The world’s largest video sharing website, YouTube.com, has just introduced wide-screen video capabilities. YouTube is extremely popular and is currently ranked #3 (as of November 2009) by Alexa, only after Yahoo and Google. The video size has increased to 960 pixels by width, which made the aspect ratio to wide-screen. YouTube explains the change “[to] better reflect the quality of the videos [users] create and the screens [they] use to watch them”.
YouTube although being uber-popular is not the pioneer in this technology. Both Hulu.com as well as Vimeo.com have adopted the 16:9 aspect ratio quite a while back. With potential new contracts for featuring full length movies on their way and with MGM already providing their content, YouTube realized that it is “better late than never”. Users with 4:3 video content can continue uploading the same. The empty space for the video will be replaced by two black bars on each side.