FireAnt released some impressive and beautiful software earlier today.
The company first launched in January 2005 with a downloadable Mac client that allowed users to aggregate video blog content and watch and/or download it to a device. A Windows client was relased in May 2005, which includes the ability to transcode video from the original source into the specific formats needed for different devices.
Until now, the FireAnt site was basically where you went to download the client.
Today FireAnt released new versions of the clients. But they also released a website service that is totally awesome.
The FireAnt site is now a full videoblogging directory that allows users to tag and rate videoblogs, subscribe to feeds and queue them up for watching or downloading. You can also watch any videoblog directly on the website in its original file format (this last point is important).
The website and clients fully syncronize, so any videoblogs added or removed from your que on the site will automatically sync up with the client (users may use the website at work, and have the client installed at home along with their PSP, video iPod or other device).
The result is an extremely versatile, file-type-agnostic videoblogging ecosystem. A tool like this was needed to allow videoblogging to expand to more users.
FireAnt works closely with other videoblogging services like Mefeedia (a directory and aggregator) and Blip.tv (a service which, among other things, provides a great platform for videobloggers to host their content) to ensure that they are all launching compatible platform and application services. This coopetition is good for the industry. Let’s see how long it can last.
FireAnt has relocated from New York to San Francisco. Joshua Kinberg and Jay Dedman are the founders (there are seven or so employees now).
Jay also worked with Mefeedia founder Peter Van Dijk to form the first video blogging email list before either company was founded. They are now tracking nearly 5,000 legitimate video blogs…up from only a handful a year ago.