Since 2018, YouTube has offered a collection of free-to-watch movies that are supported by advertising. That YouTube library in the US is now expanding to TV shows with almost 4,000 free episodes.

That translates to 100 shows in various genres from various networks and periods. Google says many are available in 1080p with 5.1 surround sound audio on supported devices. It’s available on the web, mobile apps, and “most connected TVs” through the “Movies and shows” section in the sidebar of the YouTube app. Meanwhile, the browsing UI has been optimized:

To enhance the viewing experience, we’re unveiling brand new streamlined navigation and immersive banner art. The rich visuals and new menus will help you more easily find your favorite TV shows from the comfort of the couch, whether you choose to rent, purchase, or watch for free with ads.

When you open a show page, the left pane provides a recap and “2 ways to watch” picker to switch between “Free” or “Buy seasons & episodes.” The latter sees you purchase directly from YouTube, which shares a backend with the Play Store and Google TV.

The collection includes Hell’s Kitchen, Kitchen Nightmares, Sanctuary, Ascension, Midsomer Murders, The Lone Ranger, The Dick Van Dyke Show, The War of the Worlds (2019), and Rosemary’s Baby (2014). In browsing, we found that not all shows feature the full season and stop after a few episodes.

If you’re a YouTube Premium subscriber, the viewing experience won’t be interrupted by advertising.

This joins over 1,500 movies from Disney Media & Entertainment Distribution, Warner Bros., Paramount Pictures, Lionsgate, and others. What’s available changes every few weeks. Along with TV shows, YouTube will add “up to 100 new titles each week.”

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About the Author

Abner Li

Editor-in-chief. Interested in the minutiae of Google and Alphabet. Tips/talk: abner@9to5g.com