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Best Free Movie Apps for Mac and iPhone

Best Free Movie Apps for Mac and iPhone

From Netflix to iTunes, there are no shortage of ways to watch video content on your macOS or iOS devices. But many of these services come with a caveat: they cost money.

But not to worry. If you’re looking for free movie or TV content that you can stream to your Mac, iPhone or iPad, there are still a wealth of options available to you. Here are our ten picks for the best free movie apps and platforms for Mac and iPhone.

Unfortunately, not all free streaming services are available through a mobile app. However, you can certainly view these sites in the browser of your choice on your Mac, iPhone or iPad to take advantage of their free movie and TV services.

31. Kanopy

Now your library card can take you beyond the book — and right to the movie. Kanopy pairs with your local library in order to deliver you documentaries and international films thanks to the help of your library card.

You can either search for your library on Kanopy and see if it is available OR search through the list of movies, find a movie you would like to watch, and click ‘Watch Now’ to see if it is supported by your library.

So what happens if your library isn’t listed? You can request it!

Download Kanopy here

30. Playbox

A newer version of Moviebox, Playbox is another movie streaming service for HD movie viewing on your mobile device. Unique to Playbox are a subtitles option and a child-limited mode for safe, appropriate viewing.

The first iteration of the Playbox app (named Cinema Box or CB Online) was widely popular on the App Store, but was removed by Apple because they deemed it violated the App Store’s terms and conditions. It is still available via the publisher’s site. Download and use at your own risk.

Download Playbox here

29. The Movie DB

Providing access to HD movies online, The Movie DB (an abbreviation for Data Base) is another source for online movie streaming and viewing. The app uses both direct links and torrents in order to find HD movies. You can even download select movies for offline viewing, too.

Note: The Movie DB iOS app was removed by Apple from the App Store, but The Movie DB can still be downloaded as a web app via the link below.

Download The Movie DB here

28. Big Star Movies

Similar to other applications on this list, Big Star Movies gives you access to award winning movies as well as TV shows, with the option to filter programming by genre. All thumbnails are labeled with either ‘Free’ or ‘Premium’ tags to let you know what options are available.

If you can’t find what you’re looking for on their site, Big Star Movies also offers links to other movie-streaming sites like 247 Horror, Black World Cinema, Doc World, and more.

Big Star Movies’ premium service is available for $4.99/month.

Download Big Star Movies here

27. JustWatch

If you’re looking to stay up to date on the most current movies and TV, JustWatch has you covered. This app is more of a discovery app than a movie or TV streaming service, as it points you to where you can watch your favorite movies and TV shows — you can even explore local cinemas playing the most current movies, too!

For quick browsing, JustWatch also keeps updated lists of the top 5 movies, TV shows, and streaming providers.

Download JustWatch here

26. WatchESPN

If you’re a sports junkie, you don’t have to be subscribed to the sports package through your local cable company. Instead, you can use free options like WatchESPN to watch coverage of your favorite games on your iPhone or iPad.

WatchESPN also offers access to other specific sports channels like ESPNU, ESPN Deportes, ESPN Goal Line, and others — however, access to these premier channels depends on your cable (or internet) subscription.

Download WatchESPN here

25. Newsy

Looking to get some quick bites of news? Then Newsy is a great option. The company seeks to deliver unbiased stories that tackle the most important question behind every news story: “why?” Their videos are compact and informative, and are tailored to a mostly millennial audience.

Beyond the standard news stories (think policy, culture, and science/tech), Newsy also has occasional special reports, curated by their team to create mini documentaries.

Download Newsy here

24. Turner Classic Movies (TCM)

If you’re a movie buff or classic film aficionado, Turner Classic Movies (TCM) will be the app for you. From on demand movies to two available live streams, you’ll have options for viewing classic movies anywhere on your Apple device. Plus, you can plan your viewing ahead of time with a 2-month schedule!

Additionally, TCM also lets you create custom subscriptions to your favorite actors/actresses and films so that you can be notified when they are available to watch on the TCM app.

