Note to Apple: Safari and QuickTime are not web standards

“To call HTML5 Video a hype would be an understatement. Every week, major tech companies announce improved support or new breakthroughs,” Jeroen Wijering and Zachary Ozer blog for LongTail Video.

MacDailyNews Take: Jeroen and Zachary need to look up the word “hype” before they team up to misuse it again. It’s not an exaggeration when “every week, major tech companies announce improved support or new breakthroughs.”

Wijering and Ozer continue, “In this debate, no company is as vocal as Apple. The company’s latest move is the release of an HTML5 showcase that includes a video demo featuring the capabilities of web standards such as HTML5, CSS3, and JavaScript. This effort, while exciting, is misleading and potentially detrimental to the landscape of web development and browser compatibilities. The demo is definitely inspiring and helps to move HTML5 Video along at a fast clip. At the same time though, none of the cool gizmos on this page are actually web standards. Instead, they are specific functionalities found in Apple’s Safari/Quicktime product stack (which is why access is restricted to Safari).”

“It would be awesome for Apple to start advocating the use of cross-browser HTML5 Video, being honest about what the technology can and cannot do today,” Wijering and Ozer. “Alternatively, it would be great for Apple to tell developers what its demo actually is: an excellent showcase of the video capabilities of its Safari / Quicktime product stack. Regardless, Apple should stop labelling vendor-specific implementations as web standards. It confuses web developers and it will lead to a new era of browser incompatibility that will slow down the overall adoption of HTML5 – and the conveniences it brings to web developers around the world.”

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: We agree that Apple should advocate the use of cross-browser HTML5 Video. We believe the reason they limited their HTML5 Showcase to Safari was to ensure that the demos would work as intended. Other browsers have varying states of HTML5 compatibility.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “ChrissyOne” for the heads up.]

23 Comments

  1. And why, exactly, would Apple promote anyone else’s browsers? You have to code that content in a specific way for it to work in a WebKit browser versus Firefox. Why would Apple go out of its way to promote the competition? If Mozilla wants to show off its HTML5 compatibility, nothing’s stopping them from putting up their own HTML5 showcase. That it’s an open standard does not mean Apple needs to go out of its way to make its competitors shine. Does that really make any business sense at all?

  2. Copied from Apple’s HTML5 Showcase page:

    “The demos below show how the latest version of Apple’s Safari web browser, new Macs, and new Apple mobile devices all support the capabilities of HTML5, CSS3, and JavaScript. Not all browsers offer this support. But soon other modern browsers will take advantage of these same web standards — and the amazing things they enable web designers to do.”

  3. “Out, out, brief candle! Life’s but a walking shadow, a poor player
    that struts and frets his hour upon the stage and then is heard no more: it is a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.” — Macbeth

    Most assuredly applicable to J. “I’m-a-useless-shill” Dvorak, but also to Mr’s Wijering and Ozer as well.

    They’re getting wound up over nothing.

    MaWo: ‘respect’. As in, ‘Nothing but, for Shakespeare’.

  4. there was no one with a brain who was confused by the showcase and exactly what is was showing:::::

    safari and its html5 capabilities

    “Every new Apple mobile device and every new Mac — along with the latest version of Apple’s Safari web browser — supports web standards including HTML5, CSS3, and JavaScript. “

    “The demos below show how the latest version of Apple’s Safari web browser, new Macs, and new Apple mobile devices all support the capabilities of HTML5, CSS3, and JavaScript. Not all browsers offer this support. But soon other modern browsers will take advantage of these same web standards — and the amazing things they enable web designers to do.”

  5. If you switch Chrome’s user-agent string, it can access the Showcase, but some things still don’t work correctly. Maybe this has to do with the QuickTime stack mentioned here.

    You can launch Chrome with Safari’s user agent using this command in Terminal:

    /Applications/Google\ Chrome.app/Contents/MacOS/Google\ Chrome -user-agent=”Mozilla/5.0(iPad; U; CPU iPhone OS 3_2 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/531.21.10 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/4.0.4 Mobile/7B314 Safari/531.21.10″

  6. And I agree… this Showcase is about Safari. That’s Apple’s goal… to promote Safari’s capabilities, so it’s obvious someone would need to be using Safari to enter the Showcase. Otherwise, how is that giving Apple any advantage?


    What’s up with the magic words today? “boys” “woman”… geesh.

  7. Errrrr, so the point is that Apple should what? Fix the rest of the browsers? If Safari is farther along in supporting HTML5 than other browsers, allowing the showcase to run in other browsers A) shows lack of support in other browsers and B) won’t work.

    So. Safari has HTML5 baked right in now and what is the point again? I’m not going to lie, I don’t get it.

  8. Web standards, there’s no standards…
    And Safari is a browser application while Quicktime is a media application.
    Which I will say are standard on my Mac platform.

    Apple please keep making great standards.

  9. Earth to Wijering and Ozer this ic why Apple eschews the use of Flash. Also no claim was ever made that Quicktime and Safari were Web Standard merely that they were built on open standards and are web standard compliant.

  10. @Warren,

    I think the whole idea is preclude a specific implementation as being identified as “the standard”. We Mac users had an *enormous* amount of “{Windows}{Internet Explorer}{Outlook} IS the standard” crammed down our throats by IT and their boot-licking executive lackeys for the last twenty years. Much as I want to be able to use my Mac at work, I still can’t because of these “standards”. Apple needs to ensure that its applications *implement* standards, but not in an embrace, extend, extinguish fashion a la Microsoft.

  11. What part of “technology demonstration” don’t these (and so many other) bozos understand.

    Apple was showing what’s possible to do with HTML5 in a browser, TODAY, using Safari as a demonstration platform. It was NEVER intended to run on every browser.

    Hating Apple sure makes a LOT of people incredibly STUPID.

  12. If it requires anything other than HTML 5 standards to run, meaning it requires Apple-only proprietary stuff, then Apple would be in a lawsuit already.

    This merely shows that Safari is ahead in the adoption of the HTML 5 standards.

    Other people can whine that it is Safari only, but the fact remains it is Safari only because Safari is the only browser that supports these standards right now. It has nothing to do with Apple’s proprietary IP.

    Good on Apple for showing up the other browsers and for highlighting its own browser at the same time.

    Now, with Safari 5 and extensions, I might be able to move away from Firefox. Let the extensions begin…… quickly! Hurry! I want to move to Safari!

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