The Enterprise Video Player

MediaPlatform Unified Player is an embeddable media player used by MediaPlatform. It utilizes both HTML5 and Adobe’s Flash plugin as underlying browser technologies for playback. It has very robust support for mobile and desktop browsers and media formats.

Starting with MediaPlatform 5.8, the Unified Player is used by MediaPlatform PrimeTime. With MediaPlatform 5.8.5, there is limited support of the Unified Player in MediaPlatform WebCaster events.

Browser and Media Support

MediaPlatform Unified Play leverages both HTML5 and Flash. Here is an overview of media formats and browser/device support:

Internet Explorer MP4, FLV/F4V AAC, MP3 HLS, HDS, RTMP
Firefox MP4, FLV/F4V, WebM AAC, MP3 HLS, HDS, RTMP
Android MP4, WebM AAC, MP3 HLS

Media format support may vary depending on the version of the browser being used.

Media Format Support

MediaPlatform Unified Player officially supports 7 media formats. These include:

Video file Types:

  1. MP4
  2. FLV/F4V
  3. WebM

Audio file types:

  1. AAC
  2. MP3

Streaming protocols:

  1. HLS
  2. HDS
  3. RTMP

It’s important to note that the MediaPlatform Unified Player utilizes underlying technologies for playback. Namely, (1) HTML5 <video> and, (2) Adobe’s Flash Player plugin. As a result, the player may play additional formats than those listed above (like Vorbis audio or Ogg video). However, the above media formats are what is officially supported.

Video Files

These are the supported video types.

  • MP4 (can be played in all browsers and devices).
  • FLV/F4V

Here is an overview of the browser playback support:

Chrome html5, flash html5, flash
Internet Explorer html51, flash html51, flash
Firefox flash flash
Safari html5, flash html5, flash
iOS html5 html5
Android html5 html5

1. HTML5 playback starting with Internet Explorer 9

Browser and Device Support

The MediaPlatform Unified Player essentially made up of two underlying players.

  1. HTML5
  2. Flash

It is designed to support it’s full-feature set on the most popular browser and devices independent of the underlying player that is used. In fact, the underlying player that is used is completely transparent to the user. This document spells out which browsers and devices are supported and any limitations they may have. It also discusses differences between desktop and mobile as well as describes how it decides which underlying player to use.

Browser and Device Support

Chrome1 yes yes
FireFox1 yes yes
Internet Explorer 8 yes
Internet Explorer 9 yes yes
Internet Explorer 10 yes yes
Internet Explorer 11 yes yes
Safari1 yes yes

1. New versions are released frequently. We test the most recently released one.

WebCaster Event Playback Limitations

The MediaPlatform Unified Player does not fully support Internet Explorer 8 and 9 when it is used inside WebCaster templates. This is because the Unified Player expects modern browsers and does not work in “Quirks” mode which is not currently possible in WebCaster templates. Starting with MediaPlatform 5.9, in Internet Explore 9 and below, the flash-based control bar will be used. This means that the captioning option is not available inside WebCaster templates in these browsers.

Mobile Devices

This table shows which mobile devices are officially supported by the MediaPlatform Unified Player, using HTML5:

Safari on iPhone yes
Safari on iPad yes
Chrome on Android yes

For many devices not on this list, media playback may still be possible with the MediaPlatform Unified Player but they are not officially supported due to playback inconsistencies. For example, Android 2.x, 3.x, BlackBerry may play back HDS using Mobile Flash and/or MP4/HLS using HTML5.

Playback support for the various media formats varies.

Mobile Playback Limitations

Compared to desktop browsers, there are some limitations to video playback on mobile devices:

  • It is not possible to play multiple videos at the same time on mobile.
  • Auto-starting a video on page load is not possible on mobile.
  • On some mobile devices, changing the ‘mute’ state and volume may not be possible.
  • On iPhone, video is played in fullscreen mode only.
  • On iPhone, QuickTime is used as the underlying player and the MediaPlatform Unified Player’s control bar is not used. As such, in order to have Closed Caption support on an iPhone, the captions need to be embedded into the Video itself. Here are some instructions on how to do that.

Mode Selection

All features of the MediaPlatform Unified Player (skins, player controls, etc.) are available in both HTML5 via the <video> element and the Adobe Flash plugin. The media format is what determines if the MediaPlatform Unified Player uses HTML5 or Flash. See Unified Player – Media Format Support for more details. A quick overview:

  • MP4, HLS, AAC, MP3 can be played in Flash and HTML5 players.  (Exceptions: MP4 cannot play in HTML5 on Mac FF.  HLS can play in HTML5 only on Safari.)
  • HDS, FLV, RTMP can only be played in Flash.

Important: The MediaPlatform Unified Player prefers HTML5 to Flash if a piece of content can be played in both. In other words, it will try to use HTML5 first.

Multiple Sources

If an embed contains multiple media sources, the MediaPlatform Unified Player will select the first one that can be played. A couple of examples:

  • Sources of (1) MP4 and (2) RTMP (in that order) would result in:
    • MP4 in HTML5 in Chrome
    • MP4 in Flash Internet Explorer 8
    • MP4 in Flash on FF (Mac)
  • Sources of (1) RTMP and (2) MP4 would result in:
    • RTMP in Flash in Chrome and Internet Explorer 8
    • MP4 in HTML5 on Android / iOS

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