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Wikipedia Gains a New Video Player, Thanks to Kaltura

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Online encyclopedia Wikipedia has gained a new video player, with a little help from Kaltura. The open-source information site (and its related sites) are now using Kaltura's open-source HTML5 video player. The Wikimedia Foundation made the switch so it could better stream educational videos to multiple languages and devices.

According to a Kaltura blog post, getting Wikipedia set up with the video player took a long beta period and many review cycles. Besides Wikipedia, the new video platform is being used on the Wikimedia Commons media repository and other related sites. Wikimedia Commons hosts all media for Wikipedia's sites, keeping a copy of all images, audio tracks, and videos.

Having multilingual timed text support was an essential for Wikipedia, says Kaltura. Closed caption support is also included. Wikipedia editors can use the platform to embed videos and display subtitles in the correct language for the viewer. Wikimedia says the new player is a big step forward in making the site accessible for the hearing impaired. Kaltura notes that the platform also include strong transcoding abilities, and supports WebM.

Wikipedia says that the new player replaces an Ogg Vorbis-only player that was put in place in 2005. Wikimedia and Kaltura have been working since 2008 on improving the site's video performance. 

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