What’s the best desktop browser for Netflix?
Hint: It’s (probably) not the one you’re reading this on.
Netflix remains one of the top choices for binge-watching your favorite shows. However, before you fire it up on your laptop or desktop browser, it’s important to note that your favorite browser may not provide the best viewing experience for the streaming service.
In fact, there are only a couple of browsers capable of streaming in format definition formats.
Despite its popularity, Google Chrome may not be the ideal browser for Netflix streaming. In fact, Statcounter statistics show that 69% of users prefer Chrome, but it may not provide the optimal platform for Netflix.
So, what is the best browser to watch Netflix on your desktop, especially if you want to stream content in high definition?
Which browser should I use for Netflix?
Short answer: Microsoft Edge for PC / Safari for Mac
That’s right. Microsoft Edge. That’s the browser you need to use on Windows to playback Netflix in 4K.
That’s because Microsoft uses hardware-based DRM (which is the ‘lock’ that stops people from pirating copyrighted material).
Opera's speed, security features like a built-in VPN, and customization options make it a reliable browser for streaming Netflix. However, there may be occasional compatibility issues with certain extensions or add-ons.
- Built-in VPN: Opera is one of the few browsers offering a free, built-in VPN, which can help protect your online privacy and security without additional software or subscriptions.
- Battery saver: Opera's battery saver mode can help extend your device's battery life, which can be especially useful when using a laptop or mobile device on the go.
- Personalization: Opera offers a wide range of customization options, which can help you to personalize your browsing experience and make it more efficient.
If you don’t use Edge, you’re limited to 720p playback on Windows computers. Chromebooks are limited to 1080p playback. Oh, and the Netflix app on Windows can serve 4K content as well.
|Browsers||Resolution Support||Streaming Quality||Recommended Internet Speed|
|Microsoft Edge and Internet Explorer on Windows||1080p||720p||5.0 Mbps|
|Safari on Mac (Yosemite or later)||1080p||720p||5.0 Mbps|
|Google Chrome (and Firefox, Opera)||720p||720p||5.0 Mbps|
And if you’re a Mac user? Well, Apple uses hardware-based DRM as well. You can use Safari on macOS 11.0 or later and get a 4K stream. The only drawback here? Most Apple displays aren’t 4K.
But honestly, they don’t need to be. The displays’ high-quality resolution and vibrant colors more than makeup for the lack of 4K, providing an excellent viewing experience for users.
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