Internet has prevailed over our lives so much that nowadays we don't need to buy CDs or DVDs to watch movies. Some of us don't even go to the cinema hall to watch them. All we need is an internet connection and a website from which we can download videos. Not only this, videos can also be watched online. Earlier there was only YouTube. Now we have Daily Motion and Eros as well. This has given rise and more importance to video hosting.
Video Hosting: An Overview
Video hosting is a platform that allows an individual to upload and share videos on the internet. The type of content shared can be anything from short clips to full length movies. Be it a comedy or a corporate film, it can all be shared on the internet. There are other hosting services that allow us to upload videos like image hosting service, file hosting services and social networking services.
Features Of Video Hosting
When selecting a web hosting company, look for the following features:
Social Sharing: Saw a video on YouTube and liked it? Want your friends to watch it too? Social Sharing is one such feature that will help you out. You can either copy the link and paste it on the social networking site or you can just share it from the website itself.
Ad-Free: Many a times when you go to a website and click on the play option the first thing that happens is you are being redirected to another website. And you are unable to get rid of these pesky advertisements. This is another feature of video hosting where you have an option to keep your videos and content free from advertisements.
Analytics: If you want to know how many people viewed your videos, this will help you out. You can also find out about who viewed your video and for what duration was it viewed.
Fast Loading, starting and seeking: This feature is extremely important keeping the users in mind. Nobody would want to use a website whose videos take too long in loading.
There are three categories that you should consider if you are looking for simple solutions for hosting videos on your website:
User Generated Content Sites: YouTube and Vimeo are UGC sites. These sites can be used for free. Their source of income are the advertisements that appear before the video starts, in between and around your videos. You can't control the type of videos that are shown next to yours. There are limits related to the amount of space available, the duration and at times content.
Online Video Platforms: OVP sites are not free. They charge you for the content you upload and also don't help you in generating views. But all this comes with an added benefit. You have a lot more control over the content you post. Your video player can be customized to create a brand image. You can also take help from customer service.
Hybrid Services: A hybrid service is an upgraded version of a UGC which costs less than an OVP site. For instance Vimeo has two upgraded versions, Vimeo PRO and and Vimeo Plus.
Once you have recorded the video, you can either upload it or you can embed it. Uploading or hosting is posting a video on a site just like how an image has been uploaded. Embedding a video means that the video is first uploaded on a website say YouTube and then a code is generated through which you can share the video on your website. The video will be viewed on your website but the tools will be that of YouTube.
YouTube is a free service which will help you in making your channel and sharing your videos for free. But there are paid hosting companies as well.
Top Two Video Hosting Companies
According to sitegeek.com, the top two companies that provide web hosting are:
Canadianwebhosting: It has an uptime of 100% and has hosted around 8061 websites. The hosting plans start from $4.95 per month.
Arvixe: The company has an uptime of 99.95%. It has hosted 64297 websites and the hosting plans start from $4.00 per month.
The camera phone market has increased the importance of video hosting even more. Videos can be watched from both mobiles and websites. They can also be made private and available only for a particular age group. Making videos has become a profession for many people. There are people who are making vlogs (similar to weblogs, just in the form videos). Musicians are launching their music videos through this medium. Both large scale and small scale businesses are sharing their promotional videos through this medium too. Video hosting is only becoming more and more common among both new and old users of the internet.