New icons, new player and assorted improvements
- The video player icons have been updated. They are still SVG files, meaning they scale beautifully to work at any resolution, however they are now slightly softer and friendlier. The spacing between them has been made consistent.
- The volume control has been rebuilt. The bars have been replaced with a slider. To save space, that slider only appears when the viewer positions the cursor over the volume icon.
- Similarly we have added a playhead to the progress bar which appears in the centre. When dragged and released, a ‘seek’ to that moment is triggered. Or the bar can be clicked, as before.
- The player’s captions handler has been rebuilt. We still rely on the browser’s native support for captions since all modern browsers support the HTML5 ‘track’ element. However rather than display the captions using that native support (which provides very limited options for styling and positioning the text) we now use our own custom container. The events (cues) that trigger the captions to be shown are still provided by the browser however we take over the rendering of them. On mobile devices, if native controls are set to be used (which we strongly recommend), then we revert to relying on the native captions support for a consistent experience.
- If a HLS manifest can not load, the player now tries a limited number of additional times to play it. Previously it would keep trying indefinitely which was inefficient as there would likely be a wider problem with the connection if attempts repeatedly fail.
- We have fixed an issue where some 360 content would not play, despite being appropriately categorised.
- New HLS ABR versions of some older videos have beeen made. Previously they only had MP4 renditions. Those MP4 versions remain as fall-backs for older browsers, like IE 10.
- Legacy code has been removed from the player which increased its size but was not being used.
- The plug-in used to show the player in a lightbox on the ‘feed’ page has been replaced. The previous one would sometimes position the player incorrectly.
- The issue of the video’s poster frame sometimes not showing on iOS has been fixed.
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Updated: December 15, 2020