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MOV File

MOV file extension is used to store Apple QuickTime Movies. Similar to MP4 files, MOV is a container file format which allows to store video, audio, subtitles, and metadata in the same file. MOV is derived from ISO base media file format and is capable of storing video and audio streams in multiple formats. Recently HEVC/H.265 support was added to MOV files but there still could be issues with specific media players and software support. Mac OS added support for HEVC starting from Mac OS High Sierra version.

MOV is the default format used by iOS to store videos. If you go to iCloud and try to download any of your video files from there you will see that they are downloaded in MOV format. Note that when you click on download you can either select “Unmodified original” or “Most compatible” file format for download. In case of “Unmodified original” MOV file will be download. If you select “Most compatible” then MP4 file format will be used for download.

MP4 is a more popular file format than MOV but there are many devices which specifically use MOV files. Canon DSLR cameras and DJI quadcopters save videos in MOV file format.

One of the important differences of MOV files from MP4 is that they are specifically suited for video editing. Separation of video stream and offset information in MOV file format allows storing certain edits without reencoding an entire MOV file.

You can open MOV files using VLC Player, Apple iTunes and QuickTime, Windows Media Player. You can also upload MOV file to iCloud, Google Drive, or OneDrive. All of them support playing MOV files from the browser.

To transfer MOV files over internet video/quicktime Internet Media Type (formerly known as MIME type) is used. As an alternative to MOV, QT file extension could be used.

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MP4 Quick Info
  • MPEG-4 Video
  • video/mp4
MP4 File Opens with
  • VLC Media Player
  • Windows Media Player
  • Apple Quicktime
  • Roxio Toast
  • Media Player with Codecs