Following the unveiling of OS X Yosemite at WWDC 2014, Netflix today asked beta users of Yosemite to test out the streaming service’s HTML 5-based viewing option in Safari. This feature is available in Yosemite as result of improvements Apple made to its Safari browser.
Registered Mac developers and those Mac owners with access to OS X Yosemite via Apple’s new beta program can test out the new plug-in-free streaming option by logging into their Netflix account and playing a video. Previously, Netflix web-based streaming required users to install Microsoft Silverlight for digital rights management and adaptive streaming.
This new plugin-less streaming option is possible now the Apple has added support for Media Source Extensions, Encrypted Media Extensions (EME) and Web Cryptography API (WebCrypto) in Safari.
We’re especially excited that Apple implemented the Media Source Extensions (MSE) using their highly optimized video pipeline on OS X. This lets you watch Netflix in buttery smooth 1080p without hogging your CPU or draining your battery. In fact, this allows you to get up to 2 hours longer battery life on a MacBook Air streaming Netflix in 1080p – that’s enough time for one more movie!
Apple also implemented the Encrypted Media Extensions (EME) which provides the content protection needed for premium video services like Netflix.
Are you a Netflix user? Are you looking forward to Silverlight-free streaming on your Yosemite-powered Mac?