When we began developing our Local TV Guides, we needed a way to show people in the US and Canada what’s airing on their local TV stations. That’s where TV listing and schedule APIs were a big help. These companies do the hard work of compiling accurate broadcast data and make them available through easy API calls. Check out the resources we found in our search below.
Flixed Live TV APIs
Before we take a tour of live TV APIs, we want to give a quick shout out to our an API that we’ve been working on ourselves. The Flixed Live TV API features live TV listings, schedules, and accurate channel availability for major live TV streaming services. Initially we’ve compiled some of the best live TV data feeds into one API for ourselves but we’re looking to open it up to power more use cases.
Free TV Listing and Schedule APIs
Free is good. Maybe TV information is a minor feature of your commercial project. Free APIs can be useful placeholders that deliver functionality while you focus on higher priorities. If you’re working on a personal project, on the other hand, paying hundreds of dollars a month just isn’t an option. These free services get you the live TV metadata you need.
TV Maze is a Creative Commons project that crowdsources live TV information from a community of volunteers. The project’s free API will let your app make “at least” 20 calls every 10 seconds on a per-IP address basis. The RESTful calls pull scheduling information, media assets and other content metadata.
If you plan to use TV Maze but just need a quick dataset to get started, you can download epguides’ latest catalog. The TV content search site lets the public find information about TV shows and movies using data from TV Maze. You can iron out your code using the downloadable CSV file before dealing with TV Maze’s constantly-updated database.
The RapidAPI distribution platform hosts Entertainment Data Hub. This free service offers a subset of data from Internet Video Archive, a company that supports enterprise developers. You can make 1,000 calls a month or pay a $10 monthly charge to get 15,000 monthly calls. Entertainment Data Hub provides metadata and availability information for TV shows and movies, but you do not get an EPG.
TV Media has various plans for developers who need listings and availability information for live TV content. The company offers a very limited Sample plan that lets you make 50 calls per month. That includes a 24-hour EPG as well as a subset of the company’s metadata catalog.
TV Listing and Schedule APIs for Mid-range Projects
Of course, free has its limits. You don’t get full functionality and the number of calls you can make would throttle larger apps. For reasonable monthly fees, these API providers will let you integrate their programming metadata into your project.
TV Media’s Sample plan is more of a limited trial for its main customers. Over the past 25 years, TV Media built its business by providing program listings to the media and hospitality industries. Its database covers live TV programming on over-the-air and cable channels as well as live TV streaming services.
TV Media’s commercial monthly subscription plans range from $100 to $750 or more. At the entry level, your project gets an EPG with a 5-day window and can make 1,000 calls each month. The high-end Pro Plan has a 14-day EPG and lets you make at least 20,000 calls per month.
TitanTV built its business providing programming information to TV stations, national networks and cable companies. It uses its live TV API to support the publicly available TitanTV.com programming guide. TitanTV also operates the HD antenna reference site AntennaWeb.org. Although pricing is not published, more than 1,000 TV station websites use the EPG and related metadata provided by TitanTV’s Guide Services API.
TV Listing and Schedule APIs for the Largest Projects
High-traffic websites and AAA apps have high expectations for their data providers. They need reliably accurate data, premium support services — and they’re willing to pay for it. If that’s what you need for your project, these enterprise-class API providers may be just the ticket.
Gracenote’s history traces back to the early days of the web with the crowdsourced Compact Disc Data Base. The media research firm Nielsen now owns Gracenote which offers data services to entertainment, sports and automotive industries.
The Gracenote TV Listing service is one feature of the company’s Global Video Data solution. Clients get access to TV listings in 85 countries. Unlike other EPGs, Gracenote’s TV listings and schedules for the US and Canada have a 3-week window. EPGs for other countries can have windows up to 2 weeks. Gracenote doesn’t publish its pricing.
What began as a trailer distribution service for VHS rental stores has become Internet Video Archive, a full-service content and metadata provider. Media companies such as Amazon and DISH use IVA’s services which include a dozen APIs for various metadata catalogs and third-party integrations. To get live TV listings and schedules, your best bet may be the TV Grid Online API. Priced at $1500 per month plus usage fees, these API calls let you build a 14-day EPG, display information about sports events and stream trailers.
Flixed’s ongoing mission is to make streaming on-demand and live TV content easier for cord-cutters. We produce informative content, market insights and unique data products. Our Local TV Guides, for example, provide live TV listings and schedules for local TV providers in the United States and Canada. Find out more about Flixed’s TV listing and schedule APIs.