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Evolution of Online Video Platforms

Online video platforms have evolved significantly, both in terms of the richness of their offerings and in the uses they are put to, over the last two decades. It is undoubtedly an accepted fact that an audio video content is able to explain a concept much more effectively than pure theory. Although video content started taking shape primarily for entertainment purposes in the early years, they have transformed into a more serious business over the last decade. While companies such as Microsoft, Apply, Real Networks were some of the early adopters and contributors in this space, the last few years have seen tremendous growth with open source and other commercial players including Kaltura, Ooyala, Brightcove, Cisco etc.

Google’s YouTube introduced in 2005 was certainly a paradigm shift in the online video world showing the world how far reaching and easy to use video content could be. While on one hand video players were making huge strides with rich features and performance aspects that were being engineered, some of these were left untapped in the market due to poor network bandwidth. Video platform engineering is a classic example in the digital world of how growth in a certain discipline has to be accompanied with parallel growth in other disciplines for the potential to be fully reaped. For example, it was able to get a true facelift only when internet revolution with fast speeds and reliable network availability became a reality. Similarly video content sharing and consumption has grown leaps and bounds with the growth in social and mobile computing. Cloud computing has made large sized content sharing possible.

All of these have helped video platform reach disciplines beyond just entertainment – paid sports viewing, knowledge content both in educational institutions and enterprises, aviation, healthcare are all newer areas that are beginning to leverage online video content. And as the digital world is getting ready to transform our lives in newer ways and shapes in the coming years, video has taken a pivotal positioning to be a part of this upcoming second round of revolution.