VLC for Android, app: Create and Use Playlist and Sleep Timer

In VLC for Android, we can make use of the playlist feature to create and manage lists of our favorite songs. We can access such lists any time and also use a sleep timer to automatically stop the playback. Now, playlists in VLC for Android has been upgraded to be able to include both audio and video files. So, files like MP3 and MP4 can all be in one unified list.

The playlist feature in VLC is only internally supported by the app itself. That means, it is not like *.m3u playlists which are supported globally by desktop media players. That means when you create a list, it can be used only by the VLC app. We haven’t discovered a way to export it for backup or for other players to use. So, if you uninstall/re-install the app, your valuable list might be lost forever. But it is a useful feature that can be used frequently by music enthusiasts to group songs. The lists are accessible from Menu ☰ > Playlist.

Steps to Create and use Playlist feature in VLC for Android:

  • Click on Menu ☰ > Audio or Menu ☰ > Video to browse media files.
  • On the right side of any song, press on More Options ⋮ and choose the option Add to playlist.
  • Give the playlist name (for new lists) or add to previously created ones.
  • Hit OK.
  • Repeat the same process for adding more songs.

Playlists in VLC Android

Now, if we navigate to the Menu ☰ > Playlists tab, we can find all the lists that we have created. Tap on any one of them and the songs that we have sorted will be displayed. Hit the play button to start the playback of all the songs in there. Tap on an individual item to start the playback from that track onwards.

You can also tap on More Options ⋮ against a playlist, and use Append or Insert next to add it to the current queue. If nothing is playing right now, all the musical tracks in there will begin playing. Otherwise, Append will add it to the end of the current playback series. Insert next, on the other hand, will use it after the current song finishes. In the same options, there is Add to Playlist which can be used to add all the items of the list to another one. Think of it as combining two playlists. There’s also a choice called Delete if you want to remove it permanently.

Sleep Timer

When you start the playback of a custom list, it will continue to the end. If the repeat button is pressed, then it will continue forever. There’s a way to break this chain. It is by using, the Sleep Timer. To use it, start the playback of a series of songs from a playlist or from albums, artists and genre category.

After the list playback begins, open the full player interface and follow these steps:

  • Tap on More Options ⋮ (on the very top-right)
  • Click on the Sleep Timer option.
  • Start pressing on the numeric digits to set the timer.
  • Hit OK to activate it.

Sleep Timer in VLC

Timer Tips: Pressing on 9 will set the timer to 9 minutes. Press on two digits like 23 will set it to 23 minutes. If you press on 233 (three digits) the timer will display 2 hours 33 minutes. You will get the hang of it. The maximum value seems to be 99 hours and 99 minutes. Venture into the same options to Delete the timer.

10 thoughts to “VLC for Android, app: Create and Use Playlist and Sleep Timer”

  1. Also, it is possible to retrieve a playlist from VLC Android : you need first to extract the vlc_media.db, as indicated below, then open it using a DB Browser (such as “DB Browser for SQLite”), then open the datalist “PlaylistMediaRelation”. The whole table can be copied, and pasted in the Notebook, or in a sheet excel. The table can be filtered using the playlist_id …

  2. It seems that it is possible to create an external m3u playlist (meaning using a PC), and copy it on your phone. Here is a simple example created externaly (but I did one with 1000 songs) ;

    #EXTM3U
    file:///storage/2113-0E22/MUSIC/aJazz/Brazil/01%20garota%20de%20ipanema.wma
    file:///storage/emulated/0/Music/Jean-Pierre%20Limborg/zinder/01%20satya.m4a.mp3
    file:///storage/emulated/0/Music/Jean-Pierre%20Limborg/asian%20perfumes/01%20kesara.m4a.mp3
    file:///storage/2113-0E22/MUSIC/aPop/Led%20Zeppelin/Led%20Zeppelin%20III/01%20Immigrant%20Song.mp3
    file:///storage/2113-0E22/MUSIC/aClassique/Antonin%20Dvor%C3%A1k/Dvor%C3%A1k-%20Stabat%20Mater,%20Op.%2058/01%20Stabat%20Mater%20for%20vocal%20soloists,%20chorus%20&%20orchestra,%20B.%2071%20(Op.%2058)-%20No.%201,%20’Stabat%20mater%20dolorosa’%20(quartet,%20chorus).wma

    Then, I open this file with a file manager (for example Google file), using the option “open with”, then choosing VLC. After beeng open once, the playlist is registered in the VLC data base for reuse.

  3. It seems that it is possible to create an external m3u playlist (meaning using a PC), and copy it on your phone. Here is a simple example created externaly (but I did one with 1000 songs) ;

    #EXTM3U
    file:///storage/2113-0E22/MUSIC/aJazz/Brazil/01%20garota%20de%20ipanema.wma
    file:///storage/emulated/0/Music/Jean-Pierre%20Limborg/zinder/01%20satya.m4a.mp3
    file:///storage/emulated/0/Music/Jean-Pierre%20Limborg/asian%20perfumes/01%20kesara.m4a.mp3
    file:///storage/2113-0E22/MUSIC/aPop/Led%20Zeppelin/Led%20Zeppelin%20III/01%20Immigrant%20Song.mp3

    Then, I open this file with a file manager (for example Google file), using the option “open with”, then choosing VLC. After beeng open once, the playlist is registered in the VLC data base for reuse.

  4. I’ve seen somewhere that VLC App’s playlists are stored in a database. Does someone knows the name of the database file, and where it is stored on the phone?.

    1. The name of the database file is vlc_media.db. It should be located at the /data/data/org.videolan.vlc/app_db folder. You can access it if you have root access on your phone. You can also export the database from ☰ > Settings > Advanced > Dump media database, and you will find the vlc_media.db file at the root of your storage.

  5. I’ve just downloaded VLC for android. It recognizes my music, but I had about 2000 songs in six playlists on my phone. VLC has put them in one file. Do I have to build up my playlists again, one song at a time ?

  6. You can’t delete songs directly from a playlist file; but you can load a list, start playing it, then drag the playing song at the bottom to the top of the screen, which pulls the list up from below, and gives you the vertical ‘. . .” on the top-right. Pressing that allows you to re-save the list. Before re-saving, you can edit the list by: (1) deleting tracks you don’t want, (2) reordering tracks by holding one until it vibrates, then moving it up or down in the list, or (3) appending new songs from your library.

    I don’t have a duplicated-songs issue when I re-save a list. Perhaps that was fixed since your version. Mine is 3.1.6.

  7. But No way to actually edit a playlist, a basic function and purpose of playlists and mediaplayers. Saving it will cause two of every song to on the playlist. Basically VLC as music player is totally broken since it doesnt make playlist from say playing a directory. Needing to play a song to append after doesnt save it as a playlist, you end up with above error.

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