During my time at Isotop I have worked a lot with flash based video players. It all started with a brand new videoplayer for tv4play.se in late 2008, and since then I have been maintaining and kept adding features and new versions. Let me take you to a trip down memory lane, and have a look at a few of all the different versions and variations of the player I have been involved in…
Replay (January 2009)
Tv4 Replay was launched in January 2009, and allowed the user to see the shows and clips that had been broadcasted the past seven days. It had support for streaming over RTMP and was integrated with an inline ad solution from VideoPlaza.
Tv4 play version 1 (April 2009)
It only took three months for the next version of the video player to be released. Running on the same code base, but with a new nice skin – designed by Doberman – and a totally rebranded site (tv4play.se).
This player was maintained for several years, and a lot of new functionality was added over time. The ability to watch live streams, playlists and syndicated versions of the player just to name a few of them. The player was also rebranded for sites like anytime.se, barnkanalen.se and many more.
Tv4 play version 3.0 (October 2010)
The current version of the player (as seen at the top, or at www.tv4play.se) was released sometimes around October 2010. It was going by the name Play 3.0, although I’m not really sure what happened to 2.0.
The site was totally redesigned (this time by Daytona), and so was the skin of the player. The code base was still the same, although having working with it almost constantly since the release of Replay had made it much better and more flexible, and most of the original code has been replaced.
Tv4 Play Premium (January 2011)
For a long time tv4 were maintaining two separate video players. One made in flash, and another that was a Windows Media player – Tv4 anytime – which was a service you had to pay for. It was ad-free and showed their premium content (in the end they actually had a few instances of a special version of the flash-video player as well as the Windows Media version), but in early 2011 the premium service was integrated into the regular video player and today you can play both the free and the premium content in the same player on the same site.
This has been a very long project, for which I've been the only developer most of the time. To start with a clean slate and build from scratch, watch it mutate and grow over the years, struggle to take back control, refactor, refine.
It has also been a fantastic experience developing something that is used by so many users! And being part of bringing television to the internet, something that within a few years probably will be something you take for granted. I was there, taking the very first steps. I'm truly honored to have had the chance of working on this project.
And at last: a few old links (not broken by the time I publish this)