Netflix to Drop Microsoft Silverlight


Online video streamer Netflix has now outlined its intentions to move away from Microsoft Silverlight as the browser plugin that it uses to stream content. The change was announced on Netflix's Tech Blog, and the company will be transitioning toward HTML5 instead. Netflix cites Microsoft's decision to end Silverlight support in 2021, giving Netflix plenty of time to find a replacement.

Netflix acknowledges that some users view browser plugins as security and privacy risks, and Netflix may be the only reason some use Silverlight in the first place. Silverlight also isn't ubiquitous, as many browsers (even Microsoft's own Metro version of Internet Explorer in Windows 8) do not support plugins. That limits the reach of Silverlight, while HTML5 is an accepted open standard.

The company says it's been collaborating with Google to implement support in its popular Chrome browser. The announcement comes just months after CEO Reed Hastings stepped down from Microsoft's board late last year.

The tumultuous performance of Netflix shares since the summer of 2011 has caused headaches for many devoted shareholders. While the company's first-mover status is often viewed as a competitive advantage, the opportunities in streaming media have brought some new, deep-pocketed rivals looking for their piece of a growing pie. Can Netflix fend off this burgeoning competition, and will its international growth aspirations really pay off? These are must-know issues for investors, which is why The Motley Fool has released a premium report on Netflix. Inside, you'll learn about the key opportunities and risks facing the company, as well as reasons to buy or sell the stock. The report includes a full year of updates to cover critical new developments, so make sure to click here and claim a copy today.

The article Netflix to Drop Microsoft Silverlight originally appeared on

Fool contributor Evan Niu, CFA, has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Google and Netflix and owns shares of Google, Microsoft, and Netflix. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

Copyright © 1995 - 2013 The Motley Fool, LLC. All rights reserved. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.