SmartMovie goes free, still useful for older Symbian smartphones

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Lonely Cat Games has recently made their old SmartMovie system for Symbian freeware - it's fairly evident that all Symbian smartphones since the Nokia N8 do a pretty good of handling MP4, WMV and AVI movie files/containers/codecs, so I'm guessing that interest in this previously commercial software has waned significantly. Owners of older S60 2nd Edition, Series 80 and S60 3rd Edition/5th Edition smartphones might like to grab this though. Caveat - it relies on a Windows PC to run the movie 'converter'.

You may remember my original review, from 2006, an incredible seven years ago? I concluded:

Despite having the latest Quicktime Pro and several DVD players on my Windows PC, SmartMovie's converter wouldn't open any of my .MOV, .WMV or MPEG-2 video files, which is something of a shame. It turns out that it uses DirectShow, and with the codecs here,here and here, it should be possible to open any combination of Real Media, Windows and DVD format files. Just be prepared for a little fiddling! As things stand, with no extra codecs, you have to start with video in AVI, encoded in a common codec, or in bog-standard MPEG-1. Still, for something that's precious enough to go through all this for, the chances are that you'll put the work in massaging your footage or installing extra codecs.

SmartMovie's converter

If I had to pick any one system for taking along my own collection of a dozen or so favourite video clips (e.g. the Floyd at Live 8, as shown here, or home footage of me performing at a gig, or classic music videos), SmartMovie would be the one I'd go for. If I were starting with a physical DVD, I'd be torn between the different options, I suspect, there's no one outright winner.

Despite slight reservations over its interface on the smartphone, SmartMovie does what it claims to do well and does it reliably.

Do bear in mind that this was written in 2006, in a totally different software landscape, but it does give you a flavour of how SmartMovie works (with a little codec help). In 2013, this might be useful, in its new freeware form, for resurrecting an older Symbian smartphone, perhaps as a backup device. With SmartMovie installed and a few favourite movies converted (it takes a while), it's still a valid way to fill up a microSD card...

To download SmartMovie and to see the related links and documentation, see the Lonely Cat Games product page.