Sunday , February 18 2018

Netflix confirms that it is blocking rooted/unlocked devices using Google’s Widevine DRM service

This is something that most users won’t be familiar seeing, because Netflix is available on pretty much every smart device around. However, earlier today, eagle-eyed users started noting that Netflix was showing as incompatible for users of rooted or unlocked Android handsets. Now, users who’ve already downloaded Netflix could still use it, but new users couldn’t download it.

Netflix has confirmed that this move is intentional, with this statement to Android Police earlier this morning:

With our latest 5.0 release, we now fully rely on the Widevine DRM provided by Google; therefore, many devices that are not Google-certified or have been altered will no longer work with our latest app and those users will no longer see the Netflix app in the Play Store.

With this change, only devices that are Google certified and meet all standard Android requirements will be able to download Netflix. If you root and unlock, then you’re out of luck — though, for now, you can still sideload the APK and it appears to work.

We expect, fairly quickly, that Netflix will disable streams on rooted and unlocked devices too in order to guarantee the security of their video content. For now, though, this hasn’t happened.

Interesting move by Netflix, and we wouldn’t be at all surprised to see other apps which featured streaming licensed content going down the same path.


Source: Android Police.

Chris Rowland   Editor and Publisher

Chris has been at the forefront of smartphone reporting in Australia since smartphones were a thing, and has used mobile phones since they came with giant lead-acid batteries that were "transportable" and were carried in a shoulder bag. He saw the transition from AMPS to GSM, loved the Motorola StarTac, and got into Palm technologies in a big way. The arrival some years later of the original iPhone, and then the early Androids, awoke a new interest in mobile technology, and Chris has been writing about it since.

Today, Chris publishes one of Australia's most popular technology websites, Ausdroid. His interests include mobile (of course), as well as connected technology and how it can make all our lives easier.

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6 Comments on "Netflix confirms that it is blocking rooted/unlocked devices using Google’s Widevine DRM service"

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Ausdroid Reader

Judging by the number of shows available for streaming on Kodi player, their efforts to block rooted users have been a waste of time. Why not allow *paying users* to watch shows on any device, rooted or not?

Ausdroid Reader

Disappointing but not especially surprising

Ausdroid Reader

It’s almost like they are forcing us to use less …cough…. legal methods to get our content. DRM is a stupid and anti consumer device.

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