Want to download an online video that you saw on YouTube, Netflix, Hulu, or some other streaming platform? That is certainly a good idea especially if it is a video that you watch regularly, as it will allow you to watch it offline.
Although downloading online videos used to be fairly complicated in the past, nowadays it is not. Instead there are actually numerous options available to download online videos, and you can choose the one that you feel is best.
Download or ‘Watch Offline’ Features
Over the last few years more and more platforms have started to allow videos to be downloaded via specific download or ‘watch offline’ features. Although you may not realize it, YouTube had a watch offline feature as far back as 2014.
While this option is convenient if available, these features often have limitations. Some may restrict the videos that are downloaded so they can only be watched in the app itself, while others may only allow certain videos to be downloaded
For example Netflix allows select video downloads via its app, but the feature is not available for all of its shows and the videos can only be viewed within the app itself when you’re signed-in.
Assuming that you are interested in this option, you should first check whether or not it is available on the platform you’re using, and what limitations it has.
Video Downloader Tools
Video downloader tools are essentially tools that are designed specifically to allow users to download online videos. Nowadays they come in many shapes and sizes, including website-based apps, software tools, or browser extensions.
In general these tools are relatively similar to one another however. To use them you will need to copy and paste the website URL with the video that you want to download, and then either the download will start immediately or you’ll be provided with a link to download the video.
Some video downloader tools may have limitations in terms of the maximum file size, duration, or video quality that can be downloaded. On top of that not all tools can download from every platform, but some tools do support a wide range.
If you want to pursue this option, you should find a tool that lets you download videos from the platform you’re interested in – then check on its limitations.
It should be noted that screen recorders won’t really ‘download’ online videos, but instead will provide you with the means to record them while they play on your screen so that you can then save them.
The main advantage of this option is the fact that it can be used to record and save any online video on any platform. On top of that most screen recorders do not really have other limitations either, in terms of the quality, file size, and so on.
That said there are drawbacks as well, the most notable of which being the time that it takes to record and save a video. Essentially you will need to wait for the video to be played in its entirety before it can be saved.
To use this option and learn how to rip a video from a website, this tutorial is a good place to start.
Now that the options are laid out in front of you, it is up to you to determine which would fit your needs best. It is safe to say that between these options you should definitely find at least one that allows you to download the online video that you want to however.