A few days back we received an email from one of you (our readers) who wishes to remain anonymous (so we’ll call him Dave), regarding a startling realisation about the iPhone and the Samsung Galaxy S3.
Dave had recently switched from the iPhone to the new Galaxy S3 and had discovered that videos embedded on some of the websites he uses for work don’t play on the Galaxy SIII. The most bizarre thing is that it worked for one whole week before completely stopping.
In our quest to get to the bottom of this mystery, we did some heavy testing on a series of Android devices to see if we could uncover some more about this peculiar bug. The videos in question were embedded on CNN and CNBC, two popular websites used by many business professionals.
To test this issue, we tried the videos on the Samsung Galaxy Note, HTC One X, HTC One S and the Samsung Galaxy SIII. We visited the webpages in question and tried to view the videos; here’s what we found.
Samsung Galaxy Note / Galaxy SIII:
When browsing the CNBC website and clicking on the videos, a pop up would ask us if we wanted to view them using the Internet application (i.e. in the browser) or in the Video Player. When viewing the videos in the browser, the videos would load and either not start playing or start playing and after one second show an “End of Stream” message.
HTC One Series:
Things were a little different when using the HTC One Series; we simply got a message that no suitable application was found to play the files and we could either “Exit” or “Download” the video. This was unexpected and definitely highlighted a weakness in the One Series and HTC Sense.
To really test it against the iPhone, we powered up our iPhone 4S running iOS6 (watch out for our upcoming review of that) and browsed to both websites. Tap on the video and up pops QuickTime player and the videos on both websites played back with no issues at all.
What does it all mean? Simply put, the websites recognised the iPhone as the iPhone and promptly delivered the application in a manner that the iPhone could playback. When browsing using Android, the mobile devices weren’t recognised and therefore had to play the video back using codecs to decode the native format. Samsung’s Galaxy SIII handled it well, the HTC One series did not.
We’re going to do some more research into this and we’ll let you know what we find! If you’ve had this issue before, let us know in the comments below.
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