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  • Apple Devices Rejoice! Facebook Gets HTML5 Video Playback Support



    It was a stealthy, barely noticed move. But it certainly is a monumental development, particularly for the millions of iPhone, iPod, and iPad owners perpetually confounded and frustrated by the inability to watch the videos posted to Facebook that used to be played solely in Flash.

    It looks like those days are over, as folks are beginning to report a strange and much-welcome phenomenon this morning.

    It turns out Facebook is ditching the Flash-centric model of video support and running with open arms to HTML5 video playback support, which is now in place on the mega-social networking website. As a result, iPhone, iPod touch and iPad junkies can now check out videos that turn up in friends' newsfeeds. No more absent plug-in graphic.

    Of course, the move hasn't been without an occasional bump, as some iPhone users, for example, report being able to watch the vids in the news-feed but not on the actual profile page of the individual who posted the clip. Nonetheless, the step made by Facebook in this new direction is significant and represents yet another industry shift in favor of Apple's staunch anti-Flash attitude and business model.

    While most Facebook fanatics will likely be elated by the transition of the social networking giant into HTML5 support territory, Flash fans, on the other hand, will all but certainly take this move as yet another major slap in the face to Adobe and its quickly-eroding support base.

    Image via MacStories
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Apple Devices Rejoice! Facebook Gets HTML5 Video Playback Support started by Michael Essany View original post
    Comments 40 Comments
    1. Bluprint's Avatar
      Bluprint -
      Quote Originally Posted by Pitbull2o08 View Post
      so trying to play a facebook video yields me with this message.

      "Video Playback Not Supported
      THe video you are trying to watch cannot be played back on your device. Please try to view this on a device that supports Adobe Flash."

      so much for facebook ditching adobe... GET YOUR FACTS STRAIGHT!!! lol jk. but seriously that's the error message i just got from facebook on my iPhone 3GS
      Video Playback fail
    1. szfebje's Avatar
      szfebje -
      The actual facebook app has to be updated for this to work, by default the app is set up to respond with that message no matter what, so even if in some unholy universe we had a firmware update that gave us full flash support, the videos in the actual facebook app still wouldn't work...
    1. Truckerbear's Avatar
      Truckerbear -
      It must be slow to propagate across the severs because I still am getting the error. I tried uploading a new video taken with my Droid, no go. I tried viewing on both my 2G and 3GS and still no go. I tried taking a video taken from both my 2G & 3GS then viewing on FB, still no go.
    1. stlcaddie's Avatar
      stlcaddie -
      What's Flash?, LOL.
    1. stfudvs's Avatar
      stfudvs -
      word!
    1. s4mb4's Avatar
      s4mb4 -
      long live Apple.
    1. szfebje's Avatar
      szfebje -
      Quote Originally Posted by Truckerbear View Post
      It must be slow to propagate across the severs because I still am getting the error. I tried uploading a new video taken with my Droid, no go. I tried viewing on both my 2G and 3GS and still no go. I tried taking a video taken from both my 2G & 3GS then viewing on FB, still no go.

      are you trying with the FB app? if so, it won't work until the app is updated, but you can go to the Full Site Facebook page from your iDevice and see the videos just fine, try it out.
    1. Forgoten Dynasty's Avatar
      Forgoten Dynasty -
      Now if only I had friends to post videos for me to watch .
    1. Forever Young's Avatar
      Forever Young -
      people are going to keep trying to use the facebook app so that they can say its a big fail or that its not working and we are liars. If they tried it on the actual site through the safari app it would be different. The videos would play. But I guess they will do whatever they can to make it easier for them to sleep at night (i.e. thinking we wrong and that the videos actually don't work) Heaven forbid they try both ways.
    1. chrodriguezmarydown's Avatar
      chrodriguezmarydown -
      adobe is going to be mad!
    1. M4tt Dam0n's Avatar
      M4tt Dam0n -
      Wow Apple controls the interwebz... If facebook ditches flash you can expect youtube to do the same and then it's only a matter of time before others turn in.

      They brought a huge user base and now forces sites to go flash free just because they want it that way. A single company that influences the whole internet.

      Never thought apple would succeed. Bring on the html youporn now
    1. whereswaldo's Avatar
      whereswaldo -
      people wanted this so badly, that there were PAID apps in the app store just for watching facebook videos
    1. chemalito's Avatar
      chemalito -
      I have to say its not working on my 3G, Safari, Android Mini Browser, videos dont play on Facebook =(
    1. Pitbull2o08's Avatar
      Pitbull2o08 -
      Quote Originally Posted by Forever Young View Post
      people are going to keep trying to use the facebook app so that they can say its a big fail or that its not working and we are liars. If they tried it on the actual site through the safari app it would be different. The videos would play. But I guess they will do whatever they can to make it easier for them to sleep at night (i.e. thinking we wrong and that the videos actually don't work) Heaven forbid they try both ways.
      yeah it doesn't work.... both ways... heaven forbid it...
    1. Forever Young's Avatar
      Forever Young -
      funny it works on mine
    1. bxking's Avatar
      bxking -
      For facebook, you must go to facebook.com and use the desktop version for iPhone/iPod touch users. Only videos from News Updates and going to someones page, clicking videos of this person, and pick the individual video will work. The video previews on the persons actual page still use flash player.

      Oh and incase anybody wants to put more news, youtube has almost moved to HTML5 too. They have a beta website, youtube.com/html5 . Just join the beta on your iDevice, click the desktop version and search your video. Just to let you know, this is basically the same principal the same as the youtube app though, just takes longer. It would be cooler if we were able to watch the video in the actual website instead of quicktime player. So I guess for iPhone/iPod users its now a choice between youtube app or youtube.com/html5 with quicktime. I think the iPad can do HTML5 in the same website, but it would look the same as the iPad youtube app.

      EDIT: iPhone/iPod users, I think you might like going to the website better. The videos load faster for me than the youtube app (even though they're the same videos). A plus is they're always in HQ not the low quality they put when you're on 3G.
    1. battlecrushr's Avatar
      battlecrushr -
      Awesome.
    1. mbeezy81's Avatar
      mbeezy81 -
      If we EVER get another FB app update!!!
    1. Kroo's Avatar
      Kroo -
      Quote Originally Posted by Pitbull2o08 View Post
      so trying to play a facebook video yields me with this message.

      "Video Playback Not Supported
      THe video you are trying to watch cannot be played back on your device. Please try to view this on a device that supports Adobe Flash."

      so much for facebook ditching adobe... GET YOUR FACTS STRAIGHT!!! lol jk. but seriously that's the error message i just got from facebook on my iPhone 3GS
      The report stated that Facebook IS ditching Fash, not has. Big difference!!! To encode ALL the vids on facebook will take some time, so give them a break and stop yelling at people.
    1. z3r01's Avatar
      z3r01 -
      Quote Originally Posted by M4tt Dam0n View Post
      Wow Apple controls the interwebz... If facebook ditches flash you can expect youtube to do the same and then it's only a matter of time before others turn in.

      They brought a huge user base and now forces sites to go flash free just because they want it that way. A single company that influences the whole internet.

      Never thought apple would succeed. Bring on the html youporn now
      youtube is already supporting html5....YouTube - Broadcast Yourself. but remember , they arent forcing the internet to join in on supporting their device...they are influencing the internet to use a technology which is standard, free for devs to use (instead of buying adobe flash) and uses less resources then flash. that is better for everyone and adobe is just trying to defend their product naturally. even flash on cellular phones uses too much and really blows as its not a full version of flash....