We’ve been following the web 2.0 company Splashcast Media for exactly 1 year now. On February 25, 2007 we launched version 7.0 of StuffWeLike.com because of Splashcast. I rushed to quickly redesign the website and focus it on entertainment news and videos.
Over that time, we’ve worked very closely with Splashcast to help improve their offerings. Their original player looked like this:
As you can see, there are many flaws with this design. Over time Splashcast improved many features, but it wasn’t until August 29, 2007 that it went 2.0.
The Splashcast player 2.0 allowed users to send in video/audio and text comments, select an individual media file to play, send the file to a friend, and much more.
However before this, Splashcast introduced a sweet feature called My Podcast Network, that allowed users to insert video/audio RSS feeds. Oddly enough this amazing feature was not taken to heart by many podcasters. And thus the RSS feed hijacker flame war began. Months later Splashcast removed this feature. I’ve been told that they are working on a new version that will be released sometime in 2008.
Continuing on, Splashcast met Facebook and made babies. Facebook offered Splashcast into a new and exciting opportunity to make one of the first Facebook Applications. Splashcast was grateful enough to then create a StuffWeLike Splashcast Facebook app.
As with all companies, Splashcast started pitching its player to various media companies to try and get them to pay for a Pro player account. Surprisingly enough it worked to a huge success! With Facebook, Splashcast was able to use viral marketing and spread the Pro application players around. To date many of them have received hundreds of thousands of views.
On December 11th, 2007 Splashcast took one more step to gaining revenue by inserting ads into their player. To date, I haven’t seen many advertisements within their players, but I’m sure this will change very soon.
Most recently on February 23rd, 2008 Splashcast relaunched its website to be geared towards high-end users. This flashy new website goes into great detail on how and why Splashcast could help major brands explode onto the net.
It has been an interesting ride to see how fast Splashcast has evolved from a indie web 2.0 company into a major studio partner. While I’m happy to see Splashcast succeeding, part of me worries that Splashcast has left smaller ‘Lite’ users like StuffWeLike and the thousands of other Splashcast users in the dust.
One of the reasons why I chose Splashcast over other services like Brightcove was that the user console interface is one of the easiest to use on the market. Even though Splashcast’s blog states that they will continue to support free accounts, I can only sit here and wonder what the future of this company has in mind for its Lite users.