Downloading Movies for Smartphones

It has been estimated that over 1 billion people own a Smartphone, no longer is the mobile phone a simple device to make a telephone call from, it is your mobile entertainment centre. With displays getting brighter, larger and memory capacity increasing many people now are requesting that they have access to their favourite movies via their Smartphone’s in order to watch them when they are travelling or simply commuting to work.

For iPhones downloading movies is a rather simple business, just a couple of simple clicks of Apples iTunes programme and you can access a wide variety of the newest blockbuster films for download in the iTunes store.  From there they will download into the iTunes programme waiting to be synced with your iPhone device. However when downloading movies from iTunes there is not a lot of other options to watch them on, due to Apple’s copywriting of its products you are unable to watch your films via a DVD player or legally change the format to work with other players, you can watch the film on your TV however but you will need to either purchase a variety of additional components or purchase an Apple TV something that a lot of people are unwilling to do.

However there is an alternative open to not only people with iPhones but others who have contracts with differing Smartphone makes. There is websites that offers movie downloads to your Smartphone that are free from any rights management status. These website offer your downloads as unrestricted MP4 files which can then be easily transferred to the phone of your choice, the best part of using this sort of service is that it is not restricted to your Smartphone you can then use this file on any other format i.e. transferring it to watch on a DVD.

Imovies is probably one of the best sites that you can download movies for your mobile phone, for a small subscription charge you will have unlimited access to their movie library, when you go to download your choice of film you can choose the format that you want it downloaded in, this even makes it similar by showing you options for downloading onto a Smartphone.  Not only that but if you access the website from your Smartphone you can stream the movie live, saving your precious memory for more Angry Birds games.

With the way the Smartphone’s are taking over from the regular mobile and cell phones it is no wonder more people are using them for all their entertainment needs. With each generation of phone getting more powerful soon people will be able to download whole libraries of films onto their devices. This will push the market into producing newer, faster and more efficient ways into being able to make movies available to all. Plus you never know, Apple may start to allow their products to be sold without the Digital Rights Management meaning being able to play your iTunes bought films on any platform you wished.

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Download Movies Legally

We all want to watch the latest movies as soon as they are released onto DVD but isn’t it annoying having to having to leave the comfort of your home and either queue in a store to make a purchase or finding that the rental shop is out of stock and what if you don’t manage to watch and return it within 24 hours. There are a few that will assume the only other way is to watch the latest blockbuster is to download it from an illegal peer to peer or torrent website, of course this comes with its risks and very hefty fines and punishments when you get caught. So what is the alternative? How is it possible to download and watch these films legally without the threat of imprisonment, fines and even viruses affecting your computer? The answer is simple, use a legal movie download sites.

Just like music downloads the film industry is now trying to embrace the “download generation” by offering many of their films digitally for a small fee. This ensures not only are you not committing a crime but that you are getting the very best quality available, so you can watch the movie the way it should be watched in high definition and with surround sound in a language of your choice.

It can be a tricky task distinguishing the legal sites from illegal so it is always best to do your own research before joining one of the growing army of sites. Using a website such as http://www.moviescapital.com ensures that every download is legal and high quality, the website offers unlimited access to many movies for a small price (the five year unlimited access plan is less than buying two DVDs).

Downloading from sites like these could not be any easier, you search for the film that you want to download or browse the many films the websites have to offer, you then simply click download and select the location of where you want the file to be saved to. The best thing about these websites is that it requires no additional software like P2P download programmes all the downloads come straight from the websites own servers meaning you get a very fast reliable service.

Once the download is complete and the file is on your computer then it is yours to what you please with, you can simply watch it once and then delete, watch it over and over again and saved it for the future or even burn it to a DVD disc and watch it on your home computer there is simply no restrictions on what you can then do with your file.

With film studios cordoning on to the potential gold mine they are sitting on, there will be soon even more of these website that will be offering newer and newer releases onto the market, some studios are now contemplating offering their movies for download as soon as they hit the big screen in order to prevent piracy. However at the moment it could not be easier to legally download some of the newer movies, in fact it’s just a click or two of the mouse, leaving you more time to sit and enjoy the movie.

