An unofficial blog that watches Google's attempts to move your operating system online since 2005. Not affiliated with Google.

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April 22, 2009

Google Video Updates the Interface

Google Video removed the ability to upload videos and it's now just a video search engine. Even if YouTube is a better place to build an audience that watches your videos, Google Video had its unique appeal and it was a great service for uploading long-form videos.

Another change is that Google Video updated the design for the search results pages and change the TV view mode to look more like the standard result pages for web search. The video player is much smaller and the results dominate the page, making you wonder why Google still calls the interface "TV view". Below the small video player, there's a filmstrip that lets jump to different parts of the video, a list of related videos and an option to email the video.


The new interface has a lot of flaws: the video player moves as you scroll down, the list of related videos is not always visible, Google Video no longer displays ratings and there's a lot of unused space.

I hope the service will manage to find its identity, because Google Video is Google's service that had the most structural changes: from trying to index the captions for TV shows to hosting videos, from a video store to a business tool and a video search engine.

Here's one of the first viral videos uploaded to Google Video, back in 2005, when Back Dorm Boys became famous for lip syncing to Backstreet Boys songs:


Related:
A brief history of Google Video

26 comments:

  1. The video scrolls as you scroll so it's always in view!

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  2. In the old UI, the scrollbar was displayed next to the search results and video player had a fixed position. I think the old interface was more user-friendly because the player was detached from the search results.

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  3. It's just not as nice & easy for watching things on now *sigh*

    I get the impression they want everyone to move to youtube as it now has a larger video display. :-(

    At least it still lets you search for other videos while still watching one - at least once nice feature over youtube is still there ;-) but I do prefer the old version, lots.

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  4. The video player is a bit too small for my taste (it adjusts to the browser window, but search results take up too much result on my display of 1280x800). The fact that it scrolls to stay in your view seems to be feature, not bug, though.

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  5. In Google's obsession with the community concept they have (1) failed to build one, and (2) messed up a lot of other things trying.

    I hope they recover soon.

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  6. You can still upload video on Google Video. The link is at the bottom labelled "Uploaded Videos". You can upload new videos upon login when you click on it.

    Yeah, the link is not labelled intuitively.

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  7. @Anonymous:
    That's not true. "Uploaded Videos" lets you manage the videos you've already uploaded, but you can no longer upload new videos.

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  8. I notice the changes but it wasn't clear what they were trying to improve. I don't use it that much but I have uploaded some instructional videos.

    Thanks for the post.

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  9. The window is too small to watch videos anymore. =(

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  10. Google有了YouTube,就可以放弃Google Video了撒~~~

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  11. old interface was more user friendly & attractive also

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  12. first of all, the upload function is not totally removed!!!
    you can still upload videos to Google videos via Picasa (I don't know who you are, but it is not a nice thing to talk about something until you are confident that you are correct!)
    so, google videos isn't just a search site...it can upload too (and since it is via. picasa, it is much...much better than the original interface)

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  13. Picasa and Blogger are two services that let you upload videos and the players happen to look like Google Video's player. But that doesn't change anything: you can no longer upload videos in Google Video.

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  14. and here's a proof that what I said was correct!
    http://lh3.ggpht.com/_oayQNg722yM/SgMcYbMS-lI/AAAAAAAAAic/odvVaoAVAC4/s800/pokhara.jpg (the movie icon at the bottom left wasn't added by me...it is originally a movie and picasa gave the movie icon....
    Of course, embedding seems to be omitted...maybe a google approach to make users use Youtube more but it can still be shared but only via Picasa, it seems T__T

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  15. really??? well, sorry about what I said earlier (curse me >_<)
    yeah..T__T
    I can't even find my videos on google video search... T__T

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  16. Why is the video player so small now? There has to be a reason for that.

    I used to like google videos because of the big player but now the results take 3/4 of the space, which is not needed, no...

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  17. Can anyone tell me if there's a url I can go to to force the view to change? I had had it on list view which I liked better, but now you can't watch videos in list view and the options bar at the top where the different views used to be is just the option to collapse/show search options for duration, site, etc. I really need to be able to watch videos again! Without having to switch to IE that is...*shudder* And no, clearing the FF cache/other private data does not help any. I mean, sure I can go to the other video site where it's hosted, but it's so much better, easier, faster, more reliable to watch it there on the search page...irc.lv for instance took at least 30 seconds to load when I got desperate enough to head over there directly.

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  18. @Anonymous:
    For now, the interface you're seeing is just an experiment that relies on a cookie. Clear your browser's cookies (or just the google.com cookies) and you should see the old interface. It's likely that the interface that includes the "search options" sidebar will be launched for all users.

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  19. I said before, clearing the private data (including cookies) makes absolutely no difference.

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  20. Well, I re-cleared them and now it does work, I take it back. I think before I must have closed FF before it finished clearing the cookies. Sorry! Thanks for the help, really, I appreciate it a lot.

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  21. Why is the video player so small now?

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  22. At least it still lets you search for other videos while still watching one - at least once nice feature over youtube is still there.

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  23. What is this site for? Does any Google worker ever read the feedback written here? Might it be equally efficient to write your feedback on a paper and then throw the paper to the trash bin?

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  24. @Mr./Mrs. Anonymous:

    This site is for "unofficial news and tips about Google", it's not Google's site and it's not maintained by a Google employee. For feedback about Google products, try Google's forums.

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  25. I hate all these changes google is making.

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  26. google changes so much, specially their algorithm, but still is cool to see improvements, they are after all the be all end all search engine

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