Apple TV+ offers the highest quality 4K streaming available

Jennifer Aniston and Reese Witherspoon star in The Morning Show on Apple TV+, available on the Apple TV app in over 100 countries and regions since November 1st.
Jennifer Aniston and Reese Witherspoon star in The Morning Show on Apple TV+, available on the Apple TV app in over 100 countries and regions.

Rasmus Larsen for flatpanelshd:

Apple TV+ has the highest streaming quality we’ve seen for 4K so far. It’s higher than most iTunes movies. Over the weekend, I took the first batch of measurements. I’m planning to do more later. It’s worth pointing out that Apple TV+ uses variable bitrate with a quite wide span from low to top, so the console must run for some time to calculate the average bitrate.

See has the highest bitrate so far. 29 Mb/s average video bitrate and 41 Mb/s video peak… The Elephant Queen averages around 26 Mb/s for video bitrate… So that’s approximately 1.5-2x the video bitrate of a typical HD Blu-ray disc (due to HEVC vs. AVC) and around half of a typical UHD Blu-ray disc (also using HEVC).

MacDailyNews Take: Apple TV+ is all about quality over quantity.


  1. Bit rates have to be as good or better than what’s available on disc in order to be a game changer but even still there’s something nice about owning a hard copy, even if you quickly run out of space or can’t possibly own everything you might want.

    1. I used to buy my favourite movies on DVDs, then Blu-Rays. When 4K arrived I stopped.

      Apple upgrades DVD era iTunes movie purchases to 4K at no cost. No need to re-purchase movies. 8K is near… hope the trend continues.

      1. I agree. just a few months ago we got hooked up with a ISP doing fiber to the home and have gigabit download speeds (100MB upload). Since then I’ve not bought a physical copy of anything, not even bothering to download and store it locally (had to before, internet speed wouldn’t stream 4K reliably). Now, no issues. Streaming quality is awesome on the AppleTV 4K, now that we have great bandwidth.

  2. Well, there is a serious problem with Quality, if you enable CC, or subtitling… it starts well, bu all of a sudden everything gets out of sync!! Video, audio, subtitles, all completely out of sync, to a point that it becomes unusable… that needs fixing ASAP.

  3. Some services like Netflix pushed the bounds on producing the highest quality, while doing so as bitrate efficiently as possible. While others made compromises, sometimes on the side of quality, in order to reduce bitrate even further, or compromised on bitrate, in order to deliver the highest quality possible.

    Now that player and device capabilities have become much more advanced, VBR is a standard rate-control, and there is even a new rate control called CABR which stands for Content-Adaptive Bitrate. CABR is an innovation developed by my company Beamr. For those who are interested in how we are able to reduce the bitrate of a standard VBR encoded file by as much as 50%, all without any shift in the original quality, you will want to <a href=""<listen to this podcast episode with one of our algorithm developers discussing how the system works, and the 45 patents that back it up.

    With advances in codecs, such as HEVC, which Apple uses (and every other service delivering 4K today), and with innovations like Beamr Content-Adaptive Encoding technology, you will be surprised at how awesome the video can look at bitrates that are closer to 10Mbps, than 20Mbps, for 4k/UHD HDR.

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