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High Quality Video and Photos from iOS to YouTube and Facebook

By: Todd Stabley

Camera technology for mobile devices has made big strides in recent times, and it’s possible to shoot great quality photos and videos from your phone or tablet. (And we’re poised for another even bigger leap as 4k makes its way to the mobile world.) Unfortunately sometimes preserving all that quality at your publishing points can be tricky because most apps dumb down resolution and compression by default in order to scale to their massive audiences. Most leave the door open to your being able to get better results, however. Here are a couple tips:

Facebook Mobile Default Quality vs. Original
Facebook Mobile Default Quality vs. Original

Uploading the full quality 1080p video you shot on your iPhone to YouTube

To get full 1080p videos from your iPhone into YouTube, you’ll need to avoid uploading directly from Camera Roll, as the integration with YouTube there only supports a 720p HD setting at the top end. To get full 1080p, you can upload directly from YouTube’s mobile app, or from the separate app YouTube offers for editing called Capture. Check the settings in both of these apps to make sure 1080p is set as the default.

Avoiding noticeable image degradation when uploading photos to Facebook 

I’m a stickler for photo quality, so I noticed it recently when photos I uploaded via Facebook mobile looked poor compared to the originals. Experimenting with different ways of getting photos into Facebook, I found the following. I have an 8-megapixel iphone 6, (3264 x 2448):

  • Uploading via Facebook Desktop resulted in 2048 x 1536 files
  • Uploading directly via the iOS Facebook app defaulted in 960 x 720
  • When I chose the Upload HD option in the iOS Facebook app (see instructions below), the resulting images were 1280 x 960

One option you have if you need to use your phone and want the highest possible quality is to open a browser and log in to your account at Uploading my photos this way produced 2048 x 1536 files.

If you don’t care about that full quality but still want your photos to look better than the default 960 x 720, follow these steps to enable the Upload HD setting for FB Mobile:

  1. Open the Facebook app on your phone
  2. Press the More button at the bottom of the screen
  3. Settings
  4. Account Settings
  5. Videos and Photos
  6. Photo Settings
  7. Turn on Upload HD

With 4k on its way to Mobile devices, we’ll likely need to revisit all this down the road…

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