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What If Joost Were a Web App?

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An independent developer has built a Flash version of Joost that runs in any browser. Sure, he doesn’t have access to any of the Joost content, but what he’s built is basically a proof-of-concept using Joost graphics and improving on the UI, using publicly available video from sites like YouTube and Veoh.

screenshot92.jpegLongtime Flash developer Paul Yanez told us Friday he started playing around with building a Joost app for about a month now, but just started emailing people about it last night (click on the thumbnail at left to see a screenshot). A Joost beta tester, he was frustrated with having to download a new version of the application every time it was updated. “It seemed to me like it should have been built in Flash in the first place,” he said.

Yanez’s web app looks just like Joost — when in full-screen mode, it’s hard to tell a difference. It also includes a number of improvements: first of all, accessibility on different platforms — but also better resizing of windows, webcam chat, and right-click functionality. It lacks P2P-aided high-quality video and all the content Joost has spent months licensing. [digg=]

Of course, Yanez lacks permission from Joost to use its graphics, its licensed content, or its name. But what Joost should really do is hire him to develop a web version. Yanez, an independent developer based in San Diego, says he’s just playing — next week he’ll release Wii, Apple TV, and other skins for watching web video. Joost is “making a real business; a [see our review from earlier this week] or what I’m doing is just utilizing web 2.0 and RSS feeds. They’re signing deals and they’re making it more like TV. Keeping a closed platform could benefit them.”

We’ve noticed a trend of outside developers filling in gaps that Joost has left in its product. For instance, New York-based programmer Hal Schechner noticed that Joost did a poor job of telling users when it added new content. So he started OnTheToob, where he publishes links and RSS feeds of fresh content, using software he wrote to routinely scour Joost. He told us earlier this week that since starting the site he’s been contacted by people at Joost, who are helping him improve what he’s doing.

32 Responses to “What If Joost Were a Web App?”

  1. Master Programmer

    This Paul Yanez guy is not original at all! Why are you stealing other people/companies work trying to “,ake it better”?? Just create your own dude!! Go to art school and learn to be a REAL designer!!

  2. spangler

    So copying some else’s stuff is cool? This is pathetic this Yanez guy is obviously a complete retard who can’t come up with something original.

  3. i had wondered f it would work..although i’d have hoped it would have taken a path similar to stage6 rather than flash..would be a great asset to my site

  4. I personally have not worked with flash, and p2p, however, I think using torrent’s, it should be completely possible. I remember just a year or so ago, people where saying flash couldn’t be used for online multi player games. Yet, I have played a few proof of concept games, that worked well, not perfect, but good enough to prove it can be done.

  5. Joel I know of one company who is going to have a Flash based p2p product in a matter of months that will be p2p and use a complex distributed network using HTTP ;) or so Ive been told ..we will have to see if they can make good on that .

  6. A quick read of the article says Slapvid also requires Java (“Slapvid runs as a Java applet coupled with a Flash video player”) – better than a brand new plugin, but I hate java too, seeing nightmares about very slow, extremely resource-hungry and ugly applications.

    I am aware that “all p2p does is lower the cost for content distribution”, but am simply saying that Flash can’t use complex distributed networks, and therefore a web client would mean abandoning all advantages p2p creates. Back to money-burning youtube-like sites/apps.

  7. “It lacks P2P-aided high-quality video …”

    this is the reason applications like Joost can’t be built using flash. A flash Joost would need a central server, as p2p (streaming from multiple locations, etc) via flash would either be a) impossible or b) very unreliable.

    And requiring a custom browser plugin, for example, would defeat the whole purpose of a web interface.

  8. Joost have a API that hasnt been officialy released but some 3rd party devs do have access to the API ,but I heard it was still very buggy .

    Hals site is used by the Joost developers and Content teams who prefer to use OntheToob , over Joosts own website.