Officially, Opera CTO Håkon Wium Lie was at Google's developer conference to discuss WebP – Mountain View's open source effort to replace the aging JPEG image compression format – but he'd rather talk about WebM, the video format he calls the last missing piece in the standard web platform. This morning, at Google I/O in …
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WebM is an "option"
"It has said that in the foreseeable future, WebM is not an option on YouTube". That's a bit of a mangled quote since WebM is indeed, quite literally, an option on YouTube.
What they actually said was that the HTML5 video tag was currently missing some features which meant that not every video could be served through it, due to adverts, DRM etc. but that they're working to move it forward. In the meantime you can opt-in and it'll try to serve HTML5 and WebM, and fall back to HTML5/H.264 and then H.264/Flash as required.
Note that if Adobe delivered their promised WebM support then Google would be able to deliver WebM via Flash with all these bells and whistles included. It's the browsers support for HTML5 video that is lacking features, not the codec itself. Safari, IE (and current versions of Chrome) face the same issues when delivering H.264 video via the same mechanism.