 

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Downloading Movies for the iPad

Between April 2010 and June 2011 Apple have sold worldwide around 25 million of their now famous iPads, while some immediately wrote the iPad off as just an accessory that had no real place beside the laptop, many have found that it has been revolutionary in terms of entertainment.

 

There is nothing better than using your iPad for watching movies on the go, the large clear screen makes it ideal for viewing your films on and the sound quality is excellent from such a small device, but then it was also developed to play music. No matter where you are you can now take your digital movie collection with you on your iPad which has just about made some of those long commutes to and from the workplace just about bearable.

Much like the iPhone and even the newer generations of iPod’s it is relatively easy to download films to your iPad via the iTunes service, this couldn’t be easier, iPad already required you to have an account with iTunes to be able to set up your device, next all you need to do is access the iTunes store and you can access a whole host of movie titles new and old that you can download and then sync with your device. Another method for doing this is too access the iTunes store direct from your iPad itself something that cannot be done with the iPhone at the moment, this then enables you to download your films directly onto the iPad without using the iTunes software on the computer as a middle man.

However many people do not want or just do not like using the iTunes store and look for alternatives to this method, however many of their searches bring up “free movie” illegal download websites that require people wishing to download movies to pay for peer to peer software as well as making you purchase a file converter in order for you to convert the final download into the file type needed to input onto the iPad. This method is risky for many reasons, firstly the download itself is illegal and you could be caught and charged with committing a criminal offense, next you cannot trust the download is going to be risk free, you may be downloading a host of viruses and adware to your home computer, then when you transfer these files onto your iPad you could be spread this risk to that device as well. Throw in a host of other problems including just plain bad quality of film to the more serious threat of potential identity theft.

There are however many new legal websites that are rising on the internet offering movie downloads, after all they have 25 million worldwide customers to aim for, these sites ensure that each of your downloads are not only legal and within the confides of the copyright law, but also that they are free from any potential threat to your computer and iPad and also of the highest quality. Normally legitimate services cost a subscription to join and let you have access to the vast catalogues of movies that they have online. These membership fees are normally very cheap and allow the user to then download or stream from the iPad itself a whole host of movies that the customer will be sure to enjoy.

With demand for iPads growing and more powerful machines being developed we will see a rise in the number of people wanting to download the very best quality of film onto their devices, the competition online will only get more fierce between companies offering this service meaning that savings will surely be passed on to the consumer.

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Transferring Your DVD Collection To A Digital Format

In a world where digital media is becoming more common many people want to rid themselves of having a vast collection of DVD’s. Just as the MP3 changed the way we listened to music the MKV and AVI file is changing the way in which we watch our movies. As new movies are released and we legally download them to our HTPC or NAS our DVD’s are just sitting there gathering more dust and taking up valuable space. The answer to this is a simple one; transfer your DVD collection to a digital format of your choice using automated software.

Copying your DVD onto your computer is a fairly simple and pain free process as long as you have the correct tools, for instance using a program like DVDfab. In just a few clicks of the mouse you can convert a DVD or Bluray into a digital format for playback to suit your home PC or multimedia playback device even convert it to a file for playback on your portable media player. DVDfab are so confident that you will love their product that they are currently offering a free fully working trial for you to download and try before you decide buy. The trial does come with a deadline of one month from the first time you start using the software, after a month you will need to obtain a registration key to continue using it.

Operation of the software is an absolute breeze, just open it up, insert a DVD and press the large “DVD COPY” option. You will then be greeted by a pop up box which asks you to state the region code of your DVD which can easily be found on the box of the disc. After this the software will recognise the disc and use this as your starting point for future copies. The next stage is picking what you actually want to copy from your disc, this option allows you to pick from various sound tracks, languages, subtitles and any extras that may be included on the disk. Once you have decided what you want copying you then have a choice of making a back-up to a DVD writer or saving the original disk to your computer in a variety of playback formats including MKV, AVI, MP4, WMV, M2TS and TS.

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Playback Software

So you have a folder containing your legal movie downloads and now you want to know which playback software to use. As 100 people and you will have a divided opionion, for me it is between the three top free ones. Many people would automatically chose the playback media that was preinstalled onto their computer without thinking about the alternative platforms that are out there.

