Paul Sawers was a reporter with The Next Web in various roles from May 2011 to November 2014. Follow Paul on Twitter: @psawers or check h Paul Sawers was a reporter with The Next Web in various roles from May 2011 to November 2014. Follow Paul on Twitter: @psawers or check him out on Google+.
It’s now four years since YouTube opened its API, making it infinitely easier for people the world over to integrate video into their websites. A simple copy and paste of the YouTube iFrame embed code, and basic blogs can be transformed into video repositories. The same applies to other video-hosting websites such as Vimeo and Daily Motion too, which have also opened their APIs.
But why only embed one video, from one video host into one player? Yokto (http://www.Yokto.tv) is a free tool that lets you collect and embed video from multiple sources and embed them all in a single player on your website.
The platform has just soft launched into beta, and it’s currently working to optimize the platform, but on our initial tinkerings, it’s a very simple, useful and effective tool to use. And here’s how it works.
Step 1. Create your player
The registration process for Yokto is quick and easy. And once you’re in, you click ‘Create my player’:
Step 2. Add media
Once you’ve created your player, you can search for videos and presentations to add to it from YouTube, Vimeo, DailyMotion, PhotoBucket, BrightCove, UStream, Slideshare…and you can even upload your own video directly.
Click on the media you wish to add, and it shows up in the right-hand pane and you can watch the clip to ensure it’s the right one. Then, hit ‘Add Video’, and it’s saved to that particular player.
Step 3. Organize media, create playlists
This step involves you creating a playlist to add your videos to. Click the ‘Add Playlist’ button, give it a name and then it’s a simple drag-and-drop process:
Step 4. Manage your player
This penultimate step is where you indicate how your video compilation will look. You have the choice of the following display options: Video wall (right), Lower tabbed player, Lower video wall, Video wall, Flip player, Theatre format, Tabbed list (right) and Player with video wall:
You can also adjust the player’s width, select the default ‘main’ video for the embed, set it to autoplay (if you want) and then it’s just a case of hitting ‘Get embed code’. Here’s a soccer-themed video I cobbled together, and I’ve opted for the ‘Lower video wall’ display option:
The basic version of Yokto is free, and this should be fine for most people’s needs, though there are Yokto Pro and Enterprise versions too, which provide additional features, such as integration with Amazon S3 and CloudFront, access to intelligent video URLs, custom player designs, player API access and more.
The Yokto player switches automatically between Flash and HTML5, meaning videos should work seamlessly across most modern devices. And it also has built-in social sharing tools too.
I found the tool very easy and intuitive to use, and it could have multiple use-cases. England international rugby player Jonny Wilkinson has already used the service for his official website.
One minor point worth noting relates to the navigation – there was no immediately obvious way to progress through the stages in creating the final player. For example, there was no ‘Next’ button, and in the end I had to click the links along the top to advance to the next stage.
This will be easily remedied though and, given that it’s still only in beta mode, I assume this will be fixed at some point.
To give you a little background on Yokto, it was born in late 2010, out of Powershift Media Ltd, a private technology company based in Leamington Spa, England. Yokto has 7 people working on the platform, including CEO Ross Alderson, and Oojal Jhutti, who is ‘Chief Technology Evangelist’.
Get the TNW newsletter
Get the most important tech news in your inbox each week.