Catch-up TV apps


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Catch-up TV apps


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In this activity, you’ll learn about catch-up TV, a service offered by Australian TV networks, which you access via an app on your mobile device. You’ll also find out how to use catch-up TV on your smart TV, and how to know when a show you like is available on catch-up TV.

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Australian TV networks have their own apps

Each of Australia’s major TV networks now offer a free app for their catch-up TV service. These are called catch-up apps and can be downloaded from the official app store for your device.

the iview ten play and seven plus icons
tablet with iview logo on it

What is catch-up TV?

After a TV channel broadcasts a program, that program is made available on the channel’s catch-up service. This means you can watch it when it suits you, instead of having to sit down in front of the TV at a scheduled time.

What are the catch-up TV apps?

Each major network in Australia now has a catch-up service. You can find the apps for these on your device’s official app store. They include:

  • ABC iView
  • SBS On-Demand
  • 10Play
  • 9Now
  • 7plus
a range of Australian catch up TV apps
the play store and app store icons and a person

What you need to use a catch-up TV app

Catch-up TV apps are free to download from your device’s official app store. Most catch-up TV services require you to create a free account to use the app. Creating an account also allows the app to track which episodes you’ve watched, making it easy to jump back into a program from the episode you’re up to.

This account asks for your name, email address, and to create a password to access the app.

An icon of a padlock

eSafety tip

It’s safe to create an account for a catch-up TV app, but make sure to use a unique password. Don’t use a password you’ve used for anything else, especially your main email address or any government services.

How a catch-up TV app works

When you start the app on your device, you’ll see a home screen which will have some suggestions or promotions for the app’s latest content. You’ll also see a search bar, so you can search for a program you already know you want to watch. There’s also a menu you can explore to find shows by genre or topic.

smartphone with the iview app open
smartphone with iview app displaying

Shows are only available for a limited time

Most shows on a catch-up TV service are only available to watch for a limited time. Depending on the show, this may be anything from a couple of weeks to a year. When you go to a show’s page in the catch-up app, you’ll see some information that includes when the show will no longer be available.

Using catch-up on your smart TV

If you have a smart TV, there’s probably a version of the catch-up TV app that will work on it as well.

Some catch-up TV apps also let you cast or mirror shows from your mobile device to your TV over home Wi-Fi. You can use your phone to browse and choose shows, just like a remote, while watching on a big screen.

You can learn more in the Displaying your content on a smart TV activity.

the iview app on a smartphone and a TV
receiving notifications from an app

Other features of catch-up TV apps

A catch-up TV app can send you notifications on your device when the latest episodes of your favourite shows are available. Also, when you watch regular TV, you might see a short ad for a program that says the show is available via streaming. This means the show is ready to watch on that channel’s catch-up app.

How to find shows on any catch-up service

Sometimes you’ll know about a show or a movie you’d like to watch, but not which channel it’s on. Instead of checking every catch-up app to find the show, you can use a service like JustWatch.

This lets you search by show or movie, then shows the catch-up and streaming apps it’s available on, and if you need to pay an extra fee to view the content.

You can access JustWatch via a website or an app from the official app store for your device.

The JustWatch app icon

Well done!

This is the end of the Catch-up TV apps activity. You’ve learned how catch-up TV works and how to access it on your mobile device using an app.

Up next, in the Video and music streaming apps activity, you’ll learn about subscription services that let you choose from thousands of movies and shows.

a range of catch up TV apps