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How to Stream Netflix, Fix YouTube on Raspberry Pi

By default, you can't run Netflix on Raspberry Pi at all and YouTube drops frames.

(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)

One of the biggest problems with any Raspberry Pi, even a top-of-the-line Raspberry Pi 4,  is that it can't handle streaming video very well, at least not by default. When you fire up Chromium, the default browser in Raspberry Pi OS, paid streaming services such as Netflix, HBO Go and Disney+ just won't work, because the DRM (digital rights management) software they use to protect their content is incompatible with the ARM version of the browser.  

YouTube videos don't suffer from DRM issues, but they are sluggish and drop frames when  you try to play them at full screen, no matter the resolution. Amazingly, a developer named Ventz has come up with a way to solve both problems by running a specialized version of Chromium that comes from the Chrome OS source code. Here's how.

How to Stream Netflix, Fix YouTube on Raspberry Pi

1. Enter the following commands, one after the other at the terminal prompt.

curl -fsSL https://pi.vpetkov.net -o ventz-media-pi
sh ventz-media-pi

After entering the second command, you will see some text telling you that "Your Pi is now Ready for all Media" and that it's time to reboot.

(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)

2. Reboot your Raspberry Pi.

3. Open Chromium (Media Edition) from the Internet menu.

(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)

Using Chromium (Media Edition), you'll be able to play video from DRM-enabled services such as Netflix, Spotify and Disney+. I tested on a Raspberry Pi 4 with Netflix, HBO Go, Disney+ and Amazon Prime Video. Of those four, all worked except for Amazon Prime Video.

I also found that YouTube was infinitely smoother and played at full screen without a hitch. Just make sure that you use Chromium (Media Edition). If you launch regular Chromium, you won't get these benefits.

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