Forget Windows Media Player, Here Are 3 Free Ways to Play WMV Video on a Mac
WMV files typically are played in Windows Media Player, but Mac users don’t have that app. Not to worry though, there are plenty of solutions to play WMV video right in Mac OS X and you can go ahead and forget about WMP because the Mac apps are better and more versatile anyway. Without further ado, here are three different ways to play WMV movies on a Mac, each are free downloads:
MPlayerX closely resembles the Quick Time user interface but that’s about where the similarities end, because MPlayerX will play just about any video thrown at it with flying colors. WMV files are no exception, but because it supports so many other popular (mkv, divx, etc) and obscure formats, MPlayer is debatably one of the best free video players available for the Mac platform.
VLC is the classic swiss army knife for video files, it will play virtually any video format, it’s cross-platform compatible, it’s quick, and it’s free. VLC’s other benefit is that it works fine with obscure audio formats, and if you’re wanting to stream a video from one computer to another you can easily do that too. If you want the video codec support of MPlayerX but with even more features aimed at advanced users, VLC is a great choice.
Last but not least is Flip4Mac, which is a set of video components that install into OS X that allow Quick Time to play WMV files directly. It’s a perfectly reasonable solution, but because it’s limited to WMV and WMA formats it’s just overall less useful than going with a free app like VLC or MPlayerX. My view is that if you’re going to be downloading a new app to play videos, get one that is multifunctional and that will play everything, that way you won’t have to go hunting around again when you encounter some other video file down the road. One potentially huge bonus that Flip provides though is the ability to convert the wmv videos to .mov format, letting you play them on an iPad, iPod, or iPhone, or any other Mac, without the need for them to download anything.
Not sure which to get? It’s probably safest to go with MPlayerX, it’s dirt simple to use, installs through the Mac App Store, and plays so many different movie formats that you’ll likely never have to download another video player again.