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Message 1 of 16

BT sport video quality using BT Sport Apple TV app

Hi everyone,

I’ve just signed up to the BT Sport monthly pass, and I’m watching BT Sport through the Apple TV app, on an LG 65” 4K OLED.

For UHD live events, the picture quality is outstanding, very pleased with that.

On the other hand, the HD live programs are very poor. It’s like the video is at too low a bit rate.  
It looks fine on static images, but when there is significant movement, compression artefacts are really obvious, and detail is lost.

I have  500mbps FTTP fibre broadband, so that is not the issue.

Also, with other streaming services like Netflix, Amazon Prime Video etc., the HD video quality is spot on.

I also have Sky (through a dish) and the HD quality is light years ahead in video quality terms compared to HD in the BT Sports app.

Also, there appear to be  no settings whatsoever to tweak the quality in the BT Sports app.

Has anyone else experienced this, or know why the video quality is so poor in live HD?

Very disappointed with the video quality I’m getting 😞


Thanks for any help







no settings


Message 2 of 16

Re: BT sport video quality using BT Sport Apple TV app

Assuming the app is the same across platforms, there should be a "gear" icon on the far right of the categories. In there is Device Checker, which should verify the resolution of the devices & the connection speed & set the quality accordingly.

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Message 3 of 16

Re: BT sport video quality using BT Sport Apple TV app

hi, thanks for your reply.

Yeah, on the Apple TV there is a gear icon for settings, but the only options are “Legal  Information” and “log out’.

 Not really my idea of what settings means!


so on Apple TV there appears to be no way of controlling quality, and it’s all automatic.



1) something is wrong, but not fixable in the app


2) BT sports HD quality is just very poor (Apple TV specific, possibly)

It makes no sense, as UHD quality is so good. Seems to me like BT Sport are just streaming with too low a bit rate for for HD.

Unfortunately, there’s no BT Sports app for my LG TV, which would have been useful for comparison.




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Message 4 of 16

Re: BT sport video quality using BT Sport Apple TV app

There's no Device Checker available on Apple TV devices.
There are only a very small number of device types where an option exists to force the app to show video in a lower quality (where there are known issues on some models with video when it tries to play high quality). There are no other quality settings available.
The video quality on the BT Sport 1-3 channels goes up to 1080p50 - full HD. If you're watching on any of the other channels then they only go up to 720p25 which can look a bit grainy on larger TVs.
If you want me to confirm what bitrate your device is going up to, send me a DM with the BT ID you're logged into the app with.
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Message 5 of 16

Re: BT sport video quality using BT Sport Apple TV app

Hi Darren.

My quality issue is with HD BT Sport 1-3 live broadcasts (1080p, 50fps). I understand that the quality is even poorer on the other channels (which is very disappointing, actually, especially reducing the frame rate to 25fps… that just looks terrible, to be honest - personally, I would say unwatchable… fine for portable devices, but not for TVs)

I watched the live MotoGP at the weekend, and found the quality poor… you could see lots of artefacting in the grey track for example, and detail was poor, especially non-close up. Definitely nowhere near the quality of all the other HD services I use (Netflix, Amazon Prime, BBC iPlayer, Sky (dish) etc.)

To me, it looks like a low-bitrate issue… but as I said, I have fibre FTTP 500mbps… (and / always get close to that).

I should easily be able to view the highest bitrate stream you have.

I have been watching the live Cricket on BT Sport  and again detail is poor.

I will DM you with my BT ID

Thank you for your help


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Message 6 of 16

Re: BT sport video quality using BT Sport Apple TV app

@MissLiz - did you get resolution to this issue? Am experiencing same with brand new Apple TV and brand new Samsung 4k TV. For me, all sports highlights shows on demand on the BT sport app show the same degradation issues, but live works fine.

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Message 7 of 16

Re: BT sport video quality using BT Sport Apple TV app

Hi @flillis 

I think that’s a different issue. I believe the highlights are only 720p, and only 25fps, so always look terrible on a TV. That’s just how it is, nothing you can do unfortunately.

My issue affected specific live sports (football is fine), and I believe that is due to BT Sport not having the infrastructure that say Sky do. So BT Sport can only broadcast what they are given, and it’s often poor quality when coming from  other countries.

It’s a shame, because football looks absolutely brilliant, especially in UHD HDR.
Unfortunately I have no interest in football.

Anyway, I no longer have BT Sport due to all the quality issues, and just have Sky Sports, which is always top quality for all sports, and things such as highlights are always 1080p50, so look as good as live broadcasts.

That’s not even mentioning the fact you can’t record programs with the BT Sport app, which is very poor I think.

There we’re just too many unresolvable issues with BT Sport for me, so I cancelled my subscription.




Message 8 of 16

Re: BT sport video quality using BT Sport Apple TV app

Have to agree RE: Quality; It's has declined to the point you can see alot of artifacts and compression degradation at 1080p, making the experience really poor and not enjoyable.

However, its nothing to do with infrastructure not being comparable to the likes of Sky; its entirely down to encoding and how heavily the pictures are compressed and at what bitrate they're encoded. Feeds from other countries and infrastructure have nothing to do with it.

The Extra streams being 720p25 is poor and i've raised this a few times to no avail, sadly.

Message 9 of 16

Re: BT sport video quality using BT Sport Apple TV app

Thanks for the replies. Back to sky it is then for decent quality on demand replays!!

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Message 10 of 16

Re: BT sport video quality using BT Sport Apple TV app

Of course encoding is a factor, but I don’t think that’s the only thing.

BT sports HD streams go up to 7.3Mbps (at least that was  true when I subscribed to it). With a decent encoder, that’s should be easily enough for decent quality HD stream.

Obviously, if you have a poor internet connection, you may get a lower quality stream, as it’s adaptive.

BT ran some tests on my connection (which is 500mbps FTTP) and confirmed I was getting the full quality 7.3Mbps stream.

So, using the only examples I really can, what it comes down to is:

Football (UK) : Excellent video quality

Cricket, MotoGP (from abroad): Terrible quality

Why would BT Sport encode a 7.3Mbps stream for cricket (say) at lower quality than a 7.3Mbps stream for  football?

That would make no sense..


Anyway,  whatever the reason doesn’t matter for a viewer.

The quality is not acceptable for most sports. Great if you’re a football fan, but not so much otherwise.


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