Video bait-and-switch

Don't expect to download with this worthless toolbar.

We've reviewed a lot of programs that download and convert videos from sites like YouTube, and some are definitely of better quality than others. This is the first time, however, that we've encountered a program that claimed to download videos but just...didn't. Contrary to its name, downloading videos is not even a feature that Tube Downloader actually offers. If anything about this program impressed us, it's the boldness of this bait and switch.

Be careful when you download Tube Downloader, as during the installation it will try to get you to install RealPlayer and change your home page and default search engine if you're not paying attention. The program is a toolbar that works in both Internet Explorer and Firefox, and it has all kinds of tools: a Bing search box, links to TV sites, an Internet radio player, and buttons for Facebook, Twitter, Skype, and e-mail. That's all well and good, but where's the video downloading? We navigated to a YouTube video we liked and clicked the Download & Convert button, expecting the program to either ask us to confirm the download or just start it automatically. Instead, we were taken to a Web site where we were asked to download and install Convert.Files, a whole separate Firefox extension. In other words, Tube Downloader does absolutely nothing to download videos except refer you to another browser add-on.

There are numerous other browser extensions and standalone programs that will indeed download and convert YouTube videos, and we encourage you to seek these out. When it comes to handling videos, Tube Downloader is completely worthless. We do not recommend this program.

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