Netflix confirmed to The Verge that it axed the feature this past week because of a “technical limitation” caused by the fact that Apple has partnered with most major TV brands to allow AirPlay 2 to send shows directly to their 2019 TV sets via an update.
But a Netflix spokesperson pointed out that AirPlay 2 doesn’t have digital identifiers allowing Netflix to tell those TVs apart; therefore, the company can’t ensure that its users are getting the best viewing experience.
“We want to make sure our members have a great Netflix experience on any device they use,” according to an official company statement. “With AirPlay support rolling out to third-party devices, there isn’t a way for us to distinguish between devices (what is an Apple TV vs. what isn’t) or certify these experiences. Therefore, we have decided to discontinue Netflix AirPlay support to ensure our standard of quality for viewing is being met. Members can continue to access Netflix on the built-in app across Apple TV and other devices.”
The news also comes after Apple revealed that it was launching its own streaming video service, which will feature free original content for device owners and a subscription platform for existing digital services. Customers will be able to watch content from a variety of sources all within the iOS TV application.
But while HBO, PBS, CBS, Acorn TV, and Tastemade are expected to participate in the new streaming platform, Netflix and its rival Hulu are not. One issue could be that Apple wants to keep 30 percent on every customer that subscribes to the video service — a significant boost from the 15 percent it currently takes from customers that sign up to streaming apps through the App Store.