Download TCM here

23. Viki

Missing out on your favorite Asian TV dramas? Fear not, Viki has you covered. Their collection includes Korean, Chinese, Taiwanese, and Japanese dramas for viewing at home or on the go. Plus, Viki works on your iPhone device, but is also capable for streaming on your Apple TV.

While you don’t need to pay to use Viki, you can purchase a Viki Pass to watch exclusive, ad-free content.

Download Viki here

22. MegaBox HD

For HD movies and TV shows streaming in either 360p or 720p, MegaBox HD offers a clean, simple interface for watching movies and TV shows.

The app is not available through the App Store, and requires some technical knowledge to install. Many users also suggest downloading vShare (a third-party app store) for the installation process. It is also recommended that users download Mplayer to use in conjunction with MegaBox HD.

Download MegaBox HD

21. Bobby Movie

As one of the smaller, niche apps on this list, Bobby Movie Box gives you access to HD movies and TV on your devices. The app places a special focus on delivering a great UX/UI so you can search, filter, favorite, and view all available movies and TV shows. The app also offers full subtitles in over 200 languages, too!

Unfortunately, this app is not available through the App Store. Instead, you need to visit the publisher’s site to download the app package directly from them. Download and use at your own risk.

Download Bobby Movie here

20. Hubi

Similarly to JustWatch, Hubi is a movie and TV discovery app that crawls the internet and popular streaming providers to find movies and TV shows that you want to watch. The app finds the best links and lets you either watch the movie/show or download it (depending on availability) for later viewing.

Download Hubi here

19. Newest Movies HD

Originally available only on Android, Newest Movies HD is also available for your iPhone or iPad device — without a jailbreak needed.

This app is not available through the App Store, and is only available by downloading it to your Mac and then uploading to your device. Note: you will have to adjust your device settings to allow it to install files from unknown or third-party sources. Download and use at your own risk.

Download Newest Movies HD here

18. Yahoo View

Yahoo may have fallen by the wayside as a mail and news platform, but did you know that they also offer a movie and TV service, too?

Yahoo teamed up in a partnership with Hulu to offer on-demand services via Yahoo View, which includes TV episodes from popular channels and select archived movies. Popular shows include America’s Got Talent, American Ninja Warrior, So You Think You Can Dance, and others, with a select number of episodes available for free.

Plus, if you are signed into your Yahoo account, Yahoo View will offer you top recommendations and picks based on what you watch!

It was formerly available in the App Store, but can now only be used via your browser.

17. Internet Archive

Like a digital version of your local library, Internet Archive was founded in 1996 to provide free access to TV and videos in addition to other media like music, software, and websites. The Internet Archive also has a plethora of books, with the goal of providing easy access to digital books for anyone, anywhere.

In videos, you can filter their collection by type, year, subject, and more. And by signing up for a free account, you can easily favorite select titles to access later.

Note: Internet Archive does not have a branded app; instead, you will have to use a third-party app to access these free movies on your mobile device or tablet. You can also use their website in their browser.

16. SkyNews

For access to news broadcasts anytime, SkyNews is a great option. SkyNews is part of the SkyGroup, and offers 24-hour access to live TV through their website. They cover news from the UK and around the world, including topics like business, politics, U.S., science & tech, and more.

They also feature a special ‘Live’ section that gives you access to news stories and events as they are happening, with time-stamped text updates, Twitter posts, photos, and video — so if you can’t exactly watch the event, you can still receive timely updates. This works great for sport matches or special events like Apple’s September event.

15. The Roku Channel (Roku device only)

If you are the proud owner of a Roku device (a digital media player), then you know you have access to so much media.

If you are unfamiliar with Roku, it is a device that uses your high-speed internet connection to deliver and stream content from both free and paid channels. Roku devices include TVs, streaming sticks, and express USB-connected devices.

The Roku Channel was created to give Roku users access to free movies and TV, which includes Roku-licensed content as well as content from other publishers. All of this content is free because it is ad-supported.

