Tube Explorer





"L’Indipendente" Rating

 Installation
 Interface
 Usefulness

Videos are probably one of the most interesting resources in the web nowadays. If you are looking for a specific video you may want to go to YouTube or Google Video, but there are a lot of other places where videos are available in Internet. You can use videos for education, communications, advertisement and, of course, entertainment.

But what if you want to have a view on the whole of most videos available in the web grouped by different criteria? And what if you want to download them and convert to your favorite format? Here is where TubeExplorer is of help to you. It allows to view videos from your favorite sites, not just YouTube or Google, and to search for them by using metadata. For example, you may want to have a group containing all videos related to skiing, wherever they are in the web, and you may wish to have its content updated each time you launch TubeExplorer. You may also want to select multiple videos and launch a batch job to download all of them to see those clips later on directly from your laptop even if you are not connected to the web. You can. You have a single simple highly customizable interface to manage all your videos, either online or on your hard disk. You can also convert them to various formats to upload them to your mobile phone or video player. You do not need a separate program to do that.

Of course TubeExplorer does nothing that you cannot do in another way. You can search for video sources by Google, create a set of favorite bookmarks, search each source by specific keywords, grab videos by using freeware and shareware tools, as well as convert them by using VirtualDub or other tools. But in such a case you have to repeat and repeat the same operations each time, manually collect all results, use several tools and different interfaces. By using TubeExplorer you do not need to do that anymore. It is not rocket science nor the most innovative application of the web. It is simply a good robust tool to manage all at once your augmented video library, that is, all videos you are interested into, either in the web and in your computer.

The interface is good and easy to use, even if the details panel might probably be improved, for example, by using alternate pastel colors for the background of odd and even rows in both "Details" and "Thumbnails+Details" views. The double scroll bar used to either scroll within a page and move from a page to another is confusing, at the beginning. Furthermore you cannot use column titles for sorting in the "Details" view, but you must use a button in the toolbar at the bottom of the pane. Those are just secondary features, anyway, and they will be probably improved in the future versions of the product.

After three months of usage, anyway, my overall impression is negative even if the price for the personal version is affordable if you are used to watch many videos. In fact it often hangs and has problems to load movies. So I do not recommend it.Not yet, even because the support seems to be not existent at all.

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