Windows 7 New Home Page, Smooth Streaming added to Channel 9 today


Extraordinary Robot
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Hey folks, we deployed an update to Channel 9 today, bringing us two major changes:

First, we have moved to a new video player, which has enabled us to start publishing our content using Silverlight Smooth Streaming.

You’ll see more and more video encoded using this format as new content is run through the site, but for now you can check out the latest Hot Apps post for an example. Smooth Streaming not your cup of tea? You can jump into your profile and set your ‘Video Playback Preference’ to be either

  • Auto (the default, we fall back through Smooth Streaming to Progressive and finally to HTML 5, all depending on the content we have and the browser you are running),
  • Smooth Streaming (which is essentially the same as the default at this time),
  • Progressive (same new player, but the buffer-and-play style of video that we’ve been using on Channel 9 for the past few years) or
  • HTML 5 (which forces a HTML 5 player even if you have Silverlight installed)
Second, we revamped the home page featured content area. The old style had some discoverability issues, it was hard to know what to click to go to the full view of a specific video and unless you hovered you didn’t get any of the description of the video (which can be really important to determine if you’d like to watch the video or not). Our new rotator is the result of working to solve both those issues and we hope you like it!

Thanks for reading, and feel free to post feedback about these changes right here in the comments.


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