YouTube Starts to Play Videos in HTML5 by Default

The day came. After several phases of testing and improvements, the Google announced, on Tuesday (27), the YouTube player now plays all the videos using HTML5 as a standard instead of Flash.

YouTube “flirts” with HTML5 for at least five years. But to make it fully compatible service, Google had to overcome several technical limitations. Some even involved the collaboration of developers of the most popular browsers today – Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer and Safari.

The company explains that one of the most complex obstacles has been the lack of support Adaptive Bitrate (ABR), which allows the provision of video optimizing to the maximum the buffer. For this purpose, the application evaluates the width of the connection band and adjusting the flow the detected data capacity, all in real time.

In addition to the ABR, YouTube also already supports VP9 codec (for HD video), the API WebRTC (so that the user can make live broadcasts), APIs for content viewing in full screen, among others.

Implementation (relatively) fast, stable and not requiring plugins are some of the advantages of HTML5 front of the Flash. Google also points out that the standard facilitates the implementation of videos from various devices, including smart TVs, consoles games and devices like Chromecast.

On the web, the YouTube player in HTML5 becomes driven by definition in Chrome, Internet Explorer (from version 11), Safari (from version 8) and the beta versions of Firefox (soon in the final version). But the change should be imperceptible to most users: many videos were already being offered in the new way, especially in the Google browser.