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How to stream movies and TV shows for free on Android

Authored by: Cory Schmidt — 2 weeks ago

People have been saying that the best things in life are free for a long time, but it's only now we live in the app era that I've started to truly believe it. For example, there's a huge number of apps that let you stream movies and TV shows for free on Android. We've gathered the best of them together for you here.

SPB TV

The Android SPB TV app is not region-specific and offers content from around the world via a selection of weird and wonderful stations. From the NASA channel to Comedy for Women, this app gives you a pretty healthy mix of content. 

You won't find the latest Hollywood blockbuster, NBC or Showtime on SPB TV, but if you want to take a chance on a wild card, this is the app to use. A few of the stations definitely appear to be of a more adult nature (how you choose to use that information is up to you).

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The SPB TV app features a number of international and independent TV stations. / © AndroidPIT
SPB TV Install on Google Play

#Toonmania

For your anime needs, it's hard to beat Toonmania, which offers a huge selection of the dubbed cartoons. Everything is easily navigable thanks to the app's clean and intuitive layout, and you can browse shows sorted by popularity or most recently added. There's also an exhaustive list of filters, so you can narrow down your search to find exactly what you're looking for.

This app isn't available from the Play Store, but if you head to mobi24, you can download the APK file. Just makes sure you head to Settings > Lock screen and security and enable Unknown sources before trying to install the file. Once you're done you'll have access to everything in the library.

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You can get some great Anime on Toonmania / © AndroidPIT

Crunchyroll

Another excellent Anime streaming app is Crunchyroll. And this one is available through Google Play. It has a huge selection of the best Anime available free. The app is quite popular with over five million downloads and gets a decent rating.

Running the app is quite simple. Just browse through your favorite shows and they will run with subtitles. The default is English so you won't have to mess with the language. You'll have to watch some advertisements but mostly for the premium service it offers. Basically, you're paying $4.99 so you won't have to watch Crunchyroll advertisements.

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Plenty of free Anime for the Crunchyroll app. / © AndroidPIT
Crunchyroll - Anime and Drama Install on Google Play

FilmOn

FilmOn streams a broad range of channels from around the world live, as well as a variety of classic/B-movies; mostly a bizarre but entertaining mix of horror and Kung Fu movies. But the sports channels are the most impressive. You can check out some pretty interesting live events on this app.

FilmOn is a free service supported by ads and doesn't have the same clout as Netflix or even Hulu, but the live TV streams work well, and it's a great option for streaming a number of well-known channels. Make sure you browse for a while and see what's available, you may be surprised at what you can find.

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For a free app, the number and quality of the channels available in LiveNow!TV is impressive. / © AndroidPIT
FilmOn Free Live TV & RECORD Install on Google Play

Crackle

Crackle is a hugely popular free app, which is updated monthly with new TV shows and movies. Created by Grouper but later bought by Sony, the app features ads which run at regular intervals throughout the content, the trade-off for which is that you get an excellent selection of media and an app that functions far better than some of the other TV service ports on the list.

Crackle, like Netflix or Amazon, has picked up some original content that's getting more popular. The most famous of these is 'Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee' starring Jerry Seinfeld. It's on it's eighth season and has featured some major guests like Will Ferrell, Ricky Gervais and Barack Obama.

Crackle - Free TV & Movies Install on Google Play

Hulu

Hulu lets users watch premium TV shows and movies on their smartphones or tablets without paying a subscription fee. It's packed with current and classic shows, Hulu originals, movies and plenty of kids' shows, making it a perfect family tablet companion.

If you want full access to the Hulu library you will need to pay $7.99 a month with limited commercials and $11.99 without commercials, but there are plenty of gems in the free version too. If you're willing to be patient then you'll be able to find some great shows for free.

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Hulu offers a free and paid service for online video and movie streaming to Android users. / © Hulu
Hulu Install on Google Play

Those are just a few suggestions for how to stream free movies and TV shows on your smartphone. Do you know any others? Share them in the comments.

A Minnesota native, Cory's background is in writing and editing. He received his BA from the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities and his MA from the University of Kansas. He joined the Android community in 2009 and is excited to be contributing at AndroidPIT.

Readers' favorite comments

  • Lee Oct 14, 2014

    For Movies and TV Shows ShowBox 📺 👍😊

  • Mel 10 months ago

    Great list! TubiTV.com is also another awesome free movie streaming website and app that has thousands of movies and tv shows, and it's 100% legal... check it out.

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