October 15, 2008

Vuze 4.0 sucks, probably?

I've always been a strong supporter of Azureus, but never the Vuze movement. And just now, I got a notification about the newest version of Vuze, 4.0. I upgraded and I can't say I'm pleased.

On OS X, it used an installer, instead of a traditional drag-and-droppable application folder. So strike one. Strike two, the branding has changed. In previous versions, even though the application was branded as Vuze, I could still keep the name Azureus. Here, the installer removed the old copy of Azureus and put in a new copy of Vuze named Vuze. And, the funky blue frog design has changed to a similarly blue square with a white silhouette of the frog. The brand change really hurts, since I associated Azureus so heavily with the blue frog.

Thirdly, the user interface has changed. The initial Vuze changes weren't as jarring because you could always go back to classic mode. Here, I think they've realized that the majority of users use classic mode, and they've decided to make that more prominent in their design. However, the interface is cluttered with things I don't need. I can tell they're really trying to push their content delivery network, with the user accounts and friends features, but I don't care for any of that stuff. And the biggest offender, it looks ugly. It doesn't use OS neutral colors or the same traditional shades of blue.

It's pretty jarring, and I guess I'll be shopping around for better torrent clients, or I guess I'll just try to not look at it (since Azureus does seem to remain champion in torrent clients, in terms of features. But I haven't really shopped around).

Edit: Okay, wow, I have no idea how this works, but their built-in video player is absolutely spanking VLC in terms of skipping ahead. Some video formats VLC has a hard time skipping ahead in. You jump to a place ahead of your current place in the video and it takes a noticeable amount of time for the system to catch up. Vuze, however, seems to have this built-in player and it jumps around various parts of the video instantaneously. That's a huge win.

Posted by Mark Canlas at October 15, 2008 10:59 PM