More enhancements for HTML5 video and audio in Firefox

16 December, 2011 § 8 Comments

There has been a lot of attention focused on enhancements for HTML5 videos recently. Here is an updated list of changes you can expect to see, as well as find out what is currently planned.

Available now in Firefox

  • Added visual feedback when the HTML5 Media stalled event is dispatched*
  • Clicking on the video surface will toggle between play and pause*
  • The seekable attribute returns the ranges of the media that are currently available for seeking to. Learn more about seekable
  • The played attribute enables script to see what regions of the media has been played
  • Seeking in media is now accurate to the nearest microsecond

Available now in Firefox Beta

  • Includes all the changes in the release version of Firefox
  • Specialized video controls for small-dimension media*
  • Viewing an HTML5 video directly now uses a design that is comforting for watching videos

Available now in Firefox Aurora

  • Includes all the features in the release version of Firefox and Firefox Beta
  • API for controlling fullscreen content. See the fullscreen documentation for more information
  • View video statistics overlaid on the video element (right-click on the video and choose “Show statistics”)*
  • The video controls appear when the video ends so users have a predictable way to know when a video ended*
  • “View video” is no longer in the context menu for videos when viewed directly
  • Save the current frame of a video to disk (right-click on the video and choose “Save snapshot as…”)*

Available now in Firefox Nightly

  • Includes all the features in the release version of Firefox, Firefox Beta, and Firefox Aurora
  • Standalone images are rendered on a neutral background (starting 12/19)
  • Added a full-screen button to the default video controls*
  • The video controls fade out if no mouse movement for > 2 seconds*
  • The loading throbber for HTML5 audio has been removed since it caused page layout issues*
  • Error descriptions are now overlaid on the video to help users and authors diagnose video problems*
  • The loop attribute has been implemented
  • Directly viewed videos that are larger than the browser window are automatically resized to fit the window

Features planned

  • Large overlaid play button on videos that are not set to autoplay*
  • A refresh of the design of the media controls*
  • Horizontal volume slider*
  • Add detection of H.264 videos and custom error UI*
  • Fullscreen video should disable screensaver during playback

* Requires the |controls| attribute is set on the <video> element.

12/16/2011 9:38am: Post updated to show how the various release channels of Firefox build on each other.

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§ 8 Responses to More enhancements for HTML5 video and audio in Firefox

  • marksu says:

    Can someone translate this to me?

    I am confused about this version madness.

    • msujaws says:

      I’ve added a bullet point to the different release sections showing how each release builds on the ones above it. Basically we have:
      * a “release” version which is called Firefox,
      * a beta version called Firefox Beta, which becomes the “release” version of Firefox after staying in beta form for six weeks
      * a beta-beta (higher quality than an alpha) version called Firefox Aurora, which becomes the “release” version of Firefox twelve weeks after being introduced as an Aurora build
      * a version released every day, called “Firefox Nightly”, that has changes that should be in the “release” version of Firefox in about 18 weeks

      Let me know if that helps.

  • Funtomas says:

    Wonder, what the detection of H.264 videos will provide? Looks like open video format campaign.

    • msujaws says:

      No clear idea yet, nothing has been designed for it. It’s a pretty common error case, and so it would be good to explain to users why the video that they loaded isn’t playing back for them.

  • [...] explained in this blog post by Jared Wein of the Firefox team there are quite a few new features in Firefox when it comes to playing HTML5 video. As an Aurora [...]

  • Mickael says:

    Do you have any plan to implement media playbackRate in firefox ?

    • msujaws says:

      Thanks for the comment, Mickael! It looks like the bug has stalled while developers investigated pitch-correction for when the playbackRate is adjusted. I have pinged the people that work in the component to see why we can’t land it without the pitch correction, and then follow up later to add the pitch correction at that time.

  • [...] More enhancements for HTML5 video and audio in Firefox [...]

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