iPhone XS Max Netflix download quality worse than on last android phone

yoomy

macrumors regular
Original poster
Feb 25, 2008
111
12
I come from a Huawei P20 Pro and I often download Netflix Episodes to watch later on my phones. With my new XS Max I noticed that something about the downloaded quality was off. The settings are set to download quality higher but the downloaded episode still looked worse compared to the stream.

So I started to compare the size of the downloaded episodes on both devices. Within both apps I chose the highest possible download quality.

Maniac Episode 1:
iPhone XS Max: 4xx MB
Huawei P20 Pro: 7xx MB

The downloaded episode has almost twice the size on the huawei even though the iPhone has the higher resolution.

Is this a known issue? I am really disappointed because I expected things like these to work at least as good as on android.
 

akash.nu

macrumors G3
May 26, 2016
8,771
10,060
Downloaded quality of a content is not directly related to resolution of the screen and not really down to the fact if it’s iOS or Android. The Netflix app itself is downloading a certain file type for the 2 platforms. Such things can’t be compared between different platforms as service providers choose the best they can provide for a platform. Your best bet is getting in touch with Netflix.
 

off_piste

macrumors 6502a
Oct 25, 2015
763
480
I come from a Huawei P20 Pro and I often download Netflix Episodes to watch later on my phones. With my new XS Max I noticed that something about the downloaded quality was off. The settings are set to download quality higher but the downloaded episode still looked worse compared to the stream.

So I started to compare the size of the downloaded episodes on both devices. Within both apps I chose the highest possible download quality.

Maniac Episode 1:
iPhone XS Max: 4xx MB
Huawei P20 Pro: 7xx MB

The downloaded episode has almost twice the size on the huawei even though the iPhone has the higher resolution.

Is this a known issue? I am really disappointed because I expected things like these to work at least as good as on android.
It wouldn’t be the first time that iOS devices get lower download quality than Android. For instance, Vudu purchases only download in SD on iOS even if you own the HD version.
 

cynics

macrumors G4
Jan 8, 2012
11,554
1,873
The Huawei P20 may look better because currently it is...

Android supported devices.
Screen Shot 2018-10-06 at 2.35.01 PM.png


iOS supported devices.
Screen Shot 2018-10-06 at 2.30.41 PM.png


I've read contradicting reviews but currently on the Netflix page they do not list the Xs or Xs Max as HDR/DV devices. The Huawei P20 on the other hand has HDR support.

Since the iPhone market is so large Netflix would likely want to add another HDR profile for the Xs models. The iPhone X and 8 just got supported for HDR less than a month ago or so.
 

yoomy

macrumors regular
Original poster
Feb 25, 2008
111
12
I know that Netflix list. But in my experience the indicators within the app are a more reliable source whether HDR is active on the device or not. When I first got the P20 Pro it was listed on that Netflix HDR website but within the app no HDR logos appeared next to shows. Then after an update the HDR logos suddenly appeared on some shows and you could see the difference.

Now with the XS Max I even get the Dolby Vision logo on a lot of shows, so I would assume HDR is enabled for the Max already.

I also did some more tests and while the iOS downloaded version is always smaller than the Android one, the difference wasn't as big. I tested Altered Carbon, Suits and Maniac and only on Maniac the difference was that large.

But despite that, all shows looked better on the P20 Pro. But most likely it is not a higher resolution video, just an over sharpened display that gives that impression. While I am glad Apple aims to have the most natural looking display, it just does not always look better when watching video content.
 

Diorama

macrumors 6502a
Oct 6, 2017
626
918
If you want something to make you feel better about your upgrade while you wait for improvements from Netflix, you can always look at the GPU benchmarks of your new phone versus the P20 Pro ;)

73B16E71-DB6C-45DE-88E7-9408581C05CD.png
 

yoomy

macrumors regular
Original poster
Feb 25, 2008
111
12
Hehe yeah. Those look nice sadly I don’t play any games in my phone so not really taking advantage of it.
 

limo79

macrumors regular
Jan 9, 2009
241
115
Netflix support on Mac and iPhones is poor. Apple is competition for Netflix. Also Netflix has a deal with Microsoft so the best experience is on Windows 10 and Edge browser (not Safari browser on mac OS). In the same fashion they are focused on Android phones and I really understand it because Android phones have better resolution, enabled video features. Safari video support is terrible for Yt. GPU support weak. Macs still do not have 4K screens while there is a serious rumour about 8K screens in Dell laptops in 2019. Apple is not a technology leader anymore and now you can have much better matte screens calibrated in a factory with low delta e error (Gigabyte Aero with Pantone calibrated screen).

Benchmarks? Android is so popular because even if it not perfect is universal and does not limit users. Nobody cares about excellent results of A12 Bionic chip if the customer experience with most used apps like Yt or Netflix is poor. Customers expect from luxury iPhone best experience and should not worry about business conflicts between Apple and Google or Apple and Netflix.
 
