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The 4 Best Apps for Downloading Movies and TV Shows «Smartphones :: Gadget Hacks

Streaming movies and TV shows on mobile phones is now more popular than ever, but what if you're on the plane, have a limited data plan, or are turned into a No -Service area? You will need to download your movies and TV shows instead. While Netflix is ​​great, you can not rent or download most current movies and TV shows. What you need is an app that lets you do just that.

We've put together a list of the top four apps that we believe are the top four apps for downloading movies and TV to your smartphone, whether you're buying or renting that content. With each of the following options, you can choose from a variety of entertainment options that you can view anywhere on your iPhone or Android phone. There are crucial differences between them, and some may not work for your situation. So check out our list to find the app that best suits your needs.

Image of Jake Peterson / Gadget Hacks


When it comes to choosing the best service for downloading movies and TV shows, there is many factors. We first laid down some basic rules.

First of all, all services had to offer both movies and TV shows, and they had to be downloadable for offline viewing on mobile devices. We have also made sure that each service occasionally offers offers for its content. Another important factor was that each of these participants provided Full HD content (1080p). Here are the finer points we compared our finalists with:

1: Amazon Prime Video

Amazon Prime has made a name for itself in more ways than just a shopping site. Amazon is a versatile juggernaut between its suite of products such as Kindle, Echo and Fire TV and its excellent original program.

For our purposes, however, it is the first app to download movies and TV to your mobile device. While the company rejects the publication of official numbers, Amazon offers users thousands of options for watching movies. At the moment, JustWatch has counted over 30,000 movies, so you should have no problem choosing something for your movie night!

  • Install Amazon Prime Video: Android (Free) | iOS (free)

HD movies cost $ 19.99 for the first time before dropping to $ 14.99. There are many movies whose prices continue to fall between $ 9.99 and $ 6.99. Not a bad deal.

There are also SD films available, but not necessarily less cost. If an HD movie costs more than $ 9.99, the SD movie is usually cheaper, ranging from $ 9.99 to $ 14.99. For some HD movies that cost $ 9.99 or less, there's an SD equivalent that costs the same. Not all, mind you, but it's still an interesting feature. In these cases, if you do not have the required disk space, you can choose the HD version.

From left to right: The Android App and the iOS App.

Speaking of offers: Amazon offers special offers at film prices. Keep in mind that there are usually discounts for movies with a price of $ 9.99 or higher, so nothing drops below $ 6.99 here.

Amazon unfortunately still has to provide 4K for its mobile users, which is a shame as more and more phones are used displays that would benefit from the quality improvement. You can purchase HD quality videos up to 1080p.

Amazon makes television as good as movies. According to my search Amazon offers 5,481 TV series for sale, which is much more than any other service in this list. It seems to me that there should be something in everyone's catalog.

TV episodes in HD usually cost $ 2.99, though some broadcasts already cost $ 0.99 for episodes. Some episodes cost $ 3.99, HBO titles such as Game of Thrones or True Detective. You can also get SD episodes for a dollar less. Seasons prices vary by series, but usually cost between $ 14.99 and $ 29.99. SD squadrons cost less until the price reaches $ 14.99. In this case, the SD price reflects the HD price.

2: Vudu

Vudu is Walmart's contribution to streaming and downloadable media space. Although Vudu does not have the technical family tree of companies like Amazon or Apple, it was founded by the retailer in 2010 prior to its purchase and founded in the middle of Silicon Valley. As a result of this mishmash education, Vudu has done it. There are some unique features that set it apart from the other names on our list.

It is difficult to find out how many titles Vudu offers for sale. Currently, the company has not responded to our request for numbers, but JustWatch refers to 23,266 available titles.

  • Install Vudu Movies & TV: Android (Free) | iOS (free)

HD movies are usually referred to as "HDX". This is a proprietary codec that ensures that movies at 24 frames per second are displayed with 5.1 surround sound and minimal compression artifacts. However, HDX movies have the same resolution as their HD counterparts and the benefits of HDX are more for streaming content than downloaded content.

