April 30, 2010

SynchTube – Make Online Video Watching a Group Experience

SyncTube is an application that offers up a way to make sure every member of your group is watching the same video clip at the same time, no matter where they’re located in the world. When you use SyncTube to watch a movie with your extended family, friends, or colleagues, there’s no need to worry that Grandma clicked on the wrong clip or that Mom mistakenly paused her video while she was trying to turn up the volume. Whether you’re watching a home movie, a cooking demonstration, or anything else, SyncTube provides an easy way to make sure that all members of your party are on the same page when it comes to which videos you’re watching as a group.

What makes SyncTube different from YouTube is the group format, which is why the first step after selecting a clip to watch on SyncTube should be inviting people to view it with you. Paste any YouTube URL into the bar on the SyncTube homepage, and then get started IMing or emailing out the direct link to your friends. Each friend who enters the room will be listed by name underneath the video, and you can talk to each other while the clip is playing by using the chat room feature on the right hand side of the page. Once everyone has signed in and joined your room, you can push play to allow everyone to watch the video at once. Across from each user’s name is a progress bar showing where they’re at in the video, as well as whether they’ve paused or stopped the clip.

The creator or leader of each group has ultimate control over the video that’s being played, which allows this person to drag all other viewers’ players to a particular spot in the clip that’s being shown if they so choose. The creator can also control access levels to the group, making the video inaccessible to anyone who wasn’t invited. If you enjoy the group aspect of watching movies together with friends, then SyncTube an application that can help bring that back to the seemingly solo act of watching videos online.

Practical Uses:

  • Watch a home movie together with your whole family
  • Ensure everyone is on the same page when watching an informational video
  • Make sure every member of your group saw the same clip
  • Use the chat room to ask for clarification on a particular part of the video while it’s still being played

Insider Tips:

  • Register with SyncTube to save your playlists on the site
  • Make your room private to avoid having it show up on the SyncTube front page
  • Change group leaders within your SyncTube room at any time
  • Use the bookmarklet to easily turn any YouTube video into a SyncTube room

What we liked:

  • SyncTube is easy to use, even for web novices
  • Seeing where each viewer is within the clip makes it easier to hold off discussions until everyone is done watching the video
  • No need to register in order to create or join a room
  • Playlists feature allows you to add multiple videos to watch as a group

What we didn’t like:

  • Nothing


Company Info:


  • Free


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