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Monday, September 26, 2005

Google Video Using Flash

Google Video is now using Flash as video playback plug-in. Google rarely uses Flash, and mostly for promotional or tutorial purposes so far, but this may be an appropriate time (next to offering straight video file downloads – WMV, AVI, MPG, MOV, and what-not – which is even more accessible, but allows less control). As always, Google Video will not allow all countries to play videos (I can’t see them here in Germany unless I use a US proxy.) You can still click on the samples videos as shown on the front-page, though.

Behind the scenes, as Flash expert Jan Schl├╝nzen told me, Google makes use of a Flash 7 player called “googleplayer.swf”. This player loads FLVs (Flash Video Files) in progressive mode, i.e. Google does not make use of a Flash Communication Server/ Flash Media Server 2. Instead, they transfer the files via HTTP. Additionaly, there’s some JavaScript which is called from the Flash which ensures only one video is played at a time. A URL to a video looks like this.

[Thanks Byontik, Jan.]

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