Google is attempting to push its Premium subscription tier by offering another perk as Youtube tries to entice viewers with another video setting option. YouTube began testing its 1080p Premium Enhanced Bitrate setting earlier this year in February with a select amount of users who had already subscribed to its Premium plan and later it expanded testing to iOS devices in April. The option is said to offer a higher-quality viewing experience, although not all are convinced this is truly perceivable.
Per YouTube Premium benefits Support Page:
“With YouTube Premium, you can watch videos in 1080p Premium on Apple phones and tablets.This feature may be available on additional devices in the future.
1080p Premium is an enhanced bitrate version of 1080p. An enhanced bitrate provides more information per pixel, resulting in a higher quality viewing experience. Videos are only eligible for an enhanced bitrate if they were uploaded in 1080p. You won’t find the 1080p Premium option for:
- Live Streams
- Videos uploaded at resolutions higher or lower than 1080p
To give you the best viewing experience, YouTube changes the quality of your video stream based on your viewing conditions. If you have a Premium membership, your resolution may automatically set to 1080p Premium. You can update your quality settings within the YouTube App.”
Is it worth it?
The Verge reported that following the rollout of the 1080p Premium Enhanced Bitrate setting that some users observed potential downgrading of the regular 1080p setting. This could not be confirmed as while the Enhanced version was seen to have higher bitrates it is also known that streaming quality varies due to compression codecs and other factors. The new setting has disappeared from various videos only to reappear recently following the announcement that Google is raising the rates for its Premium plan.
This author noted when reporting on the latest Gran Turismo trailer that the setting showed when attempting to view the stream at its highest quality and commented on that in our threads where a forum user (thanks @zarathustra!) kindly found a post on another site that is not impressed with the setting.
“Affected users say that the pop-up appears on every video, even when they have explicitly selected the ‘No thanks’ option.
This intrusive and repetitive prompting has become a significant source of annoyance for several users, disrupting their viewing experience.
It also reinforces the perception that YouTube is intentionally pushing users towards subscribing to their Premium service. Such tactics can inadvertently create a negative impression and undermine users’ trust in the platform.”
As YouTube tries to entice its users into switching over to its Premium tier to access the Ehanced feature there are some complaining about the repeated annoying popups regarding it. Users have stated that despite responding No to the popup it keeps coming back and, additionally, according to a thread on Reddit, some are experiencing streaming issues with the new setting, and others are debating the current quality of the standard 1080p setting.