Apple TV+ is still in its infancy but it does have some great content. Unfortunately, using the service is marred by Apple’s lack of support for third-party streaming protocols…
When you buy a new iPhone, like the iPhone 13, as I just did, you get three months of Apple TV+ for free, meaning you can watch shows like Ted Lasso and the new Tom Hanks film, Grey Hound. This is a pretty sweet deal and it is likely one of the main reasons why Apple TV+ is growing so fast.
The actual content available inside Apple TV+ is still pretty limited, despite the fact it now has the first straight-to-streaming Oscar-winning film on its books, CODA. But Apple is investing heavily in the platform and what is available right now – shows like Foundation, The Shrink Next Door, and INVASION – is of the highest possible quality.
But there is one thing that REALLY sucks about Apple TV+ and, had I not had Sky Q, it would have really affected my ability to actually use the service. As you’d expect, Apple has a particular way of streaming content from Apple TV+ on your iPhone to your HDTV. You have to use AirPlay, and in order to use AirPlay – or get it to stream from your iPhone to your TV – you will need an actual Apple TV.
The WORST Thing About Apple TV+
I don’t have an Apple TV, nor do I want to buy one – they’re not exactly cheap. But if you want to stream Apple TV+ shows or movies from your iPad or iPhone to your living room’s TV, you basically have to get one. Apple TV+ doesn’t support any other streaming protocols like Chromecast. You have AirPlay or nothing.
I wouldn’t mind this at all if Apple made a cheaper, inexpensive AirPlay dongle that you could attach to your TV to make it AirPlay compatible. But Apple doesn’t do this. Instead, it wants you to cough up $179 for one of its Apple TV units. But, please, do not do this – there are ways around this issue. But you will have to spend some money.
In my case, I have a pretty old Samsung smart TV. It doesn’t come with the Apple TV+ app. I have Chromecast installed on the side of the TV and have been using that for all my streaming needs for the past several years. And it has worked great. Chromecast is just brilliant, easily one of the coolest bits of tech from the last decade.
Apple TV+ DOES NOT Support Chromecast
But, sadly, Chromecast is not supported by Apple TV. This means, if you want to stream Apple TV+ shows, you’ll need to get something smarter. Fortunately, this is easy enough to do. You can pick up an Amazon Fire Stick or a ROKU device for a lot less than an Apple TV, and you can then install the Apple TV+ on either of them. This would be the cheapest way to start streaming Apple TV+.
There are workarounds, ways of getting Apple TV+ to stream over Chromecast, but they’re all pretty painful and not worth your time. I tried streaming Apple TV+ from my PC’s web browser to my TV, for instance, but the results were terrible – the stream kept crashing and the sound was all out of whack. Basically, it didn’t work.
You could also plug your iPhone directly into your TV, or an iPad, but, again, do you actually want to do that? Probably not.
If you have a newer smart TV model, either from Samsung, Sony, or LG, you can download the Apple TV+ app natively on the actual TV itself. If you have a new TV, this is the best way to interact with Apple TV+ without using AirPlay. If you want to use AirPlay, you’ll basically have to buy an Apple TV – although you could save some money and go with an older, refurbished model .
My advice? Just get an Amazon Fire Stick – it’s cheaper (just $39) and works just as well. Plus, you can download and run the Apple TV+ app natively, so there’s no need to stream from your iPhone.
What Devices Support Apple TV+ App?
If you want a complete list of ALL the devices that come with Apple TV+ app support, check out the list below. As of 2022, these are all the current TVs, Consoles, and Streaming Sticks that come with Apple TV+ app support.
