Research from Rice University’s Department of Psychology finds that if you like what you’re watching, you’re less likely to notice the difference in video quality of the TV show, Internet video or mobile movie clip.
“if you’re at home watching and enjoying a movie, we found that you’re probably not going to notice or even concern yourself with how many pixels the video is or if the data is being compressed,” Kortum said. “This strong relationship holds across a wide range of encoding levels and movie content when that content is viewed under longer and more naturalistic viewing conditions.”
The findings run counter to the popular belief that Americans are striving for and must have the best video quality at their fingertips all the time.
The importance of the research could be far-reaching in the way cable companies, online video and news providers shave megabits of compression to save on the ever-growing need for bandwidth.