YouTube tests ‘1080p Premium’ playback option

Some YouTube viewers have reported seeing a new option for video quality in the website’s drop-down menu. In addition to the basic 1080p playback option, they also found another labeled 1080p Premium with a note below it saying it offers “Enhanced bitrate.” A spokesman said The Verge that the website is testing the new video quality, which is currently available to “a small group of YouTube Premium subscribers.” They describe it as an “enhanced bitrate version of 1080p that provides more information per pixel resulting in a higher quality viewing experience.” Also, there should be no change in the quality of the standard resolution of 1080p, which some people may not consider the good news that YouTube considers.

Based on several comments on the Reddit thread discussing the test, viewers found the website’s standard 1080p resolution to be poor in quality. But a higher bitrate, which is used as a measurement for the amount of video data transferred within a certain timeframe, can mean getting better pictures without the need to bump up in the resolution. as XDA Developers Notes, switching to 4K will give users access to better and sharper looking videos, but they will need to stream a larger file which may cost them or eat up their data allowance.

The enhanced 1080p option is only a testing feature at this point, however, and YouTube may not approve it for a wide rollout. Once it gets out of the experimental phase, only viewers who pay for YouTube Premium will be able to access it. The subscription service will cost users $12 a month for an individual account or $23 a month for a family plan.

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