How to Watch Crackle
By Aaron Parson
Crackle broadcasts movies, TV reruns and original programming online for free. You can watch shows on Crackle on your computer, on your mobile device and on many smart TVs, set-top boxes and game consoles. You do not need to register an account to watch Crackle, but doing so opens up additional features including watch lists, a favorites list and a personal history list.
PC and Mac
To watch Crackle on your computer, you need the Adobe Flash Player. If you've watched other videos online, you probably already have Flash. Otherwise, download and install it from Adobe (link in Resources). If you use Google Chrome, you do not need to install Flash manually. After installation, visit Crackle's home page. Type a program's name into the search box or click "Browse" to look through available programming. Click a movie or TV show's icon to open it. If you picked a TV show, click an episode to watch. Your program will start playing after an ad. Click the gear icon to change the video quality or change the audio or subtitle language on compatible programs.
Crackle has apps for iOS, Android, BlackBerry and Windows Phone 8. To run Crackle, install the app from your device's store, such as the iTunes App Store or Google Play, or through Crackle's website. Tap the Crackle app's icon to run it. The interface varies slightly depending on your operating system, but you can browse through movies or TV shows separately with the Movies and Shows tabs. If you have a Crackle account, tap "My Crackle" and sign in to access your watch list for easier browsing, as the mobile app does not offer a search option.
Smart TVs and Set-Top Boxes
Crackle has apps for several brands of smart TVs, including Sony, Samsung and Toshiba, as well as for set-top boxes including Roku and those using Google TV. Some of these TVs and devices include Crackle automatically, while others require a manual download. The method to install and run apps varies widely by TV and device, so check your product's manual for more details. Unlike with watching on your computer or smartphone, most TV and set-top boxes use an activation process to log in to your Crackle account. Open the Crackle app on your TV and type the provided code into the activation page on your computer (see Resources).
Crackle offers apps for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3. Neither system includes the Crackle app out of the box, so you need to download it through the Apps tab on the 360 or the PlayStation Store on the PS3. After downloading, run Crackle from the Apps tab on the 360 or the Video column on the PS3. On the Xbox 360, you must have an Xbox Live Gold subscription to watch Crackle. The 360 version of the Crackle app also uses the device activation method to log in to your account instead of using your username and password.
Aaron Parson has been writing about electronics, software and games since 2006, contributing to several technology websites and working with NewsHour Productions. Parson holds a Bachelor of Arts from The Evergreen State College in Olympia, Wash.