What the online video industry needs is simple standards for reaching all viewers. But when have standards ever simplified online video?
Proprietary technologies are inherently bad in the video space, except when they’re not. Standards inevitably simplify matters, except when they don’t. So it is with Flash, and its obvious successors, the Media Source Extensions (MSE), Encrypted Media Extensions (EME), and Dynamic Adaptive Streaming via HTTP (DASH).
MSE/EME/DASH are the standards that will enable web publishers to replace Flash in their playback architectures. MSE eliminates two of HTML5's most critical limitations by bringing standards-based adaptive streaming and live delivery to HTML5 browsers and devices. EME brings a single encryption API to HTML5 browsers, providing digital rights management (DRM), addressing another former deficit. DASH is the standards-based file format that will actually deliver the streams. The vision is one set of cache-friendly streams in DASH format that can play on any MSE/EME-compatible computer or device, which will replace the two streams most producers create today for Flash and HLS playback.