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YouTube Begins Testing HTML5 Player

youtubehtml5.gifYouTube has begun to test an experimental HTML5 video player. Among the new features in HTML5 is the ability to display video and audio without the need for a third-party program, such as Flash.

This experimental version does not yet support videos with advertisements, captions or annotations. It also requires an HTML5 compatible browser that supports H.264 encoded video, which include Chrome, Safari and Internet Explorer with ChromeFrame.

You can try out the player at If you have opted in for other experimental features you may need to disable them to view the HTML5 video player.

In a previous post on 12 January, YouTube asked for feedback and requests from users. In their latest post, it states that the most request feature was “that YouTube do more with HTML5”. This is a rather convenient rewording of the most requested feature, which originally reads “Support HTML5 open web video with open formats”, seeings as how their HTML5 video player is using H.264 encoded video, which is encumbered by patents. To fulfill the request, YouTube would need to move to open video and audio formats, such as Theora and Vorbis.

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