Most people will have probably heard of and even used Windows Media Player it is probably the default playback software for most people who own a Windows based PC. There are major advantages of using this player as your default, for instance it supports most file types like AVI, you can customise the layout of your media centre and you can make it feel more personal with a variety of third party add on’s (or skins) and it is also one of the only playback players that you can add a TV tuner card to watch TV.

It isn’t all a bed of roses though, this software has also got a variety of negatives to it, firstly you can only use this software if you have a Windows operating system running on your machine, and with more and more people choosing to opt for more free source operating systems it certainly is a major fault. Secondly Windows Media Player does not freely allow you to sync with your Smartphone and has no applications to control these devices, which has in this Smartphone and mobile media obsessed it could be a problem.

A big favorite amongst many is the XBMC (originally developed for the Xbox), due to this being of an opensource nature it means the coding for the software is freely available to developers to improve and add to the system. Although originally developed for the X-Box as its own media system the XBMC playback software has grown to include many other platforms, this has made this a highly attractive alternative to Windows Media Player as this programme is now available on most operating systems including, Windows, Mac, Linux and even on the X-Box. Like its Windows counterpart XBMC can operate almost all audio and video files and can be personalised via add ons to customise the main dashboard. Although unable to play TV an integrated app store named “Add ons Manager” let’s you take advantage of the opened sourced nature of the software by allowing you to download many applications unique to this player, for instance the ability to stream YouTube videos. XBMC also has the both iPhone and Android applications for you to control from the one medium.

Stemming from the XBMC code itself is another alternative that is quickly rising to the challenge of Windows Media Player and that is MediaPortal (the one I am using at present). This is also open sourced software allowing developers around the world to create differing add ons that can be used to run with it. However unlike XBMC this platform can only be used on a Windows operating system.  The MediaPortal has a similar look and feel to the Windows Media Player meaning that it is very easy to pick up and start to use, you wouldn’t need to read the instructions, everything is very self explanatory.

MediaPortal is also HD compatible so if you have a good enough screen and computer you can watch excellent HD programmes and movies from the player. It also is one of the few players than can access TV and allows you to pause, rewind both TV and digital radio. However it is the high level of customisation with this software that really sets it apart from all others, with many options to personalise the media centre to your own standards.
Overall there are some really great free Playback software out there on the internet, people may be used to using programmes such as Windows Media Centre however there is so much more flexibility and customisation available by using rivals such as MediaPortal and the very fact that XBMC is available on a multitude of differing platforms might just sway it for you over the Windows Media Centre.

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Media Player Formats

So you download a movie, you see a file with a strange extension and you wonder how do you make this play on your media player? Video playback formats can seem like a load of jargon rich explanations, here we shall attempt to describe in plain and simple terms what a few of the most common file types are and what the difference is between an AVI, MKV  and a DivX file.

Media playback formats are becoming an integral part of everyday life, when we want to stream movies online, when we want to download our favourite films and even when we want to catch up on our favourite shows using on demand services there are a whole host of formats that can be used. It is no use however downloading a file that won’t play because you have the wrong type of software installed.

One of the most common and widely used video playback formats is the Microsoft developed AVI file (Audio Video Interlaced), this format has been around for a long time and has been the standard for many video and digital projects. However the problem with AVI files is that they carry so much data inside them they are not the ideal way to share media across the internet, trying to download an AVI movie file to your computer is likely to be a lengthy process. Where an AVI file does impress is in the fact that they are often the perfect starting point to use in video editing as they will work in almost all video editing software packages that are available however for the final product it is often wise to choose another format.

An AVI file is a carrier, it is a storage place for a variety of other video and audio streams; this means you are unlikely to have control of what is contained in each one of these files and the inserted “codecs” that help compress the size of the file can become many, this meaning you often find yourself searching the internet for a third party company in order to download the correct codec.

DivX video play back formats is the next stage after the common AVI file, just like the AVI file the DivX file is a container format however this file has a few additional features that can be added to enhance the visual aspect of the download. For instance on this file format you can add subtitles, DVD menus and extended features which is making this format more and more attractive for people who are wishing to access legal streams of videos online.

