It’s been a while since we’ve made any major changes to the Vimeo player and, as a member of the Vimeo Player Team, I’m happy to announce some exciting developments.

First, a little background. A lot has changed since we launched the last all-new version of our player, two and a half years ago:

* Browser innovation has brought new HTML5 capabilities (full-screen viewing is now available on every major desktop browser).
* Smartphones have gotten more powerful (and in many cases, bigger), and the variety of smartphones has increased tremendously (three years ago, when we debuted the HTML player, there were only a handful in existence.)
* Firefox added support for H.264 on mobile, Windows, and Linux (with OS X support on the horizon).
* The introduction of devices that support multiple kinds of inputs (e.g., touch, mouse, and pen) at the same time.

With all these advancements, it was clear that we needed a more flexible and accommodating base for our player. So we did the only thing that made sense: we rebuilt the whole thing from scratch.

The player may look (mostly) the same on the surface, but behind the scenes we rethought everything from the ground up. Our re-engineered back end means that videos load twice as fast, and we simplified the front end to make it compatible with way more devices.

Here’s a quick(ish) rundown of some of the coolest new features:

Lightning Fast Playback
We spent a lot of time optimizing playback, and now videos start way faster. In many cases, videos start in under a second!

In-Player Purchasing
Now anyone can quickly rent or buy a Vimeo On Demand work directly from the embedded trailer, wherever it appears on the Internet.

Redesigned Share Screen
Share to Facebook, Twitter, or by email much more quickly. We also moved the embed code to the share screen to match the behavior on vimeo.com.

Integrated Login
Want to like a video or add it to your Watch Later queue when you’re logged out? No problem! Just click the Like or Watch Later button and we’ll pop up a handy login form.

Fully Accessible
We doubled down on accessibility, with full keyboard navigation and WCAG2AA support, and better support for screen readers. (We have another awesome surprise for you along these lines. Keep reading!).

I’m about to get a little bit more technical now. Stick with me…

HTML5 by Default
No more toggling into the HTML player — now everyone who has an HTML5-capable browser gets the HTML player. And when you’re in a modern browser, even if we can’t fully use HTML5, there’s a good chance you’ll get HTML controls. We crunched the numbers and about 65% of you will get the HTML player (we’re pretty sure that we’re now serving more HTML5 video than anyone else).

Preference Sync
Through the magic of HTML5, any preferences that you change in the player (HD, volume, scaling) will change in all players that you have open in your browser. We’ll even automatically pause the currently-playing video if you play another one.

More Responsive Than Ever
Go ahead — resize the player however you want. It’ll look good, no matter the size.

And there’s one other new thing that I’m incredibly happy to announce:

Closed captions & subtitles support!
Just go to your video’s settings page, upload your caption file, and it will be available in the player. They’re supported in all desktop players, Mobile Safari on iOS 7, Chrome on Android tablets, and Kindle Fire, for now. We’re working hard to bring them to other platforms and devices as soon as we can. Read more about captions and subtitles.

We’re really proud of these updates. So proud that we made a spiffy new page to showcase all the reasons why we have the best video player in the galaxy. But seriously, though...

This isn’t the end of the awesome. There are even more epic things in the pipeline that we can’t wait to show you.

Until we meet again,
Brad

P.S. Hard to believe it’s been four years since the HTML5 player was first released!

+ More from the Staff Blog Archive

453 Comments

WOW Video Production

WOW Video Production Plus

I'd second 4K support. Youtube does.

Oh, and please can you add a bulk delete feature.
Last time I checked the forums, users were promised it being worked on 3 years ago.

Julien Deka

Julien Deka

Yes, Vimeo really needs 4K. It's about time. Hopefully sooner than later.
Happy to see that the subtitles and caption have been implemented. Good work!

Amélie Renoncule

Amélie Renoncule Plus

The original ('77) Tandy (Radio Shack) TRS-80, Model 1, had 4K. of memory!

