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Watching Apple TV+ On Android Is Difficult, But Not Impossible

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Watching Apple TV Plus on Android is far more difficult than it should be, but it’s not impossible. With the Apple TV app being the home to everything video in Apple’s world, including Apple TV Plus, there are plenty of reasons as to why non-Apple device users would want to access the app. For owners of many non-Apple devices, that’s not actually a problem.

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In general, the Apple TV app is fairly widely available and certainly to a similar level to many other streaming services. After all, and in addition to iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, Mac, and Apple TV, the Apple TV app can also be downloaded on Amazon Fire TV devices, Roku players, PlayStation and Xbox consoles, and even on LG, Samsung, and Vizio TVs. In fact, it is largely available everywhere other than Android.

To be clear, the Apple TV app is specifically unavailable on Android mobile and not on other versions of Android. For example, the app can be downloaded and installed on many Android TV devices including the Nvidia Shield TV, and Android TV-powered smart TVs by Hisense, Panasonic, Philips, Sony, and TCL. The Apple TV app is also available to download on Google TV (the next-gen version of Android TV) devices, such as the Chromecast with Google TV (HD) and the Chromecast with Google TV (4K).

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The only major caveat with both Android TV and Google TV devices is that the device must be running a minimum of Android TV 8. Providing this requirement is met, the app can easily be downloaded on a supported Android TV or Google TV device by opening the Google Play Store on the device and searching for the app. Depending on the device, it may also be possible to send the app from the web-version of the Google Play Store.

How to watch Apple TV+ on an Android phone

When it comes to watching Apple TV Plus on an Android smartphone or tablet, things are a little more tricky. With no actual app to download on these devices, users have to be a little more creative in terms of workarounds. By far, the easiest solution is just to simply watch through a browser. By heading over to the Apple TV website in Chrome, or whichever mobile browser is typically used, Android users can either sign in with their existing Apple ID or create a new one.

Apple TV on Android sign in home
Apple TV web home screen on Android

Once signed in, they will then have access to their Apple TV account including full access to Apple TV Plus. Tapping on any of the movies or shows will then display an option to play the episode or movie. The video will then be played right in the mobile browser.

Apple TV Android play Ted Lasso episode
Android users can watch in the browser

Once a video is playing, users can either watch in portrait mode or change to landscape mode for more of a full-screen viewing experience.

Apple TV Android watch landscape
Android users can watch in portrait or landscape

Once finished or when ready to watch something else, users can simply navigate back to the main menu to change to a different video.

Overall, and even though it is more work than just opening an app each time, using the web browser is a good way to get around the lack of a dedicated Android app.

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When is the Android mobile app coming?

Good question. At present, there is no firm information on when Apple plans to launch a dedicated Android mobile app, if it plans to launch one at all. In reality, it would seem unlikely that Apple can permanently avoid releasing one. Due to the nature of streaming services and their incredible growth over the last few years, services like Apple TV Plus have the potential to be hugely popular. Not to mention, the fact that Apple has already released apps for Android TV and Google TV suggests that Apple understands the importance of letting consumers using non-Apple products access the service.

Then again, considering Apple TV Plus is available to download on Android TV and Google TV devices, and can also be accessed on Android phones via the website, Apple may simply keep the situation as it is. With Android TV and Google TV devices already capable of accessing the service, Apple has catered to those highly invested in the Android ecosystem by ensuring they can watch its TV-based streaming service on the TVs in the home. In this sense, Apple may simply decide to keep the option to watch in an app while on the go reserved for those that buy an iPhone or iPad.

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John Finn

By John Finn

John started Streaming Better to help consumers navigate the live TV streaming and subscription service landscape. John has been writing about technology and TV-related services and devices since 2014 and believes the best streaming approach is to bounce between services as needed. Contact John via email at john@streamingbetter.com or on Twitter

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