The presentation on the Adobe Media Player (AMP) was pretty hot. It may not sound exciting, yey another media player. Well this could change the way media is delivered. When 134 million internet users watch over 9 billion videos, and these people compose around 75% of the US population you can see the impact of these numbers. That puts an average of 181 minutes(over 3 hours) in an average of 68 clips per month. People are not watching long videos, probably around 3-5 minutes each. That is a huge chance for content owners to deliver their media. Its big (the numbers above were gathered by the com score July 2007 report).
People are changing the way they watch video. They are bringing it into their world on their timeline. Tivo and downloads allow viewers to skip advertising and watch it all on their own terms.
Here’s the low down.
AMP is AIR powered
. Desktop hotness, that means its fueled with some mysql lite database power. It allows you to take your online resources offline.
What do the content lists look like? The content blocks are SMIL 2.1 format, so its not reinventing a new wheel, just expounding on an old one.
Does it support the playing local flv files? Sure does. Eventually I could see it supporting local playlists.
Does it support other encodings than flv? not at the moment. Seems like the new addition of the H.264 codec may make it in as AIR continues to
When’s it coming out? The adobe rep mentioned to watch for some announcements centered around the next MAX conference
When its released its going to be an alpha release, and of course as AIR is still in beta, AIR will need to be flushed out fully before AMP moves to beta.
What kind of ads will it allow? Pre, post, and mid roll advertisements, multiple sizes of banners, and ads that can appear over the video. Yes, thats a ton of options for ad delivery. I’m hoping that providers wont over use these abilities. The ads will be able to be downloaded and cached for offline viewing. All the metrics from ad delivery is going to sync next time the viewer goes online. There’s also a full screen mode that will still take advantage of the ad delivery system, primarily delivering bug ads over the video, but potentially also banners. Its supposed to support time sensitive ads too, it someone is viewing a video offline and an ad expires because its a time sensitive ad, it will stop being delivered, no point in advertising for the super bowl after its over.
What about content integrity? They have encryption that allows encryption of ads and video streams to keep the video from being ripped off and uploaded to other sites. I’m sure its a matter of time before it gets hacked, but its better then is available now. It will also keep ads from being removed. The fact that this is included, sucks for viewers that simply don’t want to see ads, but in the end its the ads that are making possible “free” video. If broadcasters can be assured their viewers are getting ads, they will be more likely to deliver media this way. I don’t believe that Windows Media Player or Quicktime player currently support advertisements, so thats a huge thing thats going to drive content owners to AMP as a media delivery platform.
Live streaming? Eventually it will probably have abilities to pull down live feeds, but first release is only going to do so much.
Download to rent? Download to own? Not yet, but there are plans. There’s also word of a set top box bringing internet tv to the living room; a combatant to the apple tv box.
Closed captioning? Yups, I believe its using the new captioning component in flash 9 to deliver the captions. I’m not sure if you have to embed the captions in the video with time points, or if its externalized in an XML feed.
What kind of places are hooking up with AMP? Maven
are just two examples, from what I heard, large broadcasting companies are also on board, more news at MAX.
What’s it cost to use AMP? It costs the viewer nothing to download the player(once its available). It costs a content owner nothing if they don’t want to have ads, just use it to delivery content. Of course ad delivery and the content encryption are going to be services that people will pay for or servers they’ll need to own/leverage, most likely FMS 3.0 servers
(probably more on the new release at MAX).
Who do I contact for more answers about all this? firstname.lastname@example.org. She gave the presentation, but didn’t have the ability to share a ton. She did seem to hint that the MAX conference would potentially see additional information. More information to be available after AMP is available in alpha/beta.
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Nate is currently a Senior Presentation Layer Architect at Razorfish Chicago. As an SPLA Nate: participates in technology leadership team and resource allocations, manage fulltime and contractor resources, represents technology for groups of brands across multiple clients, furthers development of standards within the office, architects project implementations and fosters community and mentoring.
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