How To

How to watch free TV and movies with Tubi

Grace Sweeney


In the world of streaming services, there are naturally some big winners in the space. Netflix, Hulu, HBO, Amazon. You know, the titans of big tech.


In an increasingly fragmented, weirdly transitional era, we’re linking more and more subscriptions to our bank accounts to keep up with all of our favorite programs.

Given the current state of things, it seems that Tubi’s promise of free and legal streaming is at least worth a shot. Heck, you don’t even have to register for an account.

In this article, we’ll take a look under the hood to see what Tubi TV has to offer and whether it’s a worthy replacement for any of the big guys.

What is Tubi TV?

Tubi is a video streaming tool that presents itself as a free Netflix alternative somewhat similar to Sony’s Crackle TV or the Hulu of yesteryear. Remember when you could watch “Parks & Rec” and “The Office” for free? Man, that was nice.

The platform is supported by in-stream ads. Also, you don’t even need to sign up for an account to access their library. This means there are no annoying emails, no subscription fee, just unlimited streaming.


What’s the deal with Tubi TV sign up?

What’s a little confusing here is, while ads are part of the deal, Tubi’s help section states that “all content on Tubi is free to watch — we don’t offer a subscription service to watch ad-free.”

What that means is, Tubi plays commercials pre-roll, mid-roll, and post-roll — breaking up your video with ads.

You don’t have to subscribe to any services, but you do need to watch commercials. Those commercials might not align with your interests like they might on Facebook or YouTube. (In this way, Tubi is very much like Pluto.)

Tubi’s ads are targeted using generic criteria. This means that advertisers are going to run really general campaigns to create brand awareness.

Still, if you don’t care about ads, there’s nothing to lose from giving Tubi a shot. Your Tubi TV signup comes with a few perks, including the ability to pause movies and return later (wild, right?). You’ll also gain access to movie recommendations and lists like this Rotten Tomatoes roundup below:

Tubi TV recommendations

Thousands of titles, but Tubi makes you dig for the gems.

Tubi is free, legal, and totally legit — but, at a glance, it’s not necessarily going to replace your favorite paid streaming services.

There’s no original content like “Stranger Things “or “The Handmaid’s Tale.”

Rather, there’s a TON of reruns like “Little Women of Atlanta” and “Hell’s Kitchen,” plus some truly heinous-looking kids content we have never heard of (seriously, what on God’s green Earth is Fred and why does he have so many movies?).

tubi tv options

That said, there’s some good stuff in there, too, you’ll just need to do some digging. Look in the New Releases tab and you’ll find some award winners in the mix — “Spotlight,” “Memento,” “Short Term 12.”

There are throwback cult classics like “Saved!” and “Donny Darko.” There is also a whole section devoted to Christmas horror films — which let’s be honest, look like a real treat.

tubi xmas movies

Where Tubi really shines is that it’s the home for all of your guilty pleasure watches. Whether that means scary Christmas movies or rewatching the “Forensic Files” episodes you’ve only experienced in hotel rooms.

You can watch “Quantum Leap,” and it’ll feel like that first year Netflix streaming was available. And, if you’re a big Lifetime or A&E fan, Tubi means you can finally cut the cord.

Is Tubi available on all devices?

Tubi TV is free to download on iOS, Android, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, Roku, Xfinity X1, Xbox, Sony and Samsung Smart TVs, and PlayStation. You can also watch from your browser, no download required.

As it stands, the streaming service is not available in Europe, due to changes in EU law thanks to the rollout of the GDPR.

Tubi does plan on relaunching in European countries, but they need to work out some compliance details first.


So, what’s the final word on Tubi?

It’s free… so that’s something.

But seriously, if you’re looking for one of the best free TV apps, this is a solid option.

There are a couple of notable “cons” associated with Tubi TV. First, you need to do some research to find Oscar winners and underrated indie flicks.

Second, this isn’t the best choice for TV. If you’re a fan of “Hoarders” and “Duck Dynasty,” you’re in luck. However, Tubi TV isn’t really the place for beloved comedies or prestige dramas.

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