Last night Facebook announced that they’ve upgrade their video service. There are a couple exciting upgrades. First, videos are now HD quality. This isn’t a surprising upgrade considering that YouTube has also upgraded their video service. The second upgrade is the ability for users to embed videos outside of the site. This feature was previously only available via a Facebook embed greasemonkey script which we wrote about over a year ago.
It’s great to see Facebook upgrading their video product but I’m somewhat surprised that it took Facebook this long to enable video embedding. There’s one other feature which is something no other video provider currently offers. If you wish to make your videos viewable only to your friends, Facebook will respect the privacy settings that you set for all of your videos.
I’m guessing this will provide Facebook with a fairly significant boost in the number of people using their video product. Unfortunately Facebook doesn’t currently provide statistics as to the number of viewers who saw the video but Facebook could theoretically outdo the competitors in the analytics regard. Imagine imbedding a video and then viewing demographic information about that video’s viewers.
There is a lot of potential with the Facebook video product and it’s clear that the company sees the potential. I’m sure that just managing the server requirements of running a large video platform is challenging but hopefully the company rolls out a robust analytics service in the near future. Once that takes place I believe we could see a more professional group of users start using the video product.