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MP4 file format

File extension
.mp4
File category
Description

MP4 is one of the most popular formats for multimedia storage and distribution. It is a container for processing of wide data range, from text and graphics to sound tracks and video. Also it is able to support high-quality files, such as 3D-graphics or user’s menus. It is provided in two versions: MPV (for audio) and M4A (for video). A less known extension .mpr is being used for ringtones.

MP4 files may be played by a number of programs, including Adobe Flash, Roxio Creator, Nero Multimedia Sulte, and a default plug-in Windows Media Player. They are adapted for Mac OS and supplied by modern portable players.

Technical details

MP4/MPEG-4 has been widely used since 2001. By its nature, it is similar with MP3 although more technically complex. It involves AAC coding method and complies with the standards of ISO/IEX 14496-1. Video and audio contained in a MP4 file is usually played in real time. Thanks to extra information (e.g. file name or images) it differs significantly from MPEG. Often it is impossible to embed data in such a file without use of separate streams that commentary tracks are integrated to.

Programs
Microsoft Windows Media Player
VLC media player
MPlayer
Eltima Elmedia Player
Winamp
Apple QuickTime Player
Apple iTunes
Developer
Moving Picture Experts Group
MIME type
audio/mp4
video/mp4