Today, Netflix is discontinuing support for older supported TVs, with users encouraged to either upgrade or get new devices.
Netflix ending support for older devices isn’t anything new; we’ve seen waves of discontinuing support for devices over the years. In 2019, we saw the streaming service pull support for select Roku, Samsung, and Vizio TV devices.
News of this round of support dropping has been filtering onto forums over the past few weeks, with Netflix users being given ample warning that come October 16th, their devices will no longer be able to stream Netflix.
On Reddit, one user notes that their mother’s Bluray player is no longer being supported, while another says an older Sony TV shows the notice. We’ve also seen people with Toshiba and Samsung devices being told they will no longer be supported.
In addition, support today was also dropped from the PlayStation Vita and the PS TV add-on.
While we don’t have a full list of devices that have been discontinued, it looks like most devices are over ten years old.
Why does Netflix end support for devices? It comes down to a number of factors, including security and providing a good user experience. Older devices that don’t get patched can have security issues. In addition, older devices that are aging can become slow and buggy, and given Netflix is constantly evolving and adding new features (whether that’s ad support, password-sharing features, or interactive titles), they sadly can’t support every device in existence forever.
That’s in addition to changing technical limitations. In 2019, a Netflix spokesperson told Gizmodo the issue with the devices then had to do with “older devices running Windows Media DRM.”
All users have been directed to a Netflix help page, which states the following if you receive the discontinuation message:
“It means Netflix is no longer available, or will no longer be available on your device. You can still enjoy Netflix on many TVs and streaming devices as well as phones, tablets, and computers.”
We spoke to Cord Cutters News founder Luke Bouma, who has been covering the world of cord-cutting for many years, asking him about the fact that Netflix is choosing to discontinue more devices and what the best quick and cheap fix options are when it comes to getting back to watching Netflix. Bouma told us:
“Like all technology streaming players have a life span to them.
For anyone looking for a new device thankfully there are a growing number of cheap streaming players for $30 or less. From Roku’s Express players to Amazon’s cheaper Fire TV Sticks there are many great options including Walmart’s new $19.99 Google TV Onn streaming player. These devices will make sure you can watch Netflix for years to come.”
Netflix has a dedicated satellite website that promotes its supported list of devices, whether streaming media players, smart TVs, or game consoles. A list dedicated to devices in your region can be found here.