Peter Bright: ‘Google’s Dropping H.264 From Chrome a Step Backward for Openness’

Peter Bright:

Video distributors wanting to support both Flash and HTML5 users will have to encode twice; once in H.264, for Flash users, and again in WebM, for HTML5 users. This doubles the computational cost, doubles the storage requirements, and as an added bonus will tend to hurt quality. This is inconvenient for a small site with one or two videos; for sites like SmugMug it’s an enormous headache. They can either suffer the doubled costs and complexity, or ignore HTML5 altogether and stick with Flash.

It looks like sticking with Flash and ignoring <video> is indeed what SmugMug may end up doing. And who can blame them? Flash works for almost every Internet user, and Flash supports H.264.

Practical vs. idealistic thinking.

Thursday, 13 January 2011