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YouTube HFR and in-ad links

YouTube is adding TrueView for Shopping, meaning that viewers can click and buy products listed directly within pre-roll videos.  The ads are powered by an integration with Google Merchant Center, delivered in ‘cards’ alongside retailers’ video ads on mobile and desktop.

Google is stressing that this does not allow for purchasing directly within YouTube, clicks on the product ads take users straight to the merchants’ websites. This is not the first time YouTube atemted to make its ads shopable. The Google-owned firm ran a similar scheme in 2012 but failed to get traction.

Meantime YouTube launched 60fps live streaming as an “early preview” on HTML5-compatible browsers. “When you start a live stream on YouTube at 60fps, we’ll transcode your stream into 720p60 and 1080p60, which means silky smooth playback for gaming and other fast-action videos,” said YouTube product manager Alan Joyce.

YouTube said that high frame rates are “especially important” for gaming streams, and that any app using its live streaming API can now add a new ‘high frame rate flag’ to enable 60fps streaming.

YouTube also announced it has added HTML5 playback for live streaming – “another long-requested feature” – with plans to add more live streaming improvements soon.

“As of this week, YouTube live streams will use an HTML5 player in supported browsers. And because our HTML5 player supports variable speed playback, you can skip backward in a stream while it’s live and watch at 1.5x or 2x speed to catch back up,” said Joyce.

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