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.MP4 File Extension

File TypeMPEG-4 Video File

DeveloperMoving Picture Experts Group
4.0 (2214 Votes)
CategoryVideo Files

What is an MP4 file?

An MP4 file is a multimedia file commonly used to store a movie or video clip. It may also contain subtitles or images. MP4 is short for MPEG-4 Part 14, which is a container format based on the QuickTime File Format (QTFF) used by .MOV and .QT files.

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Screenshot of a .mp4 file in Microsoft Windows Media Player 12
MP4 file open in Microsoft Windows Media Player 12

MP4 files use MPEG-4 compression, a standard developed by the Moving Picture Experts Group (MPEG). This format includes separate compression for audio and video tracks. Video is compressed with MPEG-4 video encoding and audio is compressed using AAC compression, which is the same type of audio compression used in .AAC files.

Much of the MP4 format's popularity can be attributed to Apple's iTunes Store since the format is used for distributing much of the media downloaded from the store. The MP4 format is also commonly used for streaming video on the Internet and is supported by a wide range of video programs and various hardware devices.

How do I open an MP4 file?

Most popular media players can play MP4 files. Microsoft Movies & TV (Windows), Apple QuickTime Player (Mac), MPlayer (cross-platform), and VLC media player (cross-platform) are all popular programs that PC users can use to open and play MP4s.

iOS and Android users can play MP4s in those OS's default video players by double-tapping the files. Users looking for more advanced playback options can play MP4s in VLC for iOS or VLC for Android.

Those looking to convert MP4 videos to other formats can do so using HandBrake (cross-platform).

Open and view .MP4 files with File Viewer Plus.

Programs that open MP4 files

Updated 11/2/2020

About MP4 Files

Our goal is to help you understand what a file with a *.mp4 suffix is and how to open it.

The MPEG-4 Video file type, file format description, and Mac, Windows, Linux, Android, and iOS programs listed on this page have been individually researched and verified by the FileInfo team. We strive for 100% accuracy and only publish information about file formats that we have tested and validated.

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