It appears like the next Apple television 4K may be all set to go 8K

The Apple TV 4K 2021 and its remote sitting on a table

( Image credit: Future)

Evidence has actually been discovered in code for Apple’s next huge round of software application updates– consisting of for iOS on phones, iPadOS on tablets, macOS on Macs and, naturally, tvOS on Apple Television 4K— that Apple will support the next-gen AV1 video format on its gadgets in the future.

AV1 has one significant benefit: it’s more effective than present video codecs (a ‘codec’ is the algorithm by which a video is encoded for streaming, and after that translated for seeing). This indicates you utilize less information to stream video at the exact same quality, or you can utilize the exact same quantity of information to stream even higher-quality video, such as supporting 8K without utilizing masses of information.

AV1 is utilized by YouTube for all of its 8K videos, and Netflix has actually revealed a desire to change to AV1 for all streaming in the future, to minimize bandwidth usage. At the minute, it’s not supported on Apple gadgets at all.

But as identified by in brand-new tab)(by means of FlatpanelsHD(opens in brand-new tab)), the AVFoundation structure in Apple software application, which allows designers to inform the software application which codec a video will utilize, now consists of an AV1 choice in the tvOS/iOS/iPad 16 beta.

This is an extremely strong tip that Apple will support AV1 in its next updates, though we’ve asked Apple for verification, and will upgrade if the business reacts.

Analysis: Will the Apple television 4K assistance 8K?

While having AV1 assistance will be excellent on all gadgets for minimizing information utilize when enjoying videos on the go specifically, or enhancing streaming quality for those on a bad connection in the house, the huge concern for us is whether the present Apple television 4K will have the ability to support its 8K abilities, or whether the much-rumored brand-new Apple television (2022) will be required to support 8K.

There are 2 huge concerns over this. The very first is the HDMI port on the present Apple television 4K. It’s currently an HDMI 2.1 port, which suggests the connection itself can deal with 8K at approximately 60 fps. as kept in mind by iMore(opens in brand-new tab), the Apple Television 4K does not in fact make complete usage of HDMI 2.1’s greater bandwidth, which would make 8K difficult as it stands. Consider it in this manner: the pipeline is big enough to manage the circulation of 8K, however the pump isn’t strong enough to fill the pipeline.

Apple TV 4K (2021)

Is the chip inside the Apple television 4K holding it back? Something’s stopping that HDMI port from reaching its complete capacity … ( Image credit: TechRadar)

Could Apple update the pump? The short article above is from 2021, however as far as we’re conscious, Apple hasn’t done it up until now, so it might be that there’s some hardware constraint aside from the HDMI port that’s stopping it. Once again, we’ve asked Apple to validate if it would be possible, and will upgrade if we hear back.

The 2nd concern is the A12 chip that powers the Apple television 4K. Apple’s chips have not consisted of hardware deciphering assistance for AV1 in the past, which indicates there can be no ultra-fast, ultra-efficient decoding of this video type operate on a devoted part of the chip. Rather, it will need to done ‘in software application’, which implies utilizing the basic processing power of the chip to translate the video.

The Apple A12 chip is almost 4 years of ages, so the issue is whether it has adequate power to decipher 8K video in real-time.

These issues might fit with the primary report about the brand-new Apple television that’s stated to release later on this year or early next year: that its greatest modification internally will be a more recent A14 processor with more RAM. This may offer it the power for AV1 decoding, and it might likewise be the processor that’s kept back the capability to make complete usage of the HDMI 2.1 port.

It may be a while prior to any of this pertains to fulfillment, however if you’ve got among the finest 8K TVs and have actually been expecting more assistance, Apple is at least one action better to assisting you out.

Matt Bolton

Matt is TechRadar’s Senior Editor for Television and Audio, suggesting he’s in charge of encouraging our group of customers to view beautiful TVs and listen to great speakers and earphones. It’s a hard job, as you can picture. Matt has more than a years of experience in tech publishing, and formerly ran the television & & audio protection for our associates at, and prior to that he modified T3 publication. Throughout his profession, he’s likewise added to locations as differed as Creative Bloq, PC Gamer, PetsRadar, MacLife, and Edge. Television and motion picture nerdism is his speciality, and he goes to the movie theater 3 times a week. He’s constantly pleased to describe the virtues of Dolby Vision over a beverage, however he may require to utilize props, like he’s discussing the offside guideline.

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