Goodbye, crummy Facebook Videos? Facebook 4K is in testing

Facebook 4K video
Vasilis Ververidis / 123RF
As video continues to grow on Facebook, the platform could be launching a long-overdue feature: 4K. According to TechCrunch, Facebook is now trying out 4K video by offering the feature to select users and Pages during testing.

If the Facebook 4K launches outside of testing in a wider rollout, the feature would bring up Facebook’s 1,080p upload limit to 2,160p in the UHD-1 Ultra-High Definition standard format, offering higher quality video streams.

YouTube has offered 4K since 2014 (and 4K 60 fps since 2015) but began testing the feature three years before that. While it’s unsurprising that the video-focused platform had the higher resolution first, Facebook’s push for more original video content makes the higher resolution a bit overdue. Facebook now has a Watch tab, designed to encourage creatives to launch their own video shows alongside deals for Facebook’s first original Shows including shows with National Geographic and Mike Rowe.

While the enhanced quality makes sense if Facebook wants to compete as a video platform, even the experience of sharing a casual smartphone video with friends could benefit from the update now that 4K isn’t an uncommon spec. The 4K format is becoming much more mainstream, with even smartphones boasting the ability to record video in that higher resolution. The first smartphone to shoot in 4K launched in 2013, while the iPhone 6 helped popularize the feature on a more widespread basis.

To keep the higher resolution videos from slowing down devices with slower internet connections, tapping on the gear icon on a video allows users to choose the quality to see the video in. With the current video settings allowing users to choose whether to watch the video in HD or not by default, users will likely be able to turn on 4K viewing by default as well if the feature launches.

While live-streaming in 4K is tougher to do, Facebook already has that feature available for going live with a 360 camera, though 4K wrapped around 360 degrees isn’t the same as a standard 4K resolution.

Facebook currently allows video resolutions up to 1080p and file sizes up to 10 GB, according to the company’s video best practices.

Social Media

You can now share saved Facebook posts with a Pinterest-like collection tool

Facebook collections can now be shared with friends if you also want to allow them to contribute to the list. Facebook is rolling out an update that allows users to add a contributor to their collections, or lists of saved Facebook posts.
Social Media

Members can share the same Story with Facebook’s new Group Stories

Facebook Group members can now view and share Group Stories. Unlike the Stories for an individual user, the new tool allows members to contribute to the same Group Story, if the feature isn't turned off by an admin.
Social Media

Instagram’s new Close Friends List lets you decide who should see your Story

Have a story to share, but don't want to send it to everyone? Instagram now offers a close friends list that will allow users to share stories with only the users included on that list.
Social Media

Survey of teens says social media lets them connect with friends and get support

A survey of teenagers shows the ways that social media sites can be beneficial to them, like feeling more connected to their friends, the ability to interact with different people, and as a venue to get support when they are struggling.
Social Media

Hotel chain offers an Instagram ‘sitter’ who will post photos for you

If the pressure to post stunning Instagram photos is ruining your vacations, then how about hiring a local Instagram influencer to do the job for you while you go off and enjoy yourself? Well, such a service now exists.
Social Media

Ride the rails and share your stories with Amtrak’s new social media residency

Amtrak is looking for travel fans with a knack for telling stories on social media. The new Amtrak social media residency program wants amateur travelers to share photos, video, and written content from aboard long-distance trips.
Social Media

Hangouts isn’t being hung out to dry in 2020, Google says

According to a report, Google may shut down Google Hangouts by 2020. While Hangouts was once Google's top-tier messaging app, the app has since been neglected in favor of Android Messages.
Social Media

Tumblr bans nudity to create ‘a safe place for creative expression’

Tumblr will soon no longer allow images with adult content. The company says the change is one that's designed to help more creators feel comfortable sharing on the platform, but admits the change won't happen overnight.
Mobile

Broadway actor tells Kanye West to get off his phone during opening night

Theater actors can get understandably upset when they spot someone in the audience fiddling with their phone instead of watching the show. The other night that audience member was Kanye West, and he got called out for it.
Social Media

This event topped Facebook’s biggest moments of the year — again

As the year comes to a close, Facebook is looking back on what users discussed most over the last year. For two years in a row, International Women's Day topped the list. So what else is on the list?
Social Media

This band owns Twitter, according to list of top accounts and tweets for 2018

What was the biggest buzz on Twitter in 2018? Twitter's 2018 Year in Review highlights the biggest tweets, accounts, and hashtags. The most-tweeted celebrities, movies, TV shows, athletes, politicians and more in Twitter's 2018 trends.
Social Media

What do yodeling and Kylie Jenner have in common? YouTube’s top 2018 videos

In a true nod to the variety found on YouTube, the platform's top 10 list of videos from 2018 range from celebrities to sports, from perfectly tossing a picture frame on the wall to a kid yodeling in aisle 12 at Walmart.
Home Theater

It took Tom Cruise to raise awareness of this troublesome TV setting

Tom Cruise, in an unexpected PSA tweet, asks you to turn off motion interpolation on your TV, but stops short of how to do it. Here's more on the topic, along with links to a guide on how to rid your TV of the dreaded "soap opera effect."
Computing

Make a GIF of your favorite YouTube video with these great tools

Making a GIF from a YouTube video is easier today than ever, but choosing the right tool for the job isn't always so simple. In this guide, we'll teach you how to make a GIF from a YouTube video with our two favorite online tools.