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(11 Fixes) Amazon Prime Not Working [Updated 2022 Guide]

Amazon Prime Not Working

Prime video comes at a convenient price…

So, naturally, you’re excited to stream your favorite show.

But what if your Amazon Prime doesn’t work?

Well, while the founder of Amazon, Jeff Bezos, can’t help you…

I can.

Keep reading to discover:

  • Which devices can run Amazon Prime.
  • Where to contact Amazon in case of issues.
  • How to update Prime Video on your smart TV.
  • 11 easy ways to fix an Amazon Prime that’s not working.
  • And so much more…

Why is Amazon Prime not working?

Amazon Prime isn’t working because it’s down or you’ve hit the connection limit. Alexa could also be the root of this issue. If not, you have outdated firmware, drivers, or the app. Last but not least, your device may not be compatible with Amazon Prime.


Amazon Prime not working: 11 fixes


#1: Check whether Amazon is down

The problem isn’t always on your end…

Sometimes, it’s in Amazon’s.

Don’t panic the next time Amazon Prime isn’t working.

Instead, check their Twitter account first for confirmation that they’re down.

Or you can use 3rd party down detectors to check.

#2: Address VPN issues

Can’t access Amazon Prime because of region-locked content? VPN’s your bestfriend.

VPN works by masking your IP address with one from a different country.

Neat trick, right?

But, be careful on choosing a VPN service.

My advice? Avoid free ones at all costs.

Free VPNs are security hazards for a reason:

They track your data. And that is confirmed by The Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO).

In a 2016 study by CSIRO on VPN services, they found that:

  • 6 out of 10 free VPN apps have malware.
  • 84% of VPN services don’t encrypt user data.
  • 67% of VPN apps have a tracking library on their code.
  • Only 28% of free VPN services don’t participate in user tracking.

Not only that, but non-premium VPNs also throttle your download speed. Why? So that you’d sign up for their premium counterpart.

Look, I know that you might be scared of downloading a VPN app now because of the reasons above.

You shouldn’t be. 

At least, when you’re paying for a trusted, premium VPN like:

Note: Are you traveling? If so, you should know that you can’t access content that’s not available for the country you’re currently on. That includes already downloaded or purchased content.

#3: Power cycle your device

Power Cycle Your Device

It doesn’t matter which device you have.

Smart TVs, phones, PCs…

The first thing that you should always try when fixing bugs?

Power cycling.

A power cycle is a complete reboot of your device.

Now, you might say:

“But Peter, I do that every day, and still Prime doesn’t work.”

Well, there’s a chance that you’re not doing it right.

You see, it’s not just a simple restart.

Instead, you have to:

  1. Turn your device off.
  2. Remove its power source.
  3. Wait for 30 seconds.
  4. Reattach its power source.
  5. Turn it back on.

#4: Reconnect Alexa

“Alexa, why can’t I use Amazon Prime Video?”

Sometimes, she’s the reason.

If you’re using a device by voice control with Alexa…

Try to unpair and then re-pair Alexa first.

Further reading: 7 Steps To Connect Alexa To Bluetooth iPhone

#5: Disconnect other devices

Look around your house. Count how many devices are currently using Prime Video.

If the number’s greater than 3, you’ve found your problem.

Amazon only allows 3 devices to use Prime Video at the same time.

So, the next time you want to watch a show on Amazon?

Ask your brother or sister to do their homework first.

Note: That said, the “3 devices” rule isn’t always the culprit. Amazon also doesn’t allow more than 2 devices to watch the same show simultaneously.

#6: Update the app

When’s the last time you updated your Amazon Prime app?

Good for you if your answer is “recently.”

But, if not…

You better get on with the times, grandpa.

And follow these simple steps to update Prime Video on smart TVs:

Samsung

Newer models (2015 upwards)

Note: You can’t manually update apps on newer Samsung TVs. What you can do instead is to enable auto-update.

  1. Press the Home button on your remote.
  2. Go to Apps.
  3. Press the Settings logo in the upper right corner.
  4. Toggle on ‘Auto Update.
Older models (2014 or earlier)
  1. Press the Smart Hub button on your remote.
  2. Go to Featured.
  3. Highlight Amazon Prime Video, then long-press your Enter button.
  4. Select Update Apps.
  5. Press Select All, and then Update.
  6. Wait for the update to finish.

Sony

Note: Like newer Samsung TVs, you can only enable auto-update for Sony TVs.

For Sony TVs on Android 7.0 or lower, you can skip the first 2 steps.

  1. Press the Home button on your remote.
  2. Go to Apps.
  3. Select the Google Play Store.
  4. Under Settings, go to ‘Auto-update Apps.’
  5. Toggle on ‘Auto-update apps at any time.’

