Windows 10 to support FLAC and MKV out of the box

Windows 10 FLAC

When Microsoft launches Windows 10 next year, the operating system will support FLAC out of the box, according to a tweet from Gabriel Aul, the head of Microsoft's Operating Systems Group's Data and Fundamentals Team.

FLAC—short for Free Lossless Audio Codec—is a popular format among audiophiles and anyone trading in high-quality music. Its algorithm can typically reduce a file to around half its original size, which can then be decompressed to an identical copy of the original audio.

Previously, anyone wanting to listen to or convert FLAC files on Windows had to do so via a third-party program such as the ever-popular VLC media player or the versatile music player foobar2000. With Windows 10, Windows Media Player will be able to handle those duties.

This expands Microsoft's support for popular but less-than-standard file formats. FLAC joins MKV (one of the most common containers for H.264 video alongside MP4) and HEVC (High Efficiency Video Coding), both of which were also confirmed by Aul on Twitter last month.

We'll probably still install Media Player Classic Homecinema on Windows 10, just to be on the safe side.

Bo Moore

As the former head of PC Gamer's hardware coverage, Bo was in charge of helping readers better understand and use PC hardware. He also headed up the buying guides, picking the best peripherals and components to spend your hard-earned money on. He can usually be found playing Overwatch, Apex Legends, or more likely, with his cats. He is now IGN's resident tech editor and PC hardware expert.