Safari can now stream 4K HDR and Dolby Vision content on Netflix with macOS Big Sur

We recently mentioned that macOS Big Sur includes a new version of Safari with various improvements, including HDR video support. It turns out that there is a platform that is already benefiting from these Safari updates, as users can finally watch 4K HDR content on Netflix with a Mac.

Netflix has been offering 4K content for a long time, but Mac users have never been able to watch it due to hardware limitations, as the platform is based on the HEVC codec.

Even after Apple released new fully HEVC-compatible Mac models, Apple hasn’t updated Safari to support the new technology, which is one of the main reasons for Netflix to limit its content to 1080p resolution on macOS.

With macOS Big Sur, which is currently available as a beta developer, Mac users can finally watch Netflix movies and TV shows in 4K resolution. It also works with Dolby Vision and HDR10, which offers brighter and more vivid colors.

Unfortunately, according to Apple, 4K High Dynamic Range streaming requires a Mac introduced in 2018 or later. That means older Macs can only play 1080p videos on Netflix, even with macOS Big Sur installed.

Apple has also enabled the VP9 codec for apps on iOS 14 and tvOS 14, which allows users to watch 4K HDR videos on YouTube for the first time, but Safari 14 has yet to receive this codec.

Since AirPlay 2 now supports 4K video streaming on iOS 14 and macOS Big Sur, it makes sense for Apple to commit to enabling such content on all of its platforms.

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