Yahoo has been on a roll lately, releasing
a new version of its popular instant messenger, Yahoo Messenger 10, adding
some features to the biggest web mail service in the world, Yahoo Mail, and redesigning
its search results page. But it’s not done yet, as Yahoo has announced another new feature, this time to its Video Search, which allows users to play the videos inside the results page.
“We know that users want instant gratification when searching for videos – you want to be able to watch the videos as soon as you find it. So today, we’re introducing a larger inline video play feature that shows the videos directly on the video search results page,” Manish Mohan Sharma and Sapna Chandiramani from the Yahoo! Video Search Team wrote
. “Some videos on the results page will display a “Play Now” link, which opens a large overlay window and plays the video on the results page.”
The results page of the Yahoo Video Search now features an in-line video player. Clicking on any of the results will roll out an overlay section with the original video embedded and already playing. Also, in a useful twist, the overlay section also features related videos from the original source, which will also play back inside the results page.
While not exactly new, seeing as how most of its competitors have had similar functionality for quite a while, the feature does really transform the way video searches are made. Users want to take as few steps as possible to get to what they are looking for and this is especially true for video searches. Having to click on the results, go to the original site and then play the video in order to find out if it is what they want isn't exactly the most efficient way of getting to the results they are looking for.
Google Video has had the possibility to play any video on the site when doing a search regardless of the original host for years. More importantly, Bing has recently introduced a similar functionality to its video search, allowing users to watch the videos just by hovering the mouse over them. And with the recent search deal between Microsoft and Yahoo, the new in-line playback feature on Yahoo search could be, at least in part, connected to the upcoming merger of the two search engines.