Thanks to smart TVs, many people have “cut the cord” and have abandoned their cable providers in favor of streaming TV shows and movies through popular apps like Netflix, Prime Video, and Hulu. However, not everyone has a smart TV— and even those that do own smart TVs may not have the latest versions that offer Disney Plus, HBO Max, Peacock, and a few other apps.
This can make streaming TV shows and movies much more difficult, leaving people to rely on cable for entertainment. On top of this, cable companies are known for offering low introductory prices and then charging their customers much more later on. Fortunately, there are a few ways that you can stream all of the popular shows without a smart TV.
Use Other Smart Devices
The simplest solution to being able to stream shows without having a smart TV is by using another smart device to do so. Around 97% of Americans own a smartphone, so downloading the apps to your phone will allow you to watch your favorite shows. This will also work on other smart devices, such as a tablet.
If you don’t have a smart device or you prefer to watch your shows on a bigger screen, you can hop on your laptop or personal computer (PC) and watch from the websites of these apps. Let’s use Netflix as an example because it’s the most popular streaming platform. All you have to do is visit the website and log into your account, and then you can start watching.
Connect External Devices To Your TV
Some may believe that it’s impossible to stream shows without a smart TV, or maybe even that it will take a lot of technical work to be able to do so. Fortunately, that’s not the case at all! A number of external devices can be hooked up to a non-smart TV and you’ll be able to stream movies and TV shows as if you were watching them on a smart TV. All you need is a TV with an HDMI port and one or more of these external devices.
Many gamers know that in addition to playing games, their consoles also allow them to access certain streaming apps. These consoles are Nintendo (Wii U), PlayStation (PS3, PS4, and PS5), and Xbox (Xbox 360, Xbox One, One S, One X, Series S, and Series X). So if you have one or more of these consoles, you’ll be able to access some streaming apps to watch TV shows and movies.
To access these apps through your consoles, you’ll have to go to your TV/Video/Media services or your store/shop option on your console. The Xbox 360 actually has an “Apps” setting where you can download streaming apps.
Pcs, Laptops, And Some Smart Devices
If you don’t have a game console (or maybe you have an older version of the ones listed above), you still may be able to stream on your TV. Many PCs and laptops (as well as TVs) have an HDMI port, and all you need is an HDMI cable to connect your computer to your TV. Your TV will now be used as a projection screen and you’ll have to control whichever app you choose to watch through your computer.
Some smartphones and other devices may even be able to work too. Keep in mind that this isn’t the same thing as “casting” from your phone to your TV, as you’ll need a smart TV to be able to cast.
The last type of external device is a streaming device. Again, this type of device works with an HDMI port and displays the streaming apps on your TV. Some examples of streaming devices include:
- Amazon Fire TV/Fire Stick
- Apple TV
The only downside to this method is that these streaming devices may not have all of the latest apps and many of the free services that can be found on the latest smart TVs. Fortunately, certain installs on these streaming devices will give you access to free movies and TV, as well as some other paid apps.
So these are all of the ways that you can stream TV without having a smart TV. Just keep in mind that certain streaming apps require a monthly subscription (anywhere from $4.99 to $69.99— depending on which app you choose) for you to be able to stream shows.