Skip to main content

Microsoft: Windows 10 will support the HEVC video compression standard

Microsoft will support the relatively new HEVC (High Efficiency Video Coding) video compression standard in Windows 10 out of the box, according to a statement from Gabriel Aul, the leader of its Operating Systems Group's Data and Fundamentals Team.

Aul confirmed the HEVC support in Windows 10 in a Twitter message earlier today, while also stating that earlier reports that the operating system supports MKV video files were correct as well. He added, "MKV is supported at the platform level so will be available to all types of apps."

HEVC is a successor to the well known H.264/MPEG-4 AVC video compression standard. In very basic terms, it allows for 4K resolution video to be compressed and streamed on an Internet connection. In theory, it will even allow for 8K resolution video to be streamed. The fact that Microsoft is adding HEVC into Windows 10 shows that the company continues to anticipate the next generation of Internet video needs.

Do you plan to watch streaming videos in 4K when the final version of Windows 10 is launched sometime in 2015?

Source: Gabriel Aul (Twitter)

138 Comments
  • That title means nothing to me.
    Edit:
    The title references something I don't know of. I'd love to learn about it though. What I'm suggesting is making the titles more approachable for the common folk. Thanks salmanaltaf.
  • Then why are you wasting your time commenting :P
  • I'm thinking the titles should be more reader friendly. I didn't waste my time haha, I'm trying to suggest something.
  • Why is it difficult to understand the title?
    Windows 10 will support HEVC, that's pretty much it.
  • I'm sure many of you know what it is, but many don't and I think it would be great if it was dumbed down a bit. I'm just saying, not everybody knows what High Efficiency Video Coding is.
  • Of course, and that I can't deny.
    I still think however, that educating the general public is not the job of the writers in this website, they provide the information, it's up to the user to do whatever he or she wants with it.
    Tl;dr: Use Bing if you want to know the meaning of something.
  • Completely valid point, but, once again, how much better does it make the website if a user has it all laid out for them in one place. Easy, accesible, and beneficial.
  • and that's even more pointless if the title says this: Windows 10 will support new video format. Why can't you find yourself a new knowledge by Binging 'HEVC video format definition'?
  • To be honest I didn't know what that type of video file was either so I read the article, if your not here to feed your mind, go and watch a YouTube video with cats....
  • The rest of the article explains exactly what it is, so reading on would have answered your questions about the title. Pretty sure that's how reading works...
  • Exactly
  • Step 1. Open new tab
    Step 2. Go to Bing.com
    Step 3. Type in "what is HEVC format?"
    Be enlightened.
    Step 4. Re read article with your new knowledge in mind.
  • +1
  • True
  • The problem is you can't explain what High Efficiency Video Coding is in detail in a short headline. And later in the full article it is explained quite good so if you don't now but you are interested just read the article
  • Okay.." Fuh it show pretty pictures" is that better?
  • I didn't know what it was...but the article explained it after the title hooked me ;)
  • A title should be concise. Details are provided in the body of the article. If you're interested in understanding open the page. Explain what a video codec is in the title makes no sense...
  • "Windows 10 has 4K Resolution Video Streaming Over Internet Connection" There, I like it.
  • I can currently do that over youtube, this is about win 10 supporting HEVC. The current title is appropriate.
  • But that says nothing about the CODEC which is what the original artical does and the only reason I stopped to read it.  Your title I would have skipped over.
  • He didn't understand what hevc is. Oddly, like the title he didn't understand, his comment doesn't explain his position.
  • I read "windows 10 will support the existing windows phone 8 devices to get upgraded to it" lol
  • +1520 LOL
  • +620 LOL
  • In the app settings turn on "Simple Man Titles".
  • :D
  • I hope that made you feel good.
  • Lol
  • ROFL
  • Read the article. It usually explains what we don't know.
  • I can't even watch 1080p because of connection bottleneck and screen resolution. 4k streaming would be awesome... But first we need a faster connection
  • I think the first thing we do is to mass produce 4K monitors at the price lower than $200, and we all can enjoy the 4K streaming :D
  • Pretty much in a nutshell, this particular reader expects to be coddled and have his hand held. Some people just need a constant hand to hold on. Like the Titanic "Never Let Go".
  • I didn't know what HEVC was until I read the article. Being that its NEW I doubt very many PC savy or otherwise new much about it yet anyway. The title you suggest is flawed as the point of the article is W10' native support (out the box as article mentions) and how Microsoft is looking beyond the now but also into the future.
  • Ahh, all I meant is more people will read them if the titles are different. I read all these articles, everyday, every time they're posted. I'm just saying the title makes a difference. -_-
  • Imposibruuu!!
  • Idraaaaaaa starcraftuuuuu
  • Peentaaaaaakiiiirrrr! Peeentaaaliiiirrrr!
  • Heck yes! Why not?
