where's the video, opera?!

| 33 Comments

One of the really exciting features coming up in Firefox 3.5 is Open Video. Open Video is a couple of things. First, it's the HTML 5 <video> tag which makes video a first-class citizen of the web -- an HTML element that works like other HTML elements and interacts with the DOM in Web-normal ways. The second part of Open Video is the open source and unencumbered video (and audio) codecs and containers.

Both of those are really important for the Open Web and while there's really strong agreement among the modern browser vendors, Mozilla, Apple, Google, and Opera, about the HTML <video> element and how it works, there's not yet agreement on the second part, the codecs and containers.

(To make this easier to understand, think of the HTML <IMG> element. It's what you use to put an image on a page. It's stylable and DOM-manipulatable, etc. Then there's the different image types you can use, like JPEG, GIF, PNG. Right now, we all agree that we want an <IMG> element and we agree on how it ought to behave as part of HTML, we don't, however, agree on which image formats should be used.)

Obviously Mozilla is going with the open source and patent unencumbered codecs and container format. That's Theora+Vorbis in an Ogg container. Apple favors using QuickTime and its various codecs. Google is embracing both open and not-open, with support for Theora and Vorbis in Ogg as well as H.264+AAC in an mp4 container. Opera, I'd understood from an Opera Labs build that Opera was going to support Theora+Vorbis in Ogg.

So, that's what I thought was the state of things.

Well, I just downloaded the latest Opera 10 test build, ID 6510, and there's no video support.

What gives, Opera? I've been bragging you up to the press and across all of my recent world travels saying that all of the "modern browsers" (Opera, Mozilla, Safari, and Chrome) were going to support HTML 5 video in their current or next release.

Now it looks like Opera's getting really close to a release and no sign of video. What gives? Don't make me a liar ;-)

Seriously, though. Is this gonna happen for Opera 10 or not? If not, why not? Does Opera not think that a unified front on this issue would be good for the Open Web? Has Opera changed its mind about video on the Web? Is it too "desktop" for a mobile-focused company? What's the deal, Opera?

33 Comments

Beta 2 should also introduce new features, one of them might be

No, Opera 10 won't have <video>, but we are (I am) working full time on getting it out there ASAP. We are committed to the open web platform and <video> is a part of that, I'll be at http://openvideoconference.org/ to say more on the issue.

Is there an audio counterpart to the video tag? And if so, will firefox support it the same way as it will support video?

(I could use google, but hey, this is way slower.)

Meh, my video tags were stripped instead of escaped, insert <video> as necessary to make sense of my comment.

Philip, I'll be at the conference too. We should talk there.

I have a quick question here though. Why not in Opera 10?

Did you guys not see that we were going to be releasing video in Firefox 3.5 and that our forces combined on two close releases would be more effective than staggered?

I mean, we've done a lot of heavy lifting, especially to help get the Xiph stuff moving faster and to line up partners and demos. You guys could have piggy-backed on that and we'd have all been better off for it?

Why wasn't this a priority for Opera 10? Were you on other projects? Did you not have management support? Was it because it's not as useful yet on Mobile?

This just seems like a big miss for the Open Web when it could have been a great unified front with all of the Modern browsers supporting <video> this summer.

- A

Philip: Did you publicly said it out loud (about Opera not planning Video support for Opera 10)? Is there a discussion somewhere on Opera forums about this issue?
Unfortunately, I will not be able to make it to the open video conference, but I believe it's a pretty important issue so would love to hear more from you about it. (any blog posts?)

@gandalf, if Philip told so and also told he's working full time on video, you can assume what he said is true.

I officially hate asa's blog error responses. :( triple-sent :(

@sauroman: I trust what he's saying. I just thing it deserves more public discussion than one comment

This is important to us, that's why I'll be at OVC. I don't want to make anything like an public statement here beyond answering the yes/no questions about Opera 10.

Uh Asa, I think you've to add both Vorbis and Theora to your dictionary ;)
(You have them misspelled several times in this post)

Now, I could be wrong, but isn't HTML5 still in development and isn't Opera 10 still in Beta? The latest marketing offensive of Opera apparently has spooked your socks off.

ExpPeru: the fact that Opera 10 is still in beta is irrelevant, considering Philip stated above that it won't make it in the final version.

Stifu: just that he says it won't be there (in all Opera 10 versions???) can hardly be called a definite call. Since he is not at the top of the food chain.

ExpPeru: heh, hoping doesn't hurt. I very much doubt it'll be in Opera 10.0.x, but I could see it appear in a 10.y.x release at the earliest.

I just hope they've learned from their mistake and won't rush 10.0 just to beat Firefox to the punch, like they did with the embarrassing 9.5 release.

Stifu: ExpPeru: heh, hoping doesn't hurt.

I wouldn't care less. The

I don't know what's all the fuss with a WORKING DRAFT?

As long as browsers implement it before it becomes a Candidate Recommendation, I see no problem. That's when real web designers can use those new tags.

