Over the past decade, saving money has been a driving force behind waves of people ditching cable and satellite for streaming. Live TV services like Sling TV, Philo and fuboTV, and on-demand platforms like Hulu, Disney+ and HBO Max, all cost less than cable or satellite. However, a new kind of TV service has been gaining traction over the past few years and it doesn't cost a dime.
The free streaming TV market has grown considerably in the past couple of years, with major companies like Amazon, NBCUniversal and Paramount investing in the space. Some are freemium services, such as Peacock, offering a taste of what the platform offers while nudging viewers toward the paid tiers. Others, like Amazon's Freevee, are 100% free without paid tiers as they are completely ad-supported.
However, as the choices out there continue to grow, it can be time-consuming to find the service that checks all your boxes. So we've done the work for you and put together a list of the best free streaming services available right now. Whether you're looking for movies, TV shows, or even live programming like news, you're sure to find something to meet your needs.
Tubi - free streaming service
Launched in 2014, Tubi was acquired by Fox in 2020. It's a completely free, ad-supported service offering 20,000+ movies and TV shows on-demand. It delivers content both live and on-demand, offering local news, sports, movies and TV shows. It also creates original content, such as Corrective Measures starring Bruce Willis and Michael Rooker.
Tubi is a great free option for news, offering local FOX affiliates in key markets like Chicago, San Francisco, and Los Angeles, as well as national channels like ABC News Live and NBC News NOW.
The Tubi Kids content hub offers a safe browsing space for families with young children. It's got everything from classic cartoons like Scooby-Doo Where Are You! and The Flintstones, to newer titles like Lego Ninjago, A Turtle's Tale and for preschoolers, the unavoidable Baby Shark.
You don't need an account to watch Tubi content, but signing up for a free account lets you add shows to your favorites list and pick up watching where you left off.
Tubi TV has robust device support. You can watch it on Android and iOS mobile devices and streaming devices like Chromecast, Fire TV, Roku, and Apple TV. It’s also available on Xbox and PlayStation, and cable set-top boxes from TiVO and Xfinity.
Freevee - free streaming service
Amazon Freevee launched in January 2019 as IMDb Freedive, but 5 months later was renamed IMDb TV. The third and latest rebrand occurred back in April of this year when it became known as Freevee.
Freevee is ad-supported and completely free, but you need to register a (free) Amazon account in order to watch it. Until last month, it was only available in the United States and the UK, but its August expansion launch made Germany the third country to have Amazon's free streaming service.
With the resources and experience of Amazon Studios behind it, Freevee is the best free streaming service for original content. Building on established series, with new shows like Leverage: Redemption and Bosch: Legacy, Freevee has also put out a number of completely new series, including Pretty Hard Cases, Troppo, and Alex Rider.
In addition to Amazon's Fire and Echo devices, Freevee also has dedicated apps for smart TVs like Android TV and LG, streaming devices like Apple TV and Roku, and gaming consoles such as PlayStation and Xbox.
Peacock supports a good variety of devices, including Andriod and iOS mobile devices, gaming consoles, and smart TVs. For the full list of devices, check out Peacock Device Support in 2022.
Pluto TV - free streaming service
Founded in 2013, Pluto TV is another free streaming service that was acquired in the past few years — by entertainment giant Paramount in 2019. It's one of the most popular free streaming services out there, with 68 million active monthly users as of April 2022. With 170 content partners, Pluto TV has 250+ channels and over 100,000 hours of unique programming.
In addition to standard categories like News, Sports and Game Shows, Pluto TV's linear channel guide is further organized into genre groups, such as Crime, Reality and Classic TV. Many channels are dedicated to a single show, playing episodes one after another 24/7, such as Three's Company, Iron Chef, and The Price Is Right.
With Paramount as its owner, Pluto TV offers channels you won't get elsewhere for free, such as CBS Sports HQ. There are also over a dozen local CBS News channels for markets such as Chicago, Pittsburgh and Los Angeles.
Pluto TV's "Kids Mode" is even more secure than Tubi's, as it can be locked with a PIN, guaranteeing that your kids won't be able to access other content areas when you're not in the room.
Currently, Pluto TV supports most modern web browsers, Roku, Amazon Fire devices, and iOS/Android smartphones and tablets.
