What is Codec?
A Program, that helps to open, play and create an audio/video file, uses Codec.
Codec is a device or software that is used to compress and/or decompress an audio or video file. It can consist of two components- an encoder (to compress the data) and a decoder (to decompress the data). Some codec's include both of encoder and decoder components and some codec's only include one of them. Audio/Video codec's allow compressing files and also decompress these files for playback. By compressing the audio/video, the codec effectively decreases the size of the audio or video which makes the transmitting audio or video possible over the Internet. Codec's make easy the task of transferring big chunks of audio and video through the network.
Codec enables you to play and view almost all audio and video format files. If the codec is not present and properly installed on your computer, file will not open.
A specific installed codec is required on your computer to open a specific audio/video format file. Without the right codec in place, it would be difficult to transmit or save any video/audio signal and you will not be able to play audio or video.
You can visit: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Codec for more information.
How to determine a Codec of an Audio/Video file?
A variety of codecs can be in an audio/video format. An audio and video file codec can be determined by loading the file in a media player program such as VLC media player, Windows Media Player, etc.
Play Audio/ Video Files
Audios/Videos are available in various formats that can be played with the specific codec. Each specific audio/video format file can be viewed and played with specific codec.
VLC Media Player
It is a multi-format media player program that contains many popular codec and allows playing most video/ audio files. Not only it supports a wide range of audio/video formats but also it is most simple, stable, fast and flexible program to play video/audio files. VLC Media Player is a free and open source program that plays most audio/video codec's, formats as well as DVDs and VCDs on most platforms such as Windows, Linux, Mac, UNIX, etc.
Play Audio/Video on iPAD
The iPad, a tablet computer introduced by Apple, allows you to experience the web, view photos, play music, and watch videos anywhere you go.
iPad supports .H264, .MOV, MPEG, M4V, MP4 video formats and AAC, MP3, M4a audio formats and allows playing them.
Since audios/videos are encoded in many different formats, you must convert it to the iPAD supported video formats, to watch downloaded videos from the web on your iPad.
Play Audio/Video on iPhone
The iPhone is a line of Internet and multimedia-enabled Smartphone introduced by Apple Inc.
iPhone supports video .H264, MPEG-4,.mp4, .m4v, .mov formats and audio files in AAC, MP3, M4a, Apple lossless and Audible.
Since audios/videos are encoded in many different formats, you must convert it to the iPhone supported video formats, to watch downloaded videos from the web on your iPhone.
Play Video on Android Devices
The Android is an open source operating system for mobile device, Smartphone and tablet computers, introduced by Google. It allows developers to create richer mobile, Smartphone's and tablet PCs applications. Android operating system offers excellent features to store and watch videos on its mobile phones(Samsung , Sony , HTC, LG, Motorola) Smartphone's (Samsung, Sony, etc.) and tablet PCs (Dell Streak 7 4G Android Tablet, Samsung Galaxy Tab, Motorola XOOM Android Tablet, Vewsonic G-Tablet).
The Android operating system supports H.263, H.264, AVC, MPEG-4 SP and VP8 video codec formats and 3GP and MP4 video file formats. It supports AAC, MP3, MIDI and Ogg Vorbis audio codec formats and 3GPP, MP3, MPEG-4, Ogg, and WAV audio file formats. Android operating system supports AAC codec format and 3GP and MP4 file formats for playback.
Since videos are encoded in many different formats, you must convert it to the Android supported video formats, to watch downloaded videos from the web on your Android devices.