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Now a client wants WMV ...not Flash

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Blake Porter
Now a client wants WMV ...not Flash
on Jan 28, 2010 at 5:45:39 pm

Any advantage to WMV over Flash?
Which one can most computers play right now?


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Craig Seeman
Re: Now a client wants WMV ...not Flash
on Jan 28, 2010 at 6:13:02 pm

Flash is now universal except for a few Corporate servers that won't allow anything but WMV. That's getting very rare at least with my clients.

Note that Flash for me is generally H.264 either .mp4 or .mov. They work in Flash, Silverlight, Quicktime so client has max flexibility for their webmasters.

Within the year HTML5 will be well supported so no browser plugin will be needed. Both YouTube and Vimeo implemented it a week or so ago.

As to "advantages" of Flash vs WMV it really depends on the server infrastructure but note that Microsoft is moving to Silverlight which certainly supports WMV but also supports H.264.

In short, without a Corporate client giving me a reason for WMV, they get H.264. That'll give them the option to use either Flash or Silverlight as they build/populate their web pages.



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Andrew Ford
Re: Now a client wants WMV ...not Flash
on Jan 29, 2010 at 4:50:25 am

All good info above.
h.264 is my top quality compression choice... however an h.264 mp4 to an average Windows person as a standalone file can have issues playing if they don't have QT installed. A .wmv can be played on any platform (even on a Mac with a free WMP download w/o Flip4Mac). It also has the benefit of being playable on a Blackberry.

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Always design with a purpose.


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Craig Seeman
Re: Now a client wants WMV ...not Flash
on Jan 29, 2010 at 6:40:26 am

H.264 in a Flash wrapper would be fine. Alternately a Silverlight wrapper.

If you've read Jan Ozer's articles on market penetration Flash penetration is higher than anything else by a good margin. Primarily corporate sites use WMV and even they were split about 50/50 a year ago so Flash may be leading there too.



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Andrew Ford
Re: Now a client wants WMV ...not Flash
on Jan 29, 2010 at 1:32:59 pm

Yes, I agree with you. That is the method I use and it works almost everywhere.

But, above I was talking about a "standalone" h.264 file, as in one without a wrapper. He says the client doesn't want an .flv, so you're left with giving him the .mp4 unwrapped (which has playability issues for out of the box Windows machines) or a .wmv (which should be the way to go in this particular case).

---------------------------------------------
Always design with a purpose.


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Craig Seeman
Re: Now a client wants WMV ...not Flash
on Jan 29, 2010 at 2:08:12 pm

Sorry but your message is confusing. H.264 .mp4 does not have to be standalone. There's no reason for .flv (Flash 7 or Flash 8). You give the client a "standalone" .mp4 and they wrap it in swf player. It's as simple as using JWPlayer (Longtail).

Unless you're saying they refuse to wrap the file.

I have no problem playing H.264 .mp4 on my old Windows XP PentiumD computer. Maybe the prior Pentium chip might have issues but you're going back a few years for that and I doubt there are many that old in the corporate environment.



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Andrew Ford
Re: Now a client wants WMV ...not Flash
on Jan 29, 2010 at 2:11:25 pm

Yes, everything I was talking about was a client that doesn't want to wrap the h.264. This file will not play on a WIndows machine with WMP without any additional help.

---------------------------------------------
Always design with a purpose.


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Craig Seeman
Re: Now a client wants WMV ...not Flash
on Jan 29, 2010 at 2:49:24 pm

http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows7/products/features/windows-media...

WMP12 (Windows 7) now support MPEG-4 (H.264). Microsoft Silverlight and Expression Encoder now support H.264 .mp4. Even Microsoft support H.264 .mp4 as the new standard.

If even Microsoft is pushing .mp4, I'd consider using wmv a potential issue for all but internal server use that do not allow Flash or Quicktime or WMP11 .mp4 players or plugins.




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Alan Lloyd
Re: Now a client wants WMV ...not Flash
on Jan 30, 2010 at 4:29:54 pm

Since most computers in an enterprise setting are Windows based (and this is highly unlikely to change in the imaginable future) they can play both.

If they want WMV, give your customer what they want.


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