Compatible Video for the iPad - dummies

Compatible Video for the iPad

By Edward C. Baig, Bob LeVitus

The iPad works with a whole bunch of video, although not everything you’ll want to watch will make it through. Several Internet video standards — notably Adobe Flash — are not supported.

The absence of Flash is a bugaboo because Flash has been the technology behind much of the video on the web, although the landscape is changing. Indeed, Apple backs other standards — HTML5, CSS 3, and JavaScript — and is apparently sensitive enough to the issue that in the early days of the iPad, Apple made mention of several sites where video would play on the iPad.

The list included CNN, The New York Times, Vimeo, Time, ESPN, Major League Baseball, NPR, The White House, Sports Illustrated, TED, Nike, CBS, Spin, and National Geographic. What’s more, entertainment apps from Netflix and ABC help fill the TV/movie void as well.

With the appropriate utility software, you might also be able to convert some nonworking video to an iPad-friendly format on your computer. But if something doesn’t play now, it may in the future because Apple has the capability to upgrade the iPad through software.

In the meantime, you can find a description of the video formats that iPad supports on Apple’s website.

For a somewhat technical workaround without potential conversion hassles, try the Air Video app from InMethod s.r.o. The utility app can deliver AVI, DivX, MKV, and other videos that wouldn’t ordinarily play on your iPad. You can also check out a limited free version. You have to download Air Video Server software to your Mac or PC to stream content to your iPad. Or try the excellent (and free) HandBrake application from.