You may be aware by now, that the Poco F1 does not support Widevine L1 DRM, which meant no HD video streaming on Netflix, something which we reported before anyone else. Today, we came across an interesting thread on the Xiaomi forums, which says that the Poco F1 Widevine L1 DRM support is coming soon.
If you remember, the OnePlus 5 and 5T suffered from a similar issue, and the company requested users to ship the phone to the service centre, to patch the device. However, according to Xiaomi’s announcement, the feature may be rolled out to users via a software update.
But, there is a statement that reads “Still developing with Google and Qualcomm”. Widevine is owned by Google, and the license for it is free. Qualcomm is the Snapdragon 845’s manufacturer. So, what exactly is Xiaomi working with the companies for, when the chipset is capable of supporting Widevine L1 DRM already?
It is probably related to the TrustZone, which is part of the SPU (Secure Processing Unit), in the chipset, and plays a key role in the Widevine’s decryption/encryption functionality. This is a vault-like storage, stores critical data of the user, in an isolated environment, to prevent malware/data theft.
Xiaomi could be working with Google to patch the current Widevine DRM, and for this it probably needs Qualcomm’s help to write the data to the isolated SPU, in the phone’s processor. This is likely what makes the patch difficult to deliver as an over the air update, but perhaps not impossible.
Xiaomi states that Poco F1 Widevine L1 DRM support for HD Netflix, will be added in the MIUI 10 Beta, and will be released in Q4, 2018.