updated 04:35 pm EDT, Tue June 3, 2014
Possible thanks to updated Safari
People watching Netflix in OS X Yosemite will now be able to stream video via HTML5 instead of Silverlight, according to an official blog post. The service says it has been "working closely with Apple" to implement HTML5 Premium Video Extensions in Yosemite's edition of Safari. This allows viewers to start watching videos instantly, instead of having to install the Silverlight plugin first, as in OS X Mavericks.
"We're especially excited that Apple implemented the Media Source Extensions (MSE) using their highly optimized video pipeline on OS X. This lets you watch Netflix in buttery smooth 1080p without hogging your CPU or draining your battery," Netflix adds. This is the source of Apple's claim that the new Safari should enable up to two hours of extra battery life when watching Netflix on a MacBook Air.
Prior to this week, Internet Explorer 11 was already capable of using Premium Video Extensions, but that software is limited to Windows.