Any internet user of the world can go to the SWITCHtube video portal and view the videos which are publicly accessible. However, only members of Swiss universities  can create new video channels and can also define the level of confidentiality for these channels. As an owner of a video channel, you can restrict the viewing permission to anyone with an AAI login, to anyone within your organisation or to anyone belonging to a small group of defined people.

The maximum size of a video upload is limited to 5GB per clip. Note that this is the limitation in size of the original video file. SWITCHtube will create smaller files out of this original video file for viewing on different devices and with different browsers. If you try to upload a larger video file, the following error message will appear:

Try to reduce the size of your video file either by cutting / trimming or by converting it to a format with higher compression rate.

If the owner of the video channel has set the permission to also download the video clip, you can store the video locally on your computer in the format H.264 / ACC MP4, which may be much smaller than the original video. 

Uploading of video files may occasionally fail of different reasons. Maybe the uploaded file is only a link to a video, the size of the file is too large or the video files contains a strange resolution or codec inside. You will also notice that large video files can take a very long time to upload and to transcode (up to several hours!).

If uploading repeatably fails or seems to take forever, it is recommended to locally convert the video to a smaller and standard MP4 video format.

There are plenty of Video Converters available for all types of operating systems. We recommend to use Handbrake or the Miro Converter. Search for these video converters on the internet and follow their instructions to convert your video, which then can be processed correctly by SWITCHtube.

If you have a fast internet connection you can also try an online video converter, see http://convert-video-online.com/

Please make sure that the converted video is playing fine locally on your device before you upload it to SWITCHtube.

You can also try to cut your video into two or more parts or to trim it (adjust start and end of a video). A very easy way to trim a video is offered by Quicktime. Go to the Edit Menu of Quicktime and select either "Split Clip" or "Trim..." menu option.


The videos and all the attachements to a video are stored on SWITCHtube is hosted in the data centers of SWITCH which are located in Switzerland and connected to the academic network of SWITCH. Regarding treatment of data we are conform to the relevant Swiss law and regulations.

To get the best possible result, we recommend the following compression settings when you encode your video for upload:


Codec: H.264. Choose “High Profile” if possible.

Frame rate:  25 or 30 FPS. We currently transcode all video to 25 FPS; support for other output rates might be added in the future.

Bit rate: 2000 – 5000 kbit/s for SD, 5000 – 10000 kbit/s for HD (720p or 1080p)

Resolution: 640 pixels wide for SD, 1280 pixels wide for 720p HD, or 1920 pixels wide for 1080p HD. You video will be shown in a widescreen 16:9 aspect ratio player. Don’t add any letterbox bars to your video file if you use another aspect ratio such as 4:3 or 2.35:1; this will be done by the player automatically.


Codec: AAC Low Complexity.

Bit rate: 320 kbit/s. Choose “Constant” if possible.

Sample rate: 48 kHz.

As an owner of a video channel, you can restrict the viewing permission to anyone who knows the secret address of the video channel. Such a video channel cannot be found by just browsing the video channels in SWITCHtube or by typing some keywords in the search box. You need to inform the viewers about this secret address, who then can access the video channel without entering a login name or a password.

This access mode can be very handy and user friendly because you can easily publish a link to your audience. On the other side you do not have any security and confidence that the address to the video channel remains hidden and secret. You should therefore treat the channel as a public channel and avoid any sensitive or personal content. If you want to be certain that only allowed users can view your videos, you have to set the viewing permission to authenticated users with AAI login names & passwords.

Note: if needed you can also renew the link to the hidden video channel and to the videos inside the video channel. This may become necessary if the address to the hidden channel should be only known to the new members of a course, for example. Be aware however that links to this channel and to all videos contained in this channel will be reset. As a consequence all previously used external references will no longer work. This includes embedded videos, links shared on an LMS, and links shared through emails.

Yes,  easily. If you have the permission from you manager you can upload directly to a video channel.  There might be a limitation in size or time depending on your mobile device.

Follow these steps to upload a video with an iPad or iPhone:

1. Open a browser app (Safari) on your mobile device and login to SWITCHtube (tube.switch.ch)

(Note that you can easily create an own SWITCHtube icon on your home screen so you do not need to enter the SWITCHtube web adress each time)

2. Go to one of your Video Channels and click on the "Upload video" button. If you do not see such a button, then you are not the owner (or a collaborator) of the video channel. Ask the owner of the video channel for permission to collaborate or get in touch with the SWITCHtube manager at your institution to get producer permission in SWITCHtube in order to create new video channels.


3. In the Upload form press the Add Video button. Then choose if you want to take a new video (option1) or to select an existing video from your film roll (option2). In most cases you should select option 2.  Capture a video first to the mobile device and to upload it anytime later - when you have a good  WiFi connection.Caution: if you capture your video on a device with cell phone connection, uploading large video files could become expensive if you do not have an unlimited data plan!

