If your iMessage video is also pixelated and small, then know that almost 37% of iPhone users have also experienced poor video quality when sending videos through iMessage. The good news is that there are a few easy tips you can try to improve video quality.
In this article, we’ll explain why iMessage reduces video quality and provide solutions to help you send clear, high-definition videos to family and friends. With a few quick tweaks to your settings, you’ll be sharing stunning videos that make the most of your iPhone’s capabilities.
There is no definitive answer to this. In rare cases, iMessage reduces video quality by compressing files to smaller sizes before sending them. However, you can improve them by disabling settings like Low Quality Image Mode and more.
Does iMessage Reduce Video Quality?
In a word- yes. One of the most common frustrations for iPhone users is seeing their crisp, beautiful videos turn pixelated and blotchy when sent through iMessage. You put effort into capturing a special moment, only to have it look fuzzy by the time you share it. And you must be thinking why is my FaceTime video pixelated? As it turns out, there are a few key reasons iMessage squeezes down video file sizes, resulting in lower quality.
Why Does iMessage Reduce Video Quality?
Here are some factors that play a key role in reducing video quality in iMessage
File Size Limitations
For starters, iMessage automatically compresses videos to conserve space and bandwidth. A minute-long iPhone video can easily be over 50MB – too chunky to zip through standard text messaging. So iMessage shrinks it down, sometimes dramatically. The more it’s compressed, the worse the quality becomes.
For example, for cellular data, the limit is 100MB, meaning videos larger than that will be automatically compressed to reduce their size before sending. Even over Wi-Fi, the limit is 200MB for video clips. The more compression needed to meet those caps, the worse the impact on video quality.
If you have a spotty cellular connection, iMessage may crunch videos to ensure they are sent. This compression leads to quality loss, with videos looking decidedly standard definition. Slow Wi-Fi can do the same. The weaker your signal, the more compression may occur. Even if you have Wi-Fi Assist enabled, iMessage may downgrade video quality to prevent straining your cellular data plan. It’s trying to help keep your data usage in check but at the cost of video clarity.
Buried in your Settings is an option called “Low Quality Image Mode” which keeps file sizes down by automatically reducing photo and video quality. If you have this on, it applies compression specifically to save cellular data. Convenient yes, but not ideal for video quality.
Older iPhones simply capture lower-resolution footage than newer models. So, if you are friends with an iPhone 7 holder and are getting blurry videos, the problem may be due to shooting on outdated camera hardware. Even between models, camera and processor differences impact the video compression techniques used.
Original Video Quality
No matter what iMessage does, it can’t deliver pristine 4K video if you don’t capture it that way. The better and higher resolution your original iPhone videos are, the better results you’ll see even post-compression. Frame rate, bitrate, lighting, stabilization, and more affect the baseline experience.
Possible Solutions to Increase Video Quality on iMessage
Quick hacks and workarounds to increase your video quality on iMessage include:
Disable Low-Quality Image Mode
Head to Settings > Messages and switch off the option for Low-Quality Image Mode. This prevents iMessage from automatically compressing media to save cellular data at the expense of quality. Leave it off to send full-quality videos that don’t sacrifice clarity.
Use a Strong and Stable Internet Connection
Videos usually get compressed more over poor connections. Utilize stable Wi-Fi whenever possible, check your router connection and Speedtest.net results. Move closer to the router if the signal is spotty. For cellular, 4G/5G offers better performance than 3G/LTE. Switch cellular off if networks are slow. Lastly, optimal bandwidth equals better quality transfers.
Send Videos via iCloud
Rather than attaching videos directly, store them in iCloud Photo Library. Share the iCloud link from Photos – videos will stream straight from the cloud in excellent quality instead of being compressed by the messaging process first. This is useful, especially for longer videos.
Use Third-Party Apps
If your iMessage is sending blurry videos, you can use apps like WhatsApp and Telegram that offer ways to share videos while avoiding iMessage restrictions. Telegram even supports sending multi-gigabyte video files. Transferring over these Wi-Fi-based services can maintain quality better.
Transfer Videos Directly
For local sharing, use AirDrop between Apple devices rather than texting videos. This will eliminate compression completely. Transferring videos directly from device to device via cables also prevents quality loss.
Edit Video Settings
Record videos in the highest quality formats – 1080p60 or 4K30. Adjust to higher bitrates in camera settings up to 100Mbits for detailed results. The more advanced specs used initially, the better videos withstand compression.
As you must know, Apple improves compatibility and performance in newer iOS versions. Therefore, updating provides codec enhancements for capturing and sharing high-fidelity videos using the latest efficient algorithms. So you need to maintain the latest iOS release.
To conclude, iMessage isn’t trying to ruin your iPhone videos – its compression algorithms aim to make transferring media feasible over other networks. But thankfully, you can tweak settings to help temper these effects – letting you share true-to-life videos that showcase what the iPhone’s cameras can actually capture.
James Wilson is a seasoned tech enthusiast with a passion for all things Apple. With years of experience troubleshooting and fixing iPhone issues, he brings a wealth of knowledge to “My Tech Simply.” James’s dedication to helping iPhone users find simple and effective solutions shines through in his articles.