Welcome!

Video Authors: Elizabeth White, Yakov Fain, Liz McMillan, Dan Ristic, Jnan Dash

Related Topics: Video, Machine Learning , Agile Computing

Video: Blog Feed Post

The Evolution of Web-based Enterprise Video

It has taken more than a decade to get videos inside the browser page

It took only a few years for the Web to evolve from its first crude text-only efforts to a full graphical experience. Yet it has taken more than a decade to get videos inside the browser page.

This week Brightcove begins a new lower-priced video service called Express that starts at $100 a month and offers some impressive features. I’m glad to see them in this space, which is still very much in the pre-Gutenberg publishing era. I thought I would take this moment to talk about some of the issues involved in publishing Web videos for corporate uses, putting aside all the tectonic shifts that are happening in the Web entertainment arena for another essay.

To put things in perspective, realize that it took only a few years for the Web to evolve from its first crude text-only efforts to a full graphical experience. Yet it has taken more than a decade to get videos inside the browser page. And while there are dozens of video streaming service providers, including Brightcove, Wistia, Fliqz and Kaltura, that offer ways of delivering videos, none of them are as easy to use as they could be, and almost none of them offer one-stop solutions for publishers.

In the last year I have spent a lot of time with video publishing as a result of my five-minute screencast videos, where I write, review, narrate and produce everything about a particular product. The product’s vendor sponsors each video that appears on my WebInformant.tv site along with 20 other places around the Internet.

Just take a look at the most popular Web content creation tool of the moment, WordPress, as a good case in point. If you create your own blog and host it using WordPress.com, you can purchase a “space upgrade” for $20 a year and start uploading video content. But if you decide that you want more control over your page design and host your blog on your own Web server, this space upgrade option isn’t available and you have to dive into the nasty world of third-party video player plug-ins. Even though you are still using WordPress software. It is these sorts of gotchas that can drive you crazy, or keep me fully employed explaining them.

All of these video services operate in some broad basic ways. After you prepare your video, you upload it to their server and then annotate it with any supporting text, keywords, and other information. You are then given a bunch of HTML code to embed the video player into your Web page. When you view the page, you see a player that you can click on and control the video playback, just as you would come to expect from YouTube et al. The special embed code contains tracking information that the service collects and then offers reports so you can see who watched what videos.

The service that I use at the moment is Wistia.com. Their most basic plan starts at less than $40 a month, and offers some very sophisticated tracking and embedding features. Their video player is very clean and crisp, and I haven’t had too many reports about playback quality issues from my site. I recommend that you start with them and see if they meet your needs, and if not then you might want to ask the following questions:

First, do you need a branded player for your videos? Meaning that you have your logo somewhere on the first or end screen, or underneath the video image. For some people, this is important. Some services offer a single player, like Wistia, while others, such as Brightcove, give you more stylistic choices.

Second, do you need control over the ultimate size of the video image on your Web site? The various hosting services either offer this explicitly, or else (like the basic plan from Fliqz.com) leave it up to you to edit their embed codes that they provide for you to copy and paste into your Web page. If you have to manually edit the code, you want to maintain the aspect ration (horizontal to vertical) so your video displays correctly. (It helps if you produce your video for the ultimate intended size that it will appear on your Web site, too.)

Third, how big of an audience do you expect for your videos? Given that these are targeted at potential customers and not people looking for the latest skateboarding cats or guys gone wild, you should set expectations accordingly: several thousand views over a period of a few months is a good audience. Some of the services, like Wistia, charge by playbacks per month. Brightcove charges on the number of individual videos and on your bitstream consumption, which is harder to estimate. Kaltura offers a free WordPress plug-in for hosting up to 10 GB of monthly video data.

Fourth, what kinds of reports and features are available from your service provider? With some services like Fliqz and Brightcove, their more expensive plans give you more features and choices.

