Video Editor Eric Wolfram tells us how to create video for blackberry phones

We recently had a client ask us if we were able to distribute their corporate video as a file that could be viewed on Blackberry Phone. Yes it is possible to view videos on a blackberry phone but it’s not as simple as putting something on Youtube. We wanted to share what we discovered.

The important thing about watching video on your blackberry is the file type and codec. For those non-video nerds, a file type is the way the file is saved or exported- i.e. .mov. mp4, avi, etc. A codec is a subset, often regardless of file type. Here are the Supported Media Types for BlackBerry Smartphones.

As you can see from that PDF document, Research in Motion, the maker of Blackberry’s hasn’t made the task easy, because almost every model has different requirements. Good thing there is at least one file type that can work on almost all models. We chose an MP4 file and also had success with the AVI format.

This Promo Video Optimized for Blackberry Curve 8300 was compressed as an MP4 file at about 600kb/second, 320×160 resolution at 24 f/s.

One last important detail to note, watching video on a blackberry is also subject to file size. You can’t email large files to Blackberry users, even if they try to download via wifi, this often is subject to the blackberry file size limits. The work around is to download the larger files from a web page on the Internet using the Opera browser.

For best results, blackberry users would visit this page on the Opera Browser and download the file to their blackberry as opposed to attempting to stream the video from a web server. This is done by selecting the link below within the Opera Browser and “Save” the video to the video folder or somewhere else on the blackberry phone. Then open the file with the Media application. The media application has an icon of a film reel.

We have decided to output the final file in at least two formats. One in a small version as an .avi, mpeg4 format for the people with older less expensive Blackberry phones and another higher resolution in quicktime for the users with the latest and greatest smartphones. We also recommend that the 10 minute video be chopped into three minute chunks. This way more users would take the time to download view the videos.

Eric Wolfram, a principal at WPRNY, has experience editing news with CNN and streaming live video events for WPRNY