, both paid subscriptions, and free content services, offer a similar interface with a grid of options and a search feature, Pluto TV changes it up. The interface is set up like a  cable TV listing. Content is pulled from around the internet and put into a listing where you can scroll through over 75 channels to find something to watch.

Pluto TV is supported on the following devices:

  1. SnagFilms

If documentaries are your genre of choice, SnagFilms is a service you should be looking into. The company describes its content as philanthropic movies and TV shows. You’ll find over 10,000 options for independent films, documentaries, and TV specials.

Those who use SnagFilms for streaming digital content also love the online community that comes with the service. Use the platform for reviewing movies, sharing recommendations with friends on social media, and finding new content based on the feedback of other users.

Stream content for free from SnagFilms on the following:

  • iPhone and iPad, through the App Store
  • Android devices, through Google Play
  • tablets
  • desktops
  • smart TVs
  1. Hoopla

Hoopla is unlike any other digital content streaming service. It’s a service provided through libraries around the country. The service works by setting up a subscription with the library, which then offers the content to library patrons for free. You can set up an account with your library card to get access to digital content, from movies to music to ebooks.

Like checking out a library book, you’ll rent the content from Hoopla for a limited period of 72 hours. After that, the content is returned to the system. While there are other services that allow digital content to be taken out from the library, Hoopla sets itself apart by allowing unlimited users to use the content simultaneously.

An added bonus: there are no ads to sit through.

The major limitation of Hoopla is that the service is only available in areas with a library that has a subscription. Visit the Hoopla website to find out if the service is available in your area. If not, get in touch with your local library and let them know that you’d like to see it offered.

Access Hoopla with the following devices:

  • Mac and PC web browsers
  • Apple TV
  • Apple devices, through the App Store
  • Android devices, through Google Play
  • Amazon
  • Chromecast

 

  • Chatman

    Thank you for mentioning Hoopla; I would have never known about it!

  • Elizabeth

    I hadn’t heard of Hoopla. My library doesn’t currently participate but that’s really cool for people who can access it