I hope this is not going to be another CSS3 border-radius fiasco. As a web designer, I just hope these new stuff can make our job easier, not harder. the video tag as of now is next to useless to real web designers, even for those browsers that supports it, when the implementation details are so different from each other.

soshimi: Amen!

Mozilla people really like to point fingers on other browser vendors defaults, uh.
Ok.
Where's support for system codecs with audio and video tag, mozilla ?
Where are the web forms 2.0, mozilla ?
Why the CSS shadows are so slow, mozilla ?
Why don't you support CSS gradients, mozilla ?
Why don't you suport CSS reflexions, mozilla ?
Why don't you support CSS masks, mozilla ?
Why don't we have something to see our local databases, mozilla ?
Why text rotations with any angle different from a 45° multiple are so ugly, mozilla ?
Why Firefox 3.5 still doesn't pass the Acid3 test, Mozilla ?
Why Firefox 3.5 slower than Safari and Chrome, mozilla ?
Why form elements still don't respect the OS standards (eg : select under OS X), mozilla ?

Wooops...

joey, you've succeeded in listing a whole bunch of things that are both off-topic and at least partially incorrect.

- A

joey, I can only assume that you are relatively new to Asa's blog. If not, you should have noticed that his tone when discussing Opera have greatly changed over time. From what I and many with me some years ago percieved as downright hostile and often pure FUD, to an actual productive dialogue with Opera developers as you can see in the comments above.

Kudos to you Asa for the change of rhetorics that at least I have noticed. ;-)

Until when people can put a %lt;video> element in a web page and it will behave the same way across all the browsers that support it, there's no reason to get excited about this new... toy. Even if Opera supports the %lt;video> tag in Opera 10, it will behave differently from Firefox, Safari and Chrome (which all behave differently from each other). It will just add even more confusion into this whole HTML5 thing, when it's already quite a mess.

"Why text rotations with any angle different from a 45° multiple are so ugly, mozilla ?"

On Windows, it depends on your OS font settings. Antialiasing may not be enabled on your computer, I had to enable it on one last week.

> Where's support for system codecs with audio and video tag, mozilla ?

Too high a maintenance burden, too many security risks from code we don't control. Besides, most Windows users don't have useful system codecs.

> Where are the web forms 2.0, mozilla ?

Where's anyone's? The spec has changed quite a bit since Opera did theirs.

> Why the CSS shadows are so slow, mozilla ?

No idea what problem you're seeing. At least we support multiple shadows.

> Why don't you support CSS gradients, mozilla ?
> Why don't you suport CSS reflexions, mozilla ?
> Why don't you support CSS masks, mozilla ?

You mean the Webkit extensions that haven't even been proposed to the CSS WG yet?

(We actually have masks, but instead of creating a nonstandard extension we just let standard SVG masks work on HTML content. Oh, standard SVG filters work on HTML content too, try that in any other browser.)

> Why don't we have something to see our local databases, mozilla ?

localStorage

> Why text rotations with any angle different from a 45° multiple are so ugly,
> mozilla ?

No idea, perhaps your platform can't draw rotated text well.

> Why Firefox 3.5 still doesn't pass the Acid3 test, Mozilla ?

95/100 isn't bad. We'll finish it soon.

> Why Firefox 3.5 slower than Safari and Chrome, mozilla ?

Various reasons, but we're getting faster.

> Why form elements still don't respect the OS standards (eg : select under
> OS X), mozilla ?

We're pretty good. No browser is perfect in this area.

An old Opera labs build in 2007 did support

NN, Opera with Open Video support is only available as an Opera Labs experimental build, not as a release and not as part of the upcoming Opera 10 release. That was my point.

- A

ExpPeru, I spoke with Opera folks at the Open Video Conference and they're intent on shipping Theora+Vorbis in Ogg in a future release.

Mozilla, Opera, and Google are all going to be shipping Theora+Vorbis in Ogg. Apple is not, and Microsoft has not weighed in.

- A

Can you show me a post by an Opera blogger that points out how lacking Firefox 3.5 STILL is in really basic SVG support like SMIL, <svg:image>. What about SVG CSS background and <img> support?

These are old things. HTML5 <video> is so new the spec is changing every week. One wonders how Firefox development time will be spent on keeping up with the chopping and changes, instead of on current stable recommendations.

@Robert O'Callahan
Have you actually compared the stability of the Web Forms to that of Video? I'd imagine there's little difference between the current spec and the implementation. Compare it to the current DOMStorage spec, which is very different to Firefox's implementation due to the changes since.

Why not in Opera 10?
It's quite simple if you thought about it for a little bit.

The video tag isn't standardised yet. Apple is pushing for quicktime (and should be stopped at ALL costs - quicktime is cancer) - yes, I'd prefer an h264 implementation (clearly superior quality and compression), but not with it's licensing BS.
On top of that, HTML5 is still a long time away. IE still dictates the market and as of now, doesn't have shit. I'd expect to see this in Opera 11, or maybe Opera 10.5, but not before.

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