Monday, January 30, 2012

I Got The Data Plan Letter and Encoding Videos

I was feeling a bit smug telling folks that I had unlimited data for $25 a month. I've had it for years and in that regard I was a happy camper. Nope, I could see all the AT&T, Sprint and other users gnash in pain as the balanced what they could do in a day or month.

And then I got the letter. Actually an e-mail. My phone carrier is going to place a 2.5GB cap on what I can access via my phone.

I do watch videos over the phone but I mainly use it for a podcasting back-up. I can, if I want upload videos but I haven't found a video editing/trimmer that I like on the Android side of the fence.

Let this be a lesson to you, don't be so smug. Another implications is that we may have to go back to a time when we consider the bandwidth issues of our viewers.

Back in the day, you did need to make sure that your video was viewable for viewers who had 56k modems. That is one of the reasons vidoebloggers made videos at 320x240.

This is an old video of mine from 2006. In addition to bandwidth issues you had to be aware of what your video host ISP could do to your video as well; such as additional compression.

My Point?

You might not want to just slap anything up and hope that your viewers can see it. In this time of high definition videos and reduction of unlimited date plans for mobile devices you might have to consider making a mobile friendly version of your work.

It is a balance between quality and accessibility.

For some of you that decision means that you want to produce videos that look good across devices and can't and will not sacrifice video quality. Those that can will and those that can't will wish you the best but moving on.

For others you want the widest audience possible and your are willing to take the time to edit, apply the proper compression and upload in a video format that is compatible with your web host.

That would be mp4., Vimeo and YouTube all have pages that tell you the specifications of that export format.

So until we Americans actually have a full nation data network without the threat of a lock down on usage we'll need to adjust.

Think positive.

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