LG

  1. On your home screen, go to Apps.
  2. Select the LG Content Store.
  3. Press My Apps.
  4. Highlight and select Amazon Prime Video.
  5. Press Update.

#7: Update graphics card drivers

Update Graphics And Drivers

Now, if you’re trying to watch Prime Video on your laptop…

You need to update your drivers as well.

Drivers are software made so that your hardware can function.

And there’s a driver for almost everything on your PC, like:

  • Monitors.
  • Cameras.
  • Speakers.
  • Storage drives.
  • Network hardware.
  • Keyboards and mice.

But, for Prime Video to work, the driver we’re going to update is your graphics card driver.

How can you do that?

Windows

  1. Select the search bar on your taskbar.
  2. Type and go to ‘Device Manager.’
  3. Expand Display Adapters.
  4. Right-click all graphics cards on the list.
  5. Select Update Driver.

Note: You have to restart your system for the changes to take effect fully.

macOS

Macbooks are different from Windows devices.

Apple ties its drivers with its devices’ operating systems for macOS.

This means that to update the drivers, you’ll have to update the entire OS:

Note: Make sure to back up your device in case anything goes wrong with the update process.

  1. Click the Apple logo in your taskbar.
  2. Go to System Preferences.
  3. Select ‘Update Now’ or ‘Upgrade Now.’

Need further help with updating your macOS device? You can watch this video for a visual demonstration:

#8: Update the device’s firmware

Alternatively, if you have a TV…

You’ll need to update its firmware.

Outdated firmware can mess up your TV’s software.

And that includes its apps.

Like, for example, Amazon Prime Video.

Here’s how to update your smart TVs:

Samsung

You can update your Samsung’s firmware either through the settings menu or a flash drive.

By settings
  1. Go to your Settings menu.
  2. Select Support.
  3. Press Software Update.
  4. Select Update Now to confirm.
By USB
  1. On a PC, go to Samsung’s Download Center.
  2. Type your TV’s model number on the search bar.
  3. Find the firmware file and then press Download.
  4. Go to the downloaded file, right-click it, then press Extract All.
  5. Paste the extracted file to a blank flash drive.
  6. Turn your Samsung TV off.
  7. Insert the USB into your TV.
  8. Open your TV and wait for the update prompt.

LG

Like Samsung, you can also update LG with the settings menu or USB.

By settings
  1. Press the Home button on your remote.
  2. Go to Settings.
  3. Under All Settings, select General.
  4. Go to About This TV.
  5. Press Check for Updates.
  6. If an update is available, select Update.
By USB
  1. On a PC, go to LG’s Support Home Page.
  2. Enter your TV’s name or model number to find it.
  3. Download the latest firmware file.
  4. Go to the downloaded file, right-click it, then press Extract All.
  5. Paste the extracted file to a flash drive with a folder named ‘LG_DTV.’
  6. Turn your LG TV off.
  7. Insert the USB into your TV.
  8. Open your TV and wait for the update prompt.

Sony

  1. Press the Settings button on your remote.
  2. Select Customer Support, Setup, or Product Support.
  3. Go to Software Update.
  4. Press Network.
  5. Select ‘Yes’ or ‘OK’ to finalize the update.

#9: Tweak the browser settings

Do you get an “Error Code 7218” when watching on web browsers? 

And do you only get that error when trying to watch PG content?

If so, your browser is blocking your movies or shows.

But, don’t worry. You can still watch all the adult-appropriate content you want.

All you have to do is follow these 7 easy steps:

  1. On Google Chrome, go to More. (The three dots on the upper right corner of the browser.)
  2. Go to Settings.
  3. Under Privacy and Security, go to Site Settings.
  4. Select Additional Content Settings.
  5. Press Protected Content IDs.
  6. Tick both “Sites can play protected content” and “Sites can use identifiers”.
  7. Restart your browser.

#10: Device and network compatibility

There are 2 conditions you must satisfy to watch Amazon Prime:

  • Device compatibility.
  • Network compatibility.

We’ll get to the former later. But, as for the latter…

You’ll need at least 1Mbps to watch 720p SD (Standard Definition). As for 1080p HD (High Definition), the minimum speed is 5Mbps.

And for device compatibility, here’s the list of all the devices that can run Prime Video:

Web browsers

  • Safari.
  • Opera.
  • Mozilla Firefox.
  • Microsoft Edge.
  • Google Chrome.

Smart TVs

Mobile phones

Amazon Prime Video is available on all Android and iOS devices.

Streaming devices or set-top boxes

Note: This list includes set-top boxes only available to select countries. 

Game consoles

#11: Contact Amazon support

Has anybody ever told you that you’re not alone?

Not in life…

And certainly not in fixing Amazon Prime issues either.

You can contact Amazon’s customer service to ask for a personal consultation.