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Expanding the RAZR's Video Capabilities
Intervideo's DVD Copy 5 converts any footage to 3GPP format for mobile phones
By Frank Moldstad

Using InterVideos DVD Copy 5 Platinum and a couple of inexpensive media storage devices, I recently discovered a way to convert any video footage to the mobile 3GPP format and save it to my Verizon Motorola RAZR V3 phone. Although I only tried the conversion with the Motorola RAZR phone, the process should work equally well with 3G-capable phones from LG, Samsung, and Nokia.

Although DVD Copy 5 PPlatinum (MSRP $ 49.95) is primarily intended for copying video to and from DVDs, it has a lot of other functions, too. One of those is converting video files for use with a wide variety of mobile devices, including iPod, PSP, Gameboy, portable media player or 3GPP mobile phones (Motorola, LG, Samsung and Nokia).

Converting an AVI to the 3G format is a simple process. After launching DVD Copy 5, youll notice four buttons at the top, one of which is File to DVD. Click that, and a large window opens in the middle of the interface, called Source. Drag the desired video clip into this window.

Under the Source window is a Target menu, where you can select where youd like the converted video to be saved.

Available file formats for conversion in DVD Copy 5
Below that is a menu called Copy As. The default is DVD, but if you click here, an extensive list of file formats comes up, one of which is 3GPP Motorola. Select that.

At the bottom right hand side of the interface is a small icon with a picture of a disc, which the rollover identifies as Start Copying. Click this.

The file I converted for this article was a small (117 MB) AVI file which I snipped from some old vacation footage I had shot. The conversion took only 10 seconds.

Schematic drawing of IOGear's MicroSD card reader
Next, I saved the file to a USB thumb drive by IOGear called the Pocket Card Reader for microSD. This costs about $10 at most major consumer electronics retailers, and it has a pop-up compartment at the back where a microSD/T-Flash card can be inserted. The reason thats important is that the RAZR phone uses these tiny optional cards for storage. They are available at the Verizon stores (and elsewhere) in sizes from 256MB up to 2GB. I have a 256MB card, which costs about $30.

Finally, I ejected the IOGear reader, removed the MicroSD/T-Flash card and inserted it in the phone. The video played back flawlessly.

The process involves a small amount of Rube Goldberg-style finagling, but the ability to transfer any video footage into the RAZR phone makes its video capabilities much more versatile. 

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