What’s an MP4?

Icon for an MP4 digital video

The MP4 is a widely popular format for digital video. It is playable on any computer operating system and can be streamed through the internet. It’s possible to store hundreds of hours of MP4 video to a single flash drive smaller than your thumb.

USB flash drive, smaller than a human thumb

An MP4, also called MPEG-4, is the most commonly used format for portable video. MPEG is an acronym for the Moving Pictures Experts Group, who first developed this standard for digital video in 2001. The MP4 is recognized as a non-proprietary video format by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO).

MP4 is the perfect format for sharing video memories with family and friends. The video can be created in a variety of sizes, including 1920 x 1080 high definition (HD). Frame rates can be as high as 60 frames per second (FPS), far exceeding the experience of the digital video disc (DVD).

The MP4 digital video file is extremely resilient and moves across the connected world at the speed of light. It can be copied and stored in multiple locations, further increasing its life expectancy to what one might consider indelible. This has lead to a worldwide boom in the preservation of old 8mm video reels, VHS cassettes, Hi8 video, Beta, and other analog videos into MP4 video. Many have even converted their DVD movies to this more usable and durable format.

Originally published at https://www.heirloom.cloud.