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YouTube quietly switches to widescreen

Katy Perry et al now showing on YouTube in widescreen
Katy Perry et al now showing on YouTube in widescreen

YouTube has announced another new change to its website this week, the inclusion of widescreen (16:9) videos. Before this small but significant change, all videos on the site played in the plain old 4:3 format.

The change was announced on YouTube's blog, stating: "We're expanding the width of the page to 960 pixels to better reflect the quality of the videos you create and the screens that you use to watch them.

"This new, wider player is in a widescreen aspect ratio which we hope will provide you with a cleaner, more powerful viewing experience."

Wide boy

While it may not seem like a massive difference – watching the latest Katy Perry video in wide format isn't exactly going to excite – it does prove that YouTube is starting to mean business when it comes to streaming full-length movies.

There is a problem with the new format, however. At the moment, the 16:9 videos won't embed on to third-party websites. Instead, anyone wishing to host YouTube content will have to make do with the regular size.

Just last month, YouTube announced that it will stream feature-length films, with MGM announced as the first distribution company to partner the site.