The first thing you should consider is whether you even need to download the videos. Many hand held devices have generous mobile internet bandwidth allowances which will allow you to embrace streaming technology. Here are some sites that don't require installing software on your mobile device.
TVCatchup.com - This is a great free and legal service which allows you to watch tv on your mobile phone or other internet enabled device. Provided that you live in the UK and have paid for a TV license, this is a great way to watch videos on your mobile for free.
Youtube.com - There is not a lot to say about this famous video clip site. Provided you have internet access, you will be able to watch videos on the world's most famous site.
SkillSchool.org - If you are a secondary school teacher or student in the United Kingdom then SkillSchool.org is a great place to view educational videos, interactive quizzes and GCSE Design & Technology resources.
4OD.co.uk & iPlayer.co.uk - these two sites allow you watch mobile television programs from the archives of Channel 4 and BBC services. You do not need to have an TV license to use these services.
If your personal media player doesn't have an internet connection then you will need to find a source to download free videos. TV for mobile phones without internet connections is not legally possible unless you have ripped the videos from your own DVD collection. With this in mind, here are some other common ways to get free mobile vids:
Torrents - Whilst peer to peer networking sites like btjunkie.org are used to share a lot of illegally pirated material, there are lots of creative commons free to air TV shows such as Pioneer One which are available for download.
Vimeo - Think of this site like an HD YouTube. Short film makers put their films up for mobile downloads or personal use
Flash Capture - If a site uses .FLV encoding then you can use a Firefox plugin to download the video. Using this method allows you to download videos for offline use.
- Never distribute files without the owner's permission.
- Check the file formats are compatible with your mobile device. 3GP & AVI are common for non Apple Devices.
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