The Roku Channel - free streaming service
The Roku Channel is one of the most robust free streaming services available. It offers a huge variety of premium TV 24/7, free of charge. You can choose to watch live TV and shows from a number of different channels, as well as on-demand TV shows and movies.
The selection of movies and shows is excellent. You can watch classic and modern movies including Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, Contagion, and The Terminator, just to name a few. You can also watch TV shows like Rules of Engagement, Schitt’s Creek, Spaced, and Queer As Folk.
Despite the name, the Roku Channel isn't exclusive to Roku devices. You can also watch it on web browsers, Android and iOS mobile devices, Fire TV, and Samsung smart TVs.
Crackle - free streaming service
Formerly called Sony Crackle (and Grouper before that), Crackle was acquired in 2019 by Chicken Soup for the Soul Entertainment and "Sony" was dropped from the name. With 40 million monthly users, it's still a powerhouse in the free streaming space. It's also one of the oldest, being founded in 2004, and is completely free to use. You can even watch without registering. However, signing up for an account reduces the number of ads you see and unlocks features like parental controls, a "watch later" list, and saving your progress in the shows you watch.
Crackle's content library is constantly changing, with movies and shows being added and removed on a regular basis. With a clean and responsive interface, Crackle is simple to use and its fast search function makes it a breeze to find what you're looking for.
Device support for Sony Crackle is also very good. You can watch on Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, Chromecast, Roku, iOS and Android devices, the Xbox 360/One and PlayStation 3/4 gaming consoles, and a number of smart TVs from manufacturers like VIZIO, LG, Samsung, and Sony.
Sling Free - free streaming service
Live streaming service Sling TV has a free service called Sling Free. It's ad-supported and offers a mix of live and on-demand content. Its on-demand library is smaller than others on this list, but it's got an impressive selection of news, including live broadcasts of ABC News, CBS News and Cheddar News.
Sling Free can be regarded as a freemium service in that a lot of the shows are "sneak peeks". Trying to hook you with a free episode or two, Sling is hoping you'll sign up for a paid plan to watch the rest of the series.
Funimation - free streaming service
Sony's Funimation is an anime freemium streaming service with premium options available. The free account lets enjoy ad-supported versions of shows like Dragon Ball Z, One Piece, Cowboy Bebop, but you'll have limited access to the complete library. And some free content isn't dubbed in English.
There are 2 paid plans you can upgrade to. For $7.99/month, the Premium plan unlocks the full library, removes the ads, subtitles and dubs all content, and lets you watch 2 simultaneous streams. The Premium Plus plan ($9.99/month) bumps it up to 5 streams and lets you download content for offline viewing.
Funimation also has great device support. The service supports Android and iOS mobile devices, Apple TV, Fire TV, Chromecast and Roku streaming devices, and Xbox and PlayStation gaming consoles. There are also apps for Android TV and smart TVs by LG and Samsung.
Hoopla - free streaming service
Hoopla is a unique free streaming service that works with your public library to provide access to a selection of on-demand TV shows and movies. To get started, you just need to create an account and log in with your library card.
Once you're signed up, you’ll be able to borrow up to 10 titles per month. Borrow your preferred show or movie and watch it for up to 72 hours. Once you’ve “borrowed” 10 titles, you won’t be able to check out any other media until you’ve “returned” another item.
Hoopla is available on iOS/Android, Chromecast, Amazon Fire TV, Roku, and Apple TV, as well as online using the web browser of your choice.
Kanopy - free streaming service
Kanopy is very similar to Hoopla, in that you’ll need a library card from your local library to access it. And once registered, you’ll get to choose from a huge selection of movies, including quite a bit of content from the Criterion Collection, and plenty of recent releases.
You’ll get a set number of credits per month, based on your library’s agreement with Kanopy. Each credit can be used to access a particular film for 72 hours, and your credits will reset every month.
You can watch Kanopy on Android, iOS and Fire Tablet mobile devices, Apple TV, Chromecast, Fire TV and Roku streaming devices, and Android TV and Samsung smart TVs.
Vudu - free streaming service
Vudu is owned by Walmart and is primarily intended as a marketplace where you can purchase and rent movies. Despite that, Vudu has a pretty good selection of free content. You can just visit the Vudu Free section, and watch movies and TV shows like Bull Durham, Semi-Pro, Roseanne, Gordon Ramsay's Kitchen Nightmares and more, all free and ad-supported.