MOGFX

MOGFX Plus

Question: Why the need to put 4k online? Isn't 1920x1080 more than good enough for viewing?

TattooedMac

TattooedMac

I have to agree here. Isn't 4K at the moment just Bragging Rights ?? If people aren't happy with 1080p then something is terribly wrong.
Analogue to Digital was a huge step, VHS to DVD was a Big step, DVD to Blu Ray was a little step, Blu Ray to 4k isn't even a step . . . . Yeah there is a difference, but honestly when will people stop wanting . . . ?? Never and thats human nature. Im happy with 1080p and so is my ISP 1hr 4K = 25GB lol

Jacques Russo

Jacques Russo

Right. 4k is a gimmick to sell more gear that is all. It is just a bragging thing. Not really needed. When you see the Hobbit in a theatres it is 2K (I know, it was shot at 6K in high frame rate with the "dragon" sensor blah, blah, blah, I've heard it all, but what you look at at the end result in 2K at 24P) and I have not heard anyone claiming it looks bad. Same for ALL films in theatres (no matter how big) and television. The high end standard for digital PRO cameras for TV Drama/Film is de facto the Arri Alexa (80% of all rentals for what I am told) not RED, and it shoots an amazingly beautifull 2K at 4:4:4:4. So if 2K works for a theatre screen, I think we should be ok for a while on our home screens and phones. Give us more colour depth and latitude if you can, smooth download and keep up the excellent work VIMEO is doing in democratizing video distribution to the mass. Much more important then 4K. Thanks so much Vimeo.

Urban XL

Urban XL

No, in a nutshell the main reason for enabling 4K content now is FUTUREPROOFING. Once (assuming they do) 4K televisions and/or monitors become more prevalent amongst consumers, there will be a great need for content. By Vimeo becoming a place that offers plenty of professionally shot 4K content it places them at the forefront of 4K delivery platforms. Particularly in regards to internet enabled smart tvs which by default it is safe to assume all 4K tv's are/will be.

In regards to bandwidth, many (most?) markets outside the US have ISPs that offer true unlimited/uncapped internet. And with increasing superfast fibre speeds being rolled out, the streaming size is mot much of a factor either.

Steve Ingerson

Steve Ingerson

When I have encoded a Pal video at 25fps, what will a NTSC smart TV see in the US?

Gerald Rusche

Gerald Rusche

Of cause 4k. Yesterdays innovators are todays backwardness!

max oda

max oda

it would be great to add support for hevc h265 uploads only, to start. And at a later stage maybe migrate to this format for storage also and the player.

Alexis Gagnon

Alexis Gagnon

The player should support more languages. Although the player features are accessible, the fact that it can't be in other language than English makes it automatically not accessible when not in English.

Jin Bravo

Jin Bravo

As of around 2 months ago I have been experiencing unbelievably bad vimeo playback. a 2min video will take almost half an hour to load. I love vimeo (mainly cause its not google owned but because it looks fresher and more professional than youtube) but its so frustrating. there are so many amazing short films I want to watch but I am unable to. Ive had to resort to downloading everything and watching it later but I never ever really get that time back. Videos used to load on the fly with no problem but suddenly, bad bad issues..

The Mothership

The Mothership

The quality of video playback has become truly shocking, I fear we can no longer use Vimeo as our showreel looks like it has been created by 6 year olds with an blackberry

Stan Hirson

Stan Hirson Plus

My only problem with the Vimeo player is that there is no way to stop a download. If there are multiple videos on a page and the viewer wants to skip to the next one the first player will continue to download in pause mode. This does not seem to be a problem with YouTube and some other players. Is there a work around?

Chris Browne

Chris Browne

how do i prevent my H264 videos from looking washed out on Vimeo? They dont' look washed out on Youtube

Michelle Rich

Michelle Rich

Thanks for making it accessible via captions!

This conversation is missing your voice. Please join Vimeo or log in.