Best TV streaming services in Ireland
TV streaming lets you watch your favourite TV shows and movies on-demand. Here’s all you need to know about the best streaming services in Ireland.
What is TV streaming?
TV streaming services allow you to watch TV shows, movies and live sport online from your home or mobile devices like TVs, laptops or tablets.
Streaming is usually done through an app, so you simply download and sign up, pay a monthly or annual fee, and stream your chosen entertainment wherever you are.
You’ll need a good broadband connection and a bank account to set up a payment method.
Who offers TV streaming services?
There are six main video streaming services in Ireland.
- Amazon Prime Video
- Apple TV
Here’s a look at the shows and movies you can view and the price you’ll pay for each service.
Amazon Prime Video
Watch recent movie releases, Amazon Originals, TV shows and live sport on Prime Video.
What’s on Prime Video?
You can view exclusive Amazon Originals and thousands of popular movies and TV shows via Primevideo.com on up to three devices at the same time.
Here’s a taster:
How to get Prime Video
You can either pay monthly for Amazon Prime Video only or join Amazon Prime and access it as one of the many benefits of Amazon Prime membership.
Try Amazon Prime Video with a 7-day free trial, and if you like what you see, pay a monthly fee to continue watching.
The complete Prime Video catalogue on Amazon.co.uk is only available to Prime members living in the UK. To learn more about Amazon Prime Video, read our guide Should you get Amazon Prime Video in Ireland?
Enjoy family favourites from Disney, Pixar and Marvel and blockbuster epics like Star Wars.
What’s on Disney+?
Disney+ is the most recent addition to the streaming services family, rivalling Netflix and Prime Video for high-quality video content. It has a huge selection of video content with thousands of movies, TV series and old classics.
Enjoy these great features from comfort of your living room:
How to get Disney+
There’s no Disney+ free trial running at the moment but Disney+ sometimes run discounted introductory offers. Alternatively, look out for 3rd party offers to get a free three or six-month subscription.
To find out more about Disney Plus, read our guide Should you get Disney+ in Ireland?
Stream or download unlimited films, award-winning TV shows and boxsets.
What’s on Netflix?
There’s a huge amount of content on Netflix, including award-winning TV, films, documentaries and Netflix Originals. Just sign in to Netflix to watch instantly on the web at netflix.com or on any internet-connected device with the Netflix app.
How to get Netflix
Netflix offers three plans which you can cancel or change whenever you like.
|Plan||No. of Screens||Resolution||Video quality||Price|
Netflix Basic with ads plan
In November 2022, Netflix launched a cheaper, ad-supported plan in selected countries. The Netflix Basic with Ads plan is 20-40% less than the current starting price.
Unskippable, 15-30 second ads are shown before or during certain movies or TV series. The plan has yet to launch in Ireland.
Stream world-class entertainment and watch the latest blockbusters from Sky.
What’s on NOW?
There are TV and Sports memberships you can buy, depending on the type of content you want to watch.
How to get NOW
NOW often have free trials or discounted memberships for a limited time on the Entertainment or Cinema memberships.
If you’d like to know more about how to watch Now and the content available, visit A guide to NOW - the ‘no strings’ streaming service.
NOW vs Sky Stream
Sky Stream is Sky’s other internet-based, dish-free TV service which lets you access the same Sky content. Sky Stream might suit TV buffs, while heavier streamers might prefer the flexibility of NOW and watching on the go.
The main differences include:
The home of reality TV.
Hayu gets lots of U.S. reality shows on the same day as the states. You can subscribe and watch on-demand or download episodes or whole seasons.
What’s on Hayu?
You can get a 7 day free trial of Hayu, and if you enjoy what’s on offer, continue on a monthly fee. Cancel anytime.
The home of Apple original, star-studded and award-winning series and films.
What’s on Apple TV+?
Apple TV+ is a streaming service you can sign up to watch on your Apple devices, or with an Amazon Fire or Roku stick. It features exclusive Apple original shows and movies plus other older, popular films and series.
How to get Apple TV+
You can try Apple TV with a 7 day free trial or for three months free when you buy an Apple device. Thereafter, you’ll pay a monthly fee.
Getting started with streaming TV
Getting started with streaming services on TV is really straightforward.
Just sign up to a TV streaming service of your choice and then download the dedicated app onto your preferred device. Your chosen subscription service will guide you through any start-up process.
What you need to stream films, TV and live sports
To stream movies, TV and live sports straight to your device you’ll need:
- streaming service subscription
- internet-connected device to watch
- good broadband connection
- unlimited data allowance
How to watch
You can watch on most digital devices in your home, including:
- Smart TVs
- Smartphone or tablets
- Computer or laptops
- Game consoles
- Blu-ray players
- Some set-top boxes
If your TV isn’t WiFi-enabled, a streaming device can be a great solution. These devices simply plug into your TV, but you may have to pay for extra content.
You can use an Amazon Fire Stick, Apple TV, Google Chromecast, Roku media player, NOW box or the new Nvidia Shield TV to connect to your streaming service.
Free streaming TV alternatives
If you don’t want to pay a subscription but you still like to watch content in this way, there are some free players out there, such as:
- RTÉ Player: lets you catch up on all of the latest TV shows from RTÉ 1 & 2, RTÉjr, and RTÉ News Now. You can also catch up on series like Dancing with the Stars. There’s some exclusive content on the Player, too.
- Virgin Media Player: allows you to watch Virgin Media One, Two and Three live, as well as catch up on any shows you’ve missed. There is also a decent library of binge-worthy boxsets, such as over 100 episodes of Red Rock.
Best broadband for streaming
You don’t necessarily need fibre broadband for streaming TV, but a fast, reliable connection to reduce buffering or connection issues is advisable.
If you are thinking about changing your broadband, our free comparison tool can help you choose the best broadband in your area.
Streaming TV FAQs
Can I download films and TV shows from streaming services?
Yes, Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Now TV, Disney+ and hayu all allow you to download TV shows or films onto your device to watch away from home or on the go.
In most cases, you’ll need a WiFi connection to download successfully because downloads on 3G or 4G are not possible.
Is it illegal to stream TV?
No, streaming TV such as Netflix, NOW TV, Amazon Prime Video and hayu, as well as online players like the RTÉ Player and Virgin Media Player is all completely legal.
However, it’s illegal to stream content for free that you’d normally have to pay for, for example, sports channels or events, TV programmes that are exclusive to certain channels - like Game of Thrones, or movies that have just been released in the cinema.
What broadband speeds do you need to stream?
It’s a good idea to check that your broadband speed and data allowance are high enough before you sign up for a streaming service.
You can check how fast your current broadband is on our speed checker.
- A minimum broadband speed of 3Mbps to stream without buffering issues.
- At least 2GB to stream a two-hour movie. The data allowance required will depend on whether you watch in standard definition, HD or ultra-HD.
Which streaming services offer live TV?
- Amazon Prime Video offer some live sports and also live TV via its subscription Channels
- Hayu streams content from the US and broadcasts it the same day in UK and Ireland
- Now TV broadcasts live sports events and matches as part of the Sports Pass and streams movies live with the Sky Cinema Pass
- Netflix and Disney+ do not stream any live TV at the moment