Interactive video

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The term interactive video usually refers to a technique used to blend interaction and linear film or video.

Interactive video on broadband[edit]

Since 2005, interactive video has increased online as the result a number of factors including:

  • the rise in numbers of users accessing the internet at broadband speeds
  • the addition of video as a media type to Flash

Because users are often reluctant to pay for online content, it is perhaps unsurprising that many of the new online interactive videos (including all the examples given below) are funded by grants, sponsorships, or advertisers. A number of these pieces of these have won major awards.

Some principal forms of online interactive video that have emerged are listed below.

Video click throughs[edit]

A number of interactive video technologies have been developed in the last few years that utilize a new way of encoding videos allowing users to add clickable hotspots to video.

There are also technologies that allow video producers to insert questions, calculations, results, lead capture, and personality assessments directly into the video experience. Interactivity that used to require post-production is now available to any video creator for their existing video content.


In April 2012, Canadian fashion retailer partnered with interactive video technology company, WIREWAX, to release an interactive music video, featuring Iggy Azalea, Diplo and FKi, which was conceived from the outset as a marriage of art and commerce. All the styles featured in the video could be bought by clicking on the stars wearing them at any time the viewer saw an 'S' tag. The video was discussed on fashion blogs and in print.[1][2]

"Customizable" online interactive videos[edit]

Customizable videos allow the user to adjust some variables and then play a video customised to the user's particular preferences. However the user does not actually interact with the video while it is playing. Recent examples of this form of video include:

"Conversational" online interactive videos[edit]

Conversational videos allow the user to interact with a video in a turn-based manner, almost as though the user was having a simple conversation with the characters in the video. Recent examples include:

"Exploratory" online interactive videos[edit]

Exploratory videos allow the user to move through a space or look at an object such as an artwork from multiple angles, almost as though the user was looking at the object in real life. The object or space is depicted using video loops, not still, creating a more "live" feel. Recent examples include:

  • The BT Series - Interactive video exploration of the works of Tracey Emin, Anthony Gormley and Rachel Whiteread. Created for the Tate Gallery by Martin Percy. Webby Nominee 2006[7] and Honoree 2007.[8]
  • Tate Tracks - Interactive video exploration of various works, allowing the user to listen to music while looking at art. Created for the Tate Gallery by Martin Percy. Part of integrated campaign winning Cannes Gold Lion 2007.[9]

Aside from online use, interactive video may be found in a variety of applications, as listed below.

Interactive video in early computer games[edit]

The term interactive video or interactive movie sometimes refers to a nowadays uncommon technique used to create computer games or interactive narratives. Instead of 3D computer graphics an interactive image flow is created using premade video clips, often produced by overlaying computer-generated material with 12-inch videodisc images (where the setup is known as "level III" interactive video, to distinguish it from "level I" or videodisc-only, and "level II" requiring specially made videodisc players that support handheld-remote-based interactivity without using an external computer setup). The clips can be animation like in the video game Dragon's Lair or live action video like in the video game Night Trap. Compared to other computer graphics techniques interactive video tends to emphasize the looks and movement of interactive characters instead of interactivity.

Interactive video in cinema[edit]

Interactive video has been used in interactive cinema presentations.

Interactive video in YouTube[edit]

In 2008 YouTube added Video Annotations as an interactive layer of clickable speech-bubble, text-boxes and spotlights. Users may add interactive annotations to their videos and by that a new trend of interactive videos arose, including choose-your-own-adventure video series, online video games using YouTube videos, spot-the-difference-game videos, animal-dubbing and more. In 2009 YouTube added a community aspect to its Video Annotations feature by allowing video owners to invite their friends and community to add annotations to their movies.

Around 2010 YouTube released the interactive takeovers, certain channels had the opportunity to integrate an iFrame experience enabling them to include interactive videos. Some of the most successful takeovers were done by brands such as Samsung, Tipp-Ex or Chrome.[10]

Interactive video in advertising[edit]

In 2014, video marketing platform Innovid was awarded a U.S. patent for interactive video technology.[11]

In 2017, the interactive video agency Adways created a specific format called InContent that enables to add interactive ads on a live stream for Roland-Garros.[12]

Interactive video in science communications[edit]

Documentary filmmakers have leveraged interactivity to communicate ideas about technology in new ways. One such example is the Peabody Award-winning Do Not Track, created by Brett Gaylor.

Interactive video art[edit]

Contemporary interactive video artists like Miroslaw Rogala, Greyworld, Raymond Salvatore Harmon, Lee Wells, Camille Utterback, Scott Snibbe, and Alex Horn have extended the form of interactive video through the dialog of gesture and the participatory involvement of both active and passive viewers. Perpetual art machine is a video art portal and interactive video installation that integrates over 1000 international video artists into a single interactive large scale video experience.

Interactive video in cell phone gaming[edit]

A number of interactive video cell phone games have been developed over the last several years.[citation needed]

Interactive video in VJing[edit]

Technically VJing is also about creating a stream of video interactively. this involves the user/operator to mix video clips, runtime plugins, and FX to the music's mood, bpm, and vibe.

Interactive video in research[edit]

The human-computer interaction (HCI) research community as well as the multimedia research community have published several works on video interaction tools. A survey is provided in [13]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Fortune Magazine". Archived from the original on 2012-04-15. Retrieved 2012-05-25.
  2. ^ Mashable
  3. ^ Archived January 27, 2007, at the Wayback Machine
  4. ^ BAFTA nominations 2007
  5. ^
  6. ^
  7. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2006-04-12. Retrieved 2008-11-04.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link) Webby nomination 2006 for The BT Series with Tracey Emin
  8. ^ Webby honoree 2007 for The BT Series
  9. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2007-06-26. Retrieved 2007-07-08.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link) 2007 Cannes Gold Lion for Integrated Campaigns
  10. ^ Fisher, Lauren (2011-04-04). "The 6 Best YouTube Brand Takeovers". The Next Web. Retrieved 2018-01-08.
  11. ^ Sullivan, Laurie (April 3, 2015). "Innovid's Video Patent Helps Leverage Online Ad Options". MediaPost. Retrieved July 26, 2016.
  12. ^ "Innovation Roland-Garros : " le live In-content"". May 28, 2017.
  13. ^ Klaus Schoeffmann, Marco A. Hudelist, and Jochen Huber. 2015. Video Interaction Tools: A Survey of Recent Work. ACM Comput. Surv. 48, 1, Article 14 (September 2015), 34 pages.