14 Nov 2014
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Android App Review: Vimeo

By Eddie Monotone

I review a lot of apps that, for one reason or another, aren’t that good. But it’s rare to find one that’s actually irredeemably broken. Video sharing website Vimeo’s app, however, is closer than it should be for an app with such obvious potential.

For those who are unfamiliar Vimeo is like a classier, sometimes artier YouTube. When you open the app you’re given the option of logging in or joining. I didn’t have a Vimeo account so I tried to join. Several times. I managed to get as far as picking a user name and password and then it took me no further, and a quick glance at the reviews on the Google Play page suggest I’m not alone with this problem.

By creating an account on the Vimeo website on my computer and then trying to sign in on the app I was eventually able to get in to my account, but that’s more trouble than it’s worth – if I have to go to the website to use my account on the app, why not just use the website?

That’s okay though, because you don’t need an account to watch videos on Vimeo, just to comment, bookmark, or upload your own. I can still use it for entertainment.My first attempt to watch something involved going to the ‘Featured’ section and picking something from one of the channels (The New York Times, for the record) but the video had ‘unknown playback errors’ that made it unwatchable.Then I tried typing ‘cat’ into the search bar and found a video of a cat jumping in the snow, and that video played perfectly (conclusions: the Vimeo app is unreliable, and the reason cat videos get more hits than political videos might not be just to do with people’s taste).

If you want to watch videos on your phone you have your internet browser, and Vimeo has a website. If you want to upload videos to your account then doing it through a designated app might well be easier – but only if that app actually works. While the Vimeo app isn’t unusable, my encounter with it just seemed too buggy and unreliable to recommend.

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