YouTube made history today becoming the first major video platform to roll out HDR (high dynamic range) live streaming support.

It’s been over four years since YouTube launched its HDR standard for video. Now, streams will offer higher contrast, better clarity and a wider color gamut. With HDR support, livestreams will offer the highest quality it ever had. Of course, to experience HDR livestreams, you need a device that supports HDR.

Currently, the platform supports the HDR10 and HLG standards. There’s also talk that supported line will be expanded in the future.

Higher contrast for YouTube livestreams

HDR technology allows video to show a wider range of brightness and colors. Since the white and blacks are brighter and darker respectively, viewers can see more detail in shadows and highlights. There’s a case to be made that the difference between standard dynamic range to high dynamic range is greater than the difference between 1080p and 4K.

To benefit, creators will need to use an encoder

YouTube says that creators will need to use on of the supported encoders if they want to benefit from HDR, Google says eiwers will need to also be watching on a supported playback device, like the YouTube app on HDR TVs. YouTube will be adding support for more encoders and mobile devices later.

Image courtesy: YouTube