UPDATE 9/16/2012 - I modified the PutlockerDownloader chrome extension and made one to work with Sockshare :)
Grab it here.
UPDATE 9/23/2012 - I combined my Putlocker/sockshare downloaders and made a Free-Tv-Online.me Modifier that puts direct download links right on the page! See it here.
This post somewhat deviates from this blog's intended content, but does incorporate elements of 'mobile' and 'watch' :)
I canceled Comcast last year when I got LTE (screenshot showing 33mb/s down that I'm getting right now) and thus had to find alternate sources for media consumption. I created a Chrome Extension called PlayMode to help consolidate the slippery free video links (as the hosting sites often get shut down), but since getting my Samsung Galaxy S3 have noticed that video streams tend to get broken during view, often forcing me to reload the page. This is annoying.
Here's the solution.
1. For Youtube, how much does it suck to have it freeze right at the best part of a funny clip or music video? Download in HD and watch videos as they were intended (anytime, even without internet...) with YTD Video Downloader (if you have a steady internet connection) or VDownloader (if you rely on tethering). The former seemed to often fail on larger files (400+mBs) for me while tethering, but otherwise is quite good. VDownloader is a bit better, even though its UI isn't quite as simple- if a download freezes/loses connection, you can pause and resume without a problem. It also has built-in conversion to pretty much any video format you'd like. Unfortunately, the video quality choices are limited (I can only get average quality or 1080p, not 720p).
2. For downloading TV Shows and the like, use free-tv-video-online.me, a site similar to sidereel or tvlinks.eu, but that actually works (flawlessly). After you find your show, look for putlocker or sockshare links (they work 99% of the time, load very quickly, and fast-forward//rewind works properly). Here's the trick to download video streams:
Get the video to start playing on the host site- if you're watching it on free-tv-'s site, just click anywhere a couple times and it will open up the host. Once you get to the actual movie file (with the play button), right click the page and select view source. Now ctrl-f (find command) the string '/get' and you will see something like this:
Copy this and append it to www.putlocker.com, then load that URL. You may have to install an XML viewer extension like XML tree. Once loaded, you will see the download URL!
If it's on Putlocker and you use chrome, I've automated this process with my chrome extension PutlockerDownloader. For sockshare, you need to append the 'key' value right after the ==.
For some videos (often season finales and what-have-you), it can be hard to find a Putlocker link, but rather you might only see sketchy video sites like gorillavid.in. Fortunately, for these links, if you view source right from the gorillavid free-tv- watch page, there's a direct URL to the .avi (just do a ctrl-f for .avi). Open the URL (do not include the "&provider=http" part) and presto download!
Note, to avoid popup ads and ads of all types (including on YouTube), download the Adblock plus chrome extension.
Let the bingeing begin!
Recommended shows (each so addictive you will want to watch the entire series in one sitting, except for *s which designate solely intellectual/futurist/guilty pleasure and less addictive):
Better Off Ted*
PS I also stumbled upon RealPlayer which seems to offer a 'download any video you're watching online' feature as well. I'm about to test it out (I have to restart Chrome first).