YouTube has recently introduced a high bitrate 1080p video streaming option for its premium members. However, after the recent change, non-premium users claim that the video quality has dropped significantly.

YouTube videos are blurrier or quality is low

According to reports (1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8), multiple YouTube users are experiencing an issue where videos appear blurry or low in quality.

This happens even when one has selected a higher playback resolution such as 1080p.

Apparently, watching a video on Full HD resolution appears as if someone is watching it on 480p and the for the 480p videos, they are reportedly unwatchable.


According to some this is happening because YouTube has been compressing the uploaded videos. Due to this, users even have to play the videos at 4K resolution to get a crisp image displayed on their 1080p/1440p screens.

The issue has been persistent for the past few months and affects users across multiple platforms.

Source (Click / tap to view)

Did Youtube intentionally lower the bitrate lately to make ‘good’ video quality (/higher bitrate) a premium feature?

It’s like im watching a 480p video on 1080p size and old 480p videos are basically unwatchable now.. Has anything changed recently?

On the other hand, users also complain that videos on YouTube keep defaulting to 360p or 480p resolution, despite all their attempts to have it fixed at 1080p.

Those affected have tried tinkering with their internet and YouTube video player settings, and using different accounts or VPN, but could not find a solution to the problem.

Some even speculate that YouTube might have done this in order to promote the higher bit-rate option that is currently offered as a part of its Premium subscription.

No official response

Unfortunately, YouTube has not yet officially responded to the issue with blurry or low-quality videos. But we hope it won’t be long before an official fix arrives.

We’ll let you know when it does, so stay tuned.

Note: We have more such stories in our dedicated YouTube section, so be sure to follow them as well.

Featured image source: YouTube.

PiunikaWeb started as purely an investigative tech journalism website with main focus on ‘breaking’ or ‘exclusive’ news. In no time, our stories got picked up by the likes of Forbes, Foxnews, Gizmodo, TechCrunch, Engadget, The Verge, Macrumors, and many others. Want to know more about us? Head here.

Kanav Sood
740 Posts

I love technology and like to talk about the latest news in the Tech industry.

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