News Apple TV 4K

Published on January 8th, 2018 | by Kirk Hiner


New 4K UHD movies on Apple TV, and a move for cheaper compression

If you’ve been enjoying the capabilities of your new Apple TV 4k, we’ve got a couple bits of good news for you today.

First, Apple continues to expand the list of movies available in 4K UHD, including The Snowman, Blade Runner 2049, Mother! and It. Most movies have been arriving for sale first, so watch your favorites to see when the rentals pop up. For example although you can purchase any of the above movies, rental dates for each are as follows:

  • The Snowman – January 16, 2018
  • Blade Runner 2049 – January 16, 2018
  • Mother! – Now
  • It – January 9, 2018

And while we’re talking about 4K and Apple, is reporting that Apple has joined the Alliance For Open Media in an effort to bring cheaper 4K video compression to a market currently dominated by H.265/HEVC. Apple joins Google, Amazon, Netflix and more in this push.

As explained at

The new format is known as the AV1 video codec (AOMedia Video 1) and is currently being designed by the Alliance for Open Media developers to improve and make more efficient video transmissions over the Internet.

The AV1 codec was first showcased by Mozilla (also a member of the Alliance) with an early version a few months ago. According to Mozilla’s statement, this compression technology makes video files 25% to 35% smaller than those compressed with HEVC and Google’s VP9. The HEVC itself offers a 50% reduction in file size compared to H.264, so this means that the AV1 itself can achieve 85% file size reduction if compared to H.264, which has been the dominant standard in recent years.

It’s another indication that Apple is serious about delivering 4K content to its customers. With all of the new shows Apple is announcing, they’ll obviously want to stream that content to users in the most efficient manner possible. And if any company is known for eschewing industry standards for something more efficient, it’s Apple.

For more information on the technology and Apple’s role in the Alliance for Open Media, visit

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About the Author

has been writing for the Apple web since 1997, having served as editor of Applelinks and the Technology Tell Apple Channel. In addition to his work with BEST Apple TV, Kirk currently contributes to Mac Gamer HQ and Pure Nintendo. He lives with his wife and three children in small-town Ohio where the land is cheap and the air is (relatively) clean.

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