Air Video 2.2.4 for iPhone review
Air Video lets you stream video over the network from your home computer to your iPhone or iPad. There are two parts: a free sever program that runs on a home Mac or PC and an app that runs on the iPad or iPhone. The app comes in two editions: a free version that limits you to three videos and a £1.79 unlimited version.
Install the application on your Mac and simply point it towards a folder of videos or an iTunes playlist. You may have to change some of your router’s settings (such as port forwarding) to get Air Video to work outside your local network; fortunately, InMethod provides a tutorial on how to do so.
The real strength of Air Video is playback. Support for video playback within the iOS is slim: you either have to use videos already formatted for the iPhone/iPad or convert videos to a compatible format yourself. Air Video’s server software converts videos to a compatible format for streaming. The app even lets you queue up videos for your computer to run through.
The Play with Live Conversion feature is impressive. It streams a video directly to your device without you having to wait for it to be converted. Air Video supports formats from MOV and MP4 to AVI, WMV, MKV, DiVX, and more. It can’t convert DRM-protected videos like those you buy from the iTunes Store.
The live conversion feature works incredibly well, though it depends on your network connection. On a slower connection (such as a 3G network) the video will often start out blocky but improve as you continue watching; on a strong WiFi connection, the video looks perfect. On rare occasions the video and audio get out of sync, and once or twice it cut off. But, overall, it works well.