There’s no doubt that the Windows Media Player comes with most capabilities, but a substitute is more than welcome and that’s just why we’ve compiled a list of the 6 best Windows Media Player alternatives. It’s meant to save on the time you may spend when searching through the limitless options available. Although the software has come a long way, the Windows Media Player from Microsoft for some reason is not highly preferred by most users. So where did Microsoft go wrong? We all know that the past releases from the company lacked support for many popular file formats life MKV and FLV and still continues to do so. With the requirement of additional codec packs needed to be installed in newer versions as well, third-party substitutes manage to find their way onto most PCs. Thus, we’ve slated down the best Windows Media Player alternatives for Windows XP and Windows 7 that provide support for almost all content alongside other features that aren’t available on the default player.
1. Microsoft Zune: From the makers of Windows Media Player, the new multimedia software combines its elegant design with great features for an enriched listening and viewing experience. The Zune application allows you to watch movies, listen to music and instantly stream content. Also, the stylish GUI is probably what makes the player more desirable. In addition to that, you can easily multitask while continuing to see and control what’s playing through the mini player mode.
2. DivX Plus: Supporting formats such as DivX, AVI, MKV, MP4 and MOV, the DivX Plus player brings in high video performance and media management capabilities. You can easily burn movies or videos onto a disk or save them to a USB drive. Besides these, the software allows you to transfer movies, TV shows or home videos to any DivX certified device like gaming consoles, DVD/Blu-ray players and TV sets by automatically formatting them for better compatibility.
3. VLC player: For those who love simplicity with high capabilities, then the VLC media player appears to be the best choice. Built with a basic design, the software is a free and open source cross-platform multimedia player that supports almost all formats without the need of additional codec packs. Further on, the app brings in media converter and streaming options.
4. Winamp: Available in 16 different languages, the Winamp media player wraps-in a number of features through which you can import media from the iTunes library, listen to podcasts, convert file format and control what’s playing straight from the taskbar (Windows 7 only). In addition to these, you can also listen to online services like AOL Radio and play/manage music stored on any iPod.
5. RealPlayer: Available since 1995, RealPlayer comes with abilities to share media content with social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter. Comprising a long list of functions, you can conveniently download online streaming videos from the web with a single click, play, manage and edit favorite videos and music, burn files to a CD and convert them into different formats also.
6. Media Player Classic – Home Cinema: Based on the original Media Player classic, the light weight software sports a simple design alongside support for a number of file formats. With the software, you can watch videos, movies, listen to music, create playlists and playback or record live TV through a TV tuner card.
By stating what according to us are the best Windows Media Player alternatives, you couldn’t possibly ask for anything more. Also, each mentioned software is capable of meeting specific needs that may or may not be present in the default ‘Windows Media Player.’ Whatever be the reason for you preference of a third-party software, it’s always good to adopt any alternative should something go wrong with your computer’s standard player. If you use any other alternate players for Windows systems, do share it with us too.