The Spectrum TV app is exactly what the name implies: an app for set-top streaming boxes and mobile devices that delivers Spectrum TV over Spectrum internet. The app is free, but it’s tied to Spectrum internet service and your specific Spectrum cable TV plan.
The Spectrum app can also eliminate the need for more cable boxes in your home, a major plus for those who are into Marie Kondo-ing their living spaces.
As you may have gathered from all the Spectrum namechecks, you must already be a Spectrum subscriber to use the Spectrum app. Spectrum, Spectrum, Spectrum! (Whew.)
The Spectrum TV app is a convenient way to access Spectrum TV in or out of the house. But, available channels and on-demand shows change when you’re off your home Spectrum internet network (read: you get fewer). The Spectrum TV app works, but it doesn’t quite replace cable.
It does provide a few of the perks of a livestreaming TV service, though, like sorting favorite channels by preference. On your phone, the app can also function as a remote when you’ve lost the TV clicker in the couch cushions again (it happens).
Considering that it comes free with Spectrum service, the Spectrum TV app is good to have handy, even if it’s not your go-to TV viewing choice.
What you can watch on the Spectrum TV app depends on your Spectrum TV plan: Select, Silver, or Gold. Meaning, you won’t be able to watch channels from the Gold plan if you’re subscribed to Silver or Select—the app mirrors your plan.
|Home Spectrum network|
|Outside of network|
|Spectrum TV channels||Spectrum on demand||DVR content||Offline viewing|
Watching TV on a tablet or mobile device is the most obvious function of the Spectrum TV app, but its usefulness doesn’t end there.
One advantage of using the Spectrum TV app at home is the elimination of hardware—no extra cable box gathering dust and adding to your bill. The app has the functionality of the box, but it sits alongside Netflix and Hulu on your streaming device’s screen instead of the shelf.
You can also favorite your frequently viewed channels for quick access with the Spectrum TV app, and control DVR settings and recordings, as well as parental restrictions.
When you’re not connected to your home Spectrum internet network, the Spectrum TV app’s capacity is somewhat reduced. Depending on your area, select local and cable channels won’t be available on the go—the same applies to recorded and on-demand content.
The Spectrum TV app doesn’t allow downloading shows or movies for offline viewing. You must be connected to an internet network (your home connection or otherwise) to watch anything on the Spectrum TV app.
For Spectrum internet customers who don’t want to sign up for a standard cable TV package, there’s Spectrum TV Choice, a streaming-only plan. As the name suggests, you get to choose 10 à la carte cable channels, and Spectrum throws in available local channels, for $24.99 a month.
The skinny-bundle Choice plan is cheaper than Spectrum’s cable plans, and it doesn’t exclude sports channel choices. There are third-party livestreaming TV services, like the $20-a-month Philo, that gives you up to 50 more channels, but it carries zero sports networks.
The Spectrum TV app can be configured to block content featuring adult situations, nudity, and violence based on TV and movie-rating board recommendations. Certain channels can be blocked altogether, and select times of day can be restricted from viewing (such as school time or bedtime).
Parental control is based on a four-digit PIN set by the user. There are separate PINs for purchasing movies and shows, versus on-demand access.
The Spectrum TV app is compatible with the following devices:
If you already have Spectrum service, the Spectrum TV app is a nice free perk to take advantage of. It works well on mobile devices, and it’s also a fully functional streaming-device app that can replace an extra cable box or two. Less hardware to rent is always a plus.
Within your Spectrum home internet network, there’s no limit to how many devices can use the Spectrum TV app simultaneously. Outside the network, using Wi-Fi or mobile data, multiple streams are limited to three.
Spectrum’s streaming-only Choice TV plan is specifically for Spectrum internet customers who don’t want a traditional cable subscription or set-top box. For $24.99 a month, you get 10 cable channels of your choosing, as well as available local channels.
The channels available to you on the Spectrum TV app correspond to your Spectrum TV plan: Select, Silver, or Gold. Outside of your home network, however, not all channels will be available.