The move to streaming video services was quick. It started as a niche area for hardened geeks, but now this is the way almost all people watch videos.
Uploading videos to the internet are now easier than ever. Free video hosting is just as common (with a few limits in place). But what service shall you choose? Here are the best free online hosting services for your videos.
It’s hard to think of free online video without thinking of YouTube. Much like it’s owner Google, the word YouTube has become synonymous with video searching, if you are looking for a song, clip, or meme, you are likely to “YouTube” it.
It’s not without reason as YouTube is a huge platform and the world’s biggest free hosting video site for everyone. Verified accounts can upload videos up to 128 GB in size.
Anyone can search your uploaded videos. You can keep it private, or you can unlist it so that only people with the link can view it. YouTube also supports streaming to a live audience, later saving the videos to the user’s channel.
Any content creator can use adverts to generate revenue on the video hosting site. YouTube Premium removes these adverts for a monthly fee. Premium members also get access to the YouTube Original programs and a premium Music Service, along with downloading and background play.
Vimeo has a reputation for being the video platform for people serious about video. It earned this reputation as for some time it was the only platform that provided truly high-quality video hosting services for free.
This made Vimeo a firm favorite with film-makers and animators alike. While Vimeo may no longer have the edge over YouTube in terms of its quality, it is still the second name in video hosting on the web.
With a Vimeo free account, you can only upload 500MB per week, with a cap at 5 GB. There are four paid account levels: Plus, Pro, Business, and Premium. Each level ups the limit for uploading, along with adding extra features like customizable players for embedding into websites and social media.
When you think of Twitch, you probably thought of live broadcasting first. You are right as it is one of the favorite live streaming platforms for gamers and esports. The service has taken off in recent years, with many people opting to watch their favorite content creators live rather than pre-recorded.
Twitch TV is an Amazon subsidiary. Capitalizing on their success, Twitch started offering free hosting services to their users, and you can find as much pre-recorded content as live broadcasts on the site.
Free video uploading is available to Twitch affiliates for free. Videos range from previous broadcasts to videos filmed entirely off-line and uploaded after editing. You are limited to 5 simultaneous uploads per user, with a maximum of 100 uploads in 24 hours.
For quite some time, Dailymotion was a direct competitor to YouTube. Dailymotion provided a counterpoint to YouTube in the early days of internet copyright law, providing access to content YouTube was starting to crack down on.
Dailymotion’s reputation as the cowboy YouTube is a thing of the past now, with many businesses and new services using the service for embedded content. Dailymotion also allows users to monetize their content based on view count.
5. Google Drive
While Google Drive is ostensibly a way of backing up personal files, it is also well suited to hosting videos. With Google Drive, you miss out on the community aspect of traditional video sites and social media, but there is an advantage.
Place a compatible video file in your Google Drive and it will automatically be processed into a YouTube video. You can then share the videos with a link, or embed it into websites and social media posts.
There is no hard limit to Google Drive video sizes, as long as it fits in your drive you are good to go!
Facebook has done so much with the platform since inception (with some security breaches along the way) that it might be easier to list a service they are not trying to provide. Facebook provide simple video uploading and live streaming services for free to all of their users.
Uploading a video to Facebook is as easy as sharing any other post on your timeline. Videos can be embedded, and HD uploading is available on desktop and through the Facebook apps for Android and iOS.
Instagram has exploded in popularity in recent years. It is a surprise to no-one that the Facebook-owned platform would move into video. As well as the familiar Instagram Stories feature, Instagram added IGTV, a longer form video service in 2018.
Videos on IGTV can be between 15 seconds and 10 minutes long, and in a departure from the norm, must be portrait rather than landscape. Popular Instagram users have taken to the service, but all users can post videos by creating an IGTV account in the app or on the Instagram website.
Twitter may not be known as much of a video service, but in reality, a considerable portion of the video watched daily is through the platform. The limit of two minutes and twenty seconds doesn’t seem to stop thousands of videos being shared through the site every day.
You can record and upload video through the Twitter app or the browser. Twitter owns Periscope and uses the same tech to enable live streaming natively on Twitter. Live streaming is available through the Twitter app.
In its early days, Metacafe occupied a similar space online to YouTube and DailyMotion. Since its acquisition in 2012, the site has seen fewer users. Despite this, videos still get views in the tens of millions so it may be too early to count Metacafe out.
Accounts are free, but videos are limited to under ten minutes. For those hoping to find an NSFW equivalent to YouTube will be disappointed. Much like the other sites on this list, it does not allow sexually explicit videos. Videos portraying illegal acts of violence and death are also banned.
Wistia started as a site for artists to store their video portfolios, but it quickly pivoted to businesses. Now, Wistia aims at commercial users, who want a place to upload videos and receive statistics useful for business growth.
Wistia has a free tier anyone can use to host videos for embedding on their site or blog. The paid tiers allow for customized and personally branded video players and high-level analytics for marketers and advertisers.
Make Quality Videos First
Uploading video is easy to do. In many ways choosing the right format for your videos is a more challenging task.
There are so many online platforms to choose from with your videos it is easy to get overwhelmed. Don’t forget, you need to learn how to produce quality content first!