Vudu supports a huge range of devices, too. You can watch on web browsers, Android and iOS mobile devices, Chromecast, Roku and TiVO streaming devices, and Xbox and PlayStation gaming consoles. Some smart TVs and Blu-Ray players from LG and Samsung also support Vudu.
PopcornFlix - free streaming service
PopcornFlix was acquired in 2017 by Chicken Soup for the Soul Entertainment, which also owns Crackle. It offers a pretty obscure collection of movies and TV shows compared to what you’ll find on some of the other free streaming services on this list. Still, there are some gems like The Dictator, Rango, Detectorists and Hell’s Kitchen.
The service is free to use with ads, so you can give it a shot, and see if you can find some hidden gems on this free streaming service.
Device support is surprisingly good, too. You can watch PopcornFlix on Apple TV and Amazon Fire TV, as well as Roku, Xbox, Android, and iOS, so you’ll have plenty of options when it’s time to settle in and find something to watch.
PBS - free streaming service
However, you can still watch PBS for free online on its website, or by using the PBS app on supported devices. You can watch full episodes of shows and documentaries like Call The Midwife, PBS NewsHour, NOVA, Austin City Limits and more.
As far as device support goes, PBS has an impressive lineup of supported devices. You can watch PBS on iOS and Android, Android TV, Roku, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, and Chromecast.
The CW - free streaming service
Earlier this year, the CW merged its free CW Seed service into its CW app. The new service is completely free and has older shows as well as shows currently airing on the CW broadcast network.
All you need to do to watch CW shows like Jane The Virgin, Riverdale and DC’s Legends Of Tomorrow is head to its website and sign up for an account.
You’ll be able to watch old shows in the "CW Seed Series" content hub, and new episodes of your favorite shows shortly after they air, ensuring that you never miss out on content from The CW.
The CW app streams up to 1080p HD quality and supports iOS and Android mobile devices, web browsers, and Apple TV, Chromecast, Fire TV and Roku streaming devices. There's also a dedicated Windows app, an Xbox app, and apps for Android TV and smart TVs by LG and Vizio.
YouTube Movies - free streaming service
YouTube introduced the option to buy and rent movies on its website a few years ago. Most people know that. But what most people don’t know is that there is a section of YouTube Movies that is dedicated to completely free movies, which you can stream whenever you want.
The selection is not the best, but you can still find some top films from throughout the years like The Man In The Iron Mask, Into The Blue, and Bulletproof Monk. It’s free, and you probably use YouTube already, so it's worth checking out to see if you can find something great to watch.
Device support is near-ubiquitous since you’ll just use the YouTube app to watch these movies. That means you can watch on Android and iOS mobile devices, Apple TV, Chromecast, Fire TV and Roku streaming devices, as well as most smart TVs, Blu-Ray players, gaming consoles, and more.
Xumo - free streaming service
Xumo features both live and on-demand content from top channels like CBS News and NBC News, as well as some online-only content from media outlets like Vanity Fair, FailArmy, and Bloomberg. It’s quite similar to Pluto TV, with both full episodes and abbreviated clips of TV shows and online content available.
Xumo is ad-supported and completely free with no paid upgrades available, and you don’t even have to sign up for an account.
The user interface is well-organized and responsive, while videos load very fast and stream in up to 720p HD quality,
You can watch it on web browsers, Android and iOS mobile devices and Fire TV, Roku and Xfinity media devices. There are also apps for Android TV and a wide selection of smart TVs, including Hisense, Magnavox, Panasonic, Philips, Samsung, Sanyo, Sharp, Sony and Vizio. Xumo also powers an exclusive streaming platform for LG TVs called LG Channels.
LocalBTV - free streaming service
After losing its court battle, the ostensibly "free" streaming service Locast shut down last year, and in the void left behind stepped LocalBTV, which takes a different (and non-combative) approach by working directly with station owners and networks.
LocalBTV is currently in 23 American markets and offers 25+ channels, depending on where you live. There are plans to launch a paid plan in the future with 50+ channels, but everything is currently free. Unlike the other services on this list, LocalBTV offers a cloud DVR — with 1 TB of storage! And with a channel guide that holds 2 weeks of program information, you'll be able to record shows in advance if you're going on a trip.