Purchase a Roku device here

14. Watch Cartoon Online

Best Free Movie Apps for Mac and iPhone

If you’re a fan of cartoons, then you’ll love Watch Cartoon Online. This service has a wide variety of cartoons, from current cartoon series to discontinued selections to hard-to-find anime. Their selection is organized alphabetically; and while buffering is normally hit-or-miss, their wide array of cartoons makes up for the buffering and quality.

13. Hotstar

Hotstar’s selection is tailored towards Hindi and Bollywood films in addition to live sports like cricket, soccer, and hockey. Some select movies and TV shows are available for free through the app, but access to premium movies and channels require either a monthly ($19.99/month) or yearly ($99.00/year) subscription.

Download Hotstar here

12. Flipps TV

Previously known as iMediaShare, Flipps TV is a movie and TV streaming service that uses the cloud to deliver content to your smartphone or smart device. Flipps TV specializes in B-movies, sports, music videos, educational programming, and more.

Unique to Flipps TV is the option to stream content to your smart TV and use your smartphone as the remote, which gesture-based controls for volume control, browsing, and pause/play actions. Flipps TV does this by using the cloud to deliver over-the-top content to your TV, and doesn’t require any additional hardware.

Download Flipps TV here

11. Moviebox

Similar to Netflix, Moviebox allows you to browse their catalog of movies in addition to TV shows and music videos. You can also browse by genre, rating, or even year. All of this media is delivered via peer-to-peer (p2p) torrents, which is the way you can get free media. The concept of peer-to-peer torrents often brings to mind older applications like Napster — and while p2p is not illegal, the sharing of media or data could be illegal.

Moviebox was initially created for Android, but it is available for iOS and can be used on your iPhone or iPad. In fact, you don’t even have to jailbreak your device to use it.

Download Moviebox here


10. Crackle

Best Free Movie Apps for Mac and iPhone

Crackle is a service that’s been around for quite a while. Originally called Grouper, it later changed its name and was eventually acquired by Sony. But, throughout its history, it’s offered one thing over Netflix or other streaming platforms: free content.

The platform offers full-length, uncut films that are available to watch with intermittent commercial breaks. New films are being added constantly, and Crackle also features a backlog of TV shows in a variety of genres. You can get the Crackle app on iOS, but content is also available on its browser-based site for Mac users.

9. Pluto TV

Best Free Movie Apps for Mac and iPhone

Unlike some other apps on this list, Pluto TV seems to be primarily aimed at TV-like content. There are quite a few “channels” broken down into categories like News, Sports or Movies. For the most part, this isn’t actually live TV. But the platform does pull and curate web content from live TV platforms like Bloomberg and CNBC.

But, in addition to TV content, Pluto TV offers on-demand content that’s mostly made up of movies. The selection might be hit-or-miss for some, and not every movie is available in every device or region. But, again, it’s completely free to use. Pluto TV is available for iOS, Apple TV and web browser.

8. Vudu

Best Free Movie Apps for Mac and iPhone

Vudu is a content streaming app that’s, on the surface, pretty similar to the other options that are out there. You can buy or rent TV shows or films from a large selection of movies — ranging from classics to the latest box office hits.

But Vudu also has a “Movies On Us” category that basically lets you watch certain content for free with ads. Just think of it like catching a movie on live TV with traditional commercial breaks. Vudu offers an iOS app for iPhone and iPad, as well as an in-browser viewing option for watching content on Macs.

7. Viewster

Best Free Movie Apps for Mac and iPhone

Viewster is yet another content-on-demand platform that offers users free, ad-supported TV shows and movies. While the premise is basically the same as other free content platforms around, Viewster seems to have a slightly different focus as far as its actual content goes.

You can find a wide range of foreign films, documentaries, classic Hollywood movies, and international TV. But the site also has a massive catalog of anime movies and shows, as well as gamer-focussed or animated content. It’s available on the iOS App Store. For Mac users, it’s also available online via web browser.

6. Snag Films

Best Free Movie Apps for Mac and iPhone

If your taste in film skews toward the independent, informative or obscure, Snag Films might be an excellent bet for free content. Currently, it features a catalog of about 5,000 films which can be viewed for free with advertisements. You can stream content directly on the site.