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akash.nu

macrumors G3
May 26, 2016
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Benchmarks? Android is so popular because even if it not perfect is universal and does not limit users. Nobody cares about excellent results of A12 Bionic chip if the customer experience with most used apps like Yt or Netflix is poor. Customers expect from luxury iPhone best experience and should not worry about business conflicts between Apple and Google or Apple and Netflix.
How the tables have turned. Benchmark is all android users always brag about.
 

haruhiko

macrumors 603
Sep 29, 2009
5,097
2,753
Netflix support on Mac and iPhones is poor. Apple is competition for Netflix. Also Netflix has a deal with Microsoft so the best experience is on Windows 10 and Edge browser (not Safari browser on mac OS). In the same fashion they are focused on Android phones and I really understand it because Android phones have better resolution, enabled video features. Safari video support is terrible for Yt. GPU support weak. Macs still do not have 4K screens while there is a serious rumour about 8K screens in Dell laptops in 2019. Apple is not a technology leader anymore and now you can have much better matte screens calibrated in a factory with low delta e error (Gigabyte Aero with Pantone calibrated screen).

Benchmarks? Android is so popular because even if it not perfect is universal and does not limit users. Nobody cares about excellent results of A12 Bionic chip if the customer experience with most used apps like Yt or Netflix is poor. Customers expect from luxury iPhone best experience and should not worry about business conflicts between Apple and Google or Apple and Netflix.
Netflix on Apple TV 4K has 4K support.
[doublepost=1538912912][/doublepost]
How the tables have turned. Benchmark is all android users always brag about.
Those were the times. Now I mostly hear they say - who cares about the benchmarks, you're never going to 'use' the speed.
 

limo79

macrumors regular
Jan 9, 2009
241
115
@akash.nu: Say it to Android fans ok? I read this Anandtech article and it is interesting from engineering point of view but does not change my overall user experience with Apple products - they do not use all hardware video codec capabilities (eg H.264 hardware decoding was available in MacBook Pro 2008 with Nvidia GF8600 GT and it did not change till Mavericks). All my favourite Twin Peaks series was decoded in software with 100% CPU load so I needed to switch to BootCamp with Windows 7 to have a hardware video decoding. In the same fashion they supported ancient OpenGL versions while hundred new extensions where available so gaming experience was always few steps behind OpenGL on other platforms. Today you still cannot run 4K video on YT using Safari web browser (even if screen does not support such resolution). So I am really impressed with A12 architecture and changes but as a user I do not care about benchmarks result if I have a bad user experience eg surfing on a web or watching movies. The most important benchmark for most of us should be power efficiency / draw result. The rest is OS and software optimization.
 
Last edited:

FFR

Suspended
Nov 4, 2007
4,507
2,373
London
I come from a Huawei P20 Pro and I often download Netflix Episodes to watch later on my phones. With my new XS Max I noticed that something about the downloaded quality was off. The settings are set to download quality higher but the downloaded episode still looked worse compared to the stream.

So I started to compare the size of the downloaded episodes on both devices. Within both apps I chose the highest possible download quality.

Maniac Episode 1:
iPhone XS Max: 4xx MB
Huawei P20 Pro: 7xx MB

The downloaded episode has almost twice the size on the huawei even though the iPhone has the higher resolution.

Is this a known issue? I am really disappointed because I expected things like these to work at least as good as on android.
Dolby vision and hdr(10) are two different standards.

I know dolby vision uses hevc.
No idea what hdr(10) uses. Perhaps that’s why it’s larger.

Just downloaded an episode of altered carbon and iron fist, both are 1gb.
 
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FFR

Suspended
Nov 4, 2007
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@akash.nu: Say it to Android fans ok? I read this Anandtech article and it is interesting from engineering point of view but does not change my overall user experience with Apple products - they do not use all hardware video codec capabilities (eg H.264 hardware decoding was available in MacBook Pro 2008 with Nvidia GF8600 GT and it did not change till Mavericks). All my favourite Twin Peaks series was decoded in software with 100% CPU load so I needed to switch to BootCamp with Windows 7 to have a hardware video decoding. In the same fashion they supported ancient OpenGL versions while hundred new extensions where available so gaming experience was always few steps behind OpenGL on other platforms. Today you still cannot run 4K video on YT using Safari web browser (even if screen does not support such resolution). So I am really impressed with A12 architecture and changes but as a user I do not care about benchmarks result if I have a bad user experience eg surfing on a web or watching movies. The most important benchmark for most of us should be power efficiency / draw result. The rest is OS and software optimization.
That has to do with googles proprietary codec for YouTube not apples hardware.
 

From0toHero

macrumors regular
Nov 24, 2014
132
42
Switzerland
Perhaps the quality of the screen is allowing you to see the quality of the download more clearly than the Android phone?
Note 9 as example have a resolution of 1440 x 2960 pixels with 514ppi! Much higher than any iPhone to date. I owned since the iPhone 3GS every iPhone. But my last iPhone was the iPhone X! Where I live (Switzerland) the 512gb iPhone XS Max costs around 1800 dollars. Now please explain what does the iPhone XS max offer what I can't have in the note 9? I never was thinking to say this words. But the price/value ratio is way off with new iPhones.
 

