The once ubiquitous navigation drawer has become a pariah of app design over the last couple years thanks to a forced movement toward gesture navigation. We've seen plenty of apps switch to a tabbed bar at the bottom of the screen, and now VLC is joining their ranks. Along with a few other new features, the first beta of v3.3 now sports a browser screen with an updated navigation model.

Left + Center: v3.2. Right: v3.3 beta.

Unlike some apps that have adopted the bottom tabbed navigation model, VLC isn't leaving behind a sparsely populated shell of the navigation drawer. The drawer is simply gone now, and all of its options have been squeezed down into the bottom tabs in some form or another. There's a one-to-one match for some of the main screens, while Directories and Local Network have been merged together in the Browse tab, and the More button pops up a page containing Settings and About. The History page seems to be gone. Correction: History also appears in the More page, but it will be blank if there's nothing to show yet.

Left: v3.2. Center + Right: v3.3 beta.

The changes weren't limited to just cosmetics and navigation, there's also a new Share action at the bottom of the overflow menus on content. It pops up the standard system share sheet for quickly sending it out to contacts and appropriate apps.

Left: v3.2. Center + Right: v3.3 beta.

The video player looks and behaves the same as previous version, but it was also treated to an occasionally useful feature. While a video is playing, you can now find 'video information' in the overflow menu. Opening it will reveal an overlay that shows details about the video codec, resolution, and other details that may be of some use. This is almost identical to the details shown in the standard video information page that can be accessed from the file browser (shown above on the far right), but it also uniquely contains a graph of the data bitrate for the video while it's playing.

You can start using these changes in VLC v3.3 beta 1. It's available from the Play Store once you join VLC's beta program, or you can pick up current version from APK Mirror.

VLC for Android
VLC for Android
Developer: Videolabs
Price: Free+