AVI stands for Audio Video Interleaved. AVI is a video and audio file format used to store audio and/or video information digitally for playback purposes. AVI format enjoys built-in support in all the Microsoft’s Windows platform. AVI files have file extension .avi. Apart from Windows OS, AVI format is supported by all the major platforms. In real, AVI is works as a container to hold videos and audios created and compressed using several codecs like DivX and XviD. In this article we have analyzed the pros and cons of AVI file format along with a small introduction to its history and structure.


AVI file format was created by Microsoft in November 1992 with intent of providing an advanced and robust audio and video file format for windows operating system.


The structure of AVI files is very simple. These files consist of two parts; a header followed by chunks of information. Header contains metadata of the file like the file size, frame rates and similar characteristics whereas chunks store actual audio and video information.
Let us look into some of the advantages which AVI file format has over other formats.
  • There are lots of codecs currently available that can be used to achieve desired compression ratio of AVI format.
  • AVI file format has exceptionally high quality audio fidelity.
  • In order to make it compatible with the DV standard, DV-AVI standard can be compressed unlike other audio/video formats.
  • AVI file format is developed by windows, which makes it playable with all the major Microsoft and non-Microsoft operating systems.
  • Playable DVDs and disks can be created by using AVI file format in order to store initial audio/video information.
  • AVI file format do not require any particular hardware device of software application for the file to run.
  • AVI file format is the most widely used video format for promos, short movies and advertisements owing to its compression capabilities.

  • If AVI files are compressed using some codecs then in order to retrieve and play the file it requires the same codec to be installed on the machine.
  • AVI files if uncompressed can be very large in size as compared to the other file formats.
  • AVI files if compressed beyond certain limits result in the loss of video quality.