Download a Movie or TV Show Over Wi-Fi for Future Use

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While traveling on the road or in the sky, or even just going to the gym, most of us take this time to catch up on our favorite movies and tv shows. However, Wi-Fi can sometimes be unreliable while traveling outside your home and office. Whether it’s because you are on a rural backroad or because you don’t have access to a free connection, streaming your favorite tv series or a movie while on vacation can be a problem. To solve this, many streaming services now have the option to download movies and tv shows for offline viewing which is a real game changer. Here are some of the easiest ways to download a movie or tv show to watch on the go based on your streaming service of choice. Also, we recommend downloading movies and tv shows over Wi-Fi to save on your data use.

Netflix

To download a movie or tv show to watch offline, you need the latest version of the Netflix app installed. To get started, we recommend connecting to Wi-Fi because downloading movies uses a lot of data. Open the Netflix app and click on downloads. Depending on what kind of device you are using, you will either select, “See What You Can Download, Find Something to Download, Find More to Download, or Available for Download”. From there, you will be shown what movies and shows are available. After you have selected one, you will be able to click the download button from the descriptions page. For TV shows, the button will appear next to each available episode. You may see a download season option which allows you to download all episodes in the selected season.

Netflix allows you to have up to 100 active downloads per device on as many devices that are included with your membership plan. Your downloads are available on the device that was used to download them and can be viewed from any profile in your account. It’s important to keep track of when you downloaded these titles because they expire.

The amount of time you have before they expire varies by title.  You can keep track of this in the downloads tab of the Netflix app. Some titles may expire 48 hours after you hit play, so make sure you don’t watch them until you are ready. If a title has expired, you will need to download it again. Some titles may only be renewed a certain number of times. Once you have watched your download, you should go ahead and delete it off your account.  This will help free up storage on your Netflix account.

On iOS and Android 

Hulu

Hulu works much like Netflix when it comes to downloading a movie or tv show. However, to use this feature, you need to subscribe to Hulu’s No Ads membership. When searching for a movie or show, you can identify if something can be downloaded for offline viewing by looking for the download icon by the video. Not all videos are able to be downloaded. If you pay for premium add-ons or Live TV+, those movies and shows will not be downloadable because they are not part of the Hulu streaming library.

You can have up to 25 downloads at a time on your account. This is in total, not per profile or device. Once downloaded, you will have 30 days to watch your show or movie. When you start the movie or show, you will have 48 hours to finish watching the download. If you run out of time, you may have the choice to renew your download.

On iOS and Android

Amazon Prime

Amazon Prime allows subscribers to download movies and tv shows not only on their phones and tablets, but to their desktops as well. To download movies on desktop, you need to download the desktop app that is available for both Mac and Windows users. This app resembles the mobile version very closely and can help users save their cellular data by downloading titles over Wi-Fi onto their computer.

According to Amazon, it is not recommended to save downloads onto USB-connected drives. However, if using the mobile version of the app, your downloads can be saved onto an external storage device. If you have an SD card, you’ll be asked to decide whether you want to download the video to it or use your phone’s internal storage. Downloading movies and tv shows results in large files of data, so by having an SD card, you will be saving storage on your phone.

Not all titles are available for download. Typically, you have 30 days to begin watching the download and 48 hours to finish watching it. Auto-download is a feature that is unique to Amazon Prime. This feature enables the app to automatically download the next episode of a show when you start watching a series. If you are running low on storage and want to control when the next episode downloads, this feature can be turned off. However, this feature will also auto delete episodes. If the next episode is downloaded completely, the previous episode will be deleted once watched. This is a helpful hands-free way of managing your storage. When traveling, this is a great feature to have if you end up in a situation with no Wi-Fi and you can’t continue streaming the series you already started.

On macOS and Windows

Disney+

Disney+ stands out from the others when it comes to its download selection. This streaming service offers all of its movies and tv shows for download. Also, there are no caps on how many movies and shows you can have downloaded at a time. Plus, they never expire. However, every 30 days you will need to connect your device to the internet to keep your downloads. It is worth noting that all downloaded content will be removed from your device if you logout of your account.

When you’re viewing the info of a movie or show, click the download icon to start the process. For tv shows, you can download a whole season at once, or individual episodes. One setting that might be important for you to change would be the download quality. There are three selections for quality: high, medium, and standard. Each quality setting has different download speeds and storage limits. This may be important for you to consider based on your device.

On iOS and Android

CBS, Stars, Showtime, and more

Some premium channels that have apps for download also have ways to access their content offline. If you have access to these channels through a cable subscription, downloading content is usually free of charge. The process for each app varies slightly and each cable provider has different premium channels. It is best to search for app specific instructions once you gain access through your cable provider login. This is good to keep in mind if you do not have a streaming service. Taking advantage of the perks that come along with your cable subscription is a good way to save money. Also, if you want certain titles that are specific to these channels, and you do not have cable, you can subscribe directly to these channels. Make sure you are still using Wi-Fi when downloading movies or tv shows so you can save on cellular data.

Most streaming services offer the option to download a movie or tv show so that you can easily watch them offline. However, there are some things you need to keep in mind from service to service. The number of titles you can save and the amount of time you must watch them in varies between services. If you set aside some time to accomplish this before you leave, accessing your favorite movies and tv series will be a breeze. Having your favorite shows ready will make traveling during your trip much more enjoyable.

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