I first learned about Crackle’s free streaming movies and TV service after buying a Roku streaming player for my TV. Crackle’s free video content contains a lot of titles many of you would recognize: Seinfeld, for example, in their TV show lineup and The Da Vinci Code on the movie side. The shows are advertisement supported. But, this seems like a reasonably fair trade for being able to view these shows for free. Crackle does not, however, have the deep bench of content Netflix’s pay service does. Crackle’s website indicates it currently has 255 movies, 105 TV shows, and 58 original content programs. However, that’s still a significant number of shows to sift through on a rainy afternoon or a day with a bad head cold.
Crackle just released a new free iOS app that lets you watch these videos on your iPhone (iPod touch) or ipad.
I tried it on an iPad 2 over a WiFi connection. There were moments when the video stream looked extremely good. However, it seemed to frequently shift to lower quality video with noticeable pixelation. Netflix, on the same WiFi connection, generally provides a more consistent viewing experience. Of course, there is no expectation that the broadband connection I use is itself consistent. So, it may be that the broadband connection was simply subpar while trying out Crackle on the iPad. Further testing (more movie and TV viewing) should help me decide where the problem may lie.
Crackle’s iOS interface seemed intuitive and simple to use. I don’t have any issues that I noticed in tests so far.