How to fix Netflix issues on Android phones

When it comes to multimedia entertainment, Netflix and its peers stand at the top of the hill gazing upon conventional media below. It’s only the question of time before the media streaming services replace (or completely abolish) cable TV providers. And their main weapon in that digital war is the compatibility for portable devices.

The Netflix Android app is great and offers all on-the-go features you would expect from a media streaming service. With affordable membership subscription, you’ll be able to enjoy a plentitude of movies and TV shows in high definition, including exclusives. But, no matter how good software is, it’s always going to have some issues. So, today we prepared the list of best-known Netflix issues, with explanation how to resolve them. If you’re experiencing any issues with your favorite platform on your handheld device, check the list below.

How to resolve most common Netflix issues on Android

Connection issues

Connection issues are the first obstruction standing between you and your favorite content. So, you may want to check these steps in order to troubleshoot your connection and get it off the table.

  • Use Wi-Fi instead of the mobile data to load movies. A slow or unstable connection will lead to a time out and you won’t be able to play anything seamlessly. Moreover, you’ll reduce additional expenses.
  • Make sure that the all other devices connected to the same network aren’t hogging on your bandwidth. Pause downloads or streams on your PC before using Netflix on your smartphone. Once the stream is finished, you can get back to downloading.
  • Restart your router. It’s important to wait for approximately 1 minute before turning it on again.
  • Disable router firewall. Some routers have a built-in firewall and that will certainly slow down your connection or even block it temporarily.
  •  Update your Netflix app. It seems that Google DNS setting is known culprit for Android connectivity issues. Latest updates are, as stated by developers, better optimized for Smart DNS.
  • On the other hand, if everything was working great prior to an update, you can also rollback to an older Netflix version. You can download those here. First, you’ll have to enable installation from unknown sources. Go to Settings > Security > check Unknown sources box.
  • Reset on-device Wi-Fi settings. Navigate to Settings > Wi-Fi > Tap and hold your network and then tap Forget. Reset your device and reestablish the connection.

Download issues

As you probably know, you can download a film/TV show and watch it later without any connection. That comes in handy when you’re traveling without an accessible network. Moreover, as we already stated in one of our previous articles, it’s highly unadvised to use untrusted networks for various reasons. But, what happens when you are unable to download the favorite movie because of an unexpected error? Firstly, have in mind that not all of the available titles are downloadable. This is what you should check in order to possibly resolve this issue.

The first step is to make sure you have enough storage space. Those movies/TV show episodes can go up to 4 GB or more, so clean up your storage before downloading. Delete the downloads you already watched. Also, you can manipulate between internal storage and SD. So, in case you want to store downloads on SD, you can do it this way.

  1. Open the Netflix app.
  2. Tap Menu icon.
  3. Tap App Settings.
  4. Under the Downloads, select Download Location.
  5. Switch to SD.

In addition, you can vastly reduce download time and file size with Standard video quality. For the screens that size, the difference between the Standard and High quality is negligible. This is how to change the video quality of your downloads.

  1. Open the Netflix app.
  2. Tap Menu icon.
  3. Open App Settings.
  4. Under the Downloads, select Video Quality.
  5. Switch to Standard.

This feature is available only for HD-ready devices and you can find that list of eligible devices here. Additionally, users with custom ROMs can have download issues occasionally.

Log in issues

Besides the previously presented issues, a lot of users encountered problems with login. Namely, they were unable to connect after various attempts. Sometimes, that is due to Netflix server and you’ll probably receive an error. You can check server status and temporary issues log here. On the other hand, your individual device can have issues on its own.

Now, even though Netflix supports multidevice playback, you should try to sign out of other devices and sign only to your Android handset. Moreover, you should try to sign in using a browser on your device. If you still haven’t succeeded, try reinstalling the app.

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Tap Apps or Application manager.
  3. Locate Netflix app and open options.
  4. Tap Uninstall
  5. Restart your phone/tablet.
  6. Open Play Store and tap Menu.
  7. Open My Apps and Games and select All.
  8. Navigate to Netflix and tap Install.

In addition, you can ask for a password reset and try signing again. Navigate to this page within your Android/PC browser and follow further instructions. Once you’ve created a new password, try to login in again.

Streaming issues

We deliberately saved streaming issues for the end since they’re highly related to connection issues. However, if you’re sure that everything regarding connection is on point, the app itself may be a culprit. So, follow these instructions to troubleshoot the Netflix app.

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Navigate to Apps or Application manager.
  3. Locate Netflix app and open options.
  4. Tap Clear Cache and then Clear Data.
  5. Restart your device.
  6. Open Netflix app, log in and try to stream anything.

Additionally, make sure that the app is up to date. With frequent updates, you should overcome usual bugs and glitches. This goes for all supported devices and not only for Android app.

  1. Open Play Store.
  2. Open Menu.
  3. Tap My Apps.
  4. Tap Netflix and select Update.

That should wrap it up. If you have any questions or suggestion we should address additionally, make sure to tell us in the comments.


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