APP OF THE DAY: Vilynx review (Android, iPhone)
Cloud storage, video, sharing: it's the way of the modern smartphone. It's also a minefield of hows and wheres, mixed with a lot of dead ends.
Organising yourself, separating your video from everything else, storing everything in the cloud and sharing it effectively could pose you some problems. Yes, there are some very big players out there, but one app wants to cut across the middle and link it all up.
Vilynx looks to link up devices and your video content. The aim, it seems, is to give you a single app linked into lots of places, essentially giving you access to Google Drive, Box and Dropbox as well as YouTube, Facebook and Twitter.
The idea is that you can move the videos on your device to these different accounts and share with ease, with a cloud version of your videos meaning they are not trapped on your device.
The app will let you select how the content is moved to your cloud account so you can opt for Wi-Fi only -which, seeing as we are dealing with video content, is probably the best option. The background uploads work well enough, although we noted when moving a large video that it had to be done in one go - you can't break and resume.
Vilynx won't move everything to the cloud automatically: it doesn't just scan your device and start moving video, you have to tell it which videos to copy. In this way, it's little different from using one of the existing options: you could just select videos and transfer them to the cloud anyway through any of the linked services.
But what Vilynx does that makes it distinct, is that it scans videos and creates a 5-second preview of that video for you. It will split your video into as many as four previews and play them all together so you can quickly see what a video contains.
That's great when you're trying to find a particular clip of the kids or the dog that you might not be able to identify from a thumbnail. You can then effectively play the thumbnail, or tap it to open up and view in more detail. Videos are played in full with a double tap.
You can sign into your Vilynx account on a number of devices, including in a browser, so you get access to those thumbnail views wherever you have access to the internet.
We mentioned previously that it isn't an automated process, however there is the option to record video within the app and it is then automatically queued for upload straight to your nominated storage location (Box, Google Drive or Dropbox).
There is a social element to Vilynx too, with a hint at trying to build a community, allowing you to make friends with people and share. This is a great way of teaming up with friends or family to have your own sharing community, easily sending videos to those your are connected to, so they can view through Vilynx.
It beats the likes of WhatsApp with it's 12MB sharing limit, with the added advantage of being able to move the content and share from the cloud, with the recipient streaming the video, rather than having to send it from your device, to theirs to download.
You can also share to Facebook or Twitter and you retain the cool preview as well as granting access to the whole video.
The thing we like about Vilynx, though, is that because it uses conventional cloud options, you can easily manage your content outside of the service as well as within it. There's the option to move video from one account to another too, so if you have video in G Drive and you want it all in Dropbox, you can set Vilynx to do that for you.
So, if you have video on a number of devices, or even your PC, and want to collate them together with an umbrella app to present and navigate them, then Vilynx may well do it for you, along with those neat thumbnails.
For some, it might be that uploading direct to Dropbox, or straight to YouTube, will do the trick, but for those just looking to create a simple navigable cloud storage of personal video clips, Vilynx might just do it.