Netflix is currently in the process of implementing support for Apple’s spatial audio function introduced with iOS 14 and iPadOS 14 on iPhone and iPad. The rollout has begun, a spokesman told the US media after users had already posted corresponding reports on Reddit and Apple websites.
The Dolby Atmos-based technology is supported by the streaming service initially iOS and iPadOS 14 as well as the iOS and iPadOS versions 15, which will be released in autumn. The official requirement is the use of AirPods Pro or AirPods Max. Whether tricks for using other headphones work , initially remained unclear.
Spatial Audio is to be made available at Netflix gradually – not all users and all films receive the function at the beginning. If Spatial Audio is active, users should be able to hear a surround sound experience – despite the use of only one driver per ear. There is also a position in the room that Apple has already integrated into its own streaming service Apple TV +. Head tracking takes place: the sound changes if you move the iPhone or iPad to a different place in the room and it appears as if the sound is coming from the direction of the device. Both the gyroscope and the hardware accelerometer are used.
Cinema-like experience – also for stereo
Apple is striving for a “cinema-like experience” with Spatial Audio. For Netflix, the feature can be activated via the control center of iOS and iPadOS, provided it is active in the respective film or series. Starting with iOS 15, Apple is also planning a function that will “imitate” Spatial Audio for stereo content (“Spatialize Stereo”). This should then also work in the Netflix application and other programs with audio output.