Microsoft boosts HTML5 video for Firefox on Windows 7

Plugin offered for H.264-encoded video on HTML5

Microsoft released on Wednesday a Firefox browser add-on extending HTML5-based video on the company's Windows 7 OS.

The plugin enables Firefox users to play H.264-encoded video on HTML5 by using built-in capabilities of Windows 7, said Claudio Caldato, principal program manager for Microsoft's interoperability team, in a blog post. Mozilla Firefox is a principal competitor to Microsoft's own Internet Explorer browser.

[ Microsoft and Adobe both proclaimed their love of HTML5 last month. | The Web browser is your portal to the world -- as well as the conduit that lets in many security threats. InfoWorld's expert contributors show you how to secure your Web browsers in this "Web Browser Security Deep Dive" PDF guide. ]

Microsoft has already been offering a Windows Media Player plugin for Firefox, for watching Windows Media content, Caldato said. "This new plugin, known as the HTML5 Extension for Windows Media Player Firefox plugin, is available for download at no cost. It extends the functionality of the earlier plugin for Firefox and enables Web pages that that offer video in the H.264 format using standard W3C HTML5 to work in Firefox on Windows. Because H.264 video on the Web is so prevalent, this interoperability bridge is important for Firefox users who are Windows customers."

HTML5 is an ongoing update to the HTML specification that adds capabilities for multimedia.

The extension is based on a Firefox add-on that parses HTML5 pages and replaces video tags with a call to the Windows Media Player plugin, enabling content to be played in the browser. Firefox in some cases might fail to play a video even if the add-on is correctly installed, because a page might use a call to canPlayType to determine if the browser can play H.264 content, Microsoft said in release notes for the extension. "Typically the check is done either using createElement('video') or getElementsByTagName('video') and then call canPlayType('video'mp4'). In both cases, the call will return empty string even if the Add-on is installed and the browser could play H.264 videos," Microsoft said.

Also, the current version of the add-on uses Windows Media Player Plugin APis to control video playback, thus creating differences between methods and properties defined in the HTML5 standard and those in the Windows Media Player plugin. The company seeks to fix these limitations in the next limitation of the add-on.

This article, "Microsoft boosts HTML5 video for Firefox on Windows 7," was originally published at InfoWorld.com. Follow the latest developments in business technology news and get a digest of the key stories each day in the InfoWorld Daily newsletter.

Read more about applications in InfoWorld's Applications Channel.

Tags application developmentDeveloper WorldapplicationsWindowsWindows 7softwareoperating systemshtmlmozillaFirefox3CMicrosoftbrowsers

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Paul Krill

InfoWorld

Comments

Comments are now closed.

Most Popular Reviews

Follow Us

Best Deals on GoodGearGuide

Shopping.com

Latest News Articles

Resources

GGG Evaluation Team

Kathy Cassidy

STYLISTIC Q702

First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni

STYLISTIC Q572

For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Steph Mundell

LIFEBOOK UH574

The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.

Andrew Mitsi

STYLISTIC Q702

The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.

Simon Harriott

STYLISTIC Q702

My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?