What happened now? It may come as a surprise to many that for nearly two years, the Disney+ app for PlayStation 5 has been limited to 1080p streaming. The issue arose due to the unique way in which the Sony console provides backwards compatibility for streaming applications ported from the PlayStation 4.
Disney released an update this week to bring 4K HDR compatibility to the PlayStation 5 version of the Disney+ app. PS5 was one of the last devices to not have this capability for the service, and Disney+ is one of the last services to get 4K HDR on the console.
Disney+ on PS5 will not automatically update to add 4K HDR because the company has launched a brand new app called “Disney+ (PS5)”. Users can install it by selecting the “Multimedia” tab on the home screen and then selecting “All Apps”.
If users have the old app, the new version should show up with a download marker on the icon. When you install it, all login information from your previous Disney+ is automatically migrated.
Disney+ subscribers with the appropriate hardware and display can start streaming in 4K HDR at no additional cost, while Netflix charges extra for these features. YouTube allows all users to watch 4K videos, but the service has begun testing the idea of blocking UHD with its premium subscription.
Previously, Disney+ limited PS5 users to 1080p because the old app was a PlayStation 4 app running in backwards compatibility mode (the only place to confirm this is in the Downloads/Downloads section of the PS5 menu). Other services like Netflix, HBO Max and Amazon Prime Video already have their own PS5 apps that support 4K HDR while Hulu is still lagging behind.
Oddly enough, Netflix, Prime Video and YouTube are already supported 4K HDR on PlayStation 4 Pro. Meanwhile, starting with the Xbox One S (which can only play games at 1080p), every Xbox console has included 4K HDR streaming. Other TV boxes, such as the Roku or Apple TV, can still provide better HDR and Dolby Vision functionality than game consoles while consuming fewer watts.
On a Windows PC, only YouTube and Netflix allow 4K HDR streaming. Netflix supports this functionality in its Windows Store app and in the Microsoft Edge browser with a $1 purchase of HEVC video extensions from the Windows Store. Unfortunately, none of the other services have announced plans to support 4K streaming on PC.
Disney has also added 4K HDR streaming to its Star+ PS5 app for users in Latin America. For those who don’t know, Star+ delivers content from Disney, FX, National Geographic, ESPN and other networks to Argentina, Brazil, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Peru, Panama, Paraguay, Uruguay and Venezuela.