Finally, what else is or isn’t included in the service? One of the things that I like about Wistia is the ability to share the video project with a number of collaborators, such as my clients, who can view the video directly, without my having to email them a huge attachment.

As you can see, there is a still a lot to deal with when it comes to Web videos. If you have another site that you would like to recommend, please let me know on my Strominator blog. And if you are a subscriber of Sam Whitmore’s Media Survey, you can listen to me and Sam talk about some of these video hosting and production issues on a Webinar that we will host this coming Thursday afternoon. For those of you that aren’t subscribers, I will post my Powerpoint slides on my slideshare.net/davidstrom account afterwards.

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By David Strom

David Strom is an international authority on network and Internet technologies. He has written extensively on the topic for 20 years for a wide variety of print publications and websites, such as The New York Times, TechTarget.com, PC Week/eWeek, Internet.com, Network World, Infoworld, Computerworld, Small Business Computing, Communications Week, Windows Sources, c|net and news.com, Web Review, Tom's Hardware, EETimes, and many others.

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


@ThingsExpo Stories
A strange thing is happening along the way to the Internet of Things, namely far too many devices to work with and manage. It has become clear that we'll need much higher efficiency user experiences that can allow us to more easily and scalably work with the thousands of devices that will soon be in each of our lives. Enter the conversational interface revolution, combining bots we can literally talk with, gesture to, and even direct with our thoughts, with embedded artificial intelligence, whic...
Coca-Cola’s Google powered digital signage system lays the groundwork for a more valuable connection between Coke and its customers. Digital signs pair software with high-resolution displays so that a message can be changed instantly based on what the operator wants to communicate or sell. In their Day 3 Keynote at 21st Cloud Expo, Greg Chambers, Global Group Director, Digital Innovation, Coca-Cola, and Vidya Nagarajan, a Senior Product Manager at Google, discussed how from store operations and ...
In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Carl J. Levine, Senior Technical Evangelist for NS1, will objectively discuss how DNS is used to solve Digital Transformation challenges in large SaaS applications, CDNs, AdTech platforms, and other demanding use cases. Carl J. Levine is the Senior Technical Evangelist for NS1. A veteran of the Internet Infrastructure space, he has over a decade of experience with startups, networking protocols and Internet infrastructure, combined with the unique ability to it...
It is of utmost importance for the future success of WebRTC to ensure that interoperability is operational between web browsers and any WebRTC-compliant client. To be guaranteed as operational and effective, interoperability must be tested extensively by establishing WebRTC data and media connections between different web browsers running on different devices and operating systems. In his session at WebRTC Summit at @ThingsExpo, Dr. Alex Gouaillard, CEO and Founder of CoSMo Software, presented ...
Gemini is Yahoo’s native and search advertising platform. To ensure the quality of a complex distributed system that spans multiple products and components and across various desktop websites and mobile app and web experiences – both Yahoo owned and operated and third-party syndication (supply), with complex interaction with more than a billion users and numerous advertisers globally (demand) – it becomes imperative to automate a set of end-to-end tests 24x7 to detect bugs and regression. In th...
"Space Monkey by Vivent Smart Home is a product that is a distributed cloud-based edge storage network. Vivent Smart Home, our parent company, is a smart home provider that places a lot of hard drives across homes in North America," explained JT Olds, Director of Engineering, and Brandon Crowfeather, Product Manager, at Vivint Smart Home, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
"Cloud Academy is an enterprise training platform for the cloud, specifically public clouds. We offer guided learning experiences on AWS, Azure, Google Cloud and all the surrounding methodologies and technologies that you need to know and your teams need to know in order to leverage the full benefits of the cloud," explained Alex Brower, VP of Marketing at Cloud Academy, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clar...
"MobiDev is a software development company and we do complex, custom software development for everybody from entrepreneurs to large enterprises," explained Alan Winters, U.S. Head of Business Development at MobiDev, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
