Pixelpipe Makes iPhone Video Uploads (Somewhat) Easier


It’s great that the iPhone finally has the ability to record video, right? But once you’ve captured your video, the iPhone doesn’t allow you to do much with it, other than upload it to YouTube or MobileMe. Pixelpipe overcomes this limitation, by allowing you to upload your videos directly to a wide variety of online locations. But the service also suffers from a few shortcomings of its own.

pixelpipePixelpipe is available for free in Apple’s (s AAPL) App Store; the startup also offers versions for Nokia (s NOK) and Android-based phones. The app lets you take content from your computer or mobile phone (including photos, videos, audio files, and more) and upload it directly to a variety of social networks, photo-sharing sites, blogs, and more.  On the iPhone 3GS, Pixelpipe supports uploading of video to more than 40 services; the iPhone itself only offers direct uploading of videos to YouTube and MobileMe.

Installing Pixelpipe on my iPhone was a breeze, but once I had the app up and running, things didn’t run quite as smoothly. In fact, the first thing I noticed about Pixelpipe was how slow it was — even though I was using it on a speedy, new iPhone 3GS. The first time I launched it, the app seemed to hang and was unresponsive. As it turned out, though, it was just indexing all of the photo and video files on my phone and placing them in my Pixelpipe Media gallery. But it didn’t tell me it was doing this, and — what’s worse — it repeated this process (which took a minute or longer) every time I opened the app.

Once your media files have been indexed, you can browse through a list that’s nicely organized — with one pretty big exception. Pixelpipe’s gallery displays thumbnails of your photos, but all of your video files have a blank, white thumbnail instead. So, if you’re planning on uploading a video that you captured, you best remember when you took it, as the files are displayed in that order. If you know the file name, you’re in luck, but the iPhone assigns those names, and doesn’t let you alter them. Pixelpipe is aware of this bug, and says it’s working on a fix.

To upload your photos and videos, you go into Pixelpipe’s settings and select your destinations. All of your options are arranged in a neat list, and in most cases, you simply enter your login and password for the sites you choose. Once your destinations are set up, you can go back to your media gallery and upload all of your files, or pick and choose individual items.

I tried to upload a variety of videos to my Facebook and Flickr accounts simultaneously. While all of the files neatly appeared in my Flickr account, I had to wait — and wait — for them to show up in my Facebook page. And when they finally arrived, not all of my videos made the journey. Pixelpipe’s web site has a handy tool where you can check on pending uploads, and it told me that an error had occurred during my upload. I was able to restart the upload right from the site, rather than having to go back to the app on my phone — a nice touch.

I found Pixelpipe a little slow to use and still a bit buggy. If the company can iron out some of the problems — specifically the missing thumbnails on your iPhone videos — I would find myself using it very often, though.



Apple has released our awaited app update that fixes the video thumbnails issue you’d reported. You can get our free 1.4.2 update now directly from the iTunes App Store.


Please tell us about the update that gives access to thumbnails. I need it for an iPhone app that I’m developing.


A couple of points on your article from team Pixelpipe.

  • Regarding the missing thumbnails, we submitted a fix to Apple on the same day the 3GS was released. We’re still on hold for approval however will hopefully have 1.4.2 out to users soon enough. Unfortunately we don’t get early access to the iPhones and it takes weeks for application approval so there’s a bit of a lag.

  • For older iPhones users that want to capture & upload video we also provide support for video captured with the free Cydia video recorder. You’ll need to jailbreak your iPhone to use Cydia however can use our 1.4.1 or newer version of Pixelpipe from the App Store for uploads, more on that here http://tr.im/p5TW.

That’s all for now, thanks for the (Somewhat) great review! ;)

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