Vimeo courts filmmakers with larger upload limits

An announcement at CES trade show Wednesday makes it possible for Vimeo videos to be up to 2.5 hours long, making it a more appealing option for filmmakers.

Vimeo, one of the few online video hosting services to both survive and thrive in a YouTube-dominated world, announced at the CES 2011 show in Las Vegas today that it will now allow members of its paid Vimeo Plus service to upload videos of up to 5GB in size. That's enough for a 2.5-hour-long movie in high definition.

The announcement comes at a time when Vimeo is trying to make itself a friendlier destination for long-form content as well as for living room viewing. This fall, Vimeo launched "Couch Mode," a big-screen-friendly version of its video player designed for use with set-top boxes like Google TV and home theater PC systems. It's timely that the announcement is coming out at CES, where the emphasis is on the big hardware systems and TV manufacturers that Vimeo likely wants to court for more deals.

"Since we launched our Vimeo Plus service two years ago, we have continually added to and rounded out its offerings," Dae Mellencamp, general manager of the IAC-owned Vimeo, said in a release. "We continually strive to provide our subscriber base with the best and most robust features available."

Vimeo has from the start courted independent filmmakers and animators, branding itself as much as a hub for creative types as a video-hosting site. Its Vimeo Plus offering charges $59.95 per year for more bandwidth than the free version, the ability to upload more HD videos, analytics, and an ad-free site.

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