Faster, smoother and safer videos on Chrome

Chrome is one of the world's most popular ways to watch video, with around 3,000 hours of video watched every second. Whether you're singing along with Taylor Swift, binge-watching Breaking Bad or learning about NASA’s Pluto mission—no matter what you watch, we make sure that your videos look great and load fast when you’re using Chrome.

Faster, leaner, crisper

Videos today have higher resolution, richer color and more frames per second. That's great news for you, but as video quality increases, it's harder to stream and play it without interruption. So we’ve been working on keeping Chrome lean so you can watch eye-poppingly high-definition videos. When you use Chrome to watch video on sites like YouTube, your videos load faster and look better than ever before. That's because Chrome supports the VP9 video format, which uses up to 40% less data and higher quality videos.

View: H.264 on 3GH.264 on WiFiVP9 on 3GVP9 on WiFi

We optimize for your data plan, battery life and processing power without sacrificing quality and with support for the latest high-definition formats. We’ve also worked with partners like YouTube and Amazon to reduce power consumption up to 25% by transitioning away from Flash.

Keep your videos buttery smooth

Videos really are moving pictures—each picture is called a “frame”. Those frames are recorded by a video camera, and then displayed at regular intervals by your screen so you can see it as a smooth video. A typical video is recorded at 30 frames per second, and a typical screen displays at 60 times a second—so ideally, one frame is on the screen for two refreshes, and you see smooth video. Often that doesn’t happen—many videos aren’t recorded at exactly 30 frames per second, and many screens don’t display at exactly 60 times per second—which leads to inconsistent or jerky video. We’ve been working to take account of these variations in Chrome, so we can more consistently hit two frames per refresh. That means your video looks smoother.

In this example, 32% of video frames are displayed for the wrong length of time and 5 frames never display.  

Now almost all frames are shown at regular intervals, and every frame is displayed.

Your connection may not always be perfect, so we helped build a new open standard that your video provider uses to intelligently adjust video settings—and if your Internet connection speed dips, video quality will adjust without your input. That means you get up to 50% fewer video interruptions.

Keeping you secure

Watching videos on the web used to require downloading and installing a plugin. Plugins are separate programs from the browser and can cause problems, including malware and tracking of your browsing habits across websites.

To combat this, we’ve been working with our partners to create new web standards to support premium content through HTML5. Many leading video providers like YouTube, Amazon and Play Movies now use these standards to deliver video in Chrome, so you don’t have to worry about nasty surprises.

With Chrome, you get the fastest, safest experience while you watch. So you can explore all the great video on the web—to learn, play or get inspired!

Posted by Renganathan Ramamoorthy, Product Manager and Patron of Playbacks

Video images: Blender Foundation |