The Plex Android app is in the process of receiving an update that overall intends to greatly improve the video player experience.
The updated version is now listed on the Google Play Store and devices with the app installed should see the update arriving on their devices soon, if they have not already. This is a staged rollout so not all users will receive the update at the same time.
The update has been tailored to massively improve the performance and speed of the video player. For one thing, there’s an updated UI which according to the company utilizes “the same elegant user interface as music.”
In addition, when a user now finishes one episode, the next queued episode will start to buffer in the background while the 'countdown to next episode' shows on the screen. The point here is to hit the ground running when the next episode begins and avoid any unnecessary buffering issues.
There’s also some changes to how you can view video as well. For example, users are now able to adjust how much of the screen the display takes up, or the orientation. These adjustments can be made by heading to the app’s settings, followed by "Playback Settings" and then "Display Mode."
Likewise, users can now press the home button while video playback is happening to make use of Picture-in-Picture (PIP) mode. This way the user is able to continuing navigating their device or use a different apps while the video in Plex continues to play in a smaller window.
General navigating of video playback has also been improved thanks to the ability to jump from one chapter to another, as well as the ability to see a thumbnail preview while dragging the seekbar one way or the other.
Technically, those who are cutting-edge Plex users might already be familiar with most of these new features as they were announced back in April and previously released as beta features. Which is the main difference now as all of them have exited a beta status and are becoming available to all Plex Android mobile users.
The Google Play Store listing for the updated version also shows a number of fixes are included with this version. While most of these fixes, as well as most of the new features in general, are designed for mobile, there are some fixes for those who have installed the Plex app on an Android TV device.
For those new to Plex, this has fast become a one-stop app for everything media as what many might still assume to be simply a player has evolved over time to offer a richer and more inclusive experience overall.
Most of the functionality of the app works without the need of a purchase although those looking for the richest of Plex experiences will need to upgrade through the purchase of a Plex Pass.
To download the latest version of the app (7.16.0), head over to the Google Play Store.