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In 2007, I started a site based on streaming and downloading poker strategy videos. At that point in time, the best solution I came up with for supporting users of Macs and PCs was to provide the videos in both WMV and FLV formats. Later we added an M4V version to support iPhones/iPods.

Obviously, things have changed a bit since that time. I would like to revisit our format decision to see if there is anything better that we could offer, preferrably with wider support among all devices (so that we can reduce the number of formats offered, if possible).

Is FLV + WMV + M4V the best solution? Is there something else we should consider? What about Android devices?

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up vote 1 down vote accepted

You might want to consider replacing the FLV format with, one of the formats supported by the browsers that do HTML5 video (which includes recent versions of all the major players). The most widely-supported options are Ogg (Vorbis/Theora) and webm, both of which will work natively on most browsers, although IE requires that the relevant codec be installed on the underlying system and Safari+Quicktime may also require additional codec installation. Those, however, could be persuaded to fall back to the FLV version.

Android devices will certainly play webm videos, although I don't know to what extent this is supported in the browser, so you may need to make download links available.

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As far as browsers and video serving through HTML5:

Firefox, Chrome, Opera: HTML5 with WebM or OGG Fallback: Flash with MP4

Ie9+,Safari: HTML5 with MP4 Fallback: Flash with MP4

Links worth checking out - state of HTML5, market share, media and formats support, embeddable players

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One more to simpify the process: – DeemV Mar 31 '12 at 17:41

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