WebM: How to Play WebM Video on YouTube

If you want to try WebM, the open video format released by Google, you first need a browser that supports it. For now, WebM is not supported in a stable version of a browser, but you can install a Firefox nightly build or an Opera build. I download Opera 10.54, which is more stable than the nightly builds of Firefox.

After installing the browser, go to YouTube’s HTML5 experiment and click on “join HTML5 beta”. To find videos that are available in the WebM format, use YouTube’s search feature and append &webm=1 to the URL, like this: http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=web&webm=1.

Click on a video and you’ll notice that YouTube no longer uses Flash or H.264. There’s even a messages that makes the video player more cluttered: “HTML5 * WEBM”.

YouTube converted a small percentage of videos to WebM. A search for [web] returns 4,610 WebM videos, while millions of other videos aren’t available yet in this format. Check Opera’s blog post for more information about the WebM format, embedding WebM videos and more examples of WebM videos.

Google: WebM, an Open Video Format for the Web

Google is about to launch WebM, an open video format that will use VP8, the flagship video codec of On2. As you probably remember, On2 has been recently acquired by Google.

“The WebM project is dedicated to developing a high-quality, open video format for the web that is freely available to everyone. The WebM launch is supported by Mozilla, Opera, Google and more than forty other publishers, software and hardware vendors.”

“WebM is an open, royalty-free media file format designed for the web. WebM files consist of video streams compressed with the VP8 video codec and audio streams compressed with the Vorbis audio codec. The WebM file structure is based on the Matroska media container,” explains Google.

WebM’s site says that the new codec will be supported in Google Chrome, Firefox, Opera and you’ll be able to play YouTube videos by enabling YouTube’s HTML5 experiment.

Google is expected to launch WebM at the Google I/O event, which is about to start in a few minutes (9:00am PDT). Don’t miss the opening keynote, which is streamed live on YouTube.

{ via CNet }