Frame rate on smartphones is thrown around these days so casually. You hear about it a lot on smartphones reviews, blogposts, YouTube videos etc. A lot of people sometimes wonder what they mean. If you are reading this right now and you are wondering what it means, then you are not alone.
Our phones today have come a long way. Once they were only seen as business tools meant for making and receiving calls. Now they have exploded and can be anything you want them to be. One of the things we want them be are multimedia devices. Our phones can play video games and movies (animated and non animated).
What we call videos, games and other animation today are simply motion pictures or a series of images that are captured in quick succession. They are then combined and played back also in quick succession in order to simulate motion. This means that in order to make a video, the camera simply takes lots of pictures and combines them together.
Each picture or scene captured is called a frame. A frame is a unit of a video.
There are several definitions of Frame rate depending on the area being addressed;
For the performance of a camera or display;
The number of pictures (frames) that a camera can capture/or a display can play back in one second is called a frame rate. It is measured/expressed in a unit called Frames per second (fps).
Frame rate can be defined as the rate at which the CPU and GPU can process data and send to the display. It is also measured in fps.
Frame rate in video is defines as the number of still pictures played back per unit time (a second) of video.
Going by the definitions above, they all simply mean the amount of frames that are pushed to the display within one second. If only one frame (picture) is pushed to the display during a game or video in one second, then that game/video is rated at 1fps. If 20 frames (pictures) is passes through the display in one second, it is rated at 20fps.
Many video games for smartphones max out at 60fps, TVs usually get up to 30fps and movies are shot at 24fps.
The number of FPS that your device can play is usually dependent on your hardware specs (CPU, GPU and RAM) as well as the app or game you are using. PUBG, CoDM and PES2021 for example are set to 30fps by default because that is what a lot of phones can handle. The user can then increase it to 60fps if their phones can handle it. YouTube maxes out at 60fps also.
Why are higher frame rates (fps) important?
Most smartphones today by default support 30fps and most movies and animations on your phone are also maxed out at either 30fps or even less. Most apps today also support 30fps by default.
Where frame rates become important is during gaming especially competitive online gaming like PES2021, PUBG, CoDM, Fortnite, Asphalt, Grid Autosports etc. This is because in such do-or-die games, every frame is important so as to get an edge on your opponent. If I see a frame faster than my opponent, I will act quicker before he even gets a chance to react.
Faster frame rates also means smoother videos and when combined with a high refresh rates makes your phone buttery smooth.
Read: What are Refresh rates?
It is also important to note that higher fps increases the workloads of the CPU, GPU and RAM which leads to moderate heating and increased battery consumption
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