ABC upgrades online video player

Full-screen, closed captioning among upcoming features is upgrading its full-episode broadband player with new features for the fall season.

Among the bells and whistles set for the broadcaster's online destination are full-screen viewing, closed captioning and the ability to send video links that can be embedded on blogs and social networks.

"Having come out of the gate with the first player in the space, we're continually looking at how we expand and provide a better experience from our users," said Alexis Rapo, vp digital media at ABC Entertainment. was the first full-episode player online when it launched in 2006, and as of April, it is the dominant one: Its 8.9 million unique users was tops for the month among broadcasters, according to Nielsen Online.

The user interface has been redesigned with new navigation and search features that allow users to comb series offerings graphically, alphabetically or by genre or popularity.

Although previously contained the video to a browser window, the improved player will allow the image to take up the entire monitor. The viewer also will have the option of choosing from standard or high definition.

Users also can send links that can be posted elsewhere online, where they can launch cued to a particular scene mid-episode. Video on also will be more easy to sift through, with thumbnail images that offer a glimpse of the story line progression in each episode.

The new player will be tested in a closed beta over the summer before launching ahead of ABC's premiere week in the fall. utilizes technology from Move Networks for its player.
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