If you have a fast and reliable internet connection, and if the video clips are rather short, you can also select option 2, take a video right away and upload it directly to SWITCHtube. Please note that when you select the first option (Take Video), there will be no local copy of your video on the mobile device. That is very handy when there is little or no space left on your mobile device.

4. If you want to take a new video, wait for your camera to start the video recorder and hit the red record button. We recommend to set your device to landscape mode so you can avoid the rather large black sections on the left and right in portrait mode.

5. Stop the recording by pressing the red stop record button. You  can now play the video, retake the video or use the video. Note that you cannot store the video to the film roll at this point. If you want to upload the video to SWITCHtube, press the link "Use Video".

6. Wait until the video upload is complete - whether you take a new video or select an exising video. Then enter name and description of your video:

7. After a short time of video transcoding, the video will become available on SWITCHtube for viewing and sharing. Check the view permission of your video channel if you want to increase or reduce the visability of your new video recording.



In most cases yes. But rather pick a good video camera  with an external microphone input and a good zoom lens. You can record on SDcard and upload a video to SWITCHtube or connect the camera directly to a Mac and record a video via SWITCHcast recorder

No, you cannot upload a complete DVD, but you can upload single VOB files. We recommend to use some SW-tools to create a video with correct audio track as many DVDs have more than a single audio track.

Yes, but you have to upload the MP3 audio file as an attachement to a video clip. You can re-use the small audio movie clip of the public video channel that contains some famous speeches on SWITCHtube, just search for "Speech". Look at the list of attachments and download the file "Audio-Intro.MOV". Now you can add this clip to any of your video channel and attach your MP3 files to it.

In order to add a single collaborator to your video channel do the following steps:

1. Open the panel "Manage channel permissions"

2. In the text box below "Channel collaborators" type the email adress of the new collaborator. If you do not know the correct email address of the collaborator, try with the firstname, the last name or the institution. There should be a list of email addresses displayed from which you can select the correct name.

3. If the correct name is not listed, then the new collaborator has never signed in to SWITCHtube yet. Please enter the full email address into the text box.

4. In all cases, you need to select the email address of the collaborator from the list below the text box - even if there is only one single name displayed.

5. After you have selected the email address, decide if the Collaborator should view only, upload own videos or manage all videos in your channel.

6. Click on Save Changes. The new collaborator will automatically get a "SWITCHtube collaborator notification"

You can add as many collaborators as you want by repeating steps 2 to 6. You can also invite a large group of collaborators, if adding collaborators one by one is too annoying. See the corresponding entry in this FAQ section.

In order to add a larger group of collaborators to your video channel, do the following steps:

1. Go to your video channel and click on "Manage channel permissions"

2. Locate the link "invite a group of collaborators" and click it (usually on the right side of the web page)

3. Copy from a text file or from a table a list of email addresses and paste it to the text box. SWITCHtube will automatically detect and extract email addresses from your copied text section.

4. Decide if the collaborators should only watch videos, upload new videos or manage all videos of your video channels.

5. Click on "Send invitations". An email with topic "SWITCHtube collaborator invitation" will be sent to all found email addresses.

6. As long as the collaborator has not accepted the invitation you will see the message "invitation pending" behind the email address of the collaborator.

Please note: only after you click on "Send invitations" you will see the list of email addresses that was found in the copied text section. SWITCHtube will not detect if an email address is valid or already found. Check you mail system for any returned emails because of invalid email address. 

The so called inline frame or iframe is a powerful HTML-tag which allows you to display a second, separate webpage within your main webpage. The <iframe>tag is used to define such inline frames in your pages. The video below was copied from the SWITCHtube webpage by adding the following embed code on this help page.

iframe code = <iframe src="https://tube.switch.ch/embed/e88f2b99" width="100%" height="650" frameborder="0" webkitallowfullscreen mozallowfullscreen allowfullscreen></iframe>

When the same video is called many times in a loop, the performance or response time of SWITCHtube could become somewhat slow.  This could happen for example when a video is placed in a banner or carousel of a web page with autoplay turned on. The slow performance is causing the thumbnails of other videos to load with some delay or not at all.

In order to keep the traffic to our video stream servers low, please add the appendix ?intent=kiosk to your video whenever such a  video is used in a loop or carousel on a web page. The video is then kept in special cache memory and slow read requests to the servers will be avoided.

An embed code to a video would then become for example: https://tube.switch.ch/embed/84870068?intent=kiosk

or - if the video should automatically start whenever it is called: https://tube.switch.ch/embed/84870068?autoplay&intent=kiosk

Open Educational Resources (OERs) are any type of educational materials that are in the public domain or introduced with an open license. The nature of these open materials means that anyone can legally and freely copy, use, adapt and re-share them. OERs range from textbooks to curricula, syllabi, lecture notes, assignments, tests, projects, audio, video and animation.

You can can make use of OER by defining the content of your video channel publicly available to all and adding a suitable creative commons licence. For more information about OERs, please click on this link here or here.