Best TV options on PC
May 14, 2015 5:07 PM   Subscribe

I'd like to stop torrenting the TV shows I follow and be able to pay for them on the up and up. I don't want to stream shows, for a variety of reasons. The shows I watch are for the most part available as season subscriptions on Itunes. Has anyone used itunes to subscribe to shows? Is there a better option?

The shows:
The Flash
I guess all the other CW superhero shows, please don't judge me.

Agents of Shield (CBS)
Agent Carter

Comedy Bang Bang (IFC)
I mean there's just so much great content.

Specifically I guess I'd like to know when the shows become available to download and if downloading them from itunes is substantially different from downloading a torrent file the night of broadcast. I'd be happy to pay for one click download and to easily delete episodes I've watched. Are Itunes video files DRM free like their music downloads? Can I throw the files on a flash drive?

I'm using a desktop PC running windows 7 with a regular monitor, I don't have a smart TV or and Apple TV or the chrome dongle thing.
posted by kittensofthenight to Computers & Internet (10 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
I subscribe to iTunes shows. I end up watching them the day after the show airs -- I recall that, for the last Mad Menu episode, I got an email from Apple at 3:30am Monday morning telling me that Sunday night's episode was available to view.

Not sure about the DRM -- I think your computer/device has to be authorized with your iTunes account to watch the videos.
posted by BurntHombre at 5:34 PM on May 14, 2015

I'm pretty sure there are DRM restrictions on itunes video content. You definitely have to authorize your copy of itunes.
posted by GuyZero at 5:38 PM on May 14, 2015

One advantage to purchasing them through iTunes is that your list of purchases are always available to download, so you can delete an item and then download it again. you do have to authorize the device you are watching them on, but you can have (I think) 5 computers authorized and any one time.
posted by Rock Steady at 5:58 PM on May 14, 2015

Response by poster: I guess im fine with the itune s drm, but sometimes i save eps to watch on long weekend bus rides using an android tablet. Can you access the files directly and slap em on another device?
posted by kittensofthenight at 6:14 PM on May 14, 2015

iTunes has DRM on movies/TV but as long as you know your Apple ID you can delete and redownload whenever you need. Shows I subscribe to download that night and I can watch them the next day. They may even be available the same day if you're up late enough (but I don't need to watch it same-day so I never pay attention.) They automatically download new episodes so I don't have to think about that. You can also manually click to download from the show page in the iTunes Store after you log in. It should show as the cloud and downward arrow icon or a little button that says DOWNLOAD if it's available. It's very easy to buy and download content from iTunes. You can put the files on a flash drive but you won't be able to watch them until you authenticate in iTunes on the computer you're using to play them. They play in iTunes On the computer and the Movies app on iOS.
posted by awesomelyglorious at 6:14 PM on May 14, 2015

You can access the files and move them as you wish, but I don't think you will get them to play on an Android device.
posted by Rock Steady at 9:39 PM on May 14, 2015 [3 favorites]

no on iTunes videos working on an Android device. But, both Amazon and Google have their own stores, which do the same sort of thing, and will work on an Android device.
posted by mrg at 12:21 AM on May 15, 2015 [1 favorite]

Are you me? That's almost exactly the shows I watch.

You can't play iTunes movies on android without stripping the DRM. If there's a way to download amazon or google movies you've purchased to an arbitrary device, I can't find it. You CAN download video to watch offline to a kindle-branded device, but not to your phone.

Anti-piracy technology: preventing people from legitimately buying their media since ever.
posted by contrarian at 7:50 AM on May 15, 2015 [1 favorite]

You can download Amazon movies to your device on the Amazon app, to be watched from within the Amazon app.
posted by freezer cake at 9:17 AM on May 15, 2015

If you purchase movies or TV shows through the Play Store on Android devices, the Play Movies & TV app has a little push-pin icon on each show and that is what toggles downloading the media for offline viewing. It does have some issues in that you can't cast cached content to a chromecast and when you cross international borders it sometimes gets confused, but if you're just going on a bus ride in-country it should do what you want.
posted by GuyZero at 9:50 AM on May 15, 2015

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