  • If I could I would! Watch 4K
  • Hell yes
  • The more standards the better. Less coded packs we need. If my internet is faster and my screens support it why not ..
  • I can't remember the last time I installed a codec pack. If WMP won't play it, VLC will. If for some reason VLC doesn't then I don't bother.
    Not to say more codecs in the OS isn't beneficial, especially since it will be across phone and Xbox as well as being available to developers.
  • If VLC doesnt play it try Media Player Clasic (MPC) it plays all the stuff and its very light. And black its real black not a grayish one.
  • Be careful. There are a lot of sites offering a fake MPC that will install kinds of nasty stuff. In fact codec packs are often the same way. Only get it from well-known sources and check the hash.​ ​ ​
  • Yep my fault. Its on http://mpc-hc.org and it directs you to sourgeforce for download and its the legit one.
  • But this way you get thumbnails for the files in folders. Hated Win 7/8 not having thumbnails for MKV videos, finally works in 10! :)
  • Ah yes, good point!
  • 4k TV displays have been rapidly coming down in price, I can see native hevc support mattering sooner rather than later.
  • Yes, of course....
  • Macs support 4K, but not any formats. Now Windows will do both. Go, PCs!!!
  • +1 Yeah go PC and go MSFT will be trying it out when O get the opportunity.
  • +Dell Inspiron 15 7000 series 7537 model with Windows 8.1. Phew that was a long one. XD
  • Dell always names their PCs too long ;D I built my own, and it's "official" name is the CharmsBar PC. Because it sounded cool. Yeah.
  • Nice! Any photo of it?
  • higher is better
  • As long as it supports vlc it won't matter.
  • This is primarily about support being in the OS core, so other apps can read it without requiring the devs to build it themselves.
  • I know 4k is like beyond HD but I always wondered what 4k ment?
  • 4K = 4000
    4M = 4000000 :P
  • I think its like HD is 1920x1080 and 4K is 4096x2160 but also refers to any of the 4xxx resolutions - just to be a standard that isn't a standard :)
  • I think full HD is 1920* 1080 = 2073600. 4K would be 4* 2073600 = 8294400. Then you just have to use the screen ratios like 4:3 or 16:9 or 16:10 etc to come up with pixels per line.
  • HD = 1280x720 (aka 720p) Full HD = 1920x1280 (aka 1080p, and also 2K) 4K or 4K2K = either 4096x2160 or 3840x2160 (aka 2160p) 8K or 8K4K = either 8192x4320 or 7680x4320 (aka 4320p) As you can see the xK resolutions use the number of horizontal pixels, while the "older" use the vertical number of pixels.
  • And 4K really isn't what will be streamed. TVs that are marked as 4K TV "only" support UHD which is 3840x2160 and not actually 4K. I've been quite surprised to see that all companies mark their UHD TVs as 4K when they are not. It was like when the called 720p HD READY which didn't make any sense either. It wasn't like you could ad something to make it more HD-ish. Like when a TV is Wi-Fi ready it means that you can ad a dongle to get Wi-Fi.
  • Nice explanation...if you are correct.
  • No idea why some twat downvoted you. Fixed it.
  • Why HEVC over XAVC?
  • XAVC is basically H.264 underneath, but with improved support for higher resolutions. HEVC is a whole new codec, with twice the compression for videos above 1080p. So, 4K videos can have bitrates of 8-10 Mbps and still look good on screen.
  • It means windows phone 10 will also support this....
  • This is geat. If they added native FLAC support, that would be huge.
  • FLAC and MKV
  • I expected a better-written article from you guys.  HEVC has nothing to do with 4k.  It a codec, like AAC or FLAC.  4k is a resolution, a picture size.  It's just a better, more efficient way of compressing video (and images), which works well for 4k since there's a lot of pixels to be compressed.   You can have 360p in HEVC.  You can have a still image in HEVC, just like you have them in PNG/JPG/GIF. HEVC reduces the bandwidth/storage requirements of videos by making the them much smaller in size, but it increases the complexity of playing them back.  Hence Windows supporting it.   Note that this does not apply to WP.  HEVC support (hardware accelerated) is Snapdragon 805 and over.  Otherwise you'll run through your battery watching a single 15 minute video.
  • They didn't say it, they said that the compression allows you to stream 4k resolutions over an internet connection, thus commenting how good the compression is. I suggest rereading the article. ;)
  • Hey everybody! Look how much this guy knows!
  • LOL
  • Ummm... That's what he said in the article!
  • Hmmm...all windows phone are able of having hardware accelerated apps.
    .just look at IE for example.
  • I am loving where they're going with this. Especially the mkv support. Please support embedded subtitles!
  • Exactly. And subtitles should have been supported OOTB since long.
  • As it should. Who knows, the new codec might replace h264 entirely in the far future. MS shouldn't wait so long to add support for new codecs or A/V formats.
  • Now do the same with FLAC. 
  • +1
  • Yahoo!
  • Yahoo is still around?
  • Hahaha... Gold
  • Good article but please tell Daniel a "call to action" at the end of every piece feels ingratiating and insulting. Yes I would. The more codecs the better.
  • I agree, ending every article with a question has gotten old. What do you think? Sound off below!
  • I like the question at the end of the articles. It makes the difference to other windows news portals (not only that ;)
  • I try to think but nothing happens!
