VLC Media Player For Android Gets An Update

VLC, a popular media player which allows you to play video in almost any format or codec known to man, has recently received an update for the Android application.  The developers are still working on this folks, so be patient, as they are currently working on this in their free time.  According to the developers, the app is progressing well and maturing more and more on a daily basis for Android.  Ivoire, a VLC Media Player developer had this to say on his blog:

After two months of work, VLC media player is working quite well on Android based systems. The project still requires a lot of work before any release but we now know that running VLC media player on Android is achievable.

Some of the things they have been working on as stated on the developers blog include:

Video output

The video output developed by Adrien Maglo (alias Magsoft) is now able to output video directly into an OpenGL surface. This is the second video output module created by Adrien for VLC on Android. This second version is able to run on any version of Android and not only Gingerbread (2.3) but is a bit less efficient. This trade of is very important because few phones and tablets are running Android Gingerbread at the moment.

Audio output

A first audio output module was developed by Dominique Martinet (alias Asmadeus). This module was based on OpenSL ES which is quit convenient and efficient but OPENSL ES is only available on Android 2.3. This is the reason why we decided to write a new audio output module that might work on any Android devices regardless of the version.

For this reason, I (Rémi Duraffort, alias ivoire) am developing a second audio output module for every Android versions. The work is barely started so we cannot show you any video at the moment.

Here are a few things that “still need to be done”:

Improving the Video output

The video output must be improved to handle some specials cases like the rotation of the device or the power saving mode (and many more).

Some work must also be done to improve handling of the aspect ratio and rendering performance.

Audio output

As said before, the next goal is to finish the audio output module to handle audio correctly. This module requires some work to be able to output audio for any Android version.

Graphical User Interface

As you saw in the screenshots, the GUI was only made to help us testing both the audio and video output modules. Before any beta version, we must create a nice GUI that allows users to select the right media or stream to play. We will work on this task as soon as the audio and video output work well.

Porting libraries

VLC media player is relying on a set of libraries for a lot of functions like decoding, encoding, getting meta-datas (id3 tags), …

To enable these functionalities we must port the underlying libraries to Android based devices. This work is not began yet but as for now we already have a lot of libraries (like FFmpeg) that allows us to decode many formats like: mpeg, h264, mp4 or ogg. So this task does not have priority.


The last task is to improve VLC media player performance by optimizing it for the devices it will run on. Every Android devices uses ARM processors which imply some specific optimizations that are currently not activated. Some devices also provide ARM NEON instructions that VLC can use to speedup decoding.

The developer summarizes with the following:

As a conclusion, you can notice that VLC media player on Android is working quite well. Anyway we are not ready to release a version until some months because we want something stable and nice to use. Be patient, we are working on it, even if this job is only done on our free time.

I will write another article when some interesting news about VLC and Android come out.

[via spillthebeans]

About the Author: Joe Sirianni

Joe was born in New Jersey and spent most of his childhood moving around from state to state. He eventually made his way to Pennsylvania where he met his Portuguese beauty and made her his wife. He now has three great kids and full access to all of the Portuguese food he can eat. Joe's love for mobile technology began when he bought his first Palm Pilot, a Palm M130 and left it on top of his car, driving off, causing it to smash into a thousand pieces. Forced to buy a new device, he quickly discovered that specs were changing so rapidly he was buying a new device every six months just to keep up. Since then, he has constantly felt the need to have the latest and greatest. When the "smartphone" revolution began and integrating cell phones and PDA's was the norm, he quickly jumped to Windows Mobile for several years until the first Android device was launched, the T-Mobile G1. Joe began appreciating all of the free utilities Google provided and sold his soul (his precious data) to Google long before they got into the mobile OS business. So, there was no hesitation at all for him to jump on board and ride the Android train as an early adopter. And boy has it been a blast. Joe now works in the Engineering & Operations dept for a major mobile carrier where he remotely troubleshoots cell sites and loves being an Editor for TalkAndroid.

  • Melissa Terry


  • Ron

    Saweeeet!!!! We need a good video player like VLC!!

  • http://www.detektei-ramsauer.com Georg

    I hope the player will arrive soon!

  • Dave

    I would pay for an player that actually works correctly! I’ve tried all of them and there really is a need for VLC. Thanks for you work on this.

  • subs

    if you guys made this properly i would have no problem paying at least £5 for it

  • Ross_eyerie

    Sooner the better! Looking forward to it!

  • autumnrush

    Thanks a bunch! Hope this version will work fine with samsung galaxy y GT S5360