FLV Progressive Download and Streaming Video Formats

Initially, the cost of video streaming put it out of reach of most people and as technology has advanced, the cost incurred for streaming videos has reduced.

There are many different formats available to create streaming video with the most common formats being:

1. Adobe Flash (FLV)
2. Quicktime
3. RealMedia
4. Windows Media

All formats have distinct advantages and disadvantages, with the ultimate decision coming down to personal preference. However, FLV has emerged as one of the strongest contenders in the video streaming market due to notable users such as Google Video, Reuters.com and YouTube.

It isn't only the large publishers who have favored FLV streaming, but thousands of smaller webmasters who have chosen FLV as their video streaming format. The simple reason is due to the lower cost and the fact that it is one of the most widely-supported cross-platform players available. It is a common plugin that means virtually everyone will be able to view videos produced for the FLV format.

For the majority of webmasters who experience moderate traffic to their website, FLV videos can be stored on their web host and embedded into their website content to improve user experience. When visitors click to view the video it can play straight away if it uses progressive download streaming.

Progressive download streaming means there is no special streaming server needed to host video files and visitors are not required to download the full video before viewing it. This means there is no additional cost to webmasters who want to add video to websites as they do not need to pay for expensive dedicated video streaming servers.

FLV is highly suited to the progressive download method as Flash uses two main file formats, swf and flv files. The swf files are embedded into HTML/Php/Asp pages and act as the web video player while the flv file can be stored on an external server or within the same server and streamed through the web video players.

If you want to provide videos on your website you can choose to upload the video to video sharing sites such as YouTube or you can host your own. The most affordable way to host your own videos will be using FLV format with progressive download streaming. If you already have an existing backlog of videos, you can normally convert them to FLV format with a quality flv converter.

Overall, although there are various options available to add video to websites, streaming video software can be expensive if you want to have only the highest quality video. However, FLV format has been designed for web playback and is high quality, compact and favored by thousands of smaller website publishers. Why not add some cool web video players to your website today and provide a better browsing experience for your users?

Guest Author: Aritrim Basu is a software developer and owner of Easyflv.com which offers cool web video players and a batch flv converter that makes it easy to convert videos to flv format.

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