In the past, you’d have to pay for a cable package if you wanted to watch television. But now, the internet has changed all that. You can now watch TV on any number of devices, your phone, tablet, PC, or a smart TV, to name a few. Following whatever you want, whenever you want, however you want has become so straightforward that major production companies are struggling to keep up with the changing landscape. This post will go through some of the more common ways to watch your favorite TV shows for free. While this post will talk about piracy, it does not endorse it.
1. Use Advert Supported Streaming Services
What do Hulu, Peacock, and Crackle all have in common apart from unusual-sounding names? They all provide advert-supported streaming of regular TV shows. Essentially, they work like traditional TV, whereby you sit through various ads for the chance to watch what you want for free. This is beneficial because it keeps the standard free-to-watch method alive, but intersperses adverts at set intervals. Some people don’t like this, but it provides everyone with a bit of something they need. The consumer doesn’t have to pay, and the content creators get paid for their work. Some of the more popular ad-based streaming platforms include:
- Hulu (with an option to pay to remove the ads).
- Pluto TVRoku Channel.
- Tubi TV.
- YouTube (nominally).
2. Virtual Private Network (VPN)
You might already watch shows on the internet but want to watch them online for free; you need to use a VPN. What is a VPN? It is a security layer between you and your IP address. It hides your IP address; that is, it masks your actual IP address and routes you through another one. So, if you are in America and want to watch a program from the BBC, a VPN is the way to go. You can create an account with that particular broadcaster and spoof your IP address to make it look like you are currently in the UK, where it is free to watch. While you can often watch these shows on an advert-supported basis, some of the programs remain unavailable, which is why you might resort to using this particular method.
3. Tor Browser
Tor is short for “The Onion Router,” a network of computers around the world that are designed to direct internet traffic through a series of encrypted relays. Fair warning, this is not legal in most jurisdictions, and you could get in trouble. Even more fair warning, the Tor network is colloquially known as the dark web, which is not strictly true as it is a conduit into the dark web. However, semantics aside, you should exercise caution when delving into this world as there are things that you could stumble upon that you will never be able to unsee. Nevertheless, you can use it to watch free TV without compromising your identity (if used correctly and with common sense).
4. Use An App
Apps like Crackle allow you to watch many hot TV shows for free when you download the app. While the library isn’t as comprehensive as those from Netflix or Peacock, it is free, and there are many older shows to discover.
This is another legal but not legal method. Torrenting itself is not illegal; it is merely a way to download files. Torrenting is the process of sharing a large file, such as a film or video game, with multiple users by way of peer-to-peer distribution. Torrenting is the most obvious example of file sharing, but the concept is also utilized to share music, photographs, video games, and any other file type. Therefore, it can be used as an efficient method to download legal things. However, it is more infamously known as a way to download films and TV shows for free. This is the illegal aspect of it, and as with the TOR method, you should be aware of this. Nonetheless, you can find almost any TV show imaginable to download directly to your computer.
You might be wondering why this potion is included, as it isn’t a conventional way to watch free TV. However, YouTube has been expanding into new territory and becoming more than a place to watch cat videos. With the correct search strings, you can often find the show you are looking for and watch for free. There are times when this is ad-supported and endorsed by YouTube. Other times, this results from users uploading their own torrent version of the show to share.
There are numerous ways to watch your favorite shows for free, but you have to decide if you want to take the legal or illegal route.