Wait, what was I looking at? 5 apps to keep track of all your favorite shows

Have you ever found yourself scratching your head trying to remember when stranger things episodes coming back to Netflix? Google can be your friend, sure, but many of us want to follow more than one show or movie. And we do it for many streaming services.

So what is the best way to find information for versions on Disney+, HBO Max, Hulu etc? Write it on a post-it? Put it in your phone’s calendar? While these methods can be effective, there are apps that do it better.

Here are my suggestions for free apps that help you track the streaming TV shows and movies you plan to watch, the ones you’re immersed in, and the titles you might be interested in, but need solid recommendations. They can alert you when new episodes are about to drop or remind you where you left off on a show. I should mention that some of the apps below are built into Trakt, a web-based platform that syncs with your PC, phone, or home media center, but its native app is still pretty clunky, so we’ve left it out. this list.

Screenshot by Kourtnee Jackson/CNET

TV Time is available for Android and Apple users and you can create an account using Google, Apple, Twitter, Facebook or email. Choose the shows you watched on which streaming service (or network). Interestingly, when you scroll through Hulu’s selections, only its originals are listed, but the app tells you that you can add more later.

With TV Time, you can choose from multiple lineups, including trending shows like The Boys, Superman & Lois, MasterChef, or Evil. There are also categories for genres, a “Most Added” section with titles such as You, Riverdale, American Horror Story and Rick and Morty, and even a “Most Added Animation Series” line.

Once you’ve locked in your choices, TV Time puts together a watchlist and suggests which episodes of your chosen shows you should watch next. There is a separate tab titled “Coming Soon” which shows the release day and time for new episodes. Thanks to TV Time, I now know that Reservation Dogs Season 2 premieres August 3 and Never Have I Ever Season 3 arrives August 12.

The app also prompts you to check off movies you’ve watched, and the list spans decades, platforms, and genres. Even new movies like Thor: Love and Thunder are here. Once you’ve completed this step, TV Time will then ask you which movies you want to watch. This is where you search for specific titles or choose from TV Time’s trending list to add to a schedule. To test, I added Knives Out 2 (Netflix), which was seamlessly added to my fall schedule.

Plus, you can filter your TV time view by progress, including what you’ve finished, shows and movies you stopped halfway through, or what you’re currently watching.

Screenshot by Kourtnee Jackson/CNET

You may already know JustWatch as an app that organizes the broadcast of a title, but you can also create a watchlist, track upcoming releases, and watch a show with just one click. Once you open the app, you can select each streaming service you use – including Disney Plus, Crunchyroll and Fubo – to watch shows and movies. More than 100 suppliers are listed on JustWatch.

Use the app to search for TV shows and movies or click Discover to explore. Refine your search by platform, genre, year or rating. When you click on a show thumbnail, you can tap “Follow” to follow every episode and every season. JustWatch will ask you which episodes you’ve watched and you can check off entire seasons or individual installments. Where this app stands out is when you go to “Watch Now” to click on a streaming service’s logo, and you’re immediately taken to the show’s landing page to start watching. Talk about convenience.

Add a title to your watchlist and JustWatch tells you which episode to watch next or you can check off when you’re caught up. It also displays the dates of upcoming episodes.

The app also has a personal recommendation feature and shows the price of each streaming platform. You can use JustWatch on a web browser, on Fire TV devices, or on iOS and Android mobile devices. Sign up directly on the app or with your Google or Facebook account.

Hobi

Available on iOS and Android, Hobi is one of the most popular and comprehensive tracking apps. When you open it, you can select the shows you plan to watch or have watched, and Hobi shows where you left off. The titles are added to your watchlist. If it’s an old show, Hobi lets you know the show is over but still reminds you which episodes are next for you. The Discover feature highlights trending shows, series returning in the current week, news airing for the month, and recommendations across genres and networks, including HBO and Netflix.

Along with monitoring your Watchlist and new episode release dates, Hobi provides personal viewing stats on how much TV you’ve watched. It also estimates your favorite genres based on these statistics. The app can be integrated with Trakt.

Screenshot by Kourtnee Jackson/CNET

SeriesGuide is available on Android and Amazon Fire TV, and claims it has no ads and doesn’t track your personal information.

When you first log into SeriesGuide, you have the option to block spoilers for episodes of shows you haven’t watched yet. You can either search for a title or click Discover and scroll through a long list of content. Like Hobi and TV Time, the app lets you know which platform hosts the series or movie you want to watch or follow. It also integrates with Trakt.

Once you’ve selected your shows, SeriesGuide provides upcoming release dates or recent release dates and times. For example, the display shows that Stranger Things 4 episode 9 dropped five days ago on Netflix at 3 a.m. ET, and Harley Quinn season 3 dropped on HBO Max three weeks from now on a Thursday. I was able to glean tracking information for content on Netflix, Disney Plus, Prime Video, HBO Max, Paramount (Yellowstone) and more.

Its movie listings are pulled from TMDB and JustWatch, and you’ll find the release date, running time, cast credits, and synopsis on the page. You can add movies to your personal watchlist, click on the trailer link or press the Stream/Buy option if the digital version is available.

Among its features, there’s a notification system that alerts you when new episodes are available, a list of favorites and a catalog of the number of unwatched episodes per season. With SeriesGuide, you can click “Skip” and the app will consider a watched episode. The user interface is very easy to navigate, and you can sync alerts with your device’s calendar, rate content, or view your movie and show viewing stats.

Screenshot by Kourtnee Jackson/CNET

Cinetrak lets you track both TV shows and movies, but you need to set up a Trakt connection in order to create watchlists. You’ll see ads at the bottom of the screen, but the interface is clean and intuitive. In the TV Shows menu, you can find titles in several categories: Genres, Trending, Popular, and Most Watched. Click on a series and Cinetrak displays general information about the show and the seasons. Tap the plus sign to add a show by title, episode, or season.

The calendar feature lets you see episodes that have been watched, added to collections, or added to your watchlists. Basic access is free, but you can upgrade your account for additional features such as creating “likes” lists, curated collections, or sharing with friends.

TV streaming apps FAQ

What about privacy issues?

Take the time to review the privacy notices and settings for each service. JustWatch explains that it collects user data that can be used to target advertisements based on your movie tastes, while TV Time also uses non-personal information for marketing and advertising purposes. With the latter, you can also toggle your personal account settings and set it to private, which prevents non-followers from seeing your activity. You can also unlink social media accounts.

Do I have to pay to upgrade for more tracking benefits?

While some of these apps offer the ability to upgrade, we recommend sticking to the free versions, especially if you just want a basic way to remind yourself of upcoming releases or track your progress for a show.

Why didn’t Reelgood make this list?

Reelgood is a great platform that lets you keep track of movies and TV shows that have already been released or those that are slated for arrivals in the current month. However, it does not provide information for the coming months. For example, the Quantum Leap reboot is slated to premiere on NBC and Peacock in September, but Reelgood only lists information from the original release. Hobi, on the other hand, shows Quantum Leap Season 1 premiering on September 19, and the first episode is 60 minutes long. You can even add it to your Hobi watch list.

About Yvonne Lozier

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