Kyte.tv vs. PodTech.net (Adobe announces new Flash player)

We’re about to watch a HD-DVD movie so I thought I’d bang out a little post about Kyte vs. PodTech, since that’s what I’ve been playing with lately.

Why mention the HD-DVD? Well, I am happy that I picked HD-DVD as my home format since today DreamWorks and Paramount said they’d support that format exclusively. I remember when Chris Coulter argued with me about this, saying the movie studios would go exclusively Blue-ray. I love it when he turns out to be wrong. It doesn’t happen that often.

Anyway, that takes me to what I’ve been doing at work. Playing with video. Heck, it’s my job.

UPDATE: Adobe just announced a new Flash player that lets you play H.264 files. Richard MacManus has the details on that announcement. Since Flash is used by both PodTech and Kyte (and many other video distributors like YouTube and Blip) this will probably have a big impact on the future of video on the Web. UPDATE2: Ryan Stewart links to the best reports on this topic and talks about what it means. Anyway, back to the comparison of Podtech vs. Kyte.

[podtech content=http://media1.podtech.net/media/2007/08/PID_012261/Podtech_ElliottSoloway.flv&postURL=http://www.podtech.net/home/3927/improving-education-with-teacher-of-the-year &totalTime=1653000&breadcrumb=ef97f164f2e64ca48a7206c042ae2119]

So, I did this interview a week ago in Seattle with Elliot Soloway. He’s the teacher who had Larry Page in his classroom. This is probably my best interview, at least according to my email. You really responded to this one, which is about how to improve the educational system. Anyway, today we put up the other recording of this interview and you get to see how I record my Kyte.tv shows. Which leads me to the point of this post:

Here’s a good place to compare Kyte.tv with PodTech.net.

First, here’s Soloway’s interview on PodTech. And here it is on Kyte. Actually the Kyte one was split into two parts cause you can’t put more than 20 minutes up on it. So here’s the second part.

The first thing you’ll notice is that you really can’t compare Kyte to PodTech. It’s like comparing Apples to Oranges. But why let that stand in the way? Heheh.

CAN YOU UPLOAD?

PodTech: no.
Kyte: yes.

This is an important distinction. Kyte is participatory while PodTech is solely a media distribution system. Do note that you can upload your own video to my Kyte channel, or you can open your own. Click “Produce on this Channel” to record your own video and start a conversation with me.

CAN YOU CHAT?

PodTech: no.
Kyte: yes.

Kyte’s real magic is in the chat room. It’s open 24 hours a day and you can say anything you want. But unlike the chat room on other places like on Justin.tv or Ustream.tv, you can not just type text, but can record audio and video to the chat room too. This is a HUGE reason why I am using Kyte instead of Ustream or Justin.tv.

CAN YOU WATCH ON APPLE TV/IPHONE/MEDIA CENTER/IPOD/ZUNE?

PodTech: yes.
Kyte: no.

A lot of you who watch my show do it by subscribing to my RSS feed and downloading my show in MPG4 format to your various devices. Since Kyte is Flash based and my show on PodTech is both Flash and MPG4 based you can only view PodTech stuff on your devices.

WHICH ONE IS BETTER QUALITY?

PodTech is, by far. Why? Because Rocky (my editor) brings my video into Final Cut Pro in near HD quality levels, edits it there, and then exports it to MPG4. This process takes a LOT longer than Kyte, but results in MUCH higher quality that you can see if you watch both videos. Oh, if you want to watch my ScobleShow videos in the best quality possible, you’ll want to download them. Look for the little “Download this” video. The “Video” file (here’s the one for Elliot Soloway’s interview) is much better quality than the one that plays in the player that’s embedded above.

WHICH ONE WORKS ON MY NOKIA N95?

Both do, but with Kyte you can also upload your own videos and you can chat. PodTech looks better, though, due to the higher quality compression and techniques that we use.

WHICH PLAYER LOOKS NICER ON YOUR BLOG?

Well, I think the Kyte one looks sort of goofy. They are redesigning it, Kyte’s CEO told me today. But for now PodTech wins.

CAN YOU USE EITHER ON FACEBOOK?

PodTech: No.
Kyte: Yes.

Kyte’s Facebook integration is quite nice. Gives you the exact same stuff that their Web client gives you. And integrates into your mini-feed on your profile page so your visitors know when you’ve done a new Kyte video.

CAN YOU UPLOAD WITHIN FIVE MINUTES OF FINISHING A RECORDING?

PodTech: No.
Kyte: Yes.

Remember yesterday when I was recording the HP Garage? That video was available for you to watch within five minutes of me hitting “stop” on the recorder. The same video on PodTech? Will take hours. Why? I have to hook my camera up to my computer. I have to rewind the tape. That takes a few minutes. Then I have to open up Final Cut Pro on my Mac. Then I have to hit record, which starts the tape playing. Now I have to wait an hour, if I recorded for an hour. Now I need to edit. PodTech puts a couple of things onto the beginning and ending of a video. Even if I don’t do any other editing that process still takes a few minutes. Now I need to save/export/compress the video. That takes more than an hour. Sometimes more than two hours. Even on a really expensive Mac Pro with lots of RAM and the fastest hard drives and processors available. So, fastest possible turnaround time for PodTech is more than two hours and probably more. Kyte? Less than five minutes. Just hit “stop.” Write a headline. Write a few tags. Hit “broadcast.” If you’re on a fast network it goes even faster. Often I’m up and running within one minute of hitting “stop.”

WHAT ABOUT CONTROL FOR ADVERTISERS

PodTech: yes.
Kyte: no.

This is a major reason to build your own media distribution system like we have at PodTech. Inserting an advertisement? Possible on PodTech but not easily doable on Kyte. Keeping track of every little referer? Possible on PodTech, but Kyte gives very little detail and what it does give you is open to the public to see (like you can tell how many people are watching now, how many referering URLs there are).

CAN YOU USE IT ON A MOBILE PHONE

PodTech: you can watch, not share.
Kyte: yes (but only on some phones, iPhones, for instance, can’t record video).

This is the reason I kept my Nokia N95. If you load the Kyte mobile app you can upload video, watch video, participate in the chat (using text/audio/or video) and more.

CAN YOU EMBED EITHER ON WORDPRESS.COM?

PodTech: yes.
Kyte: yes.

Embedding stuff makes it more likely other bloggers will use it because it doesn’t require sending your users off to another site. Lately I’ve noticed that bloggers are being selfish with their traffic and are linking to things a lot less often.

CONCLUSION

I’ll continue using both, but thought you’d find the comparison interesting because Kyte just got funded by Nokia and is doing some of the most interesting stuff out there.

I love Kyte and will keep using it for the reasons above. I’m still on blog vacation, so maybe at a future time I’ll compare Kyte to YouTube and the really nice Facebook video app, among others.

What do you think? Which video system is getting your attention? Why?

Any others out there that should get my attention?

OK, Maryam, let’s start the movie now. Who wants some popcorn? Yummy!