Online video isn't just becoming faster, more accessible, and of higher quality; it's also growing quickly as a media platform. In fact, in July 2012, 184 million Web users in the US accounted for 36.9 billion video content views—and an average of 22.3 hours of video content viewed per viewer.

How did online video get to that point? Although its beginnings are complex, we can point to three main contenders in the 1990s that began bringing online video to the masses: Quicktime Player, Windows Media Player, and RealTime.

Although creating online video once required consideration of multiple complex video codecs, developers are now on track to streamline that process with the adoption of HTML5, a Web markup language that's being standardized.

What else has evolved in the online video world? The following infographic, compiled by KZO Innovations, a video software company that provides an on-demand video platform for the enterprise, government, and small business markets, offers a more detailed look at how online video access has evolved in recent years.

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