It's available on web browsers, Android and iOS mobile devices, and Apple TV, Chromecast, Fire TV and Roku streaming devices.
FilmRise - free streaming service
FilmRise has a huge selection of free, ad-supported movies and TV shows. It mostly focuses on under-the-radar, independent movies and documentaries. However, there are still some big-budget and critically acclaimed movies like The Illusionist and The Miseducation of Cameron Post. TV shows include everything from The Rifleman to Kids in the Hall to Kitchen Nightmares.
FilmRise is available on Android and iOS mobile devices, Roku and Fire TV streaming devices, Xbox, and smart TVs by Samsung, LG and Vizio. There's also a FilmRise channel on YouTube.
CometTV Live - free streaming service
If you love sci-fi shows and movies, CometTV Live is a great option. This is a live-streaming version of the Comet TV broadcast network from Sinclair Broadcast Group and has more than 1,500 hours of sci-fi programming from MGM and United Artists, mostly including older science fiction B-movies.
You can watch CometTV on web browsers, Apple TV and Roku. There is no mobile support at this time.
Shout Factory TV - free streaming service
If you’re looking for free movies and TV shows, Shout Factory TV has a great selection of both. This streaming service is completely free and ad-supported, and you don't even need to create and account or sign in to watch.
Shout Factory TV has 8 live channels streaming 24/7, including its main Shout! Facory TV channel, Scream Factory TV, and Shout! Cult. Other channels are dedicated to a specific series, such as Alf and The Carol Burnett Show, while TokuSHOUTsu streams non-stop tokusatsu films and shows like Ultraman, Super Sentai and Kamen Rider.
The library has less mainstream films than other services, so it's a good place to go if you'r in the mood for film noir or cult classics. Movies are also grouped into genres and categories like Seasonal, Silent Films, and the VHS Vault.
Dig around and you’re sure to find some hidden gems that catch your interest, such as the unrated director's cut of Ken Russell's controversial 1984 film Crimes of Passion, with Kathleen Turner and Anthony Perkins, or The Big Sleep starring Robert Mitchum.
You can watch Shout Factory on your web browser, or on your mobile web browser, but there are no apps for iOS or Android. You can also watch Shout Factory on Roku and some Samsung TVs, or on its Twitch channel.
Charge! Live - free streaming service
Like Comet TV, Charge TV is a new broadcast station from Sinclair Television Group focused on action and sports entertainment. Its Charge! streaming channel is completely free and you can watch it even if you’re outside its broadcast areas.
You'll find popular crime TV shows like CSI: Miami and CSI: NY, as well as classic 80s shows like CHiPs, Knight Rider and Magnum P.I.
While there's no on-demand option, the programming is quite varied, so you’re sure to find something great to watch. The programming schedule is also available for the upcoming 2 weeks with a printable version available for download.
Charge TV is currently available to watch for free online. However, it seems that Charge TV currently only supports web browsers, with no apps for mobile devices or living room entertainment systems.
Finding a service that satisfies all of your needs can be difficult with all the possibilities that exist. Hopefully, with our list of the best free streaming services, you are able to find something that suits your tastes, whether you're looking for movies, TV shows, or live programming like news at no cost!
Eric Liston • Author
Eric Liston is a content writer based in Columbus, Ohio. Since 2015, he’s been writing about technology, cord-cutting, and helping everyday people save money. He also has expertise writing about medicine, dentistry, insurance, and a variety of other industries. No matter what he’s writing, his focus is always on simplifying complex concepts and making them approachable for everyone. When he’s not slamming away on his keyboard at his home office, you’ll find Eric reading sci-fi novels, improving his disc golf game (he just hit his first 400-foot drive) and playing video games on his gaming PC.
Kelsey Reynolds • Editor
Kelsey is a content strategist based in Minneapolis, Minnesota. She holds a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing from the University of Minnesota. Kelsey was drawn to working at Flixed because the team was so open, motivated, and curious. She most enjoys thinking about how to blend programmatic and editorial content to answer readers’ questions as completely and efficiently as possible. When she’s not at her computer, Kelsey can usually be found working in her garden or walking her two dogs in the park.