If you have old VHS tapes, 8mm, miniDV, or photos, you’ve probably looked for a way to digitize the priceless memories from your life — and one of those ways is YesVideo, a conversion service that takes your ancient media and brings it into the 21st century. And starting today, YesVideo is adding a new feature that will allow you to publish those memories and any other archaic media to your Facebook Timeline.
You can submit your vintage videos at any of YesVideo’s at CVS/pharmacy, Walgreen’s, and Costco retail locations. The footage is sent to YesVideo’s San Clara or Atlanta locations, where it’s digitized and uploaded to the platform’s cloud for you to view and share. While YesVideo’s primary focus is its cloud hosting service, the company sends you a DVD copy, alongside the original media as well.
To make the experience more social, YesVideo’s Facebook Timeline integration will show up on your profile in a couple ways. First, if you log into YesVideo using Facebook Connect and comment or like a friend’s video, those actions will be published to your Timeline. Second, YesVideo is using Facebook’s Open Graph to offer you a quick way to share clips of the converted footage on your own Timeline. To share a video, you just click the “Share” button on your YesVideo profile page, add whatever metadata your choose, and publish the media to the corresponding date on your Timeline. It’s worth mentioning that the visibility of content published from YesVideo to Facebook is restricted strictly to your friends.
YesVideo is also introducing a feature that indexes your video algorithmically so your content is easily digestible. What this means is that your converted videos uploaded to YesVideo will automatically be broken down into bite-sized clips (called chapters). You’re more likely to share shortened footage than publish the 65 minutes of video that’s converted on average for each YesVideo customer.
YesVideo’s Timeline integration was a natural progression for the company, says CEO Michael Chang. Chang says that based on initial testing, the company has “really seen some explosive growth on Timeline.” Users were already publishing an average of three times more videos in the last two months alone. In August, users shared just 2.3 YesVideo videos on Facebook, and during the Timeline integration trials this month that figure jumped to 6.7 videos. YesVideo users seem to appreciate the collaboration of these two services in general, as 37 percent of them have been logging into the platform through Facebook Connect, so tying the two closer together is a natural next step.
There’s a spillover effect for Facebook as well, as the partnership will help fill out the Timeline. While the last five or so years of your Timeline might be bursting with content, years prior are likely fairly empty. Facebook encourages you to share important historical events in your life including your new job, marriage, or even your birth using the “Life Events” tab. These are all moments possibly documented through video or photographs that YesVideo can seamlessly port over to the Timeline, while also digitally preserving. Talk about killing two birds with one stone.
“We’re posting content like your birth, your first steps, playing with grandma, first birthday, second birthday, and third birthday,” says Chang. “We’re getting that kind of stuff posted to Timeline.”
According to Chang, YesVideo digitizes over 1.5 million videos per year, and with its indexing feature, turns that into approximately somewhere between 75 million and 150 million clips a year. The company is on track to make $60 million in retail revenue (this being YesVideo’s brick-and-mortar operations), which makes up 95 percent of the business.
Next on the agenda is offering an open API so third-party developers can create additional tools, like video editing. “We think of ourselves as more of a platform, so we’re going to start opening up the platform to third-parties,” says Chang.
Chang also hinted at a few features on the road map: “This idea that you have all your home videos and access to your extended family’s old home videos and you sit down and log into your Google TV for instance or your Roku box and voila, you’ve got your home videos that you can share with your family or on your mobile device.” The future of YesVideo, he says, is the idea that “personal home media is an entertainment category for customers.”