Posts Tagged ‘HTML5’

MPEG LA have come out and declared that the H.264 codec will remain royalty-free for Internet broadcast videos.

This has been one of the blocks for wide adoption on the standard with both Mozilla and Opera opting not to support the format in the past citing royalty concerns.

“MPEG LA announced today that its AVC Patent Portfolio License will continue not to charge royalties for Internet Video that is free to end users (known as “Internet Broadcast AVC Video”) during the entire life of this License. MPEG LA previously announced it would not charge royalties for such video through December 31, 2015, and today’s announcement makes clear that royalties will continue not to be charged for such video beyond that time.”

Safari, Chrome, and Internet Explorer 9 already support videos encoded with the H.264 codec.

Mozilla and Opera are yet to comment on the move.

Mozilla have released Firefox 4 Beta 1 to the public, after final beta 1 builds started to appear last week.

Firefox 4 has many changes over 3.6, and is based on Gecko 2.0 rendering engine. New in Firefox 4 include:

  • Tabs on top for Windows by default  (Mac and Linux changes coming later)
  • Menu bar replaced by Firefox button for Windows Vista and Windows 7 users
  • New add-ons manager
  • CSS transitions
  • Native HD HTML5 WebM video support

A full list of changes can be found in the release notes. Firefox users can download Firefox 4 Beta 1 from the Firefox Beta website.

Just a day after it’s final release candidate, Opera has released Opera 10.60 final to the public, for Windows, Mac and Linux users.

Opera’s benchmarks show that Opera 10.60 is up to 50% faster than Opera 10.50, and is again faster than Google Chrome 5 builds. With these results, Opera is again claiming to be the worlds fastest web browser.

New in Opera 10.60 is Geolocation, HTML5 AppCache for Offline Applications, HTML5 WebM video support, web workers, and some vendor specific CSS3 styles (which are yet to be ratified by the WC3 organisation). A full list of changes can be found in the changelog.

Opera 10.60 can be downloaded from the Opera website.

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Google have today announced the launched a new website, called HTML5 Rocks, showcasing the power of HTML5 and related technologies.

The site currently includes nine tutorials demonstrating how to utilise some of HTML5’s new features, along with an in-depth HTML5 powered presentation on the new language.

“Because HTML5 and its related technologies cover so much ground, it can be a real a challenge to get up to speed on them. That’s why today we’re sharing HTML5 Rocks, a great new resource for developers and teams looking to put HTML5 to use today, including more information on specific features and when to use them in your apps” wrote Paul Irish, Google Chrome Developer Relations.

I encourage developers to dive in and check it out. An all HTML5 web is sure to see some interesting sites and applications.

In a release that had been hinted at in late May, Apple has released Safari 5 to the world, for both Mac and Windows users.

Performance of the updated browser has seen Apple’s Nitro JavaScript engine speed increase by 30% over its predecessor. Safari 5 new DNS pre-fetching and improved caching which helps web pages load faster.

HTML5 support has also been improved, with support for over 17 new HTML5 tags and features. HTML video now supports full-screen and closed captions.

Perhaps the most impressive feature of Safari 5 is the new Safari Reader. This nifty feature removes ads and other distractions from online articles. Safari 5 automatically detects when you are reading an article, and can be activated by clicking the new reader button which will appear in the address bar.

Most pleasing to current add-on and extension users is that Safari 5 will now support user generated extensions, which are expected to launch in an online Apple gallery in the coming weeks.

Apple’s Safari 5 can be downloaded from the Safari website for both Mac and Windows.

Microsoft is still hard at work on Internet Explorer 9, and today provided an updated on how they are going with the World Wide Web Consortium (WC3) web standards.

Latest results show that IE9 is now fully HTML5 standards compliant.

Microsoft conducted W3C Web Standards tests for HTML5, SVG 1.1 2nd edition, CSS3 media queries, CSS3 borders & backgrounds, CSS3 selectors, DOM level 3 core, DOM level 3 events and DOM level 2 style across a variety of browsers.

