The sheer scope of videos available on YouTube is nothing short of amazing. Millions of people view YouTube videos each day. Many people set up accounts and build lists of their favorite videos to share and to watch again. While it’s great to be able to access these videos for free via the Internet wouldn’t it also be slick to be able to save these videos to your computer in a format that allows you to watch them without being connected to the Internet?
YouTube Videos on My Computer?
Well you can. There are a number of free software programs that allow you to download YouTube videos, save them to your computer and convert them to a format of your choice. Of these different downloading programs we like “YouTube Downloader.” There are others that can convert to more formats or download from more video sites, but YouTube Downloader strikes a good balance of functionality, a simple interface and is easy to use. YouTube Downloader allows you to download the video file and then convert it to the format of your choice such as .WMV for Windows Media Video or .MOV for Apple’s QuickTime, or one of several other formats.
The process is relatively straightforward. First download and install the free program. A great download site for free programs like this is download.com as it is safe (no viruses or spyware) and fast. With the program installed go to the YouTube site and locate the video you want, copy the URL for the video from the Address Bar of the browser, paste it into YouTube Downloader and download the file. After the YouTube video file is downloaded select the format you want to convert the file to (WMV is best/easiest for viewing on Windows PCs) and run the conversion process. So it’s kind of a “two-step” process, but pretty straightforward.
Why Download YouTube Videos?
Some people may wonder “why would I want to go through this process when I can just watch these videos online”? A legitimate question. One reason could be that periodically videos are posted on YouTube that are then removed days, weeks, or months later due to copyright issues or other legal reasons. Another reason could be a desire to transport the YouTube video to your portable media player such as an iPod, Zune, or your cell phone. Or perhaps you have a slow Internet connection and you want to watch your favorite YouTube videos without having to wait for them to load from the Internet.
So if you are an avid fan of YouTube videos, having your own copy on your computer or portable media player may be just the thing for a growing media library.