Video JS Blog

Matthew McClure2019-09-13

Announcing the new Videojs.com

If you visit the Video.js website today, you'll (hopefully) notice it looks a little different. You may also notice that you're reading this on the root domain instead of blog.videojs.com. If you've noticed either/both those things then this is redundant, but today I'm incredibly excited to announce a new website for the Video.js project(s).

The plan was for this website to take a month to build and ship and we're going on...well more than that, but we think it's worth it. Not just because I'm the one responsible for the ~6 years we've spent with the previous website, but because the new design shifts the focus to what we think is so important about Video.js: you, the builders, using Video.js to create.

Video.js in 2019

When Heff first created Video.js back in 2010, the reasons for needing and using a video player were different than they are today. I asked him, “What was the biggest motivation for using a player in 2010, and why did you make Video.js?”

Well, interestingly, it wasn't because Flash was dead. That wouldn't happen for years. And it wasn't to support iPhones, because you couldn't build video controls there yet. It was simply to use native web technologies to build video rather than a third-party plugin. It was fun.

I don't know if that answers your question. Those other reasons would be why most people eventually used Video.js.

For what it’s worth, my answer to why I would have used Video.js in the early 2010s would be a little different: it was a nice looking player that had a Flash fallback to support older browsers. Today, however, Flash is dead, and unnecessary anyway because browser support for modern codecs has gotten so much better. Sure, things have gotten a little more complicated with adaptive-bitrate streams becoming commonplace, but even then, simply playing back video in the browser has become table stakes.

That’s one of the reasons why we like to look at Video.js as a player framework instead of a player. Video.js is a well-tested, extensible, and extremely customizable starting point for you to create your own custom experiences for your viewers. We’ve tried to make sure you get a great player right out of the box when you start using Video.js, but, if you want, it can be the starting point for the perfect player for your application.

New Themes

All four Video.js themes
All four Video.js themes

To that end, we've launched the website with four new CSS-only themes. Each is named after the website theme that contains them, but the point is to show off just how easy it is to customize your players while giving you some new starting points for creating your own custom themes. If you're interested in learning more about the process of using/building the themes, there's a high level overview on the Mux blog.

New LogoNew Logo

The new logo will slowly filter out across the different projects over the next few days (let's face it, maybe months), but we've got new stickers on the way! If you're interested in slapping some Video.js on your laptop or bumper, if that's still a thing, shoot us a tweet.

Credit where credit's due!

This redesign and buildout was funded (and built) by Mux and, as usual, hosted by Netlify. Browserstack allows us to test each player version in different browsers and devices, and Fastly provides our CDN-hosted versions. Last, but certainly not least, the Video.js corporate shepherd and primary sponsor is Brightcove.

Go build awesome players

We'd love to see the players you create!

💝 @matt_mcclure

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