Netflix has confirmed to The Verge that they’ve dropped support for Apple AirPlay entirely. This means that iPhone and iPad users can no longer use their mobile device to cast Netflix content to Apple TVs, as well as smart TVs that will support the upcoming AirPlay 2 expansion that includes Samsung, LG, Vizio, and Sony TVs. This does not affect Fire TVs, so it’s still possible to use an iOS or Android device to start playing Netflix content on any Fire TV that has the Netflix app installed.
Amazon Fire TV devices support the open, non-proprietary, DIAL casting protocol. That is what Netflix apps on mobile devices use to play content on Fire TVs. This is different from Apple AirPlay on Apple TVs and Google Cast on Android TVs and Chromecasts. One downside to Fire TVs using DIAL is that it requires the Netflix app to first be installed on the Fire TV before it’s possible to send content to the device. This has proven to be a bit confusing for some users when they don’t see a newly set up Fire TV appear in their casting options within the mobile Netflix app because they haven’t installed the Fire TV app yet.
Netflix’s official reason for dropping AirPlay support is as follows:
We want to make sure our members have a great Netflix experience on any device they use. 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.