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Users can now watch video from within the browser via a special downloaded player -- one that likely will enable pay-per-view in the future.
...But to watch video, users first have to download the Google Video Viewer, a free plug-in for Google video content only. (The plug-in works with the Internet Explorer and Firefox browsers.)
[internetnews.com...]...this is clearly a shot across Microsoft's bow. The Windows Media Player is a standalone application, rife with its own DRM and entanglements with Hollywood. Many once claimed IE would never fall, but Firefox has shown what the open source community can do with some good code and the support of a dedicated user base. I'm pretty sure that once Google's VLC implementation is stared at by enough folks, a stand alone player with hooks into Google Video search and many others will not be far behind.
Hopefully, (for those still screwed by "Bourbon"), G will leave the SE market and may be going on to "other things". ;)
And what does this have to do with search? Focus, Google! Focus!
Google is totally focussed... They're just looking at a bigger picture than you might be.
In another Internet News article, by the same writer...
Google Moving Forward on Payment System
...it's likely that Google is moving toward enabling payments for content, including books, news articles, video and other digital media.
Google has applied for a patent on a method of searching for media that would execute a permission protocol before search results were delivered. The protocol would allow the publisher to authorize Google to display more than snippets of the text. The protocol also could track page views and enable either a share of ad revenue with the publisher or delivery of the document on a pay-per-view basis.
In U.S. Patent Application No. 20040122811, filed by Google co-founder Larry Page, he says very directly that one idea is to permit "subscription-like access" to the electronic content.
According to the application, this system could be used not only for magazine articles but for providing paid access to CDs, DVDs and audio books.
More about the patent in this article (dated December 9, 2004)...
If Google could pull off what it outlines in that broad patent application, it may open new revenue streams to publishers of print, CD and DVD media, while broadening its own revenue base.
It'd certainly make them huge rivals for others in the business as well as allow them to compete with online offerings such as CinemaNow and MovieLink.
oh, and what about music offerings? Music on Demand the way others are already offering? I myself would welcome Music Video on Demand the way Yahoo does. 'sorry for that slight tangent.
I'm not a programmer so I can't understand much of the VideoLAN patch file [code.google.com] used to create the player plugin. One thing's for sure, it requires DirectX and Windows to function, despite the fact that VideoLAN is cross-platform.
The Windows Media Player is a standalone application, rife with its own DRM and entanglements with Hollywood.
If Google is planning a payment system, that simply means DRM (digital rights management) even if they don't use the term, so I'm not sure that the plugin is really any different from WMP. Why isn't the plugin cross-platform? Because Windows (because of the work put in by Microsoft for WMP) is the only platform where DRM can reasonably be enforced.
Of course Google is obliged to publish patch files as VideoLAN is GPL licensed - so it is much easier for someone with the appropriate knowledge to attempt to bypass the DRM mechanisms.
Interesting that the article states Google built the player on top of VLC which others have stated might be doomed to patent issues
VLC is participating in a campaign aginst EU software patents which is being run by the EFF and a large number of open-source projects. VLC is not alone with this stance. As the code is GPL it can be forked or moved outside of the EU in order to continue.
My guess is Google is going to head into the pay per view market with a massive catalog of old TV shows. This would incorporate their recent investments in dark fibre, payment processing etc.. My guess is you will soon be able to purchase episode #123 of Seinfeld via Google to view at your own leisure.
Very unlikely. If that were going to happen, it would have happened already. The on-demand PPV market will happen on your television via cable and satellite operators, not online. The reason it hasn't happened online is because of fears about file sharing and because online, each additional downloader/viewer costs additional money (due to server loads and bandwidth costs). In other words, it doesn't scale anywhere nearly as cost-effectively as well as it does on satellite and cable.
5 years down the line Google is going to look much more like Yahoo. How can Yahoo survive? How can we survive without Yahoo?
It's already pretty easy to make and edit your own video productions - heck, Sony now has a consumer level hi-def camera and editing video is only getting easier/cheaper. The challenge for the little guy, as always, is reaching an audience. And facilitating that process would be right "on-mission" for Google.
They will counter spamming attempts by reviewing video uploads before publication-- smart move.
Overall I think Google stepped up to a new level of sophistication. As much as I want to criticize Google every chance I get I can only say WOW to this effort.
Satelite mapping, translation, video search/play, oh my!
which will be paid by advertising... that business model has already been proven to work, for a number of websites that are doing it right now... video advertising pays better than anything on a computer right now.
think about it... you own video assets that are currently limited to t.v.-only playback, and somebody wants to pay you to show 'em on a computer... of course you'll sit up and take notice.
the vlc player will of course never have any drm, so i don't see how people can tie it directly into the google payment processing situation.
Sounds like it would have malware or least trackware all over it.
I think they intended to provide the source code for the player. Right below the plugin download button it says "Source code", and it links to the Google Project page. But there is no source code on that page. I guess they didn't get around to putting it up yet.