YouTube TV Might Get A Picture Quality Boost This Summer

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YouTube TV is not the worst streaming service when it comes to picture quality, but it is not the best either. Google’s live TV streaming service has continually been looking to improve various aspects of the experience lately, and it looks like picture quality might now be next in line.


YouTube TV is now running “picture quality experiments” including the testing of transcoding changes. According to a recent Reddit post by a YouTube Community Manager, the plan is to make these transcoding changes permanent by this summer, assuming the testing period before then goes well.

One of the specific changes that’s now being tested is a bitrate increase for live 1080p content. Only devices “that support the VP9 codec with high-speed internet connections” are being used for this testing, but the change is likely to eventually result in an improved picture quality on most devices.


The picture quality experiments were only a small part of the Reddit post which was filled with bits and pieces explaining some of the other things that the YouTube TV team is currently working on. While some of these details were new, others simply confirmed recent information.

For example, the post highlights that an update for the YouTube TV app on Apple TV has rolled out and looks to fix a black screen issue that some users have been facing. While we already knew about that update, the message also confirmed that a fix for the app crashing problem on 1st Gen Apple TV 4K players “will be in the app store imminently” so that will be one to look out for.

Elsewhere, the April update post also explains that a fix for an audio/video sync issue will begin testing soon, and that the team is also working on some improvements for multiview. The suggestion being those multiview upgrades should arrive before the start of the NFL season.


Speaking of which, the post also took the opportunity to remind YouTube TV members that they have until June 6th to save $100 on the cost of an NFL Sunday Ticket subscription.

John Finn

By John Finn

John started Streaming Better to help consumers navigate the live TV streaming and subscription service landscape. John has been editing and writing about technology and streaming for online publications since 2014, and believes the best streaming approach is to rotate between services as needed.

John's preferred live TV streaming service right now is YouTube TV although he does tend to switch live TV services multiple times each year to keep up to date with their changes. Outside of live TV, John also actively streams HBO Max (for the shows), Peacock (for Premier League), and Paramount Plus (for Champion's League). However, John is also currently subscribed to Apple TV+, Discovery+, Hulu, Starz, Showtime, and Shudder.

Contact John via email at or say hi on Twitter

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