Your MacBook may not be capable of Netflix 4K streaming

Your MacBook may not be capable of Netflix 4K streaming

The new macOS Big Sur update will finally let people stream 4K HDR on Netflix using the MacBook. Furthermore, Netflix 4K streaming would only apply to select versions of the device.

Fans have long clamored for Apple to allow them to stream 4K HDR Netflix content on the MacBook. And finally, it’s all going to happen with the new macOS Big Sur update. Unfortunately, this Netflix 4K streaming feature is a bit selective in a way that only versions 2018 or higher could use it.

Netflix 4K streaming on the MacBook

Netflix enthusiasts can now anticipate the arrival of 4K streaming on their Apple devices. According to a Netflix support document, systems must meet or exceed a few requirements before they can stream in Hight Dynamic Range.

Two of the requirements are the macOS Catalina 10.15.4. and a compatible Mac model. An Apple support page specifically names these compatible models. They are as follows, per The Verge:

  • iMac 2020
  • iMac Pro
  • Mac mini 2018
  • Mac Pro 2019
  • MacBook Air 2018 or later
  • MacBook Pro 2018 or later

To be more specific, only the devices with the T2 security chip will be able to stream Netflix on 4K HDR. Even older Mac models with the capacity to support 4K won’t be able to do so without the T2 chip.

Your MacBook may not be capable of Netflix 4K streaming

As of this story’s publishing, it is still unknown why it only works on newer versions of the MacBook and how the T2 security chip relates to it.

However, it may be because the T2 chip acts as a co-processor and has a built-in video processing power. Apple did say that the T2 chip “makes transcoding HEVC video up to twice as fast as the previous generation.”

It is also possible that Netflix only included the T2 requirement to make sure that their subscribers are using Macs with the current graphics components.

How to find out if your MacBook supports Netflix 4K

Mac users can check whether their device has the T2 security chip by heading to the System information menu. Once there, you can scroll through the Controller or iBridge tab to see if the T2 security chip is among the listed. It would be listed as “Apple T2 chip.”

If it does have the Apple T2 chip then your device is ready for Netflix 4K.

Aside from the T2 security chip, users must also be subscribed to the Netflix monthly premium plan. This costs around $15.99 per month.

The macOS Big Sur is still in its public beta phase. But fans can be assured of the Netflix 4K streaming once the macOS Big Sur arrives later this year.


Featured image courtesy of Samet Özer/Unsplash, Anastasia Shuraeva/Pexels

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