The lines between streaming and traditional media have become increasingly blurred, and the Google TV streaming platform demonstrates that. This service combines all your streaming needs onto one screen for an experience similar to channel surfing. All you need is a Chromecast or a compatible smart TV. You can even turn your Android device into a remote!
The Chromecast is commonly ranked as one of the best streaming devices currently available. What a lot of people don't know is that Android OS powers Google TV software. There are thousands of compatible apps that you can use with Google TV. This list covers the best of the bunch.
The best apps to download for Google TV
Some apps come preloaded on Google TV, but those apps can differ depending on the device. All that's necessary for preloaded services is to connect your accounts. For any apps that aren't there, you need to find and download them in the Google Play Store. Consider the following apps when adding to your Google TV app library.
1. Streaming service apps
Netflix is one of the most likely apps to come preloaded on your Google TV setup. It's worth making sure that you have it and that your account is connected (if you have an account). Most of the other streaming juggernauts have apps that are worth using. These include Amazon Prime TV, Hulu TV, Paramount+, HBO Max, Disney+, and more.
2. Network TV apps
Many TV networks have apps that are available with Google TV. Make sure to look for apps from any of your favorite broadcasters. Sometimes you need a cable subscription to use these apps, but they often allow access to live TV and popular media.
3. Fubo TV
Fubo TV is a great app for following sports and watching live events. There are several sports apps that show live events and highlights as well. Fubo has a clean interface and a good variety of content. If you have a sports genre in mind, look for a specific app or related network.
4. Redbull TV
Redbull TV is another good option for following sports. This app focuses on individual athletes that are sponsored by Redbull as well as Redbull events. This is a good one if you're interested in following extreme sports and Esports athletes.
If you have a stationary bike, you probably know what Peloton is. This app is known for its indoor cycling workouts, but many great exercise routines don't require equipment. There are a lot of good exercise apps for Google TV. Peloton is a great place to start your search.
6. VLC Media Player
VLC is one of the best apps for playing any kind of media. This app is well known for being able to play most video file types. You can also play audio files and use some other nifty features! This is a great app for playing personal media files through your Google TV.
7. Send files to TV
It can be difficult to transfer files between your other devices and your Google TV. Send Files to TV helps solve this problem. Using this app, you can send movies, shows, and other files stored on other devices to your Google TV setup.
8. FX File Explorer
If you plan to transfer files between other devices and your Google TV, using a file manager app is essential. This helps you organize and keep track of your files. Downloading this style of app is also important if you intend to sideload programs.
It's useful to be able to treat your Google TV setup like a sound system. Whether you want some ambient noise or you're hosting a party, the Spotify app is a great way to have a central music hub.
10. TuneIn Radio
TuneIn turns your TV into a radio. TuneIn has access to music stations, news, as well as FM radio. Between TuneIn, Spotify, Google Play Music, and other good options, Google TV can cover most of your audio media needs.
If you want to keep up with your favorite streamer or watch esports events on your TV, download the Twitch app. It does a great job of formatting Twitch's streaming interface for a TV setup. There are some third-party options if you don't like Twitch's official app.
The Masterclass app is an underrated choice for Google TV. This is a great resource for learning new skills. Plus, it helps to have lessons play out on the big screen. You may need to make one-time purchases or have a subscription for this app.
13. TV Usage Digital Wellbeing
It's never a bad idea to keep track of your device usage. Digital Wellbeing for Google TV is a great way to keep tabs on how much time you spend with your television. You'll also find clever features that help curb usage if that's what you're looking for.
14. JioPages - Web Browser for TV
It's helpful to have access to a web browsing tool. JioPages is one of the highest-rated TV web browsers in the Play Store because it's simple and looks great. There are plenty of other options you can look into if this one doesn't do it for you.
Expand your app library on Google TV
There's a good chance Google TV can take care of the bulk of your media consumption. Thousands of available apps cover the ground between streamed content and traditional media. The apps listed above are a great place to start.
Consider checking out how to use Google TV if you're new to the service. It never hurts to get tips when diving into a shiny new technological toy.