YouTube On the Go

YouTube On the Go

Mobile Gadgets for Watching and Recording

Some online videos are filmed in studios, even if they are homemade studios. Some of them have the perfect lighting, expensive cameras, and professional staff. But none of that ever guarantees the success of a YouTube video. Some of the most entertaining and most popular videos were filmed on mobile phone cameras, capturing an unexpected event or blooper.

When the moment that will launch your Internet stardom occurs, you do not want to be caught without a camera. Furthermore, when someone else’s rise to fame hits the Web, you want viewing access wherever you are. This list covers devices that record YouTube-friendly videos, those that can play them, and those that do both.

Record for YouTube

FlipVideo – Perhaps the most well-known of cameras designed to record Internet videos is the FlipVideo series. These handheld video recorders can capture HD video and rely on desktop computer software to share the videos on social media sites like YouTube, Facebook, and MySpace. Once the device is synced with a computer, the aspiring Internet  director can select which sites to upload the videos to and share.

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iPhone – The iPhone can do much more than record videos, but its recording capability cannot be overlooked.  After you have recorded a video, you should notice an option that says “Send to YouTube“.  This will allow you to upload the video directly to your YouTube account. As with a normal video upload, it will give you forms to fill out the necessary metadata information and then upload the video. With the HD capabilities of the iPhone, sharing quality videos is quick and easy.

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Android – Like the iPhone, Android-powered devices with built-in cameras have the ability to easily upload videos to YouTube. After all, Android is largely a Google product, as is YouTube, so their support for uploading videos should be no surprise. With phones like the HTC Evo 4G, you can upload HD videos from anywhere, at any time.

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Kodak Zi8 – Similar to FlipVideo, Kodak’s Zi8 can record HD video and then upload to YouTube and other social media sites through software built directly into the camera, via a flip-out USB interface.  The software also includes editing features to trim and cut all of your bloopers, unless, of course, the purpose is to catch bloopers. In that case, you can just edit out the boring parts. The camera can record 720p and full 1080p HD videos.

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There are many other camcorders that are small and portable, but most of the top-rated ones are various models from FlipVideo and Kodak. In addition, any phone with a browser should theoretically be able to upload a recorded video to YouTube. The only hurdle would be making sure the video is encoded and formatted to YouTube specifications.

Watch YouTube on The Go

Any mobile device with a web browser and Adobe Flash player can play YouTube videos, and YouTube has a mobile version of their site to make touch screen access easier. However, many mobile devices, even ones that support Flash, buckle under the CPU strain of the browser plugin. Because of this, those mobile devices often have apps that download and play YouTube videos with the same streaming effect provided by Flash, but without the high processor load. Additionally, YouTube’s support for HTML5 video will eventually provide mobile users with a low-impact alternative to Flash.

The iPhone and Android phones come with pre-installed YouTube apps. Users of the Nokia S60 and Windows Mobile handsets can download an app directly from YouTube. Blackberry users and users of other mobile phones can use YouTube’s mobile website, provided they have the necessary functionality to play videos.

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Media Players – Some mobile media players, like the iPod touch, can play youtube videos by default. Others, such as the PSP, require the installation of an extra app. Android-based tablets and media players will have the same playback functionality as android phones.

Media Players that have Wi-Fi access will need access to wireless access points, while those with mobile service, such as 3g, or the ability to use a phone as a Wi-Fi spot, can truly enjoy youtube anywhere.

Netbooks and Tablets

Most netbooks and tablets support any video-sharing site that can be accessed via a web browser, because of the built-in flash support.  exceptions include the iPad, which only supports HTML5 video (already available on Youtube, Vimeo, and others). The other issue to consider is that many tablets and netbooks have low-powered processors that cannot handle flash videos in HD. They may fare better with HTML5 or with an app that can download the videos first.

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Keeping Track of Videos

Most video-sharing sites, including Youtube, offer user accounts that allow users to mark favorites, share videos they like on social networking sites, and subscribe to content channels. All of these features are very important when you are using multiple devices to access the same content. By marking favorites, you can view your favorite videos from any device, as long as you login. Similarly, after logging in, you can access the subscriptions you saved on your computer from your mobile device.

With hd quality recording and playback, video sharing has become a realistic mobile experience that anyone with a phone, netbook, or tablet can easily enjoy.

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I am a librarian with 8 years of experience in information architecture, technology, free and open source software, and electronic publishing. I have written hundreds of articles on topics ranging from information technology to politics. I also write fiction novels, short stories, and fables.

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