These browsers included IE9 May 2010 Preview, Firefox 3.6.3, Opera 10.52, Apple Safari 4.05, and Google Chrome 4.1 all running on Windows. The results are very promising for IE9.

A preview IE9 build can be downloaded from the IE Test Drive website.

Google has announced a new format for the HTML5 video war, called WebM and using the VP8 codec.

The new video format is royalty free and designed specifically for use on the web. The WebM project is sponsored by Google, Mozilla, Opera, AMD, Nvidia and Oracle amongst others and is aiming to become the standard way we view video on the web in years to come.

All major browser have announced support for the format, except for Apple.

“In its HTML5 support, IE9 will support playback of H.264 video as well as VP8 video when the user has installed a VP8 codec on Windows” commented Internet Explorer General Manager Dean Hachamovitch.

“Video will finally become a first-class citizen of the Web. This is a big deal, and the day will be remembered in the history of the Web” wrote Håkon Wium Lie, CTO, Opera Software. Opera also have preview builds of the browser available which support the WebM video format.

Mozilla was also quick to follow, with preview builds of Firefox that also include support for WebM. Chrome builds should follow in the coming week.

Apple has been very quiet on the matter, not stating whether it will support the format in it’s Safari browser, and whether this format could make an appearance on iPhones, iPads and iPod touches.

This is a great day for open web standards.

Hulu developers have come out describing HTML5 as not ready to deliver video content, and that Adobe’s Flash still reigns supreme.

“When it comes to technology, our only guiding principle is to best serve the needs of all of our key customers: our viewers, our content partners who license programs to us, our advertisers, and each other. We continue to monitor developments on HTML5, but as of now it doesn’t yet meet all of our customers’ needs. Our player doesn’t just simply stream video, it must also secure the content, handle reporting for our advertisers, render the video using a high performance codec to ensure premium visual quality, communicate back with the server to determine how long to buffer and what bitrate to stream, and dozens of other things that aren’t necessarily visible to the end user. Not all video sites have these needs, but for our business these are all important and often contractual requirements” wrote Eugene Wei, VP of Product at Hulu.

With Apple putting all its eggs in the HTML5 basket, it seems others aren’t so sure. Adobe’s concerns appear valid, and today launched its We Love Choice campaign.

“At Adobe, we believe that the open flow of creativity, ideas, and information should be limited only by the imagination. Innovation thrives when people are free to choose the technologies that enable them to openly express themselves and access information where and when they want. Everyone loses when technological barriers impede the exchange of ideas” the campaign says.

It’s clear the HTML5 vs Flash debate is far from over.

Google has done the “impossible” to show the power of HTML5, and ported Quake II to run in the web browser in what seems another dig at Adobe’s Flash.

The move seems a little contradictory, with Google announcing just last week that they were bundling Adobe’s Flash with Chrome. Either way, a lot of work appears to have gone into porting the game.

“We started with the existing Jake2 Java port of the Quake II engine, then used the Google Web Toolkit (along with WebGL, WebSockets, and a lot of refactoring) to cross-compile it into Javascript. You can see the results in the video above — we were honestly a bit surprised when we saw it pushing over 30 frames per second on our laptops (your mileage may vary)” said Google’s Chris Ramsdale.

Right now, the game will only run in Google Chrome and Safari, and the port can be downloaded by visiting the Google code page.

Dear Mozilla and Opera,

Get with the <video> programme! Ogg Theora has lost the HTML5 video format war.

The evidence is all in front of us. The battle seems to have been won with the final move by Microsoft, who have announced that they will support the H.264 and MPEG-4 formats for Internet Explorer 9, completely ignoring the OGG video and audio formats.

In contrast, both Firefox and Opera only support the Ogg video, which is a free open source video format that is not covered by any known patents.

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