Along with high-profile documentary titles and National Geographic content, SnagFilms also features tons of films submitted by independent documentarians and filmmakers. For comedy-lovers, there’s also exclusive standup shorts available. Users can stream content via browser or through the iOS app.

5. Yidio

Best Free Movie Apps for Mac and iPhone

Unlike other free movie apps on this list, Yidio is more of a “content aggregator.” The platform doesn’t host any of its own videos. Instead, it allows you to search through thousands of titles and figure out where you can watch them (for free or otherwise).

It warrants a place on this list because it’s an easy way to find free movies online. Rather than search through Vudu, Crackle and the like, you can simply use Yidio to track down the platform hosting your favorite films. It can be accessed via browser on Mac, or downloaded on iOS from the App Store.

4. TubiTV

Best Free Movie Apps for Mac and iPhone

TubiTV is a relatively new player in the online content market, but it’s growing pretty rapidly. The platform recently got a slew of content from major publishers like Lionsgate and MGM. And, again, its service is completely free to use (because video streaming is ad-supported).

Its content catalog certainly won’t be a replacement for Netflix, but it does offer several big-budget films and a decently high streaming quality. TubiTV does tend to do extremely well with cult classics, documentaries, foreign films and independent movies. It’s available on iOS and via browser. An account is required to stream content.

3. Popcornflix

Best Free Movie Apps for Mac and iPhone

Popcornflix is an on-demand video content site that is owned by an independent film distributor. As you can probably imagine, a lot of the content on the site is made up of films or TV shows put out by that independent distributor.

Still, Popcornflix offers a ton of options in various genres — from horror and thriller, to action and drama films. You probably aren’t going to find the latest summer blockbuster, but the catalog does include some low-key and older gems. As with most apps on this lists, these films can be streamed via browser or through a free iOS app.

2. YouTube

Best Free Movie Apps for Mac and iPhone

Yeah, we know: YouTube isn’t necessarily a full-fledged content subscription platform like Netflix or Hulu. Similarly, you probably won’tfind free full-length films on the platform (at least, not ones that are there legally). But it is, arguably, the world’s largest repository of online videos — and that includes a slew of short films and indie movies.

Again, we don’t recommend that you go searching out the latest Hollywood blockbuster. But still, there is no shortage of long-form and free content on YouTube that’s definitely worth your time. You can find anything from old black-and-white classics to freely available documentaries on the platform. Available via web browser or iOS.

1. Vimeo

Best Free Movie Apps for Mac and iPhone

Vimeo, like YouTube, is mostly a video sharing platform. But that means that indie filmmakers and content creators frequently upload their works to the platform. While you can find feature-length films here, one of the main draws is watching high-quality indie content. Not every video is free, but quite a few of them are.

Vimeo is distinct in a couple of ways, however. Unlike YouTube, it has a much smaller and tighter-knit community of content creators. Because of that, you might be more likely to find indie or experimental films with relatively high production values. There are also no ads on the platform — so you can watch content via browser or iOS app without interruptions.

  1. SHALIM says:

    Hi Mike!
    This is a HUGE COllection of movie apps in one place. I was searching for this and just landed on this post! “SNAG Films” it seems new to me. Must try this one.
    Anyway.. thanks for informative post
    Bookmarked for further reference!

  2. Hey Mike Peterson!
    Some movie apps are working really well. But in the name of “Free” some of the apps are actually not! Though i had purchased the Hotstar Monthly subscription and it seems something great! I think everything is not free in that world. You have to pay something.

    Anyway.. love this great apps collection! I know it took hard efforts to arrange all of the apps for us. You did great work.
    Waiting for such kind of more new collection …
    Pesadao Nunca

  3. Umair Xan says:

    Thanks for sharing the best list of app IOS, I really liked it…

  4. Grancy says:

    Hey,Mike Peterson
    Really thank you for the list,but my mac book pro can’t find these apps.What a pity!What’s more, how can i watch moves on my book?

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