Plex Expands Cloud Storage Options, Adds Desktop Mode to Plex Media Player

Plex, a streaming service built to make it easier to run locally stored media from any device, has made a lot of big moves in the past year. They’re making a few more before 2016 wraps up, expanding their new Plex Cloud feature and adding a desktop mode to their Plex Media Player.

In a post on their official subreddit, the Plex team announced that Plex Cloud now works with Google Drive, Dropbox, and Microsoft OneDrive. When Plex Cloud was announced in September, it only worked with Amazon Cloud — users could link their Amazon accounts and use their cloud storage as a Plex media server, instead of having to use their own external hard drives or NAS setups. Those cloud storage companies do not offer file encryption for the Plex Cloud service or otherwise, and do have the means to detect illegal content and ban users accordingly.

On the frontend side of things, Plex has added their web app UI to Plex Media Player. Previously, Plex Media Player had a UI better suited for use on a television. After the update, when Plex Media Player is in full-screen mode, it will still have that same TV-optimized UI. When not in full-screen mode, it’ll look more like their web app, which is easier to navigate with a mouse and keyboard. It’s ideal for anyone using a laptop to stream content to a larger screen. Plex is celebrating by making their Media Player available for free to download, with no subscription required.

Lastly, Plex has created a plugin for Kodi users. Kodi is a competing, open-source media player previously known as XBMC, which is where the Plex team started out before going off on their own. The history between the two players has made it a little easier (and perhaps more palatable) for them to work together. The new plugin is for the Kodi player, and brings Plex’s UI and playback technology to the more customizable Kodi player. The plugin only exists as a preview for now, and Kodi users can download it here.