Amazon Fire TV
- Fire TV Stick 4K (2018)
- Fire TV Stick – Gen 2 (2016)
- Fire TV Stick – Basic Edition (2017)
- Fire TV Stick Lite (2020)
- Fire TV Stick – Gen 3 (2020)
- Fire TV Stick 4K Max (2021)
- Fire TV Cube (Gen 2)
- Fire TV Cube (Gen 1)
- Fire TV – Gen 3 (2017)
- Fire TV – Toshiba 4K (2018, 2020)
- Fire TV – Insignia 4K (2018, 2020)
- Fire TV – Toshiba HD (2018)
- Fire TV – Insignia HD (2018)
- Fire TV – JVC 4K (2019)
- Fire TV – Grundig Vision 6 HD (2019)
- Fire TV – Grundig Vision 7, 4K (2019)
- Fire TV – Grundig OLED 4K (2019)
- Fire TV – JVC Smart HD/FHD (2020)
- Fire TV – Technika 4K (2020)
- Fire TV – ok 4K (2020)
- Fire TV – JVC 2K (2020)
- Fire TV – Onida HD/FHD (2019, 2020)
- Fire TV – AB/AKAI/Croma UHD (2020)
- Fire TV – AmazonBasics HD/FHD (2020)
- Fire TV – AmazonBasics 4K (2020)
- Fire TV – Toshiba C350 Fire TV (2021)
- Fire TV – Insignia F20, F30, F50 Series (2021)
- Fire TV – 4-Series (2021)
- Fire TV – Omni Series (2021)
Android TV Streaming Devices and TVs
- NVIDIA SHIELD TV
- Google TV
- LG OLED – RX, ZX, WX, GX, CX, BX series (2020)
- LG OLED – R9, Z9, W9, E9, C9, B9 series (2019)
- LG OLED – B8, C8, G8, E8 Series (2018)
- LG OLED – W7, G7, E7, C7, B7 series (2017)
- LG OLED – G6, E6, C6, B6 series (2016)
- LG NanoCell – Nano 99, 97, 95, 90, 85, 80 series (2020)
- LG NanoCell – SM99, SM95, SM90, SM86, SM81 series (2019)
- LG UHD TV – UN85, UN73, UN71, UN70, UN69 series (2020)
- LG UHD TV – UM80, UM75, UM73, UM71, UM69 series (2019)
- LG UHD TV – UK62 and above, UK7 series (2018)
- LG UHD TV – UJ77, UJ65, UJ64, UJ63, UJ62, UJ60 series (2017)
- LG UHD TV – UH65, UH63, UH61, UH60, UH55 series (2016)
- LG Super UHD TV – SK9, SK8 series (2018)
- LG Super UHD TV – SJ95, SJ85, SJ80 series (2017)
- LG Super UHD TV – UH95, UH85, UH77, UH76 series (2016)
- 2021 4K OLED/LCD Smart TV – MT5816
- 2019–2020 4K OLED/LCD Smart TV – GZ/GX/HZ/HX Series – MT5813
- 2018 4K OLED/LCD Smart TV – FZ/FX Series – MT5811
- 2017 4K OLED/LCD Smart TV – EZ/EX Series – MT5811
- PlayStation 4
- PlayStation 5
- Roku Smart Soundbar 9100X
- Roku 4K TV 6000X, 7000X, A000X, C000X, G000X
- Roku 8K TV E000X
- Roku TV 8000X, D000X
- Roku Smart Soundbar 9101X, 9102X
- Roku Express 3900X, 3930X, 3940X
- Roku Express+ 3910X, 3931X, 3941X
- Roku HD 3932X
- Roku Streaming Stick 3600X, 3800X, 3820X
- Roku Streaming Stick+ 3810X, 3811X, 3821X
- Roku Premiere 3920X, 4620X
- Roku Premiere+ 3921X, 4630X
- Roku Ultra 4640X, 4660X, 4661X, 4670X, 4800X
- Roku Ultra LT 4662X
- Roku 2 4210X, 4205X
- Roku 3 4200X, 4230X
- Samsung QLED 8K Q9, Q8 Series (2019, 2020)
- Samsung QLED 4K Q9, Q8, Q7, Qx Series (2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021)
- Samsung UHD 8, 7, 6 Series (2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021)
- Samsung FHD/HD 5,4 Series (2017, 2018, 2020)
- Samsung Serif Series (2019, 2020)
- Samsung The Frame Series (2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021)
- Samsung The Sero Series (2019, 2020)
- Sony A9S series (2020)
- Sony A9F series (2018)
- Sony A9G series (2019)
- Sony X85G series (2019 55”, 65”, 75” and 85” models)
- Sony X95G series (2019)
- Sony X80H series (2020)
- Sony X85H series (2020)
- Sony X90H series (2020)
- Sony X95H series (2020)
- Sony X80J series (2021)
- Sony X85J series (2021)
- Sony X90J series (2021)
- Sony X91J series (2021)
- Sony X95J series (2021)
- Sony Z8H series (2020)
- Sony Z9G series (2019)
- Sony Z9F series (2018)
- Sony Z9J series (2021)
- VIZIO OLED (2020)
- VIZIO P‑Series Quantum X (2019, 2020)
- VIZIO P‑Series Quantum (2018, 2019, 2020)
- VIZIO P‑Series (2016, 2017, 2018)
- VIZIO M‑Series Quantum (2019, 2020)
- VIZIO M‑Series (2016, 2017, 2018)
- VIZIO E‑Series (2016, 2017 and 2018 UHD models)
- VIZIO V‑Series (2019, 2020)
- VIZIO D‑Series (2018, 2019)
- Xbox One
- Xbox One S
- Xbox Series X
- Xbox Series S
And check out How to Stop Apple TV Keyboard Notifications On iPhone! Also, check out tvOS 16: All The New Features, Release Date, & Supported Devices!
Richard Goodwin has been working as a tech journalist for over 10 years. He is the editor and owner of KnowYourMobile.
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