Cloud storage

The Best Video Player for iPhone

A long time ago, Apple made it difficult for third-party developers to make a good media player for the iPhone. Thankfully, over the years they’ve loosened their restrictions, and now you can get a really solid video player with PlayerXtreme.

Platform: iPhone and iPad
Price: Free ($4.99 for Pro features)
Download Page


  • Supports plenty of video and audio formats: 3gp, asf, avi, divx, dv, dat, flv, gxf, m2p, m2ts, m2v, m4v, mkv, moov, mov, mp4, mpeg, mpeg1, mpeg2, mpeg4, mpg, mpv, mt2s, mts, mxf, ogm, ogv, ps, qt, rm, rmvb, ts, vob, webm, wm, wmv
  • Simple, familiar folder-based interface that feels a lot like Finder, which also includes multiple ways to view and sort your library
  • Various ways to search through your files
  • Supports streaming over SMB, UPNP, and Wi-Fi
  • Download files to the app over your local network
  • Open files from directly from email attachments
  • Great control over the look of subtitles
  • Supports HD playback
  • Change playback speed
  • Hide folders that guest users of the app can’t see but you can
  • Support Chromecast and AirPlay (Pro version only)
  • Boost the volume of soft audio (Pro version only)
  • Passcode protection to lock away files (Pro version only)

Where It Excels

PlayerXtreme can handle just about any file format you throw at it, which means that it can easily become your main video player without much effort. It does just about everything you need a video player to do: you can create playlists, add your own subtitle files, play audio in the background, play files from a variety of sources, and customize playback in tons of ways. If you buy the Pro version of the app for $5, you can stream videos to your Apple TV or Chromecast.

Beyond being just a solid media player, PlayerXtreme also makes it easy to transfer files from your computer to your iOS device using a ton of different methods. PlayerXtreme will automatically search your local network for shared folders, where it can then download or stream any video files it finds. You can…

10 Items You Will Never Regret Bringing on a Trip

Getting ready for an upcoming trip is exciting. But when you make your packing list, stick to the essentials. There’s no need to blow money on heavy, bulky gear you’ll never use. Paring down your packing can also save you the expense and inconvenience of an overweight bag. Here are 10 necessities I’ve never regretted bringing on a trip.

1. Earplugs

Sleeping poorly can wreck your mood and put a serious damper on your travel fun or the business meetings you have to get to. I always make sure I have several pairs of earplugs to help me get the shut-eye I need, whether I’m on a plane, a bus, or in an unexpectedly loud hotel room. When it comes to sleeping well, you’re always better off being prepared, especially if you’re a light sleeper. (See also: Packing Light? Don’t Forget These 5 Must-Haves)

2. Passport photocopy

You don’t even have to purchase this item. All it takes is a little preparation before you leave and you can save yourself from a potential major hassle while you’re away. Make a couple of photocopies of your passport’s main page (the one with your picture on it), and any other pages that might be relevant — for example, if you’ve had to get a visa in advance, make a copy of that page, too.

Leave one copy with a friend or relative — whoever is most likely to not lose it. You’ll want to have a copy for yourself, too. Some hotels require you to leave a passport at the front desk during your stay, but if they’ll allow it, leave a photocopy instead so that you don’t ever lose possession of your original document. As a backup, upload a digital copy of the passport to a secure cloud storage app such as Google Drive. For extra security, you can password protect any file on Google Drive. Upload a photo of your passport on your smartphone, too, in case you need to access it offline. Just be sure to lock your phone.

Consider also making a photocopy of your driver’s license, credit, and debit cards. For security reasons you may not want to upload all of the information to the internet, but you can keep a paper copy in a secure place away from your wallet. Lock it in your room safe if one is available. At the very least, note the international and local bank customer service numbers for your card accounts, so that you can easily call them if a card gets blocked, lost, or stolen. (See also: What to Do if You Don’t Have Your ID at the Airport)

3. Plug adapters

Most countries outside North America use electrical outlets featuring different kinds of plug inputs. If you’re traveling often to different countries, it’s worth investing in one or two universal plug adapters that can be used in multiple countries. That way, you’ll never…