The wonderful YouTube app has been around since the very first iteration of iOS, a staple in the handful of apps that Apple chose to include on their very first iPhone and every iOS device that followed. Since then it has helped us watch countless funny sketches, lyric videos of unreleased songs, and (of course) home videos of kittens sneezing. With the millions of videos online and hundreds of thousands of users, you can almost always find a video you want to watch-whether it’s a live performance of The Night Man Cometh” from Always Sunny In Philadelphia, or unofficial sketches from Andy Samberg and the rest of The Lonely Island. No two ways about it, the YouTube app is an important and irreplaceable part of what makes iOS special.
But unfortunately, since its release, Google and Apple have become fierce competitors. While the Android versions of YouTube are sleeker than ever, the iOS version really hasn’t changed much. But so long as we still have it on our phone and tablet, we’ll be okay. And we’ve already replaced it with other video players for iPad-some of which double up as editors, streamers, and even let you watch 3D videos!
Vimeo For iPhone
Vimeo is a “respectful community of people who are passionate about the videos they make”. Already, just by reading Vimeo’s in-app description, you can tell it has probably scared off half the riff-raff of YouTube (a service that isn’t exactly famous for its intelligent, politically correct comments). Because Vimeo caters to a different audience, it’s more focused and artsy. You can easily lose track of your time watching hours of avant-garde clips, and up-and-coming documentaries. Or you can just watch dumb videos too, but they take a little more digging to find than on YouTube, which is absolutely littered with them.
The Vimeo app is as easy to sort and filter as the YouTube app, but it also adds a little secret-sauce to the recipe-it’s also an awesome video-editor. With Vimeo’s general ease of use, it’s definitely possible that you’ll use it much more than YouTube, even if you aren’t focused on making videos.
CineXPlayer For iPad
To be blunt, CineXPlayer for iPad is a torrenter’s dream. It plays a wide variety of video formats, like .avi’s. Since its first release, CineXPlayer has improved its interface multiple times, added plenty of stability improvements, and even added support for videos in MP4, MOV, and M4V.
Now, we don’t condone unlawful downloading of movies, but there are plenty of free videos on the internet that are saved in obscure file formats. An option like CineXPlayer allows users to download all those videos without waiting for third-party applications like Handbrake to encode them, so you can play them with Apple’s stock video player.
Why watch free videos when you can watch free movies? No matter how awesome the content is on YouTube, it’s pretty much impossible that it’s any more awesome than Starship Troopers. But many iOS users are already practically bursting with content, and if you don’t have a 64GB iPhone, chances are you don’t want to carry around that many movies at any given time. Crackle solves that problem by streaming those videos, hence keeping a small storage footprint. So what is it? Crackle is a free video player loaded with thousands of Hollywood movies. And the best part? It’s entirely free.
Not all the movies are worth watching, but there’s an ever-expanding list of good ones, like Step Brothers, Snatch, and Starship Troopers. But Crackle isn’t just for movies, and there are thousands of full-length episodes of your favorite shows (Seinfeld, Samurai X, Spiderman, etc) all ready for streaming. We’re not sure how this app even exists. But we’re glad it does.
HBO GO For iPad
HBO is pretty much amazing. No other channel has such a fantastic array of drama, and it’s easy to get hooked on just about any show they offer. What could possibly be better? How about a free app that lets you stream any HBO shows at anytime? Enter HBO GO.
HBO GO allows you to take True Blood to the treadmill, or watch Game of Thrones on a porcelain throne, or just watch Bored to Death when you’re a little bored. All the big name shows are here, and there’s a social flavor that’s integrated into the app, which lets you quickly share what you’re watching, when you’re watching it. The only requirement is that you already subscribe to HBO, so if you don’t it might be time to call your cable service and hook it up.