There are a lot of on-demand streaming services out there, but only a few are as good as Tubi. But before you cancel all of your other subscriptions, you should learn more about Tubi and decide whether it’s worth it. Can Fox’s next streaming platform, after all, really compete with Netflix?
Here’s all you need to know about the new streaming service, including the features and content that, for better or worse, define it.
What exactly is Tubi?
Tubi is a streaming service with a difference: it’s completely free. That isn’t an altogether novel concept, to be sure.
There are a few programmes that allow you to watch live television — as well as an out-of-date selection of archived video — without paying a monthly fee, but Tubi focuses solely on on-demand entertainment. Consider it a commercialised version of Netflix but without the monthly costs.
Because Tubi is free, you’ll have to make some concessions. To begin with, there are advertisements. They aren’t obnoxious, but they are present. Second, the content isn’t original; it primarily reruns from cable and other broadcast outlets. Tubi doesn’t have anything new or exclusive right now, at least not yet.
That isn’t to suggest there isn’t anything worth viewing. If you sift deeply enough, you’ll come across the occasional diamond in the rough.
A five-minute search turned up Hercules: The Legendary Journeys, The A-Team, Ender’s Game, Midsomer Murders, The Masked Singer, and Hell’s Kitchen, to name a few.
TubiTV also features programming from ABC, Lifetime, BabyFirst TV, CONtv, and Docurama, among others. Tubi Kids also has a good selection of series and movies, including Naruto, Ninjago, Scooby-13 Doo’s Ghosts, and A Turtles Tale: Sammy’s Adventure.
In addition, depending on how old the content is, the collection doesn’t offer 4K Ultra HD resolution and only offers Full HD.
There’s also no way to upgrade to get a better viewing experience. Tubi is completely free, so if you don’t like it, you’ll have to look for something else. There are enough of them, fortunately.
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Devices that are supported
Tubi is likely to be supported by any (modern) device that can connect to the internet. The streaming service is available through a web browser as well as a mobile app for Android and iOS devices.
It’s also accessible on Roku OS and other Roku devices, as well as Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, Amazon Fire TV Stick, and Amazon Fire Stick 4K. For the PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 5, as well as the Xbox One, Series X, and Series S, there are specialised apps.
You might be able to put it on your television if you don’t have a set-top box or streaming stick. For example, the Tubi app is available for various Samsung TVs via the Samsung App Store.
On all Roku TVs, including the TCL 6-Series and Fire Edition TVs, such as the Toshiba Fire Edition TV, you may also download it through the Roku Channel Store.
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Tubi doesn’t have a lot of features, which is understandable given the low price. You’ll need to register for an account if you want to watch something geared at older audiences, and that’s where the tools come in. You’ll be able to pick up where you left off (on any device), establish a queue, and get recommendations based on your viewing habits if you do so.
Our point of view
In this world, nothing comes for free; if you want to watch a show for free, you’ll have to endure an ad or two both before and during the broadcast. The advertisements aren’t as bothersome as you may assume. You’ll usually see a 20-second commercial before your show begins, followed by a 40-second commercial about halfway through.
The content is the only serious drawback. Tubi has little money to spend on content because it solely generates money from advertising, thus it licences more affordable older material.
But let’s not look a gift horse in the mouth: Tubi is free, so it’s worth browsing through the catalogue in the hopes of finding something worthwhile at least once. After all, if you find even one thing you enjoy, you’ve spent your time wisely.
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In conclusion, we do not believe it is worthwhile to use Tubi as your sole streaming provider. If you’re cutting the cord, don’t cancel Comcast until you’ve added Amazon Prime, HBO Now, or Netflix to your package (or all three).
While you’re at it, throw in a live TV streaming subscription of some sort — Hulu Plus Live TV, for example — to round out the package. Just don’t put all your eggs in one basket with Tubi.