7 great apps for watching TV on your tablet

Never miss your favourite show again with catch up TV streamed straight to your mobile phone or tablet. If your busy schedule means you often have to sacrifice watching your favourite television programmes, you could watch them on the go by using your tablet. Whether you have a spare half an hour during the busy commute or maybe you get some free time during the day, make the most of this time by plugging in your headphones and switching off the outside world.

If you are going to use your tablet to watch TV, there are a few things you should know to avoid having to pay hefty fines and data charges. In some instances, you will need a valid TV licence to watch TV on your tablet. If you are watching live television as it is being broadcast or recording live TV, you will need a TV licence but if you only watch TV on catch up then you won't. When watching live television away from home, you will be covered by your TV licence as long as your tablet is working from its own batteries. If you are watching live TV away from home whilst your device is plugged in on charge, you will need a separate licence from that address.

You can also incur extensive data charges if you are streaming or downloading television shows on 3G. It is better if you watch when connected to Wi-Fi. Alternatively, download when connected to Wi-Fi and then watch later when you are not connected. This is useful when on the tube or other areas with little or no signal.

Now you know the rules and regulations, watch TV on your tablet using one of these great apps that will let you watch live TV as well as on catch up.

BBC iPlayer

bbc iplayer

You never have to miss an episode of EastEnders again with BBC iPlayer. You can watch all of your favourite shows across BBC including BBC Three, BBC1, BBC2, BBC4 and more. Watch live or catch up on the last 30 days. You can browse by schedule, featured or most popular programmes and you can also download your favourite shows to watch later.

ITV Player

itv player

ITV Player allows you to catch up on shows that have been broadcast over all of the ITV channels including ITV, ITV2, ITVBe, ITV3, ITV4 and CITV. Catch up on shows from the last 30 days or watch live. You can browse the recommended programmes or search alphabetically or by channel. This app is free to download with unlimited usage however you have the option of ITV Player Premium which incurs a monthly charge. This gives you access to all the catch up TV available on the free player but with the added bonus of no adverts.


Sign up for a Netflix membership and you will receive access to unlimited TV shows and movies on your tablet. You can instantly watch as many TV episodes or films as you want, whenever you want. Simply search for what you are looking for or browse through thousands of titles that are added to regularly. You can watch on a number of devices including TVs, games consoles, tablets, phones and more and you can connect your devices so that if you stop watching on one, you can resume on another. The app is free and you can get a Netflix membership for as little as £5.99 a month.

TV Guide

tv guide

View the full listings for Freeview, Sky, Virgin Media and Freesat all on the TV Guide app. View what’s on now and next or if you would prefer, you can view a full days listings on one screen. Choose the way you view the listings, either by scrolling down or horizontally in the grid view. Not only does this app give you the full TV guide, but you can also rate the programmes you are watching, share what you are viewing on social media, set reminders for your favourite shows and remote record on Sky and Virgin Tivo straight from your device. You can also catch up on certain shows where you see the iPlayer logo and where the iTunes logo is displayed, you can click through to download that show.

TVCatchup Live TV

TVCatchup Live TV

TVCatchup Live TV gives you access to the TV listings for the next 24 hours as well as lets you watch live TV. Because this app is for live TV rather than catch up, you will definitely need a TV license to watch television on it. Similarly to the TV Guide app, you can see what’s on now and next and share what you are watching with your friends on Twitter, Facebook and over email.



If you are a Sky TV customer, take advantage of this great app that allows you to watch TV on the go at no extra cost. Download shows when connected to Wi-Fi and then watch when out and about without any use of 3G/4G. With over 1000 movies and hundreds of television programmes, what content you can download will depend on your Sky TV subscription. Two devices can be registered with your account and you can watch on both at the same time. For just £5 a month, Sky Go Extra gives you additional features including on demand content and four registered devices with two being able to stream at the same time.

Amazon Instant Video

Amazon Instant Video

Get unlimited streaming of over 15,000 films and TV episodes with Amazon Instant Video. Watch anywhere at any time on your smartphone or tablet for a monthly fee of just £5.99. It is also available for those with Amazon Prime as well as additional features including access to Kindle Owners’ Lending Library, one day delivery at no extra cost, delivery upgrades, unlimited storage in Amazon Cloud and more.

If you want to improve the quality of viewing when watching TV on your tablet, buy some additional items to enhance the experience.

A tablet stand will make viewing more comfortable and allow you to set your tablet up in a better position. You may find that the sound on your tablet isn’t very loud so buying some additional speakers may improve the sound. Wireless speakers are a good choice as it means that you can better place the speakers.

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