Netflix’s new move will save your data more while streaming videos
Millions of smartphone users stream videos on Netflix everyday, consuming large amounts of data. While some are on the SD and HD tier, many are also on the Ultra HD premium tier, which is also responsible for guzzling the most data. But this is about to change now as Netflix is changing the streaming codec that results in less usage of data while giving nearly the same quality of video. As announced by the Netflix engineers on the Medium blog post, the firm is moving to AV1 for the Android app. The new codec is said to deliver 20% improved compression over the VP9 codec that is being currently used.
Netflix engineers add that they plan to bring AV1 codec to all the platforms, which means desktop apps, web version and the iOS app as well. "While our goal is to roll out AV1 on all of our platforms, we see a good fit for AV1's compression efficiency in the mobile space where cellular networks can be unreliable, and our members have limited data plans," states the post. "In the spirit of making AV1 widely available, we are sponsoring an open-source effort to optimize 10-bit performance further and make these gains available to all," it adds.
While end users will hardly notice any difference, Netflix states that select titles are now already available to stream in AV1. The post adds that AV1 codec makes use of the open source dav1d decoder built by the VideoLAN, VLC, and FFmpeg communities and sponsored by the Alliance for Open Media, which has Netflix as one of its founding members.
In addition, the streaming platform says it is working with select OEMs and chipmakers to extend AV1's usage into hardware.
For the unversed, Netflix currently has four plans in India. The 'Mobile' plan is priced at ₹199 per month, while the Basic, Standard and Premium tiers are priced at ₹499, ₹649 and ₹799 respectively.