7 Comments

Summary:

With the battle over high-definition DVDs now decided, the HD debate shifts back to the web, where once again we ask if HD online matters. Re-igniting the discussion is Dailymotion‘s announcement today that all HD content uploaded to the video-sharing site will be automatically re-encoded for […]

With the battle over high-definition DVDs now decided, the HD debate shifts back to the web, where once again we ask if HD online matters. Re-igniting the discussion is Dailymotion‘s announcement today that all HD content uploaded to the video-sharing site will be automatically re-encoded for 720p HD playback.


Xavibes08
Uploaded by xavibes

But are people looking for HD experiences on the web? During his Q&A session at NewTeeVee Live, YouTube’s Steve Chen was pretty adamant in his belief in video that’s “good enough” to get more people involved. AOL pulled the plug on its HD-like offering last year after low user adoption and CBS was hesitant to jump into HD content, believing that audiences don’t care so much about video quality.

And in an odd way, Dailymotion’s HD offering may prove the naysayers’ points. The Dailymotion blog concedes:

Word to the wise, however: HD is both bandwidth and processor intensive, so a 1.6 Mbps connection is advised (and dual-cores don’t hurt ;).

In an initial test, I had trouble with one video stopping almost every three seconds. A subsequent video worked fine, though there was still some stuttering. Dailymotion has created a special HD section where you can see for yourself.

HD content is definitely on the industry’s brain. The Flash 9 player started supporting HD. Hulu added HD content. Swarmcast released Autobahn HD for Flash. But until it becomes ubiquitous and easy (we mean, real easy), the ugly truth is that HD’s pretty picture won’t catch on.

UPDATE: PaidContent writes that ESPN360 will start providing HD programming as well (at a bit rate of 2Mbps).

You’re subscribed! If you like, you can update your settings

  1. Richard O’Brien Monday, February 18, 2008

    Until the majority of web users have high enough bandwidth connections to provide a “stutter free” experience HD will remain in the shadows.

    The importance of simplicity to web users far out weighs that of picture quality.

    Also, just out of interest, what are the latest stats around web user connection speeds? I’m guessing that there isnt a vast number of people connecting at 1.6Mbps?

  2. Internet TV Blog » Blog Archive » Who Wants HD (High Definition) Video on Internet TV?… Broadcatchers Do! Tuesday, February 19, 2008

    [...] Albrecht is arguing that no one wants HD video on the Internet yet. Chris’ article points out that…. AOL pulled the plug on its HD-like offering last [...]

  3. It is about giving people choice. Their new player is excellent and one click of the “HD” button switches to normal mode. The embed goes full screen too (can’t get that with the YouTube embedded player either).

  4. It uses 40 % CPU for me which is less than the 70 % that Vimeo does. I’m using a 1.86 Ghz Centrino with 1.5 GB RAM. Sitting at work at a media company makes sure that bandwidth is no problem but it’s nice that my fairly old computer can manage the load.

  5. Richard, I’ll see what I can dig up on average connection speeds.

    Frank, yes, the new player is quite good and full-screen is a nice touch.

    Also, the video embedded in this story has been swapped. The “Bullitt” one I originally posted got taken down.

  6. MySpace Adds HD Video « NewTeeVee Friday, February 29, 2008

    [...] Adds HD Video Following last week’s move by Dailymotion to bring high-definition video to the Web, MySpaceTV is launching an HD video player for the social network with a trailer [...]

  7. YouTube’s Bumps Up Streaming Quality « NewTeeVee Wednesday, March 12, 2008

    [...] the new “good enough” for Chen, as he described it at our conference. With the likes of Dailymotion, Vimeo and MySpace throwing down the HD gauntlet, the pressure was on YouTube to improve its [...]

Comments have been disabled for this post