A HyperText Markup Language (HTML) music player is a container embedded in a website that plays music or audio. The HTML music player is just an embed tag that also can be used for videos and plug-ins. Depending on the coding, an HTML music player can either be two-button or an entire console with play and pause buttons and a progress bar. Unlike some other HTML tags, the music player has cross-browser support so it can work over all major Internet applications, though the coding for each browser used to be different. A programmer also can set the audio to start when someone enters the website, or he can allow the visitor to start the audio manually.
As of 2011, there officially is no such thing as an HTML music player, because there is no tag specifically for this type of function. Instead, when someone uses an embed tag to place a music or audio file into a website, the website shows a small or large console that plays the file. This same tag is used to embed movies and plug-ins.
An HTML music player comes in two visible formats: two-button and an entire console. If the user makes it two-button, then there are start and stop buttons. With a console, there is a progress bar, tracking buttons and start and stop buttons. There is a third type of music player — an invisible one — that this gives the user no control over whether the audio file will play.
When the HTML music player was first created, it did not have cross-browser support, meaning the coding for each browser had to be slightly different. The programmer also had to enter player information so the website knew what software to open to make the audio file play, depending on the file’s format. This music player eventually gained cross-browser support and the need for various coding to achieve the desired effect disappeared.
Typically, when an HTML music player is used, the programmer allows the user to choose whether he wants to play the file. While this is common, the programmer also may choose to make the file play when the visitor opens the website, so he has to hear the music or audio. If the music player is made invisible, then setting the audio file to auto-start is the only way it will play.