Personalize YouTube with SublimeVideo

© 2013 Alain Herzog

© 2013 Alain Herzog

Jilion is developing a web technology that makes it possible to generate video players that run on any support and for which the appearance feature is completely modular. The following is an interview with the co-founder of the start-up, Zeno Crivelli.

Many users of smartphones and tablets know all too well the annoying message indicating that their device does not support the Flash player system in which the video is encoded. Universal video web framework developed by Jilion, a start-up of the Science Park Ecublens, addresses this error message and many others. It actually facilitates the work of web developers who can, through a single line of code, ensure that their video will be played correctly, regardless of operating system, browser, or device. Using cloud technology, updates are performed automatically through Jilion’s server.

Eureka! exclaimed Jilion on the day they managed to encode the first HTML5 video player in the world. The happy outcome of a simple challenge between IT friends spawned the birth of Sublime Video. The beta version was immediately made available for use on the Internet, winning 3,500 followers in one week and more than 8,000 after a few months. The co-founder of the start-up at the Science Park Ecublens reveals their secrets.

What has created such a significant interest among users?

For the past three years, the HTML5 standard has been the successor to Adobe Flash technology for making interactive websites and, in particular, to move away from Flash for playing videos on the web. It has become very difficult to obtain a universal player that can run on all types of media. Differences in implementation of HTML5 on each browser often give developers gray hair, especially trying to find a reliable video player. Flash is typically installed on the website. Now with HTML5 the market for browsers and terminals is constantly evolving, and ideally should be updated nearly every day. Our system uses the principle of the cloud to deliver the player code dynamically whenever one of its users loads a page. Our client, therefore, doesn’t have to worry about anything, because we do the updates. Each time the page is loaded, it is the latest version of the player that appears. This constant evolution is essential with HTML5.

What is the difference between SublimeVideo and YouTube, for example?

With our framework, customers can get the desired player, both in terms of design features as well as functions, then embed it in any website. There’s no more advertising or social elements if one doesn’t wish to have them. In addition, video can be hosted on the server of one’s choice or even, since December 2012, on You Tube itself. It is unique that it is now possible to replace the traditional player with the red and white logo with the logo of their choice when it becomes embedded on the website. We can therefore keep some benefits from You Tube, such as statistics, while using one’s own player and placing all of the features that one wants.

And what will happen if the hosting sites change their programming interface (API)?

For now, our player will integrate with YouTube and Vimeo Pro. We will move to Dailymotion as soon as their programming interface (API) allows it, which is expected shortly. The YouTube integration is possible through their official programming interface. Changes are very rare. And if a change occurs, the old version is still available for some time, which gives us the time to update our integration. For example, an older version of the programming interface was announced as obsolete by the giant webhosts in October 2009, but it remained available until October 2012.

What are your plans with SublimeVideo?

The outlook is good: by 2015, Internet traffic will quadruple, and videos make up 90% of that. For now, we are developing our framework by the addition of many features that will permit increasing customization, or by adding share buttons on social networks, etc. We are also starting to seek financing to complete our technical team with people focused on business, because we can hardly manage the influx of opportunities since the launch of this new technology last December. Whenever possible, we want to spread this technology more widely,so that other developers can contribute to enhancing the features of our platform.