With all the new iPhone 4S users visiting iFunia every day, we're increasingly being asked will iPhone 4S play AVI or how to play AVI on iPhone 4S, so we prepared this article about AVI playback on iPhone 4S.
Will the iPhone 4S Play/Support AVI Video Files?
According to Apple's iPhone 4S tech specs, the iPhone 4 (iPhone 4S included) practically supports only one type of AVI video:
Motion JPEG (M-JPEG) up to 35 Mbps, 1280 by 720 pixels, 30 frames per second, audio in ulaw, PCM stereo audio in .avi file format.
AVI is a multimedia container format developed by Microsoft in 1992. An AVI file can carry audio/visual data inside in almost any compression scheme, including: MPEG-4, XviD, DivX and others. Motion JPEG is a type of AVI compression, used mostly by digital cameras. While most downloaded AVI are encoded with XviD/DivX codec and there's no indication Apple is supporting such AVI. In other words, iPhone 4S supports some types of video cameras AVI footage via the camera card reader accessory, while it won't let you play downloaded AVI movies on iPhone 4S. So how to play AVI movies downloaded from the Internet on you iPhone 4S or iPhone 4?
How to Play AVI on iPhone 4S?
To view AVI video files unaccepted by iPhone, you need convert your AVI to iPhone 4 friendly format first. Two options then are available: convert AVI to AVI with JPEG compression, or convert AVI to MOV, MP4 or M4V which is highly compatible with iPhone. This article introduces two solutions for converting AVI to iPhone 4S format on Mac for assisting you to do the playback. Here we go the step by step guides:
Perian is a free QuickTime component that enlarges QT native support for many popular video formats which not quite "Mac Friendly". It works perfectly even "like a charm" for most of the AVI files on Mac. To use this method, you will also need either QuickTime 7 Pro, which costs $30, or QuickTime X.
Step 1: Once you've downloaded and installed Perian, open your AVI file using QuickTime.
QuickTime 7: To convert the file to a format which your iPhone recognizes, choose File > Export… then select a format from the dropdown list; MPEG-4 or iPhone are the best options to choose for this purpose. Choose where to save the new file and hit OK.
QuickTime X: QuickTime X can send the file directly into iTunes, which saves a bit of time in the long run. Choose Share > iTunes… and you'll be presented with three size options. Sometimes only iPhone will be available to select, but this is fine because that's where we want to watch the AVI. Click Share and QuickTime will export the file directly into iTunes.
Step 2: You only need to continue with this step if you used QuickTime 7 previously. Once your file has been exported to your hard drive, all that’s left to do is drag it into iTunes, where it will be added to your library and can be synced to your iPhone.
Play AVI on iPhone 4S with Video Conversion Program
Personally, I prefer this method to going to an iPhones 4S video conversion application. As I find it faster. Also, using specialist conversion software can get you all the customization features of QuickTime 7. The application I use is iFunia iPhone 4 Video Converter which offers many options for conversion, including a whole host of preset options.
Step 2. Directly drag & drop your AVI files to the Mac app, or head to "File" menu then choose "Add Files" to import your files for converting. Batch conversion is allowed;
Step 3. In the "Output Format" box in the right pane, click the downward arrow to access a dropdown list of preset file options. The iPhone output profiles have been optimized and are suggested for use.
Step 4. When the file has been converted, drop it into iTunes to add it to your library and put it onto your iPhone 4S.
Audio Video Interleave (also Audio Video Interleaved), known by its acronym AVI, is a multimedia container format introduced by Microsoft in November 1992 as part of its Video for Windows technology. AVI files can contain both audio and video data in a file container that allows synchronous audio-with-video playback. Like the DVD video format, AVI files support multiple streaming audio and video, although these features are seldom used. Most AVI files also use the file format extensions developed by the Matrox OpenDML group in February 1996. These files are supported by Microsoft, and are unofficially called "AVI 2.0".