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A8 Chip in iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus Capable of Playing 4K Video

The dual-core A8 chip powering Apple's iPhone 6 and 6 Plus appears to be capable of handling 4K video playback, despite the fact that the two iPhones have native resolutions of 1334 x 750 and 1920 x 1080 pixels, respectively.

4K video playback on the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus was first discovered by the developers behind WALTR, a Mac app that's designed to make it easy to upload and convert any music or video file to an iPad or iPhone for native playback, and reported by TUAW.

The discovery was made by the developers of WALTR, a great Mac app that allows users to quickly upload video files to their iPhone which aren't supported by iTunes, such as FLAC and MKV files. While testing the app developers found it is possible to playback 4K videos on the iPhone 6. Even if Apple hasn't announced it, the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus are ready to play 4K videos.
With resolutions of 1334 x 750 and 1920 x 1080, the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus won't be able to reproduce the detail in a 3840 x 2160 4K video, but the A8's ability to play 4K content means 4K videos side-loaded onto one of Apple's two devices will still be watchable.

It's highly unlikely many users will load 4K videos on their iPhones due to the massive file size of 4K content and the fact that there's little practical use for it, but it has the potential to be a somewhat useful feature for some users who want to play 4K video recorded on their devices as there are apps available that advertise 4K video recording on the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus.

Related Roundup: iPhone 6s
Buyer's Guide: iPhone (Buy Now)


Top Rated Comments

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27 months ago
ooooo, airplay for the new Apple TV in full 4k resolution. nice.

apple tv in 2015 confirmed.
Rating: 23 Votes
27 months ago

4K video ? wait until apple provide iPhone with 64gb as the entry level.
with 16 gb space, it is pretty much useless.


I'm going to go out on a limb and say that someone looking to use 4k video can swing the extra $100 to bump to 64gb.
Rating: 20 Votes
27 months ago

Is it REALLY playing a 4K video if it is showing it on a 1K screen? I think it is reading a 4K video files, thrashing 3/4 of the data and displaying the remaining 1K video stream.

It is like when you buy a 24MP camera and are all happy that you have this high resolution image. But then you phone has a 2MP screen. What happens to the extra pixels? Well they are down sampled and not displayed.


It still has to decode the entire 4k stream. You can't just ignore data. Video decoding doesn't work that way. And even in the case of downsampling, you still need to take the larger resolution media as input, and process that data through resampling filters to a lower resolution, so overall the whole process is even MORE computationally intensive than if you could output the 4k video at a 1:1 pixel ratio on a 4k screen.

As to the article, this should come as no surprise. I wouldn't be surprised if even the A7 is powerful enough for it. The Cortex A8 in the iPhone 3GS was able to decode 1080p video, even though it couldn't display the full resolution of it due to the screen, and that was five generations of hardware ago.
Rating: 19 Votes
27 months ago
I think that means the A8 will be in the Apple TV very soon... And the apple TV will have a major upgrade, probably a full App store.
Rating: 9 Votes
27 months ago

It's highly unlikely many users will load 4K videos on their iPhones due to the massive file size of 4K content and the fact that there's little practical use for it


Translated:
Absolutely nobody will load 4K videos on their iPhones, due to the fact that the iPhone is a phone, not a 6ft-wide 4K display. Macrumors apologises for the utter futility of this news story.
Rating: 8 Votes
27 months ago
I just want a 4K or 5K Thunderbolt Display!
Rating: 7 Votes
27 months ago
4K video ? wait until apple provide iPhone with 64gb as the entry level.
with 16 gb space, it is pretty much useless.
Rating: 5 Votes
27 months ago

Is it REALLY playing a 4K video if it is showing it on a 1K screen? I think it is reading a 4K video files, thrashing 3/4 of the data and displaying the remaining 1K video stream.

It is like when you buy a 24MP camera and are all happy that you have this high resolution image. But then you phone has a 2MP screen. What happens to the extra pixels? Well they are down sampled and not displayed.


Computationally, that's actually MORE impressive.
Rating: 5 Votes
27 months ago

Umm.... Apple doesn't currently have 4K content. So why should they release a 4k Apple TV?


Apple doesn't currently have 4K Apple TV, so why would they release 4K content?
Rating: 5 Votes
27 months ago
4K at what bitrate? Note 3 can decode 4K at 275Mbps rate from internal storage or 120Mbps over 5GHz 802.11ac and supports MKV format with several players like MX Player app without the need to convert to iTunes compatible format that takes time and disk space.
Rating: 4 Votes

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