Adobe is getting set to support the H.264 high-definition standard, the same standard used in Blu-ray and HD-DVD players and set-top cable and satellite boxes. Most popular video sites on the Internet use the Flash video format and as more and more videos get published in this new format, we can expect to see the visual quality of web video improve exponentially.
That is, of course, dependent on the source of the video. Footage shot on your cell phone isn’t going to look like Discovery HD Theater unless your phone can somehow shoot in high definition. Increased demand for high definition-capable devices should make more and more manufacturers include an HD setting as a standard option, so that’s a good thing.
Where can you expect to see improvements in the very near future? The network TV sites. Most of their shows are shot in high definition already, so the switch to the new Flash format shouldn’t require very much heavy lifting at all. My favorite network shows in high definition, on demand and free? Comcast, you’re on thin ice.
Coming Soon: Web Video in High Definition [New York Times Blog]