Safari in macOS Big Sur Works With 4K HDR and Dolby Vision Content From Netflix on Newer Macs

Safari 14, introduced in the iOS 14 and macOS Big Sur betas, introduces HDR video support and allows Netflix users to watch content in 4K HDR and Dolby Vision for the first time.

macosbigsur
As pointed out by 9to5Mac, Netflix has long offered 4K content that can be viewed on other platforms like the 4K Apple TV, but it has not been available to Mac users due to hardware limitations.


Safari in macOS Catalina and earlier has limited Netflix content to 1080p resolution, but with macOS Big Sur, Netflix works in 4K and supports Dolby Vision and HDR10 for more vivid colors.

Watching 4K HDR content on Mac requires a Mac introduced in 2018 or later, so older Macs will continue to be limited to 1080p resolution on Netflix with macOS Big Sur.

As we covered last week, tvOS 14 and iOS 14 are now compatible with YouTube's VP9 codec, allowing 4K YouTube content to be watched on those platforms, but the codec is not yet supported in Safari 14 in macOS Big Sur.

Related Forum: macOS Big Sur

Top Rated Comments

Somian Avatar
34 months ago
It's not a hardware limitation. Older MacBook Pros can play H.265 4k content just fine. The only reason it doesn't work is that someone made a decision that it's not supposed to work. DRM isn't a technical necessity.
Score: 27 Votes (Like | Disagree)
IamTimCook Avatar
34 months ago

It's not a hardware limitation. Older MacBook Pros can play H.265 4k content just fine. The only reason it doesn't work is that someone made a decision that it's not supposed to work. DRM isn't a technical necessity.
Agreed. Having the 2017 iMac Pro relegated to 1080p viewing for Netflix and iTunes is the biggest load of....
Both the 2017 iMac and the 2017 iMac Pro have the necessary CPUs for DRM streamed media.
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)
SoN1NjA Avatar
34 months ago

That looks like it says “mp4” and “hevc”. Sounds like YouTube is supporting H.265. Rather than Apple supporting VP9. If so, that’s a good thing.
Google will never support HEVC, not even in hell

Why on Earth would Google spend loads of money developing VP9 and now AV1, all to bow down to Apple who has to flick a switch on their side?
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
iBluetooth Avatar
34 months ago

Google will never support HEVC, not even in hell

Why on Earth would Google spend loads of money developing VP9 and now AV1, all to bow down to Apple who has to flick a switch on their side?
H265 is not an Apple codec.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Jamalien Avatar
34 months ago
JUST SO YOU ALL KNOW : You don't need big sur, it also works in safari technical preview for catalina

Edit : Only works sporadically in Catalina, and consistently in Big Sur...idfk whats with it
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
konqerror Avatar
34 months ago

That looks like it says “mp4” and “hevc”. Sounds like YouTube is supporting H.265. Rather than Apple supporting VP9. If so, that’s a good thing.
The screenshot/article is talking about Netflix, not YouTube. Netflix always supported HEVC.

It was a DRM issue for 4K on the computers, as I recall. They only supported Microsoft PlayReady which requires Edge or Silverlight (when that was still a thing).
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

iPhone trade in

Apple Adjusts Trade-In Values for iPhones, Macs, and More

Wednesday January 25, 2023 9:40 am PST by
After announcing new Mac and HomePod models last week, Apple adjusted its trade-in values for select devices in the United States. iPhone trade-in values decreased by up to $80, and most Android smartphones also went down. Mac trade-in values remained unchanged or increased by up to $40 depending on the model, while some Apple Watch models increased in value and others decreased. Trade-in...
iPhone 14 Pro Purple Side Perspective Feature Purple

iPhone 15 Pro Expected Later This Year With These 7 Exclusive Features

Tuesday January 24, 2023 4:53 pm PST by
Apple's next-generation iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max are expected to be announced in September as usual. Already, rumors suggest the devices will have at least seven exclusive features not available on the standard iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus. An overview of the seven features rumored to be exclusive to iPhone 15 Pro models:A17 chip: iPhone 15 Pro models will be equipped with an A17...
Mac mini M2 2023

New 256GB Mac Mini and 512GB MacBook Pro Have Slower SSD Speeds Than Previous Models

Tuesday January 24, 2023 1:11 pm PST by
While the new Mac mini with the M2 chip has a lower $599 starting price, the base model with 256GB of storage has slower SSD read and write speeds compared to the previous-generation model with the M1 chip and 256GB of storage. A teardown of the new Mac mini shared by YouTube channel Brandon Geekabit reveals that the 256GB model is equipped with only a single 256GB storage chip, while the...
iOS 16

iOS 16.3 for iPhone Launching Next Week With These 4 New Features

Friday January 20, 2023 11:43 am PST by
In a recent press release, Apple confirmed that iOS 16.3 will be released to the public next week. The software update will be available for the iPhone 8 and newer and includes a handful of new features, changes, and bug fixes. Below, we've recapped bigger features in iOS 16.3, including support for physical security keys as a two-factor authentication option for Apple ID accounts, worldwide ...
iPhone 14 Pro Purple Side Perspective Feature Purple

iPhone 15 Expected to Feature Wi-Fi 6E Like Latest Macs and iPad Pro

Wednesday January 25, 2023 5:39 pm PST by
The iPhone 15 will support Wi-Fi 6E, according to a research note shared this week by Barclays analysts Blayne Curtis and Tom O'Malley. The analysts did not specify whether the feature will be available on all models or limited to the Pro models. Apple has added Wi-Fi 6E support to a handful of devices so far, including the latest 11-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pro, 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook...
maxresdefault

Hands-On With the New M2 Pro Mac Mini

Tuesday January 24, 2023 1:45 pm PST by
The new M2-series MacBook Pro and Mac mini models launched today, marking the debut of the first M2 Pro and M2 Max chips. We have the M2 Pro Mac mini on hand, and thought we'd take a look at the machine and do a series of benchmarks to see how it fits into Apple's lineup. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. Base model Mac mini machines come with either an M2 or M2 Pro...
apple tv 4k red image

Apple Releases tvOS 16.3

Tuesday January 24, 2023 10:10 am PST by
Apple today released tvOS 16.3, the third major point update to the tvOS 16 operating system that originally came out in September. Available for the Apple TV 4K and Apple TV HD, tvOS 16.3 comes six weeks after tvOS 16.2, an update that added Apple Music Sing. The tvOS 16.3 update can be downloaded over the air through the Settings app on the ‌‌‌‌Apple TV‌‌‌‌ by going to System > Software...
maxresdefault

Hands-On With the New M2 Max MacBook Pro

Thursday January 26, 2023 12:14 pm PST by
New 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models with the latest M2 Pro and M2 Max chips are available in Apple retail stores and are already in the hands of customers, and we picked up one of the new M2 Max machines to answer all of the questions MacRumors readers considering a purchase might have. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. Yesterday, we asked MacRumors fans on...