One criterion for judging applications, at least for me anyway, is whether or not the application includes additional functionality to an already existing feature. For those of you who own the BlackBerry PlayBook the stock video application gets the job done but there are some features that are noticeably lacking.
While travelling to Las Vegas for CES back in January, I wanted to catch up on the last season of one of my favorite shows as I had six hours to spare. It would have been nice to be able to just press a button and see them all in succession.
Unfortunately, that is not possible so to fill in the void there is AutoPlay Media Player by Bumblebee Computing that lets you automatically play videos one after another. This comes in handy if you want to watch an entire series back-to-back while streaming to your TV or to entertain the kids on a long road trip with nonstop movies.
AutoPlay is very easy to use. Everything you need to access your videos and create your playlists are accessible from the main screen. All of your compatible videos are shown on the left hand side of the screen while all the controls are at the top. Users can tap on the button in the upper left to access all their videos, their favorites playlist, or even search for videos by name to create dynamic playlists. Next is the progress bar, rewind/play, toggle button for shuffle and repeat single play, and the favorites button.
- Auto-bookmarking: It also incorporates an auto-bookmarking feature that allows you to keep track of where you left off in a video without clumsily needing to manually having to remember and fast-forwarding back to where you were. Better yet, when you close the app and then open it again, it will bring you back to exactly where you were -- perfect for resuming your movie exactly where you left off!
- Wide variety of formats supported: It supports a rich set 1080p HD video formats including mp4, avi, mov, f4v, wmv, 3gp, 3g2, asf, and m4v (non-DRM). If it works with the native one, it will work with this app (and conversely if it doesn't work with the native video app, it will also not work with this one)
- Intuitive gestures: Navigate through your videos with ease using intuitive gestures: swipe left for next video; swipe right for previous; quickly scroll through list of videos using a velocity sensitive flick gesture; single tap on viewing area to toggle play/pause; double tap to toggle full-screen.
- Dynamic playlists: It provides the ability to search through your files and create a dynamic playlist based on the results; for example, if you have 100 files, and you want to see only the ones with 'glee' in the title, enter 'glee' in the search box. The results will be filtered to only files matching 'glee' in the title and auto sorted so that successive files named 'glee' will be ordered. This makes it easy to dynamically generate a playlist and then autoplay a season worth of episodes in the expected sequence!
- "My Favorites" Playlist: A built-in "My favorites" playlist is provided that allows you the ability to quickly add videos to a customized list and play in continuous mode
Not only will it save your place when exiting, it lets you play/pause if you tap on the screen during playback. What I love is how the developer is open to new ideas and how since its initial release has taken into account forum members' suggestions to improve the application.
So the next time you have the urge to sit on the couch and hold your own marathon of your favorite videos, movies, or tv shows (in order!) stored on your PlayBook then be sure to give this application a try. It offers additional functionality not currently available in the native video player. This useful application is currently available for only $.99.
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