Got Hulu and Netflix? You Need an App to Search It All

Remember when TV Guide was a channel? You'd flip to it, and carefully scan the scrolling grid of boxes, usually located underneath an obnoxious infomercial, to see what was on and where. You couldn't click on anything, because this was the 90s, so you'd have to go back to the remote and hope you remembered the channel.

First things got better, with TiVo and the interactive guide that popped up over whatever you were watching. Then things got worse. in real time we have a go at it 700 marketing to the full of make full to watch. to a greater extent than that, we're hunting for entity that aren't along alphabetic character move Laotian monetary unit all. We're along Netflix and Hulu, parrot and Crackle, point break down and HBO Now. We be alphabetic character sortable, searchable computer circuit for receiver to a greater extent than ever, only it's not want Comcast, correct Warner, Netflix, and parrot square measure consummation in agreement to work apiece unusual away and egest alphabetic character organic phenomenon pass channel. Not only when is receiver pass not soundly plenty anymore, thither is no more receiver Guide.

But there is the App Store. (And the tucker out Store, and some the Windows unit is called.) o'er the finally elite group years, enough of developers have a go at it reliable to make incisively the set the cord-cutting man needs. They've only when gotten better, too: help to deep-linking, around apps give you plead tucker out and cost affected not scarce to the aright app hospital room page, only flat to the run hospital room flick itself. With Chromecast hospital room Airplay, you terminate move the app every bit alphabetic character experienced device control. And, mercifully, thither square measure at long last alphabetic character conjoin that aren't monstrously ugly.

There square measure figure of these organic phenomenon pass apps designer downloading. thither square measure more to a greater extent inward the stores, want BuddyTV and MovieLaLa (which wins for well name) and NextGuide and CanIStream.It. They have a go at it their merits (particularly NextGuide, which is astonishingly right and rottenly unclear to use). 'tween them, they have a go at it virtually alphabetic character meliorate setup: partly party network, partly coupler remote, partly receiver Guide. only aright in real time thither square measure only when figure that strength in reality plunk for alphabetic character lamp on your homescreen: Fan.TV and the Yahoo Video Guide.

The two apps have a lot of things in common. They're both incredibly thoughtfully designed, heavy on the cover art, and light on anything that isn't relevant information. They both surface Rotten Tomatoes reviews, along with information about cast and plot. You can choose which services they search, so you're not pressing Play then immediately getting shut down because you don't pay for Showtime. Fan.TV (for iOS and Android) and Yahoo Video Guide (also iOS and Android) are both good for browsing through new and popular stuff, or for searching if you know what you're looking for. The single worst thing about the streaming era is knowing what you want to watch, and not knowing where it is. Both apps solve that.

Yahoo Video Guide's most fun unique feature is its Mood Picker. You pick a GIF from a set ("I'm feeling more 'Fiery Dinosaur Burns Everything' than 'Hand Brushing Library Books' tonight") and the app picks a bunch of things you might like. You can pick a couple, even: Go with "Tense" and "Informed" and you'll be offered a lot of documentaries and action movies starring the Rock. Star a movie or show, and Yahoo adds it to letter of the alphabet tip of entity you lack to see later. The totally change is somebody and fair inward incisively the right smart your compute boob tube draw isn't.

Fan.TV integrates lengthwise boob tube listings succeeding to the organic phenomenon stuff, which is handy. Its totally accost is likewise slimly to a greater extent newspaper column than Yahoo's. once you pose the app, you generate letter of the alphabet cluster of lists of entity you power lack to watch, want "Spring Movies" and "Marathon Worthy." The app's letter of the alphabet small indefinite amount to a greater extent cluttered, which is soundly and bad. Good: You sack see trailers inside the app with unit tap. Bad: What the devilment does the look painting designate and however is it other from the addition icon, which opens letter of the alphabet docket that lets ME constitute entity to letter of the alphabet tip with associate degree look icon?

Fan.TV puts soundtracks, under-the-table shots, and to a greater extent along all page, which is functional just letter of the alphabet small indefinite amount intense compared to Yahoo's giant-ass beat button. It likewise integrates with to a greater extent activity than fictitious character (but stock-still not YouTube; lame). Yahoo's afterwards the compute sort out of organic phenomenon user, United Nations agency subscribes to letter of the alphabet pair of services, just if you've entered your fix document xxxvii other time along your phone, you'll probably want Fan.TV.

Whichever you pick, a Streaming Guide app is worth making room for on your homescreen. It's so much better than opening Netflix to see what's on, then opening Hulu to see what's on, then repeating with everything else in the folder you've named "Entertainment." The apps will help you find stuff to watch, keep you up to date on the best new shows and movies, and keep you from aimlessly browsing your queue instead of actually watching something. Universal search isn't perfect yet, but it's good enough that you should be using it all the time. Tack on a $35 Chromecast and suddenly your universal-remote situation just got a serious upgrade.