YouTube on Android Now Lets You Play 4K Video on Devices with Lower Res Display


The YouTube app on Android has just received a new update to let you play videos at up to 4K resolution. All you need is a phone that has a 4K display, as well as a good internet connection, and you are good to go. However, it seems that Google has now opened up the unsupported video resolution option on many devices, which in theory, will allow people to play 4K videos on devices with a resolution lower than 4K.

YouTube on Android Now Supports 4K Resolution Across All Devices Regardless of Resolution

According to a few posts on the YouTube subreddit, the YouTube app on Android now lets you play 4K videos even if you do not have a supported phone, considering how smartphones with 4K display are not available in abundance. A Reddit user, u/Liskowskyyshared a screenshot that shows all the video resolution options up to 2160p regardless of your phone's resolution.

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While some claim that it is a bug and will be rolled back, another solid argument that says otherwise is that this was intentional. The reason is simple, by letting 4K videos play on lower resolution displays, you essentially see downscaling, which means that a 4K video on a 1080p display or a 1440p display will look a lot better of fidelity. I did test this on my Galaxy S21 Ultra and then on my LG C9, and the results are definitely different, and in many cases, better as well.

This update makes sense for all devices because 4K videos generally have a higher bitrate, which will allow for a much better overall viewing experience. The videos will come out looking a lot sharper, too.

At the time of writing, the video resolution feature seems to be available to everyone worldwide. I checked on my Galaxy S21 Ultra and a couple of other devices, and all seem to have this resolution available on them. It is safe to say that YouTube will not be rolling back, but we will let you know if they change their minds.