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Difference Between WMV and MPG

wmvWMV vs MPG

WMV and MPG are the two video file formats that are very popular to consumers nowadays. The primary difference between the two is the source of the standard. MPG is the shortened version of MPEG (Moving Picture Experts Group), the group that developed the standard, to fit with the 8.3 filename format that was used by file systems back then. On the other hand, WMV stands for Windows Media Video and was developed by Microsoft for use with its products.

MPG is the older standard of the two and has evolved a lot over the years. MPEG4 is one of the most popular variants as it found prominent use in mobile devices. Although it still belongs to MPEG, it no longer uses the MPG extension; it uses the MP4 extension to differentiate itself. MPG is commonly used when the video is encoded in the older MPEG1 or MPEG2 standard. WMV is also based on the MPEG4 standard and aims to duplicate and improve its functionality for users of Microsoft software and hardware. Therefore, comparing the quality of MPEG1 to WMV with the same file size, the quality of WMV would be a lot better due to the compression algorithms. But when comparing MPEG4 to WMV, the results are still debatable.

When we look at the consumer end of the equation, it is clear that MPG is the winner as its maturity means that a lot more devices support it compared to WMV. This encompasses software to hardware players alike. WMV is widely used in products that Microsoft is involved with but has not been as successful with other products. It is the default file format for Windows Media Player. For some time, it is the only supported format for Silverlight, another Microsoft product. WMV is also the default format for hardware devices from Microsoft. This includes the Zune, a music player from Microsoft, the very famous Xbox, and even on PDAs and smartphones that run the Windows Mobile operating system.

1. MPG is an industry standard while WMV is a proprietary format developed by Microsoft
2. MPG is much older than WMV
3. MPG is used for files that that use the older standard, commonly MPEG1
4. WMV is based on a later version of MPG known as MPEG4
5. WMV is much better when compared to MPG but not when compared to MP4
6. MPG has a much wider range of devices that it can be played on compared to WMV

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