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Thanks to Microsoft, Chromium Browsers Will Be Able to Stream Netflix in 4K

Chromium appears to be on track to support UltraHD and FullHD content after many years of Microsoft Edge holding exclusive access in browsers.


Microsoft has proposed changes to Chromium that would enable DRM streaming of 4K content. This functionality was previously limited to its EdgeHTML browser and TVs, with Chrome historically limited even on a 4K monitor.

The changes are currently live in Chromium Edge on Windows 10 via experimental flags. PlayReady is a copyright protection technology built into Windows, so the functionality is unlikely to come to ChromeOS via that method.

However, a new commit (via WindowsLatest) suggests efforts to bring the 4K-ready DRM to all Chromium are nearing completion.

“To support the playback of protected/DRM media on Windows with 4K content, we are going to use MF-based Protected Media Path (PMP) architecture,” said Microsoft’s Frank Li.

To do so, Microsoft suggests an enhanced implementation of the MFMediaEngineClient and MFMediaEngineRender. It will then add connection pieces in Chromium’s code to let the MFMediaEngine render audio and video, while creating a LPAC utility process that would communicate with Google’s Widevine DRM.

The changes have been added the commit queue for a dry run, and flags are likely to go live in Chrome test builds soon.

Microsoft and Google’s Chromium collaboration has born plenty of fruit in the past months. It previously led to a new text finder, battery improvements, and spell checker. Still, this could be one that’s the most noticeable to users. 720p by default isn’t ideal in 2019, while using Netflix’s Windows 10 app still presents issues with multiple monitors.

Ryan Maskell
Ryan Maskellhttps://ryanmaskell.co.uk
Ryan has had a passion for gaming and technology since early childhood. Fusing the skills from his Creative Writing and Publishing degree with profound technical knowledge, he enjoys covering news about Microsoft. As an avid writer, he is also working on his debut novel.

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