Diorama

macrumors 6502a
Oct 6, 2017
626
918
Note 9 as example have a resolution of 1440 x 2960 pixels with 514ppi! Much higher than any iPhone to date. I owned since the iPhone 3GS every iPhone. But my last iPhone was the iPhone X! Where I live (Switzerland) the 512gb iPhone XS Max costs around 1800 dollars. Now please explain what does the iPhone XS max offer what I can't have in the note 9? I never was thinking to say this words. But the price/value ratio is way off with new iPhones.
Speed.
Graphics.
Better screen with slightly lower ppi.
Five years of release-day OS upgrades. (The biggest selling point perhaps. There are two year old flagship android phones that don’t (and won’t ever) have the current android.)
 

From0toHero

macrumors regular
Nov 24, 2014
132
42
Switzerland
Speed.
Graphics.
Better screen with slightly lower ppi.
Five years of release-day OS upgrades. (The biggest selling point perhaps. There are two year old flagship android phones that don’t (and won’t ever) have the current android.)
The updates point is certainly correct. While speed and better screen are not really valid. I give you a good example. Sure the new iPhone opens apps blazing fast, and also the ram management is meanwhile even superior to android. But only if you do one thing at a time. I can download torrents on my note 9 while gaming and also watching Netflix in small window. Try to do that with a iPhone. Impossible. The iPhone xs max is almost as big as the note 9. But still apple only managed to insert a 3100mha battery? Why that they next year can put a 3400mha battery and claim superior battery life, while they could already have delivered this year. Soon the Huawei mate pro will come out, there you can see what real innovation looks like for a acceptable price. The iPhone xs max is a total RIP off. I could easily have bought one, but I give my money only to the company who deserves it.
 

Vermifuge

macrumors 68000
Mar 7, 2009
1,992
1,492
Note 9 as example have a resolution of 1440 x 2960 pixels with 514ppi! Much higher than any iPhone to date. I owned since the iPhone 3GS every iPhone. But my last iPhone was the iPhone X! Where I live (Switzerland) the 512gb iPhone XS Max costs around 1800 dollars. Now please explain what does the iPhone XS max offer what I can't have in the note 9? I never was thinking to say this words. But the price/value ratio is way off with new iPhones.
So don't buy it. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ different strokes mate.
 

Jimmy James

macrumors 603
Oct 26, 2008
5,047
3,427
Magicland
Note 9 as example have a resolution of 1440 x 2960 pixels with 514ppi! Much higher than any iPhone to date. I owned since the iPhone 3GS every iPhone. But my last iPhone was the iPhone X! Where I live (Switzerland) the 512gb iPhone XS Max costs around 1800 dollars. Now please explain what does the iPhone XS max offer what I can't have in the note 9? I never was thinking to say this words. But the price/value ratio is way off with new iPhones.
I agree iPhones are overpriced. Especially in some countries where exchange rates or trade agreements make it even more expensive.

But what does the iPhone offer? Much better privacy. This matters more than performance, features, or outright capability. It matters even more than price. It matters even if one thinks they don’t care about privacy.
 
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From0toHero

macrumors regular
Nov 24, 2014
132
42
Switzerland
I agree iPhones are overpriced. Especially in some countries where exchange rates or trade agreements make it even more expensive.

But what does the iPhone offer? Much better privacy. This matters more than performance, features, or outright capability. It matters even more than price. It matters even if one thinks they don’t care about privacy.
Privacy? In my opinion not one mobile can't be decrypted by law enforcement. If you think the iPhone can't be breached, I must inform you that a Jewish company has developed a USB device that can compromise any iPhone security to date.
 

Jimmy James

macrumors 603
Oct 26, 2008
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Privacy? In my opinion not one mobile can't be decrypted by law enforcement. If you think the iPhone can't be breached, I must inform you that a Jewish company has developed a USB device that can compromise any iPhone security to date.
Google is choosing to actively sell or distribute data in ways that Apple does not.

By your reasoning no home is private because it can be breached or be subject to a search warrant. I’m referring to an unlockable glass house.
 
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akash.nu

macrumors G3
May 26, 2016
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Privacy? In my opinion not one mobile can't be decrypted by law enforcement. If you think the iPhone can't be breached, I must inform you that a Jewish company has developed a USB device that can compromise any iPhone security to date.
This is why Apple has also included an option in iOS 12 that stops from such devices to gain access to the device via usb connection unless YOU authorise to do so.
 

upandown

macrumors 6502a
Apr 10, 2017
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Privacy? In my opinion not one mobile can't be decrypted by law enforcement. If you think the iPhone can't be breached, I must inform you that a Jewish company has developed a USB device that can compromise any iPhone security to date.
Absolutely.

But my belief is iPhones, at this moment in time, are less susceptible to being hacked by the smaller guys. Criminals etc. so at least there’s that.
 
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