It seems like Mozilla is trying its hardest to alienate some of its users and has decided to provide Netflix HTML5 video support for the Windows platform only.
Mozilla has been criticized before for the lack of HTML5 video support in Firefox, and that is painfully obvious when trying to use services like Netflix, which have dropped the use of Flash for their content. Until recently, Linux users could use the NPAPI plugins, but those are getting deprecated.
Don’t worry, since Mozilla has plans to replace that missing functionality with another Adobe product, which is called Primetime CDM. Netflix can’t be streamed over regular HTML video, and it needs a form of DRM protection (digital rights management). This new Adobe Primetime was available through the old Flash Player, and it looks like it’s going to be offered separately.
Adobe Primetime for Linux is not planned
One thing that really stood out from Mozilla announcement was the fact that only Windows is mentioned. After we dug a little deeper, we found that Mac OS X will get Adobe Primetime sometime next year, and that’s about it. The Linux users are not mentioned, and given the state of Linux support from Adobe, we probably know the answer already.
“As we announced earlier this year, Mozilla has been working with Adobe and Netflix to enable HTML5 video playback. This is an important step on Mozilla’s roadmap to deprecate NPAPI plugins. Adobe’s Primetime CDM runs in Mozilla’s open-source CDM sandbox, providing better user security compared to NPAPI plugins,” Mozilla explained on their blog.
Google Chrome already has support for Netflix, and as long as the Linux users have the latest version of the NSS, it shouldn’t be a problem. The funny thing is that Mozilla is a foundation that acts as a corporation, and Google is a corporation that wants to act as a foundation.
It’s difficult not to portray Mozilla and Adobe as the bad guys, but it’s much more likely that the users will decide that for themselves when they are going to use something else than Firefox to watch Netflix.