Netflix to Stream AV1 Format for Android

Video-streaming application Netflix released its latest video format geared for Android users. The new video format now reportedly supports AV1 video codec, which the company claims to save 20 percent data.

AV1 is a high performance and royalty-free video codec, states Netflix. The codec allows compression efficiency over the current VP9 encodes utilized by the company. Likewise, Netflix acknowledges that the AV1 codec is made possible by its partnership and involvement in the Alliance for Open Media (AOMedia).

In a blog post, the video-streaming company states that although the release is currently available for Android devices and users, it plans to make the format available to other platforms as well. It said, “We see a good fit for AV1’s compression efficiency in the mobile space were cellular networks can be unreliable, and our members have limited data plans. Selected titles are now available to stream in AV1 for customers who wish to reduce their cellular data usage by enabling the “Save Data” feature.”

Netflix Stream AV1 Format

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Still, in its early stages, the company reveals that there are still limited titles available for streaming, states Tech Crunch.

Though the company has yet to provide a detailed explanation of the benefits of utilizing the AV1 video codec, The Verge outlines some of its many uses. At the core of it is users consuming significantly fewer data.

Moreover, this particular feature is supported across a variety of platforms and backed by major players in the industry. These include Amazon, Apple, Google, Intel, Microsoft, and Netflix. Other key players who support this are ARM, Facebook, Mozilla, Nvidia, Samsung, and Tencent.

Although the AV1 format is slated to be a game-changer, The Verge sees this offering as one that comes with restrictions. For example, the “Save Data” feature indicates that the feature may not support high definition and high-quality videos. This can result in low picture quality.

In addition, Endgadget says that upon utilizing the same format on YouTube playback, a warning message pops up, saying “Streaming AV1 in HD requires a powerful computer.” The Verge notes that this could affect the battery life of devices. At the same time, it brings the idea that the codec may not work seamlessly in smartphones where the format is not supported.

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As of writing, the company reveals that it is working with industry partners as well as device and chipset manufacturers to bring this feature into device hardware.

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