12 Places to Watch Free (or Cheap) TV on the Web

From blinkx to YouTube, it's all right here

Free television shows, sports events, and special programming without a hefty monthly subscription? Yes, you really can do this on the Web, and this article is going to show you twelve different sites that offer all sorts of great free TV shows online. Make it easy on yourself, by the way, and just go ahead and get a smart TV already, would you? You'll be able to connect to any of these sites through one and just hang out on the couch like the old days.

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Logo of the Hulu online service.
Converted to SVG by Tkgd2007/NBCUniversal, Fox Entertainment Group, and Disney-ABC Television Group/Getty Images

Hulu is one of the best sources on the Web for full episodes of TV shows. They also offer a wide selection of free movies, documentaries, and animated specials. Usually, Hulu posts an episode within 24 hours of airtime, which makes it a very convenient way to keep up with your favorite television shows without being tied to the TV. More »

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Fox logo

Not only can you watch your favorite FOX shows here, you can also get episode summaries, cast info, and upcoming previews here. They also offer behind the scenes information, exclusive looks at new or upcoming TV episodes, and specific offers only for fans. More »

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nbc logo

Your favorite NBC programs, all in one place. Be sure to visit the NBC Video Library, where you can find current and past episodes of the NBC line-up.Find the latest NBC TV schedules here, along with news, an active community, games, and the official NBC store. More »

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LinkTV Logo

Link TV provides a wide variety of high-quality programming from around the world, focusing on global news, international events, and different cultures.

If you're looking for a different perspective than you usually get from network news programs, Link TV is a good bet.

Link TV is organized so you can find what you're looking for without a lot of fuss.

Users have several options, including:

  • View the daily full schedule
  • Check out the Programming channels
  • Browse programs
  • Browse videos
  • Use Link TV's Search feature; you can narrow your search to Most Relevant, Most Recent, or Alphabetical, as well as by series.

All of Link TV's multimedia content is available to watch via streaming technology right in your browser. No special players are needed (you probably will need the most updated version of Flash, but most browsers come with that nowadays).  More »

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YouTube, one of the oldest and most popular video sharing and upload sites on the Web today, is a great way to catch up on TV that you might've missed or find obscure clips and outtakes from your favorites. You can also find fan-made video montages of great moments from various programs throughout TV history. 

If you like YouTube, check out YouTube TV. It's a separate, paid service you can subscribe to. More »

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PBS features many of their programs online in an easy to view streaming format that you can enjoy right within your Web browser. Make sure to visit the Explore Topics page to get a feel for what's available, as well as the main PBS Programs page. More »

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Full shows from multiple networks are available at Xfinity. There are also TV series, movies, documentaries, short films, and sports events here, all free, and all available to view within your Web browser. Note: You'll need to be a Xfinity subscriber in order to take advantage of many of the offerings here.  More »

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abc logo

ABC offers fans sneak peeks of your favorites, local schedules, full episodes, photos, even message boards where you can discuss programs and find people who have your same interests in mind. More »

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Much like other sites on this list, Veoh has so much to offer that it can be overwhelming on the first visit. Best bet for finding your favorite TV shows to watch? Try the main TV show index. Here, you can sort by popularity, date added, alphabetical order; by clips or full episodes; or by language (dozens of languages are available here). More »

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OVGuide. OVGuide

OVGuide searches all over the Web for full-length episodes, movies, videos, animation, and documentaries. Check out the main TV index that shows you what they've got to offer, as well as the main index of all the literally thousands of TV programs that OVGuide has for the avid watcher. More »

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You can find all of your favorite content on Sidereel, including the most popular and current programs, upcoming exclusive sneak peeks of premieres, Web-specific broadcasts, and the latest episodes. You can also make a personalized calendar of all your favorites on Sidereel so you'll never miss an episode again. More »

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Blinkx Logo

Blinkx is a video search engine that offers literally millions of hours of available video content online to watch for free. World news, entertainment, sports, it's all here. You can even create your own Blinkx TV channel with your own personalized mix of content, choosing whatever you want to watch (via a simple keyword search) on a daily basis. More »

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