HDX movies on Vudu have price ranges similar to Amazon and range from $ 6.99 to $ 19.99. depending on how up-to-date and popular the film is. SD movies usually cost $ 1- $ 5 less. Like Amazon, Vudu offers special deals, especially packages. These bundles usually include two movies for $ 7.99, which is one of the best savings you'll find on this list.

From left to right: The Android App and the iOS App ,

While Vudu does not support UHD, does not offer this level of quality for smartphones. Users looking for a 4K movie experience on their phones need to look elsewhere. You can buy UHD movies in the Android app, but you can not watch in 4K format if you do not do so from a computer. On the other hand, iPhone users can not even buy movies in the app, but have to do so first in a web browser or on another compatible device.

Vudu also has a respectable television catalog, albeit a bit small. JustWatch has a Vudu library of 3,277 series, which is just over half of Amazon. Episodes are the usual $ 2.99 for HD and $ 1.99 for SD, but you'll find deals and unique deals from time to time, so keep your eyes peeled.

Unlike Amazon, you can not rent TV shows, but you can rent movies. The prices are not quite as low as Amazon, but are still similar to other services. HD movies run between $ 3.99 and $ 5.99, SD movies usually cost a dollar less. Purchased HD content can be downloaded in SD at no extra cost if you want to save storage space.

From left to right: The Android App and the iOS App ,

If you've bought a loaner, you have 30 days to look at it. If you click on "Play," you have 24 hours to watch the movie.

Vudu has a legup on Amazon when it comes to downloading. Vudu offers PC downloads so those who prefer to watch movies and TV on their computers have this option. However, you will need to go through the Vudu player, not VLC or Quicktime, which may hamper your media freedom. This also means that you can not add your Vudu movies to your Plex library if you can not figure out how to remove the DRM.

Another fantastic Vudu feature is the partnership with UltraViolet. With this program, users can use their previously purchased DVDs and Blu-rays to get digital copies at significant discounts. DVDs cost $ 2 per copy and $ 5 for an HD copy, while Blu-rays cost $ 2 for an HD copy, since more has probably already been paid for the Blu-Ray.

The disc-to-digital goodies do not stop you there either. Vudu offers package deals on some movies that allow you to purchase a physical Blu-Ray and then enter a code to redeem a free copy of the Full HD digital version. And with Walmart's InstaWatch program, if you purchase legitimate discs from the Walmart website via the same email address associated with your Vudu account, you will instantly receive a free digital copy of the media in your Vudu account. This may be the cheapest way to buy digital content in HD, as Walmart has some great deals on Blu-ray discs.

Unlike other services on this list, Vudu has a minimal selection of free downloadable content. For some shows you will usually find short clips behind the scenes, but not many. Vudu is known for offering free movies and TV advertising. However, this service is limited to streaming only. If you're looking for free media that you can download to your devices, look elsewhere.

Vudu is characterized by its cross-platform availability. The app works regardless of whether you have Android or iOS. However, due to Apple's restrictive policies, the iOS app is limited because of its inability to make purchases. You can use Vudu on all popular TVs like Roku, Fire TV, Chromecast, Android TV and Apple TV. It is the only service on our list of official support for all five of the leading TV platforms by market share.

3: Google Play Movies & TV

In many ways, Google Play can be viewed as iTunes by The iTunes Android World. Well, more specifically, iTunes and the App Store of the Android world, but we do not have to worry about that now. The point is, the two offer similar services to each other.

Since we do not know how many titles Google Play offers, we need to use third-party sources. According to JustWatch, Google has 29,465 movie titles. The films from Google are almost identical to iTunes. HD movies run between $ 4.99 and $ 19.99. SD is $ 1 to $ 5 lower or equal, depending on the movie and cost. The purchase price of HD content includes the ability to download an SD copy if there is little space left on the phone.

  • Install Google Play Movies & TV: Android (Free) | iOS (free)
From left to right: The Android App and the iOS app.

