Not too long ago, Microsoft released an extension for Google Chrome which enabled H.264 HTML5 video playback. Now Google has returned the favor by offering a WebM plug-in for Internet Explorer 9 users. In a move which we can only describe as oozing with self-confidence, Google points out that there are some known issues -- visit this page, and revel in its blankness.
If you plan on using IE9 but don't want to miss out on all the WebM videos which are popping up, download and install the plug-in now. The plug-in only works on Vista and Windows 7, but conveniently the same is true for IE9.
Google has already announced that it would be dropping H.264 support from Chrome, but some other key players in the browser arena aren't backing down. Microsoft, of course, is standing behind MPEG-LA's codec -- and now it's making sure that Chrome users will still be able to view HTML5 video embeds which are encoded with it. The magic will be handled by a new browser add-on called Windows Media Player Extension for HTML5. No, it's not a full-on plug-in -- which is kind of what we were expecting, given Microsoft's affinity for NPAPI tomfoolery.
To add the extension to your Google Chrome install, just visit Microsoft's download page and agree to the alert you see above.