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macOS Big Sur will bring a much-needed update for Netflix binging in Safari

(Image credit: Netflix)

Apple Mac users making the jump to macOS 11 will be pleased to hear that Netflix streaming is getting an upgrade in the forthcoming operating system release.

It's been discovered that those looking to settle in for a Netflix viewing session on their Apple laptop or desktop devices will now be able to enjoy 4K HDR streams, directly from the new version of the Safari browser.

Previously, anything above a 1080p stream would require the viewer to jump to another app. But support for HEVC in Apple's web browser opens up support for higher resolutions and even top HDR formats like Dolby Vision.

HDR requirements

You'll still need specific hardware to make use of the new HDR features however. Only certain Macs or MacBooks will be able to take advantage.

When Big Sur releases later this year, you'll be able to access 4K HDR Netflix streams on MacBook Pro or Mac Mini models released in 2018 or later, or on iMac Pro or Mac Pro machines. If your device doesn't have a built-in display, your external monitor will need to be HDR compatible too.

HDR (high dynamic range) is a premium video feature that boosts peak brightness, making for a richer image and more pronounced definition between dark and light areas of an image.

Gerald Lynch

Gerald is the Executive Editor for TechRadar, taking care of the site's home cinema, gaming, smart home, entertainment and audio output. He loves his gaming, but don't expect him to play with you unless your console is hooked up to a 4K HDR screen and a 7.1 surround system. Based out of TechRadar Towers, London, Gerald was previously Editor of Gizmodo UK. He dreams of the day when he can pop on a VR headset and meet Lawnmower Man-era Pierce Brosnan. Sadly, Pierce doesn't share the dream.