Perhaps you have reached this article out of desperation, or you have found us after typing in the search engine “netflix, problems, movistar”. Well, we know what you are going through because, to begin with, we are living it in our own flesh just like you, so we are going to give you a few keys so that you know why you could be experiencing these problems.
In order to understand it well, we have to get a background. The issue of Netflix with Movistar is not something new, since this "battle" was partly to blame for the streaming service taking so long to reach our country. From Netflix they came to recognize that the service was experiencing problems for those users whose Internet provider was Movistar , and they have even published speed tests of their clients where we can verify that the download speed for Movistar broadband users is the lowest of all in our country.
We are going to see how services such as Netflix work in order to understand well how any supposed operation carried out by an Internet provider can affect us.
Netflix offers content over the Internet, but they do not have their own network to deliver that content (as for example Movistar does it with Waki or Movistar TV) so to get that content to users it needs the network of others. These companies are called over-the-top (OTT) and they always need an open network to be able to distribute.
However, for Netflix content to reach the end user, they have to rent transport capacity , since since they do not have a fixed network, they need a transit operator or a content distributor (Content Distribution Network, CDN).
These companies are the ones that deliver the content from the point where Netflix is located to the network of the operator that provides us the broadband service, that is, our Internet operator, which in our case is Movistar. As a general rule, the transit operator has agreements with the Internet provider to be able to pass the traffic of these OTTs such as Netflix and they will be the ones who have the last word in the content that reaches users. These agreements are known as "peering" agreements . Peering is the voluntary connection of Internet networks that are administratively independent whose purpose is to exchange trafficof the clients of each network. Normally these agreements are usually made without paying anything, except on certain occasions in which, if the traffic is very unbalanced, the telecommunications operator that supplies the end user may require the OTT to pay , this is what is known as the “paid peering ".
With these very summary data on the operation of this type of services, it is clear what is happening: Movistar demands paid peering to Netflix but due to the high cost of Netflix itself, it refuses to pay and consequently cannot offer a quality service through this operator .
Netflix has requested a peering agreement (not a payment) with Movistar since it considers that it does not have to pay them for the distribution. For its part, Movistar responds that if Netflix wants higher speed and quality, it has to pay and assures that they are not purposely discriminating or slowing down Netflix traffic, but everything indicates, supposedly, that this is not the case.
It is logical that Movistar wants Netflix to pay, but not only that, it has a greater interest in all this: the sale of content . Why would they make it easy for Netflix if they offer similar content themselves? It is logical that the trickle of customers who unsubscribe from the streaming service due to the impossibility of enjoying it benefits them since, if theirs do not register problems, users will migrate to these.
Coincidentally, users register problems with Netflix from 8 in the afternoon , the rush hour for this type of content. If you search on the Internet you will find many users who are experiencing the same ordeal even with 300 MB of optical fiber hired.
After trying everything possible (disconnecting the Wi-Fi from all the devices, restarting the router, connecting to other free channels, changing its location ...) we began to do tests to see if it was a connection or Netflix problem.
While Netflix does not exceed 480p of quality (a torture for the eyes), services such as Waki (from Movistar) and even YouTube are seen in HD without any problem. Strange right? After checking this, we proceeded to measure the speed of our connection, first with a normal speed test , and the result was good: 7.7 Mb / s download (it takes 5 to watch Netflix in HD).
Then we measured the speed that Netflix is being allowed through a meter created by the company itself and the result was that of those 7.7 Mb, Netflix was only allowed 3.7 Mb . With that speed it is obvious that you cannot see anything in a decent way and without stopping. To make sure that this was really happening, we re-measured the speed the next day in the morning (we remember that the "incidents" are only recorded at night , in prime time) and curiously, the speed that reached Netflix had uploaded by almost 4 Mb overnight (pun intended). Below we show you the captures with the results and the hours of the test.
After these telltale results, we decided to contact Netflix and Movistar in search of explanations and, above all, solutions. First, we contact Netflix customer service through the chat that offers support. When transmitting our problem to the person who contacted us, they quickly responded that the problem is not them but Movistar and in fact urged us to google “netflix movistar” to verify that there were many more users suffering this supposed operator sabotage . The solution he offered us was to ask Movistar to restore our DNS , something that we also did and that we are now going to tell you about.
The person who attended us on Netflix this time was quite cautious in not executing specific statements but it can be perfectly understood what he means:
However, other Netflix operators are not so cautious in their statements and do not hesitate to say that Movistar is sabotaging their service (cutting signal to the ports) on purpose as we can see in the following capture provided by a Twitter user with the same problem that we:
Well, after talking to Netflix, we had the second part, call Movistar. We got in touch with them and we can assure you that after telling the voice-over “problems with Netflix” , no operator contacted us . The only thing we got was 10 minutes hanging on the phone while said announcement "configured our router" and after verifying (the announcement of course) that we had no problem they hung up the call . Therefore, from Movistar we do not have any clarification.
10 minutes of voice over on 1004 without any response
What can we do?
The options for the moment and while the war between the two companies is still open are very few. On the one hand, we can resign ourselves and watch Netflix badly or in the hours that the service is not “damaged”. The other options are to change your streaming television service or Internet provider. Regarding the change of operator, it is not as easy as it seems (we have informed ourselves to do it, of course). If you have the same bad luck as us and the fiber does not reach your home, you have nothing to do since neither Orange nor Vodafone will provide you with ADSL . You can hire other operators but inform yourself before if they use the lines and antennas of Movistar because if you are not in them.
In any case, if you continue to experience this problem, do not hesitate to complain to both companies now that you know why, in most cases, Movistar users are experiencing these problems in the Netflix service. And by the way, if a friendly neighbor of another operator allows you to access their network for a moment, do the test, enter Netflix from it and you can see for yourself that there is no problem.