Google Play offers special offers for movies, and like iTunes, these offers are usually found on the homepage. Google makes it easy for you to see your savings, as the old price in gray is crossed out and the new price, like all other prices, is bright red.

While Google Play offers UHD on a desktop and compatible smart TVs, smartphones are not supported. Hopefully we will see that this technology will arrive soon.

In terms of TV, Google Play offers a similar selection as Vudu (3,414). HDTV episodes usually cost $ 2.99 at the regular price, unless it's a premium show that costs $ 3.99. SD episodes are generally one dollar less.

From left to right: The Android App and the iOS App ,

Google Play also offers specials on TV episodes. While you might not find as many deals as you would for another service, Google offers cheap savings packages, TV Seasons of $ 15 or less.

One of Google Play's biggest draws is the fact that you can earn free credit You can buy movies and TV shows by completing occasional surveys using the Google Opinion Rewards app. If you have enough time, you can build an impressive movie and TV library without paying a penny. However, Google Opinion Rewards is only available for Android devices.

Google Play's rental system is relatively straightforward. HD movie rental usually costs $ 2.99- $ 5.99, with SD titles either the same price or a dollar less. You have 30 days to watch your movie from the time of purchase and an impressive 48 hours to finish the movie from the moment you play it. Like all services in this list except Amazon, Google Play does not offer TV rentals.

You can not download your Google Play movies and shows to a Windows or Mac computer, but you can download songs if you have a Chromebook. There are no discounts for previously purchased DVDs or Blu-Rays, but Google Play offers free content such as Free TV. Just like iTunes, you will not find the best or hottest TV shows here, but hey, you might find something fun.

Google Play goes well with the different devices. You can access it on both Android and iOS, although you can not buy anything through the iOS app. Google Play is directly compatible with Roku, Chromecast and Android TV. But even on the platforms where is unavailable you can play purchased content through the YouTube app so you can even watch your movies on Fire TV and Apple TV. The iOS app and the YouTube app now have built-in AirPlay streaming, so Google Play users can transfer their content directly to an Apple TV.

4: iTunes Store

While it's popular to download music digitally – legal anyway – iTunes has since established itself as a great source for downloadable movies and TV.

Apple's iTunes is probably the best app on this list for iPhone, Mac, and all-round Apple users. However, outside of Apple's ecosystem, it is only available on Windows PCs, so Android users can not do so. Due to the size of an app for the iOS community, we have earned third place.

Let's talk about movies. Apple claims that iTunes users can choose from around 85,000 flicks. Just Watch on the other hand claims that iTunes has only 26,427 titles. Go figure.

Movies are offered at a typical price, but you can find some for cheap – HD movies usually cost $ 5.99 to $ 19.99, with SD movies usually costing a dollar less. Like Amazon, some iTunes movies charge the same fee for the SD copy as for the HD copy. Take this into account before making a decision. However, HD purchases can be downloaded in SD at no extra cost if you want to save space on your phone.

The iTunes Store has only one app for iOS.

iTunes also regularly offers special discounts for movies, with most premium movies already at $ 4.99.

iTunes HD delivers 4K content. A welcome addition to anyone who uses the service on compatible devices. Unfortunately, the only 4K-compatible device in Apple's ecosystem is the Apple TV 4K. Even the latest iPhones from Apple can not run movies in 4K resolution, but only with a maximum resolution of 1080p. Fortunately, HDR-compatible iPhones can display HDR movies in their full dynamic range, but at 1080p instead of 4K.

At first sight iTunes TV seems to offer. Apple claims iTunes has 300,000 TV shows in its store, but we're not sure about that.

We think Apple counts every success as a television series. That would be useful, considering that JustWatch lists only the available 4.645 series. In any case, iTunes costs its TV episodes similar to the other services, although some HD broadcasts are slightly cheaper, as with the movies. HD broadcasts usually range between $ 0.99 and $ 2.99, although HBO and other premium channel episodes may charge $ 3.99 per episode.

Cover pictures and screenshots of Jake Peterson / Gadget Hacks

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