Globally, many people are social distancing or in their homes under shelter in place orders because of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Because of this, many people are watching streaming services, and the surge of people may have been too much for Netflix to handle in many places. Some are finding they cannot access the service, getting an “NSES-500” error.
DownDetector is reporting massive issues with the streaming service, which began to surge at approximately 9 AM PT / 12 PM ET. While things seem to be getting back to normal–roughly an hour later–many people on Twitter are still reporting that the site is down. DownDetector’s global map has revealed a plethora of reported issues in Europe, which you can see in the map below.
Germany, Belgium, The Netherlands, and England–mainly surrounding London–seem to be hit the hardest by the interruption issues. Stateside, New York City, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Chicago have the most problems accessing content.
GameSpot employees from the Los Angeles, Chicagoland, and Connecticut had no issues playing content through a variety of methods: Android, iOS, Chrome, Roku, and Fire Stick were all tested.
According to DownDetector, 42% of reported problems are because of “No connection,” 34% were “Video Streaming,” and 23% were issues with the website.
Hulu experienced a similar issue at the same exact time, and Amazon Prime Video has slight issues around that time as well. It’s apparent that shelter in place and self-quarantining are placing a lot of stress on ISPs and streaming services, the likes we’ve never seen before. In order to help with the stress, Netflix has been downgrading video to standard definition in Europe.
Aside from the “Big Three,” there are plenty of other streaming services to check out, and you can find them all in our comprehensive “The Best TV Streaming Services For 2020.” If you don’t want to watch anything alone, you can always do a Netflix Party, which is the streaming service with its own chatroom. And to continue planning your binge-watching schedule, check out what’s coming to Netflix in April.