[whatwg] The issue of interoperability of the <video> element

Allan Sandfeld Jensen <kde at carewolf.com> wrote:

>> Thus, I suggest to change the wording to "User agents must support
>> Theora video and Vorbis audio, as well as the Ogg container format".
>Or a clear sign that the video tag was doomed to failure anyway. I really 
>can't imagine Microsoft or even Apple to let a multi-billion industry go, for 
>the sake of implementing HTML5.

I've been struggling with the question what purpose the <video> element
serves if interop isn't going to be achieved, which is the current state
of affairs. 

Afaics as it stands the following codec support is likely:

IE: Windows Media and possibly MPEG4
Apple: Quicktime and MPEG4
Opera: uncertain, but not likely to support Quicktime or Windows Media
Mozilla: uncertain, but not likely to support Quicktime or Windows Media

Afaics the currently most used way to serve video is through Flash. From
a content provider's point of view Flash has very good client support,
but the quality vs bitrate ratio isn't great. Flash is likely to improve
on that latter point long before browser support for the <video> element
will reach a level for content providers to consider using it.

I understand the desire amongst browser manufacturers to support video
content natively regardless of the above, but afaics native browser
support will be irrelevant since content providers are unlikely to start
serving content using the <video> element and continue using Flash.

>Keeping it, or changing to wording will not 
>change the behavior of Microsoft and Apple, but will only ensure that HTML5 
>will never become fully supported in the major browsers.

Support for the <video> element without a common codec may well become
fully supported, but pointless. Consequently and with regret I favour
removing <video> from the spec.


Received on Sunday, 24 June 2007 03:37:21 UTC