As any movie fan with an Android tablet will know, there are only so many films that you can fit on your slate without it grinding to a painful halt. One way round this inconvenience is to get your hands on a portable hard drive. Another cheaper option and one that’s infinitely more convenient, so long as you have access to an internet connection, is to download Plex for Android.
Plex works by streaming media from your desktop computer to your Android tablet and it does so extremely well. Setting up the app takes a solid amount of effort but then this is complicated technology at work here, not Angry Birds Intergalactic Safari.
First, you’ll have to download the free Plex program to your desktop which will then scan through all the music, movies and TV stored on your computer before establishing a Plex Media Server. Once this is done, download the Plex app and then connect to your new Media Server. Finally, sit back, relax and enjoy your media library from any location in reach of your desktop’s Wi-Fi network.
In the bath. On your rooftop. In the garden. The range of possibilites may not be endless but they are pretty staggering. What’s more, streaming works seamlessly and to a remarkably high standard, as if you’re using Sky AnyTime or BBC iPlayer through a Virgin Media boxset. Although the app offers a series of movie downloads for US users, UK-based folk will have to settle for their own DVD rips as encrypted iTunes downloads won’t work either.
To add to what is already a fairly gobsmacking app, Plex also comes with the ability to remotely access your home media library. It’s an awesome touch which requires a bit more menu trawling but is all explained in this comprehensive tutorial.
Plex does have some downsides. Its desktop incarnation can be pretty patience-testing and, according to comments on the Android Market, the app does have some buggy tendencies when shifting between updates. Considering all Plex will set you back is £3.23, there’s no real reason you shouldn’t be downloading it now onto your Android tablet.
The Bottom Line
A great solution to mass video storage on your Android tablet.
Version reviewed 188.8.131.52
Requires Android 1.6 or higher