Sorenson makes some pretty great software and video services and have a large user base. So they decided to ping the user base and see what kind of trends are ongoing in terms of video file formats and usage within that user base.
The methodology was a survey of Sorenson Media software/service users with more than 1,000 responses out of 100,000 user surveys sent.
The major takeaway from the survey was that MP4 was the top video format by its users beating out Flash by 15% and Quicktime by almost 25%. For the web MP4 dominated with 69% of output and for mobile it was still dominant at 59%.
Meanwhile, QTRM and MOV were the top input formats totaling up to about 52% of all files input.
H.264 ruled the roost in terms of codecs with 78% saying that's the codec of choice. Considering that you can get better quality and many Flash-based video players support it, that's not a very big surprise.
Here's a bit more about their user base:
Sorenson Media's client base comprises video professionals at agencies, post-production houses, enterprises, educational institutions and myriad other organizations throughout the world. This extensive user base includes 70 of the Fortune 100 companies and 60 percent of the broadcast station groups in the United States. -Press Release, Sorenson Media
Many of the respondents stated they output in multiple formats so even though MP4 was top dog and Flash was in second, 45% said Quicktime and 34% said WMV. The only real loser overall, WebM which had just round 5% of respondents outputting to the format. Guess Google is losing that battle.
On the mobile side MP4 was, as I said 59%, Flash had just 16% (probably from lack of support on iOS) and HTML5 also got 16%. Windoes Media pulled down 9% and WebM just a measly 3%. Again, Google, it seems you're sinking your own format on several fronts.
Some of the reason that the outputs are so diverse could also be based on use. Eighty-nine percent of respondents are doing web video, but 67% are making DVDs, 46% are aiming for mobile users, 45% are using it for internal corporate use and 43% and pushing content to TV.
One of the things I particularly like about Sorenson Squeeze 7, which I use for a lot of my transcoding is the list of presets. I found two that work quite well and made some slight modifications to them to tweak for better performance. It seems that's a common thing as 68% said they modify those encoding present for specific uses and 11% create them from scratch.
“Despite the fact that we include nearly 200 presets—or encoding ‘recipes’—for video output in the latest versions of Squeeze, video pros seem to be increasingly involved in tweaking and fine-tuning their final product to their specifications and preferences,” Csathy added. “With more devices and formats entering the market, overall complexity and the need to ‘dial in’ video quality and performance are increasing, not decreasing. At the end of the day, video quality is essential—it is a reflection on the content, the brand and the message.”