By Anthony Park and Mark Watson.
We've previously discussed our plans to use HTML5 video with the proposed "Premium Video Extensions" in any browser which implements them. These extensions are the future of premium video on the web, since they allow playback of premium video directly in the browser without the need to install plugins.
Today, we're excited to announce that we've been working closely with Microsoft to implement these extensions in Internet Explorer 11 on Windows 8.1. If you install the Windows 8.1 Preview from Microsoft, you can visit Netflix.com today in Internet Explorer 11 and watch your favorite movies and TV shows using HTML5!
Microsoft implemented the Media Source Extensions (MSE) using the Media Foundation APIs within Windows. Since Media Foundation supports hardware acceleration using the GPU, this means that we can achieve high quality 1080p video playback with minimal CPU and battery utilization. Now a single charge gets you more of your favorite movies and TV shows!
Microsoft also has an implementation of the Encrypted Media Extensions (EME) using Microsoft PlayReady DRM. This provides the content protection needed for premium video services like Netflix.
We expect premium video on the web to continue to shift away from using proprietary plugin technologies to using these new Premium Video Extensions. We are thrilled to work so closely with the Microsoft team on advancing the HTML5 platform, which gets a big boost today with Internet Explorer’s cutting edge support for premium video. We look forward to these APIs being available on all browsers.