VLC Player for mobile – Android Version
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VLC Player Interface, UI and Functionality :
It is very Basic player at this stage. The UI is simple. There are no confusing buttons but at the same time, UI is not rich. When you install VLC and launch it the first time, it scans all directories to generate media library and video thumbnails and it takes good amount of time doing so but wait, this is not just one-time process.
VLC as Video Player
When watching any video, there are few onscreen controls like play/pause, next, previous, lock, fit(aspect ratio). You can change volume by sliding your finger upwards or downwards on the playing video but pinch to zoom feature is not there as in mx player. Instead, you can use the bottom-right control to fit the video centrally or horizontally or vertically or change its aspect ratio. The lock feature is also not efficient as when you hit on the lock icon located in the bottom-left side on the playing video, it would prevent the video from rotating to landscape or portrait mode but it is still sensitive to touch and on-screen controls fly up on the screen if the video is accidentally touched. The lock feature should fully disable all on-screen controls except the lock button itself. There are only few settings in vlc which can be opened by hitting option button on android phone and choosing preferences. If you enable Hardware acceleration, the player becomes buggy on most of the devices including my Samsung Galaxy S2. Further, I tried watching phone captured 1080p video but it was not as smooth as it feels on stock android player or mx player. You can not adjust video brightness from vlc unlike mx player for android. About supported filetypes, it detects almost all types of video files including flv. It supports video resume feature so we can leave any video and exit vlc anytime and then resume from the same position of the video, the next time we launch vlc as it highlights the last played video in the videos list.
VLC as Audio Player
When we switch to Audio, we see four tabs under it namely Artists, Albums, Songs, Genres which mean that our audio files are arranged on these bases but if you touch Songs label directly, it doesn’t switch to Songs view; you need to swipe your finger left again and again to reach to Songs view. We hope vlc developers should make all these sorting tabs actionable. When you play audio file and switch to videos list, the audio keeps playing and mini audio player is seen at the bottom while you browse through list of videos. If you play any video then and then stop that video, the audio doesn’t resume which we expected it to resume. The audio plays in the background even if you leave vlc. Also, there is a vlc widget which has play/pause, previous and next control. VLC widget is neat but not sophisticated. If you stop playing and exit vlc, the next time you launch vlc, it doesn’t highlight which audio file you were playing last time as it does with video. Talking about supported file types, it detects all types of audio files. Although, eqalizer controls are not available in mobile vlc player, yet we would like to appreciate the quality and the possible loudness which is higher and better than the stock android audio player. Verdict :