There are many free desktop media player offerings available on the Internet today for downloading and installation. However, many factors have to be considered in finding the free ones. Below are some of the listed factors to be considered.
- Security. First of all, desktop media players, free or not, are all software called codecs. Codec (short for coder-decoder) software converts digital signals to audio signals and vice versa. By concept, as software, desktop media players are vulnerable to attacks or may be used by some developers as the attacker itself. Therefore, be sure to install only highly recommended, operating system compatible and ware-free desktop media players. Some media player developers put extra files in the installation kit with malware. As a reminder, never install a free desktop media player when it has got pop-up advertising. If it is already installed, immediately uninstall the player.
- User friendliness. Desktop media players are designed to entertain. Therefore, desktop media players must perform that function. The user interface plays a key role in the user friendliness of a player. For example, there is a popular media player that has got a small user interface, with small fonts and small buttons. This media player, though it lacks in design, has become popular because of its understandable manual controls for its graphic equalizer options, thus giving users the power to modify music tones and quality.
- Flexibility. Historically, media players were used only to view pictures, then, moving pictures, which were also called animation. But the golden era of media players took place when it had been designed to play audio and movie files as well. Now, media players do not only play files. They can let users create playlists, convert audio and video CD files, both digital and laser, to MP3 and MP4 files, connect to Internet media websites, create library files, connect to FM and AM radio stations, and many more. It may be hard to believe, but most free desktop media players are offering these services.
- Connectivity. As mentioned, desktop media players can now connect to various media websites. They may also connect to Internet radio online, video and audio streaming websites, and even legally download audio and video files. A good free desktop media player is also something which lets you connect, share and collect audio and video files from the local network, may it be from another computer within the local network or a mobile phone. There are many free desktop media players today that also play embedded files from profile pages of social network users.
Free desktop media players are always available for download. But if your computer’s operating system already has got a built-in desktop media player, like Microsoft’s Windows Media Player, bother only to download or install another desktop media player if it does not fit your satisfaction as a user. As mentioned, desktop media players are designed to entertain. If the player itself is not satisfactory, the user is always expected to delete it