Vimeo, long playing second fiddle to YouTube, has released some new features that should be very attractive to video producers.
First, Plus members ($59.95 per year or $9.95 per month) can now upload files as large as 5 GB - meaning full-feature HD film uploads, or up to 2.5 hours of HD per week. With a Plus membership, Vimeo users can also upload unlimited HD videos per week, within the weekly limit (non-Plus members are limited to one new HD video per week).
Also when it comes to HD videos, Plus members can automatically embed the HD version of their videos so that users need not choose the HD viewing option. However, be careful with this option, particularly when embedding video outside of your own site, where page elements out of your control can slow load times.
An attractive option for marketers and brand curators, Vimeo now offers custom URLs for videos. This is great for branding and recall purposes (and very useful for tweeting and Facebook updates) but will not influence SEO, as the root URL will continue to be a numbered sequence. The Vimeo blog states, however, that this is only a redirect "for now."
Finally, Vimeo now allows users to hide their activity on their profile page. This feature has been requested often from Vimeo users as a way to increase privacy.