remember that streaming is more expensive than progressive download. Most of the companies will offer you progressive download but not streaming. I mean, they will offer you to put the file on a traditionnal webserver (apache or whatever) and you will play it through your flash player (jeroen flv player for example) This is not streaming !
If you want to stream your movies, you'll need a streaming server such as Adove FMSS or Wowza. I already performed some tests on wowza plateform with a hd file (720p) at 3.5 Mbits and and you have a quality near bluray or hd-dvd, the quality is way far from dvd...
Then, your file can be encoded 2 ways :
- on2vp62, 720p, at the bitrate you want (1.5 mbits is a good compromise between bandwidth and quality but it's not perfect), seekable, it is the poor man HD
- h264, 720p or more, at the bitrate you want. This codec enables you to have a better quality at lower bitrate than on2vp62. (no seekable)
Remember that HD is bandwidth consuming.
But, some alternative exist :
stage6.com : up to 1080p but your visitors will need a plugin !
vimeo.com : up to 720p, flash, on2vp62 at 1500 Kbps.
and probably other website but I give you those I know.
thanks to those website, no bandwidth issues because you don't need to bother about it...
Vimeo is generally considered the best free service for doing this, and it serves them via Flash too which is superb for compatibility. Unless you piece together the components yourself (encode it as Flash video, etc), you're probably better off with going with a service.