SYS-CON Events announced today that CrowdReviews.com has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 22nd International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 5–7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. CrowdReviews.com is a transparent online platform for determining which products and services are the best based on the opinion of the crowd. The crowd consists of Internet users that have experienced products and services first-hand and have an interest in letting other potential buye...
"There's plenty of bandwidth out there but it's never in the right place. So what Cedexis does is uses data to work out the best pathways to get data from the origin to the person who wants to get it," explained Simon Jones, Evangelist and Head of Marketing at Cedexis, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
"IBM is really all in on blockchain. We take a look at sort of the history of blockchain ledger technologies. It started out with bitcoin, Ethereum, and IBM evaluated these particular blockchain technologies and found they were anonymous and permissionless and that many companies were looking for permissioned blockchain," stated René Bostic, Technical VP of the IBM Cloud Unit in North America, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Conventi...
WebRTC is great technology to build your own communication tools. It will be even more exciting experience it with advanced devices, such as a 360 Camera, 360 microphone, and a depth sensor camera. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Masashi Ganeko, a manager at INFOCOM Corporation, introduced two experimental projects from his team and what they learned from them. "Shotoku Tamago" uses the robot audition software HARK to track speakers in 360 video of a remote party. "Virtual Teleport" uses a multip...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Telecom Reseller has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 22nd International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York, NY. Telecom Reseller reports on Unified Communications, UCaaS, BPaaS for enterprise and SMBs. They report extensively on both customer premises based solutions such as IP-PBX as well as cloud based and hosted platforms.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Evatronix will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Evatronix SA offers comprehensive solutions in the design and implementation of electronic systems, in CAD / CAM deployment, and also is a designer and manufacturer of advanced 3D scanners for professional applications.
Leading companies, from the Global Fortune 500 to the smallest companies, are adopting hybrid cloud as the path to business advantage. Hybrid cloud depends on cloud services and on-premises infrastructure working in unison. Successful implementations require new levels of data mobility, enabled by an automated and seamless flow across on-premises and cloud resources. In his general session at 21st Cloud Expo, Greg Tevis, an IBM Storage Software Technical Strategist and Customer Solution Architec...
To get the most out of their data, successful companies are not focusing on queries and data lakes, they are actively integrating analytics into their operations with a data-first application development approach. Real-time adjustments to improve revenues, reduce costs, or mitigate risk rely on applications that minimize latency on a variety of data sources. In his session at @BigDataExpo, Jack Norris, Senior Vice President, Data and Applications at MapR Technologies, reviewed best practices to ...
An increasing number of companies are creating products that combine data with analytical capabilities. Running interactive queries on Big Data requires complex architectures to store and query data effectively, typically involving data streams, an choosing efficient file format/database and multiple independent systems that are tied together through custom-engineered pipelines. In his session at @BigDataExpo at @ThingsExpo, Tomer Levi, a senior software engineer at Intel’s Advanced Analytics gr...
When talking IoT we often focus on the devices, the sensors, the hardware itself. The new smart appliances, the new smart or self-driving cars (which are amalgamations of many ‘things’). When we are looking at the world of IoT, we should take a step back, look at the big picture. What value are these devices providing? IoT is not about the devices, it’s about the data consumed and generated. The devices are tools, mechanisms, conduits. In his session at Internet of Things at Cloud Expo | DXWor...
Everything run by electricity will eventually be connected to the Internet. Get ahead of the Internet of Things revolution. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Akvelon expert and IoT industry leader Sergey Grebnov provided an educational dive into the world of managing your home, workplace and all the devices they contain with the power of machine-based AI and intelligent Bot services for a completely streamlined experience.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Synametrics Technologies will exhibit at SYS-CON's 22nd International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York, NY. Synametrics Technologies is a privately held company based in Plainsboro, New Jersey that has been providing solutions for the developer community since 1997. Based on the success of its initial product offerings such as WinSQL, Xeams, SynaMan and Syncrify, Synametrics continues to create and hone inn...