  • Agreed.. It getting lame
  • OF COURSE!!!!
  • Wow....So now we can play MKV files in Windows Media Player...which is good !
  • Windows team should remember updating Windows Media Player though, at least its looks. It's still got Windows 7 UI.
  • I know this is completely of topic but Will Windows 10 for your phone support GIF images?
  • I think I recall hearing that GIF support was coming to Windows Photo Viewer, so maybe?
  • What about that age old codec *.mmv?
  • This sounds good. I'm glad.
  • Good and for the first person that comment read of you don't then you wont understand is like if I ask a question and you don't you go your self and find the answer if there is an answer. About hevc that's pretty good hopefully I wont have to install to more third party app to watch mkv files. I think Microsoft is going in the right direction this time lets hope
  • Dude, there is a reason they invented punctuation marks. ​
  • I would like to see codecs baked in from something similar to klite
  • Seems higher res.
  • Anticipating the future. Nice move Microsoft! Keep it up!
  • Of course it should support it! 4k is the next 1080p, if you know what I mean.
  • Unless, meanwhile, Sony decides that 8K is the new 1080p, of course lol
  • I must be getting old. I can't tell a difference between 4K and 1080 unless I am less than 2 feet from the screen.
  • Giving that current generation of consoles are struggling with 1080p 60fps until reaching 8k 60fps we will have to wait 10-20 years. :P
  • Amazing.
  • What about the rtsp protocol???
  • VLC
  • forget about streaming 4K content from the internet!  native support means that XBMC/Kodi will finally work for all of my movies I have been ripping in h.265!  This is great news!
  • I don't care what Windows 10 supports because it sucks to USE it.  Why'd they have to screw with Windows 8?  I get more and more angry every minute I try to do anything with Windows 10.  I like nothing about it.
  • Because the majority of us hated Windows 8. The good thing for you is: You are not forced to upgrade to Windows 10 ;)
  • The correct anwser would have been "It's not a final Operating System yet". Windows 10 only exists in a preview that was made for desktops. You won't even experience the real version of windows 10 until mid next year.
  • Care to bet that this is closer to what it will look like than it would look like Windows 8?  @DJCBS, it's people like you that Micrsoft is destroying the OS, making it go backwards.
  • bcoz u come from a different planet ehere u didn't know thst ppl wanted the start menu back. even i love windows 8 how Microsoft changed and yhst i always loved it. but majorly Windows pc is used for work an shouod ve simple according to the majority. Cant help it.
  • Re: Aashish13,
    Your writing is difficult to read.
  • Then you don't want to know my opinion of people who still want the old desktop and held onto the stupid Start Menu.  Power users, indeed.
  • Because technology moves forward.... Not backwards nor does it stand in one place. I never had a problem with DOS, as it had no overhead all my programs worked fast in DOS. Win 10 so far is great.
  • No, it's not.  Windows 8 was a huge leap forward. Windows 10 is a reversal of course.  I was easily able to grasp where it was going.
  • It seems like it will be faster...
  • I would rather want to see rar and 7z support. And, above all, native support for SCP/SFTP/SSH in Explorer and cmd. No more WinSCP in 2015 please. And give me a new notepad for coding.
  • Yes to all of those. Though while Notepad should be tweaked to view source code better, there's Visual Studio for doing the actual coding.
  • I think that this format will become the standard so yes I will use this as more and more videos are released in 4k standard.
    It's a bit like saying will you use mp3 file formats? How can you avoid using it now.
  • Hey guys, could you make your Windows 8 app support push notifications and videos embedded in articles?
  • No doubt, I think we all will.
  • Omg 8k streaming! Thank you Microsoft
  • What about the web, can we have a standard video codec and ditch flash video?
  • My PC is 1080p ;P
  • 4k streaming on my 720 ... LOL just kidding! If it'll support mkv that's awesome..
  • I am wondering about windows phone 10. Each feature they are adding to windows 10 will be available on the phone version.
    I think windows phone 10 will support hdmi out and USB otg also......
  • That's nice
  • Seems as though MS is being a little less dickish lately when it comes to video codec. You won't hear me complain. VLC shouldn't have to exist. Windows should support things like this to stay ahead of the game. But that's just my opinion.
  • Like being able to mount ISO. That was an amazing thing I use daily on win 8. But again... Being dicks only putting it on "pro". Maybe 10 will be fully integrated across all versions? This is the first we've seen of MS putting efforts into extensions. Usually it's just fend for yourself type environments. Like zip extraction? Sheesh took them long enough for that. Granted it has been out a while now in windows. Don't recall which one integrated it. Glad to see functionality is priority finally
  • Now Netflix has no excuse for keeping us PC users locked out of their 4k streaming!
  • For My Sammy 100", the answer is YES!
  • You know, MS are really doing a great job so far, all they need to do now is buy Malwarebytes and integrate it into the OS because they suck at malware detection!
  • Yes....ill be pitting my videos I make from my Nokia 1520 up on the screen :)