ProTube: An Alternative YouTube App for Jailbreakers

By , Jan 5, 2012

You know it. I know it. The stock YouTube app that comes with your iOS device is simply an abomination. Yes, it’s that terrible.

So anything that can improve over the stock app is generally received with a warm response. For that matter, even YouTube’s web app is leaps and bounds over the stock YouTube app.

ProTube is the latest YouTube alternative to make its way to Cydia, and it attempts to pick up where the YouTube web app left off. Does it succeed? Check inside for my full breakdown…

As soon as you open ProTube, one thing is immediately apparent. This is not a built-from scratch app by any means. This is simply a wrapper on top of YouTube’s web app.

That’s not necessarily a bad thing, I mean, why re-create the wheel when you already have one? Just don’t go into it expecting something fancy or new, or else you’ll come away disappointed.

The primary function of ProTube is providing downloading capabilities for both video and audio. Sadly, my experience with both was a bit half-baked.

Downloads worked most of the time, but I experienced an odd issue that saw ProTube downloading the same video over and over, even when it appeared to be downloading a brand new video of my choosing.

Along with that, the audio conversion and downloads timed out on me every time. Either I received an error message, or it stuck on “converting” forever. Bear in mind that these were 1-2 minutes videos that I was attempting to download at most.

One thing that I do particularly like about ProTube is how easy it is to share, export, or rename videos once you have them downloaded. It even allows you to watch your videos mid-download.

ProTube promises to block ads, but ads have never been much an intrusion for me, especially on YouTube’s mobile site, so I don’t have much to say about that one.

Overall, the app has promise. It’s built open YouTube’s competent web app, so it has the foundation to succeed. If some of the bugs can be worked out with downloading and a few more compelling features are added, then ProTube may be able to compete with some of Cydia’s best like MxTube and others. Until then, I’d hold off until a few more revisions are made.

Have you used ProTube? If so, what did you think?

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  • Anonymous

    LOL this is a fail, it doesn’t let you download the mp3 or the video apparently so it really isn’t something to make me change from the normal app.

    • Anthony Bouchard

      Actually, now it does.

  • wolfasari

    It’s decent, atltrough it has it fair share of bugs, what i like if that you can manage your account from it.

  • Joshua Rawlings

    Browsing YouTube on ProTube is head and shoulders better than on the stock iOS app. Even though it is similar to YouTube on Safari I prefer keeping my browser open for other things. So having a separate app works better in my workflow.

    I still don’t understand the whole YouTube download to mobile trend. Do I really want to download nyan cat or Rebecca Black onto my phone? I like ProTube a lot. There is also a separate tweak by the devil per that will open all links directly to ProTube and not the stock app.

    • Matt Bona

      I have both ProTube and the Tweak, it is pretty nice. I have been using MxTube + videolock forever to be able to listen to things that I download.

      As for the downloading, I have a T-Mobile ip4, so I really can’t stream a song fast enough on Edge. Also, a lot of my favorite songs are also done as live videos that are posted to youtube, so I love downloading those and being able to listen to them when I’m not sitting down at a computer screen.

  • locomambo

    hey jeff by the way you awesome!!! i tried this app and for me it work the converting the music to mp3..what its not there yet it able to save to the music says that it will be there soon…also i tried to download a couple of videos and it did work for me …this app is awesome… recommend to everyone…

  • locomambo

    hey jeff by the way you awesome!!! i tried this app and for me it work the converting the music to mp3..what its not there yet it able to save to the music says that it will be there soon…also i tried to download a couple of videos and it did work for me …this app is awesome… recommend to everyone…

  • Anonymous

    Downloaded ProTube to check it out.
    1) The video download problem Jeff showed in video does occur only if you don’t try tapping the video to load first. So if you want to download a second video, make sure you activate it by making it play for a second.

    btw jeff, at first i tried to avoid watching the videos cause i’m not a big fan of commentaries/reviews. But you are getting better and better at just flying threw the commentaries and making it a really professional review. Good job!

  • Anonymous

    Good video. Patiently waiting for the 4S untethered.

  • Simon Reidy

    I think it’s a great app. Sure, it’s mainly just a wrapper for the YouTube mobile website, but given YouTube has such a great mobile site, there’s not much a fully custom iOS app could really improve upon. ProTube is slick, very fast, background downloading works well for me (not quite as flawlessly as YourTube, but still fine most of the time) and it has a decent range of options.

    The only thing I would like to see implemented is a choice of download resolution. Sometimes 480p is fine, but other times it would be nice to download in full 720p1080p if you’re outputting to a large HD display. There is the “HQ” YouTube video option, but to my eyes HQ looks like 480p (where as low quality would is probably 360p). I could be wrong on this, but it would be nice if this was made clearer and we were given a few more options regardless.

    As Jeff mentions in the video, the real stand out feature is the separate plugin to make links open in ProTube, rather than pathetic “2007 design” native iOS YouTube app. The fact that Apple STILL hasn’t done a thing to improve it after 4 years, shows their blatant disregard for it, probably because it’s owned by their competitor Google. Same goes with Maps on iOS which as well know has been greatly surpassed by 3rd party apps, and Android’s continuous upgrades of the Maps app makes the iOS version look pathetic by comparison.

    Personally I think it’s time for Apple to start upgrading their native apps in general (look how dated the musicipod app now is compared to other offerings in the app store!) and/or give people choices abut which default apps they want to use. If I want to use something other than mobile Safari as my default browser, then I should be able to do so without jailbreaking. This is another area where Android unfortunately has an edge.

    Hmm…Somehow my mini review of ProTube has turned into a rant about Apple restrictions and comparisons to Android. Sorry about that! :) /end rant

  • Thom Alan White

    I’ve been waiting for probably 2 years for such a full-featured youtube app. Mxtube and Yourtube were buggy and disappointing. It may not be perfect but with the near-daily updates it’s getting damn near close and I feel my money was well spent on it.

  • Alona

    What’s the name of the free addon?

  • Liz Gui

    Can i delete youtube without it affecting protube?

  • Chris Spaulding

    How do u get protube. I’ve looked