Video has quickly become one of the fastest growing media formats on the Internet, and that seems like a logical thing to occur. It makes sense that a company would attempt to integrate an interactive video solution into WordPress and Kaltura is the first solution that we've seen to address this. It is a decent try, but it is far from perfect.
Beyond the interactive features, Kaltura is your basic YouTube-esque video provider. Everything that you would expect from a video player is available here, but nothing else amazingly special pops out. Kaltura Player Kaltura adds interactivity into the mix:
* Embeddable video: Add multiple embeddable video player
* Multimedia: Add video, audio and images to an existing video
* Remix: Ability to “remix” the video with an online editor
* Size Matters: Large (400 x 426) and small (268 x 308) video players are available
* WordPress Integration: Nice integration within WordPress’s posting interface
Kaltura Has Some Issues
There are a few concerns with Kaltura. The most prominent concern is the fact that you can only stream up to 3 GB of data per month for free -- that amount could be exceeded within a few days for many bloggers out there. Of course, we realize that there has to be some kind of limit -- after all, bandwidth isn’t free -- but it is not clear what happens after the 3 GB threshold is reached.
It would have been great to have the ability to brand your own player -- similar to Viddler. It is not clear as to whether or not this is possible, but it is something to keep in mind if you evaluate Kaltura.
Is Interactive Video Ready for the Big Time?
Finally, we don't see these interactive features as being a huge draw at this point in time. Why go through the effort of adding a video comment when you can type a text comment in the same amount of time? It might be good for adding a personal touch, but we just don't see this going mainstream quite yet. To sum it up: Kaltura is a decent attempt at interactive video, but it may not be going anywhere fast in its current stage. Let’s be honest, who is going to take the time to “remix” a video? Video comments don't seem to be that popular quite yet. Finally, the lack of being able to brand your own video is a huge disappointment.
Even though I was, overall, disappointed by Kaltura, if the company addressed some of these issues, it would be much more approachable in the end. For now, stick with Vimeo and Viddler. Vimeo offers high quality while Viddler offers personal branding. Take your pick.
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