Most of web video has been optimized to display just fine on iOS devices, but it's still annoying to open an article from your favorite blog and find out that the author didn't use Vimeo's updated embed code compatible with the iPhone and iPad. Vimeo offers a new embed technology to support iOS devices, but it's not turned on by default. Just like Vimeo, other services such as Flickr, Megavideo and Dailymotion sometimes struggle in offering video embeds capable of being displayed on Apple's mobile devices.
The Skyfire browser has been making the rounds recently: an iPhone app that can take any Flash video from any web page, and convert it in seconds to an HTML5-based video you can watch on the iPhone. The app is paid though, and perhaps many users don't need all of its functionalities. Then, some developers even released tweaks and hacks in Cydia to activate Flash on iOS -- with very disappointing results, I have to say. Put simply: either you jailbreak your device to sorta gain access to some Flash content on the web, or you buy Skyfire to convert Flash videos. But there's no easy way built in Mobile Safari to play that Vimeo embed on the iPhone.
This is changing today, thanks to this neat bookmarklet called iOSFlashVideo I found on iSpazio (Italian) and installed on my iPhone and iPad a few minutes ago. With just the tap on the bookmarks bar, you'll be able to instantly watch videos from Dailymotion, Flickr Video, MegaVideo and Vimeo through the iOS standard media viewer. It's very simple to install.
- With your iPhone or iPad, open this link: http://iosflashvideo.fw.hu/
- Save the page as a bookmark. To do so, hit the action button in Safari, then "Add Bookmark"
- That's it. Every time you'll stumble upon a web page with broken video embeds on the iPhone and iPad, try to hit the bookmark and see what happens. If that's a video from the services iOSFlashVideo is currently supporting, it should work fine.
You can try the bookmarklet by heading over this old MacStories post which contains various Vimeo embeds. Hopefully, the developers will update the bookmarklet to support more video services in the future.