Update: The service has launched, and the team behind SoapBox is blogging here. Checkout this video – Butterfly busts a move -pretty good quality. Rob’s MySpace page has embedded SoapBox.
Microsoft’s much awaited YouTube competitor is all set to get out of the gates, perhaps as early as tomorrow. A Microsoft employee has blogged about the pending release of the video sharing service, code named “Warhol,” that will be renamed as SoapBox. The word of the new service had leaked earlier this month, and caused a lot of chatter.
Kurt Shintaku says that the new service will come with 100 megabytes of storage and will will use Windows Media technology to playback video, instead of more popular Adobe Flash technology. I guess Mac users could play back the videos if they have Flip4Mac. (Rob who works on the SoapBox team says that “Soapbox autodetects your browser + platform and streams WM for IE/Windows users, but Flash for Firefox/Windows and Firefox+Safari on Mac.”)
In case you’re wondering, Warhol has only been accessible by Microsoft employees from Microsoft’s internal network ….. Suffice it to say, they’re going to announce it tomorrow so everyone will get the chance to take a look at it. It’s really bandwidth efficient, you can “copy” the content locally to your own machine if you have the right tools (instead of using some proprietary wrapper around it like you do with Google), it’s optimized to your network speed, and doesn’t require any plug ins or anything.