A DivX movie offers you the chance to store a DVD worth of information at about one tenth the total file size while maintaining the same image and sound quality as you would expect from a DVD.

Another progression to the AVI file is the MKV file (which stands for the rather catchy Matroska Video) this file is an open sourced file which means not only it is free to use but also that its technical specifications are free to view for personal and commercial uses. The MKV file is a ‘carrier’ it supports multiple layers so within an MKV file you might find; menus i.e. can store DVD chapters and further menu’s holding multiple audio tracks so you can have the choice to listen to the movie in a variety of differing languages instead of just watching the subtitles.

.MKV is seen as a superior file format for downloading movies over the internet and it should be your number one choice if wishing to play back your media in HD or bluray type quality. There is no doubt that the MKV file is not the last step in the development of online containers for video and audio, with more people coming up with newer, faster ways of sharing DVD like quality movies online.

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Free Movie Downloads

We have all seen the websites offering free movie downloads, many of us might have been tempted to sign up and have a look at what they have to offer and what is available for download however, when people see these advertisements for “Free Movies” I can assure you that they are not free. The words Free Movie Downloads are being used to entice you in, they are being used to play with your curious mind, they are trying to get you through a sign-up process and lead you on only to reveal at the very final stage that there is a price or a membership fee involved. These sites not only use unscrupulous marketing ploys, they are illegal, any site offering unlimited usage for a ’one time’ fee are breaking the law.

There is another kind of site that offers free films; when you visit them they will inform you that in order to watch the latest Hollywood blockbuster you will need to download some software. When you have downloaded the software you will then be presented with a charge to use it, what you have really downloaded is peer to peer software that will allow you to illegally download as many films as you want.

Once again false advertising and the false promise of free films is too much for some people to resist and many people fall into the trap of purchasing this software in order to watch their movie, however not only are they committing a crime but most of the software that is required to download files can be found for free of charge. Therefore what started off as a search to watch and enjoy a free film ends up with the customer spending money that they didn’t have to spend in the first place.

The final kind of free movie download site is probably the most dangerous of them all. There are sites that might actually allow you to download what seems a free movie, however the files that are being downloaded are often just a front for a much grander scheme. Many of the sites are set up by online criminals who will hide damaging software such as viruses and adware into the files, so even if you are getting to watch a free movie download from the site there is no cost on the long term affects that this can have on your computer or laptop. Detail information on your data can be uplifted, your whole identity could be cloned from online fraudsters using this method, therefore your free movie could end up costing much more than you would have ever thought!

When you see a link on a website that is offering you the chance to download and watch a movie for free of charge, think twice you never know the true cost of the download!

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Legal Movie Downloads

How fast times have moved on, there were those that said the CD would never catch on and replace vinyl, however it came and passed in a blink of an eye as the world of digital media and MP3 took over. In much the same way we are now seeing a greater desire for our movie collection to be stored in digital format in the form of mkv, mp4 and divx files depending on your preferred media.

Not only are we looking to digitally store our movie collections, we are now seeking places to download the latest Hollywood movies direct to our hard drives and NAS systems. In the world of fast Internet speeds and low cost media storage we want to download a movie that we can be watching within 30 minutes. It no longer seems acceptable to wait for the postman to arrive several days later with a DVD you have ordered and that trip to the shops seems such a chore.

For me the problem has always been the illegal download sites, those sites that change the name of a file so that you have no idea what you are really downloading. Not only is it against the law to download pirate films it is dangerous too. How do you know that you are not downloading a Trojan or a virus, how do you know that some sicko has not changed the name of a title and what you are really downloading is illegal or under age porn? Do you really want to risk being placed on a sex offenders list, try to imagine explaining that one.

I could go on and on about the dangers of downloading films and Hollywood blockbusters from sites claiming to have free movie downloads but I won’t. If you wish to run the risk it isn’t for me to police but don’t say you were not aware of the possible consequences and at the end of the day are you really looking for poor quality media? I have spent a small fortune on my TV system and HTPC so the last thing I want to do is waste that viewing experience watching a film that has obviously been pirated or looks like it was a camcorder job at the back of a cinema.

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