With so much content now available for TV viewers, keeping up with everything can be a challenge. That’s were TV guide apps can come in handy, as they provide a simple way to know when all your favourite programmes are on.
We’ve gathered together some of the best currently available, so you never need miss a show on Freeview ever again.
Of course, if you prefer to consume content on your own timescale, then you might want to check out our Netflix vs Amazon Prime Video comparison review.
TV Guide UK free
A perennial favourite of ours is the rather perfunctorily named TV Guide +. This neat, well-designed app, offers listings for a huge number of channels, displaying both what’s currently showing, alongside a section for what’s coming next.
Naturally you can peruse the schedule for the entire day, or use shortcuts that display what will be on during prime time or late evening. There’s also a separate breakdown for movies, sport, or cartoons, and you can compile a list of favourite channels rather than toiling through the entire listing.
The app is free is you don’t mind ads, but at the moment you can upgrade to the premium version for 4 months (£1.99) or a whole year (£2.99).
Another easy recommendation is TV24. For years now it has been a reliable way for both iOS and Android users to plan their viewing, all from the comfort of their smartphone or tablet.
The app boasts a full seven-day schedule, and segregates certain content – such as movies, sports, documentary, and kids – making it easier to quickly find what you want.
On the main time-line you’ll see what’s currently on each channel, plus the times and titles of the next two shows. Very useful.
TV24 also allows you to follow certain shows, and setup reminders so you know when they’ll be on.
The free version of the app is fully featured, but it places a big ad in the middle of the content on each page. You can scroll past it, but it does get annoying quite quickly.
To remove it you’ll need the premium version, which can be had for £9.99 per year or £0.99 per month.
TV Guide might have a generic name, but this app has a far more interesting approach to how it arranges content.
Alongside the traditional time-line of programming, there’s a ‘Now & Next’ section that does what it says, plus you have the ability to search through various On-Demand services to see what’s on offer.
These include All4, iPlayer, ITV Hub, My5, as well as subscription services like Netflix and Amazon Prime.
The traditional broadcast content can also be easily navigated thanks to the number of quick menus on offer. Premiership Football has its own section, which equates to Match of the Day and Football Focus for the main part, while there’s also general Sports, Films, Top Rated, New, and Trending.
A Favourites section allows you to follow certain shows, you can create a bespoke listing containing only your preferred channels, and it’s also possible to set up Alerts for when an episode is about to start.
Overall, it’s an impressive app, and if you want to remove the obligatory ads then it will only cost you £4.99 per year.
Radio Times Discover TV
If there’s one name synonymous with TV listings then it has to be the Radio Times. The long-standing publication now has an app, and it’s a very good one.
When you first launch Discover TV you’re not presented with the standard TV schedule, instead there are a selection of curated lists offering, among other things, the ‘10 Best Today’, ’10 Best Catch-Up’, and ‘5 Best Free Films’.
These lists are well in keeping with the traditions of the Radio Times, and certainly make it more likely that you’ll be introduced to quality content that you might otherwise have missed.
Tapping the Full Listings option at the bottom of the screen takes you to a seven-day schedule that is cleanly laid out and a pleasure to navigate. There’s even radio listings available, so you’ll never miss the Archers again.
Tapping on any show brings up more details, including a short summary of the storyline, who stars in it, and its duration.
Once you’ve set up a free Radio Times account you’ll also be able to follow certain shows and create lists of your favourite channels. Those with a Sky+ account will also be able to record shows directly from the app too.
The app does contain ads, and you can’t remove them. But for the most part they’re unobtrusive and mean that this excellent app remains free.
If you want to watch Freeview TV on your smartphone or tablet, then TV Player is a good way to achieve this. As well as a seven-day guide to content, there is also a live streaming feature that allows you to keep up with favourite programmes while on the move.
Obviously, this will use up data from your plan. You can, however, buy TV receivers that let you watch on your tablet or phone without an internet connection.
For example, Elgato's EyeTV has a Lightning connector and plugs into your iPhone or iPad - it's £66 from Amazon.
The app offers a £5.99 p/m tier that also grants access to subscription channels such as Discovery, History, Comedy Central, Eurosport, and Nickelodeon.
Compared to some of the others in this list, TV Guide is a little light on features, but what it does it does well.