Don’t go in blind. Here’s what you need to stream Netflix in 4K
If you’ve signed up to Netflix New Zealand, you will have noticed the ultra HD (UHD) option in its premium package. Ultra HD? Sounds awesome, sign me up!
Unfortunately, there are a few obstacles between you and ultra HD streaming, and some of them can be quite pricey, so here is everything you need to begin streaming Netflix New Zealand in ultra HD.
A 4K television. It might be obvious to some, but yes, you are going to need a 4K-ready TV to make the most of the premium Netflix package. In 2015, 4K televisions became all the rage, much like the curved screens and 3D TVs before them. Today, you can get 4K televisions from as low as $500 (43 inch Veon 4K Ultra HD LCD TV from the Warehouse ), though anything of higher quality is likely to hurt your wallet.
What else can my 4K TV do?
While streaming in 4K is the future, it’s not the only reason to purchase a 4K television. The latest consoles, like the PlayStation 4 Pro and Xbox One S, allow you to play games in 4K (native for the PS4 Pro and upscaled for the Xbox One S).
Can your broadband handle it?
To be honest, probably not. Ultra HD streaming requires a steady 25Mbps. The problem is, most Kiwis would scoff at a 25Mbps connection because 25Mbps is the absolute maximum speed ADSL2+ can reach. If you don’t live a stone’s throw away from the exchange (and your Wi-Fi is running nothing but ultra HD Netflix) you’re pretty much out of luck – unless you’re one of the lucky ones who have Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP) installed at your address, as part of the Ultra Fast Broadband (UFB) program.
If you’re hooked up to FTTP, you should have absolutely no problem streaming ultra HD Netflix.
Alright, so you’ve hooked yourself up with a 4K TV and FTTP, and you’re kicking back enjoying 100/20 speeds. Before you get too comfortable, we need to talk about data usage.
How much data does your Internet service provider (ISP) give you every month? Because if you’re streaming ultra HD Netflix, it better be a lot.
Ultra HD Netflix streaming uses an estimated 7GB per hour, which is massive. If you watch 1.5 hours of Netflix movies every night, that’s 325.5GB per month. Taking into account data usage for general browsing and other downloads, you’re going to want a minimum of 500GB per month. How much is that going to cost? Approximately, from $60 per month. Here are a couple of providers who offer unlimited data at a reasonable price.
- My Republic 100/20 $59.99 – Unlimited data
- Stuff Fibre 100/20 $49 for first 3 months, then from $79.50 – Unlimited data
Your TV must have HDCP 2.2
If you have either a 5K iMac or a 4K PC monitor, you could be thinking, “why do I need a smart TV?” Well, if you want to watch Netflix in UHD, you may still have to fork out the extra cash for a 4K-enabled smart TV because not all 4K devices have high-bandwidth digital content protection 2.2 (HDCP).
HDCP protects digital copyrighted content, as it streams from the Netflix servers to your TV. The reason Netflix restricts the usage of 4K content on PCs and Macs is simple, even a bit petty. Because you can use PCs and Macs to record, edit and potentially distribute streamed media, Netflix restricts you from streaming in 4K. Netflix sees it as an insecure platform from their end; one with which they don’t want to share their carefully controlled content.
So, how can you watch Netflix New Zealand in full-blown UHD? With the brands listed below:
- Konka TV
- LG TV, Blu-ray player or set-top box
- Panasonic TV or Blu-ray player
- Samsung TV or Blu-ray player
- Sony TV or Blu-ray player
- TCL TV
- Veon TV
Summary: What you need to stream Netflix New Zealand in 4K
4K seems like a huge hurdle just for the crispest rendition of Kevin Spacey’s menacing mug available, but with 4K console gaming now in full swing, a 4K TV purchase is looking like a more sensible investment. Here’s what you will need to get set up:
- A preferred 100/20 connection
- A minimum data allowance of 500GB per month
- A premium Netflix New Zealand membership ($18.49 with access to four screens)
- A 4K smart TV with HDCP 2.2