How to Enable Netflix Full HD (1080p) in Ubuntu and Other Linux

3 min

A simple tutorial for you to enable full HD 1080p Netflix playback in Ubuntu and other Linux.

The steps are a little different in Firefox and Chrome. Follow accordingly.

Netflix playback in Ubuntu and other Linux distributions is in only HD 720p by default. It’s from their current requirement, which is mentioned here for its HTML5-based player in the browser. This is what is supported currently:

  • Google Chrome
    • Up to 720p on Windows, Mac, and Linux
    • Up to 1080p on Chrome OS
  • Microsoft Edge up to 4K
  • Mozilla Firefox up to 720p
  • Opera up to 720p
  • Safari
    • Up to 4K on macOS 11.0 or later
    • Up to 1080p on macOS 10.11 to 10.15

Although Edge is supposed to play full HD, it doesn’t work in Linux (as per my test and numerous reports on the web).

So, to play in full HD 1080p via Firefox and Chrome, you need to install an add-on that enables playback. Remember, although the add-on works, it is software decoding, not hardware decoding. Hence, you should keep that in mind because it might use more resources from your hardware due to software rendering.

Enable Netflix Full HD (1080p) in Ubuntu and Other Linux

Firefox users

  • Open the below link. And hit Add to Firefox to add the extension.
  • Verify it’s enabled by going to about:addons from the address bar. Then clear your cache, close the browser and launch Firefox.
  • Open and log in to your account. From the right-top section avatar, click on Account.
Go to Account Settings
Go to Account Settings
  • Then, under Profile and Parental Control, expand your profile.
  • Click on change under Playback Settings. In this screen, select data usage per screen=High.
Change Playback Settings
Change Playback Settings
Select HD settings for streaming
Select HD settings for streaming
  • Click save.
  • Now, play any HD-capable movie or series. And you should be all good.

Chrome Users

Follow the exact same steps mentioned above after installing the extension below from Chrome Web Store.

How to Verify that Netflix in Linux is actually playing in 1080p?

Once you are done with the above steps, you should be all good. However, there is a way to verify whether the extensions are working properly and playing in full HD.

While playing any title, press ALT+CTRL+SHIFT+D to bring up debug information. In this window, you should see playing bitrate is 1080.

Here’s a comparison of the before and after enabling the Firefox extension.

Before enabling HD 1080p Playback for Netflix in Linux
Before enabling HD 1080p Playback for Netflix in Linux
After enabling HD 1080p Playback for Netflix in Linux
After enabling HD 1080p Playback for Netflix in Linux

Also, if you press ALT+CTRL+SHIFT+S, you can see the available bitrate list for audio and video.

Wrapping Up

Although the above Netflix playback in HD works in Firefox and Google Chrome using the extension, it did not work in Microsoft Edge in Linux. Also, make sure you have proper Netflix plan capable of full HD streaming.

If you face any errors or trouble playing, let me know in the comment box below.


Creator of All time Linux user and open-source supporter. Connect with me via Telegram, Twitter, LinkedIn, or send us an email.
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