MOV - QuickTime Movie

What is a MOV file

The MOV file extension is used to save video files with a proprietary compression algorithm designed by Apple. This file extension is compatible with both Windows and Mac platforms. Each file container is capable of holding multiple media types. They can hold videos, video effects, text, images, subtitles, and audio. Video editing software often use this file type. MOV files and QuickTime are often used in the editing of music and video (or the two combined). Sony PSP and DVD players are capable of viewing MOV video files based on the compatible software. The International Organization for Standardization approved MOV files are the basis for the MPEG-4 Part 14 file.

MOV files can contain multiple tracks, each track containing objects in a hierarchy called “atoms.” Atoms can contain media or edit data, or they can be parents to other atoms, however, they can only do one of the two actions. MPV and MP4 files use the same MPEG-4 file container, and they usually use QuickTime as the standard with the most support. With MOV files, existing media can be embedded to media in another file. Early versions of QuickTime allow viewing of MOV files only while later versions (QuickTime Pro) allow editing and exportation of the files by the user as well.

Here's a small, but not exhaustive list of programs that can open MOV documents:

  • Apple QuickTime Player
  • CyberLink PowerDirector
  • Roxio Easy Media Creator
  • VideoLAN VLC Media Player
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