In this quick guide, we will show you how to watch Netflix on your Steam Deck while in gaming mode.
Netflix is one of the top video streaming services, sporting a wide range of content that many like.
While web browsers like Chrome and Edge can run this video streaming service on your Steam Deck, it is not easily accessible in gaming mode.
Additionally, Netflix doesn’t have its own client that runs on the Linux operating system the Steam Deck uses. Luckily, a web browser is more than good enough to stream Netflix on the Deck.
Over the following steps, we will show you how you set up Netflix so you can access it while in gaming mode.
This tutorial will focus on using the Chrome web browser, but with slight adjustments can work with other Chromium browsers.
Using Netflix on your Steam Deck
The following sections will show you how to use Netflix on your Steam Deck. Getting this streaming service to work on your device is a relatively simple process.
Changing to Desktop Mode
You must change to desktop mode to add Netflix to your Steam Deck library.
Desktop mode allows us to control aspects of Steam OS that aren’t accessible in gaming mode.
1. For us to get to desktop mode, you will first need to open the Steam menu.
You can open this menu by pressing the STEAM button or clicking “
STEAM MENU” in the bottom-left corner.
2. With the STEAM MENU open, click the “
Power” option. Despite being labeled “Power”, this is also where we can exit to desktop.
3. Now that the power menu is open, click the “
Switch to Desktop” option.
Installing the Chrome Web Browser for Netflix on the Steam Deck.
4. At this stage, we want to install the Chrome web browser to our Steam Deck. We will use this web browser to access Netflix while in Steam Deck’s gaming mode.
You can skip to the next section if you already have Chrome installed.
Now that you are on the desktop open the Discover application by clicking the bag icon in the taskbar.
5. Your first step with the Discover application open is to swap to the “
Search” page (1.).
After opening up the search page, use the search bar at the top to look for “
You can open the keyboard on your Steam Deck by pressing the STEAM and X buttons at the same time.
6. After searching for “
chrome” you should see “Google Chrome” at the top of the list.
Double-click the “
Google Chrome” entry to be taken to its Discover page.
7. All you need to do now to install Google Chrome to your Steam Deck is to click the “
Install” button in the top-right corner.
Giving Chrome Access to the Steam Deck’s Controls
8. By default, using Chrome to access Netflix in the Steam Deck’s gaming mode won’t work correctly.
Luckily, there is a workaround for this by overriding the Chrome Flatpak settings. To change the settings, you must open the Konsole terminal application.
To find Konsole, open up the start menu by clicking the icon in the bottom left.
9. Now that the start menu is open, hover over the “
System” option (1.).
In the additional options, scroll down and select the “
Konsole” application (2.) to launch the terminal application.
10. With the terminal open, you can now give the Chrome browser access to the Steam Deck’s controls using the following command.
This command overrides the filesystem settings to give access to the “
/run/udev” directory. This directory contains devices such as the Steam Deck’s controls.
flatpak --user override --filesystem=/run/udev:ro com.google.Chrome
Correcting Widevine Permission Issue
11. With Konsole still open on your Steam Deck, you will need to resolve a permission issue with the Widevine DRM.
To be able to do this however, you will need to have set a password to utilize the sudo command.
You can resolve this permission issue by using the following command within the terminal.
sudo chown -R root: /home/deck/.var/app/com.google.Chrome/config/google-chrome/WidevineCdm/4.10.2652.2
12. At this point you can now quit out of the Konsole application.
Adding Chrome to the Steam Library
13. Before we can make Chrome launch Netflix on our Steam Deck, we must add it to the game library.
Adding it to our library will allow us to change the launch parameters to start up Netflix.
To start this process, open up the desktop version of Steam.
14. With the Steam desktop client open, click the “
Add a game” option in the bottom-left corner (1.).
Next, you need to click the “
Add a non-steam game” option (2.).
15. In the next dialog, scroll down until you see “
Google Chrome” and ensure its tick box is checked (1.).
Please note, if you don’t see the “Google Chrome” option, it means it has already been added to your Steam library.
With the “
Google Chrome” option selected, click the “
Add selected program” button (2.).
Changing Chrome to Launch Netflix on the Steam Deck
16. We are finally at the point where we can configure the Chrome browser to launch directly to Netflix when you run it from the Steam Deck’s interface.
If you would prefer to manually go to Netflix using the Chrome Browser you can skip this section. This section will just configure the Chrome shortcut to launch directly into Netflix while in the Steam Deck’s gaming mode.
Look for the entry labeled “
Google Chrome” within your Steam Deck’s library. You can use the search box in the top-left to narrow this down if you have lots of games in your library.
17. With the “
Google Chrome” entry selected, click the cog icon on the right side of the screen (1.).
After clicking the cog, click the “
Properties” option (2.) that has appeared.
18. Now that we have the properties screen open, you will first want to change the name of this entry from “
Google Chrome” to “
Remember to open the on-screen keyboard by pressing STEAM + X on your Steam Deck.
19. Next, you will want to change the “
Launch Options“. These options will allow us to make Chrome launch Netflix on our Steam Deck when you run it.
After the ‘
"@@u" "@@"‘ text, add the following. These lines tell Chrome to launch Netflix in kiosk mode. It will then scale the window to fit the Steam Deck’s screen.
--window-size=1024,640 --force-device-scale-factor=1.25 --device-scale-factor=1.25 --kiosk "https://netflix.com/"
Returning to Gaming Mode
20. You should now be able to launch Netflix within Steam Deck’s gaming mode.
To test that everything works, return to gaming mode by double-clicking the “
Return to gaming mode” icon on the desktop.
Launching Netflix on the Steam Deck
21. Now that you are back in gaming mode, change to your Steam Deck library using the Steam menu.
22. You will now need to change to the “
NON-STEAM” tab in your library (1.).
Once in this section, find and select the entry labeled “
Launching Netflix on the Steam Deck
23. Finally, all you need to do to open Netflix on your Steam Deck is to click the “
24. You can now log in to your Netflix account and begin streaming movies and TV shows to your Steam Deck.
Hopefully, you will now have a good understanding of how you can watch Netflix on your Steam Deck.
Luckily, Netflix runs well on the web browsers available on the Steam Deck.
Please feel free to comment below if you need help getting Netflix to run on your device.
We have many other guides for the Steam Deck to get the system set up for your needs.