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How to watch Netflix on TV



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Sarah Tew / CNET

Netflix is ​​the world's most popular subscription video service, and it's likely that you'll find something there that you really want to see. Yes, you can stream Netflix to your phone, tablet or computer, but to fully enjoy it, especially with friends and family, you want it on the biggest screen available: your TV.

The options for viewing Netflix on TV vary depending on your existing equipment, but the basics are the same.

What you need to start

  • Netflix Subscription . Plans start at $ 8.99 a month, a price that limits you to a single screen (TV, phone, or whatever), and relatively low video quality (standard definition or SD). Netflix's most popular plan costs $ 1
    3 a month, so you can stream HD in two screens at the same time. If you have a 4K TV or you want to watch up to four screens at a time, you'll need to sign up for $ 16.
  • Netflix username and password. If you've signed up for a plan, you'll need to enter your Netflix username and password to watch on a TV. Tip: Check the details on a computer or phone before trying on your TV. Because the repeated logging in with a TV remote control can be a real challenge.
  • Broadband Internet for your TV. While you might be watching Netflix with a slow dial-up or ISDN account, the experience will be frustrating at best, if not transmittable. Netflix recommends a connection speed of at least 1.5 Mbps. Most broadband services can achieve this. However, if you are not sure, visit SpeedTest to measure your speed. You also need a way to connect the Internet directly to the device that Netflix is ​​supposed to stream. Depending on this device, you can use a wired Ethernet connection or frequent wireless LAN. To connect this device to Wi-Fi, make sure that you know your Wi-Fi name and password.
  • A Television. Unless your TV was made before the early '80s, you should be able to see Netflix on it. Some TVs have built-in Netflix apps, but most people watch Netflix on television with a separate device. Most Netflix devices mentioned below use HDMI connections, but at least one device uses AV-Out (red, yellow, and white analog cables), which is suitable for older models.
  • Netflix app on a TV.
  • Just like on your phone, there is an app for Netflix designed specifically for TVs such as smart TVs, media streamers, and game consoles. The app is free, but you will need to install it on the device and log in with your Netflix credentials to view them. Speaking of devices …

TV sets you can use to watch Netflix

Once you've set everything aside, you'll need to find out which device you actually watch Netflix with. Here are your key decisions in ascending order of price.

Smart TV, game console, or Blu-ray player you already own

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An LG TV interface from Net TV with Netflox. CNET

If you've been making a flatscreen TV for the last 10 years, you probably can see Netflix on it. Modern televisions integrate streaming services like Netflix into an interface called "Smart TV."

Of course the app is older, slower and not as smooth as the modern version, but if you want to access Netflix now, then this should be the case. Wikipedia has a list of all possible platforms, but the major older systems are Samsung Smart TV, Sony Internet TV, Panasonic Viera Cast and LG Netcast . While some TVs have their own Netflix button on the remote control, most compatible models have a smart TV button that allows you to access the available streaming apps.

Likewise, your Blu-ray player or game console may have a Netflix app. If you have a relatively new console – from the Xbox 360 or PlayStation 3 and later – you can access it from Netflix.

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Game consoles, media streamers, and smart TVs can deliver Netflix to your TV.


Sarah Tew / CNET

New Media Streamer

Even if your current Smart TV, game console, or Blu-ray player with Netflix is ​​the cheapest option, it may not have aged well. If you have an older device, the Netflix app may be sluggish or unreliable. You also have no UI improvements or new features, such as: For example, you may be able to see the outstanding Black Mirror Special Bandersnatch (19459005) (but this is not guaranteed). Or rather use a real remote instead of the controller of your console.

The best way to access a recent Netflix is ​​through a new streaming device. Prizes start at $ 30 with the Roku Express . Meanwhile, the Roku Express Plus offers an analog AV output for $ 35, making it ideal for older televisions (see below).

Simply connect one of these devices to an available port on your current TV and follow the onscreen instructions. Many streamers include Netflix by default, but for every device (except Chromecast) there is also a streaming channel list or app store for downloading the app for free.

Here are some of our tips.

Best for old TVs

Roku Express Plus ($ 35)

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Sarah Tew / CNET [19659039] The Roku Express Plus is not only one of the most affordable streaming devices, but also the only one on the market with analog red, yellow and white AV outlets. It is ideal for older TVs without HDMI.


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Best for Attendant

Chromecast ($ 35)

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Sarah Tew / CNET

If If you live on your phone, the Chromecast might be for you. It puts Netflix on a TV without having to watch a remote or even watch a menu on a TV. Instead, you control everything through the Netflix app on your phone.


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Best for 4K TVs

Roku Streaming Stick Plus ($ 50)

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Sarah Tew / CNET [19659039] Our favorite steamer for 4K TVs is this Roku stick. It combines Roku's simple user interface with the improved picture quality of 4K and HDR – both are available on Netflix if you get the most expensive plan.


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For a more complete list of media players, check out CNET's best streaming devices from 2019 or our Roku vs. Amazon Fire TV] If you're still buying a new TV, chances are it's the latest Smart TV system has. Our favorite is Roku TV. It is easy to use and offers the most complete selection of streaming services in the market.

Best Small, Affordable Smart TV

TCL 325 Series Roku TV (from $ 150)

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Sarah Tew / CNET

While this is not the best picture you can buy, the Roku TV is great value for money and fantastic User interface with fast access to Netflix. No other equipment required!


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If you are looking for better picture quality, check out our list of the best TVs. All are Smart TVs with integrated Netflix.

Enjoy streaming!


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