I’m very excited to announce that we’re moving to HTML5 video!
Over the past few weeks we’ve been transcoding selected portfolios to H264, testing them with authors and reviewers in a new version of our video player which supports both Flash and HTML5 playback.
We’ve received great feedback on both the transcoding and the player, the next step is allowing all authors to preview the H264 transcoded version of their items inside the new player.
We’ve added a small panel to the item sidebar (viewable only by the author of the item) which provides a link to test the new player. Here’s a screenshot:
What’s different in the new player?
When you’re viewing the new player, here’s a quick summary of what you’re seeing:
- An updated version of JW Player.
- We still default to a Flash video player (it offers better performance on desktops, it’s still the default for sites like Vimeo).
- If Flash is unavailable, we fall back to a native HTML5 player.
- If HTML5 playback is unavailable, we provide a link to a video download.
- For both the Flash and HTML5 players, we now use the transcoded H264 file for playback, not the FLV file you originally uploaded.
- There’s no way to opt-in to only use the HTML5 player yet (other than uninstalling Flash, or using a device that doesn’t support Flash, like an iPhone or iPad).
- For desktops, we still use the modal pop-up to ensure we play the video at the same dimensions it was uploaded (rather than squishing it into the preview window, or stretching it up to full-screen).
When is it going live?
The full library has been transcoded to H264, and the new player is available to authors right now. Once we’re confident there’s no major issues with the transcoding process or the player, we’ll make H264 and the new player default for everyone. My best guess is within a week or two.
What’s changed in upload?
Nothing There’s no changes to the upload process or requirements yet. You still upload your preview files in FLV format, and we transcode it to H264 almost immediately. We’ve been doing this in the background for about a week.
Obviously H264 upload is the next step (no more FLV!), we’re getting started on that next. The focus of this beta is ensuring our entire library can be viewed without Flash, on a greater range of devices.
We’ll announce a beta for H264 upload soon.
Where do I report issues?
There may be minor transcoding issues and artefacts. What we’re really looking for is deal-breaker problems with the transcoding process or player functionality that would prevent us from releasing the new player to everyone.
When testing the new player, we’ve provided a link to form for reporting issues, as well as a link to the raw transcoded video file (so that you can review the transcoding separately from the player). Here’s a screenshot:
Ben and Charlie cranked out most of the awesome dev work here, but I’d really like to thank our first round of testers for taking the time to review our work and provide us with great feedback:
Thanks devs and testers ! this is a really good move !
The previews rocks on Ipads !
Fantastic news! thank you Envato!
Works great here
Great news!!! Thanks envato!!
Very cool stuff! Html5 was way overdue imho. So these changes are exciting to say the least !
This is fantastic news! Previews look awesome on Nexus 7
This has a potential to really boost sales now that buyers can watch previews ‘on the go’ using their mobile phone / tablet.. Thanks for this update!
Question though – does switching the new player on affect everybody that view this item or is it just me? Is this per viewer/browser option or more like a global switch?
Say I want all my items to default to the new player for everybody that view my portfolio? Is this possible? It would be very sweet if such control is implemented in the settings tab so I could turn it on/off for all items in one go.
The button is only a temporary solution so that authors could test the feature without manually adding
?html5=trueto every link. Once the testing is finished it will go live for everyone and will work without buttons. So please test it and report back if you face any issues.
the mp4 version looks like crap
but should be an easy fix (relatively since I don’t have many items to update) if I’m allowed to upload my own mp4 version. Is this possible?
the mp4 version looks like crap
Can you give us some more specific feedback using the form linked to from the page. If they all “look like crap”, pick the worst one — it’ll give us something specific to look into.
but should be an easy fix if I’m allowed to upload my own mp4 version. Is this possible?
It will be soon