HTML5, VP8, H264 – What is all this video stuff?

At the beginning of this year, one of my major initiatives when starting my new company is to offer high-quality video content for my customers and not be restricted specifically with Flash Video codecs. Why…well, it is heavy, takes for ever to encode, and does not maximize the high definition image my clients pay me so dearly to deliver.

First stop, go mobile. I did tons of research on companies providing solutions for mobile video delivery. From Brightcove, Kaltura, Sorenson and host of others were on my choping block to sift through and see what fits me best. Right now, 360 by Sorenson has worked well providing rich media delivery to not only web interfaces but also to iPad, iPhone, and iPod Touch. They have more to come and waiting on the HTML5 release.

But one of the major places I have been watching is the HTML5 discussion. I am currently using an HTML5 player on my homepage for video delivery. This allows different browsers select with video codec to use whether it may be Flash, Quicktime, or even OGG.

So…today was a big day in the video delivery arena. Google announced it’s acquisition of On2 Media and the release of the VP8 codec as an open source codec. As a part of this they announced the WebM Project as a part of the release of the VP8 codec as an open source codec.
***FYI, below are some links that explain all this stuff like HTML5, VP8, etc.

Now…what the hell does this mean for the end consumer. Web video delivery is changing faster than I can find a new gadget to buy. Also, Flash video is not the main gig anymore and I am thankful. With VP8 and other codecs that can be wrapped by an HTML5 player, high quality video will be delivered faster and to more browsers including mobile platforms. The big boys are openly acknowledging that offering video to the standard desktop is the wave of yesterday and the consumer demand to watch video over any mobile device is crucial.

So…when you are thinking about working with a video production group or a video technology group to distribute your video content, the game is changing fast. It is more than just burning a DVD and compressing to play on your website. It is now outputting the right flavors of your project and getting them to your audience. Seriously, audience and wear they watch the video content is the crucial equation to this game. If you are trying to reach people on an Android or and iPad, you better be able to distribute that message to that technology! Audience and Distribution is the crucial question!

A year ago, it was all Flash Video or some Quicktime for web. Becuase of that, you could not access this content on most mobile devices and some browsers. Now, with all the new mobile devices whether be in your pocket or on the door of your refrigerator…the next generation codecs and players like VP8, H264, HTML5 will allow you to get a message to a targeted audience regardless of the technology! Are you working with just cool video producers or are you working with peeps that can create the message and understand how and where it needs to be delivered?

OK…cool links:

Today’s Google Annoucement from the Google I/O 2010 Conference
Mashable’s 5 Tools for Integrating HTML5 Video into your Website
What is HTML5 Video from Wikipedia
What is VP8 from Wikipedia
The WebM Project
The Digital Media Update from Sorenson’s CEO Peter Csathy on VP8