Are you bending over backwards trying to figure out why Prime Video is stuck on the spinning wheel?
You’re not alone! Believe it or not, every day thousands of the platform’s subscribers are faced with the same issue and are left nothing short of confused.
I know how annoying this can be, especially considering that you don’t seem to be getting your money’s worth.
But don’t worry, you’ve come to the right place for answers. Below, you’ll find 8 easy fixes that will help you get rid of the annoying spinning wheel.
The main fixes you can try to fix this problem are: Check your connection, check Prime Video’s servers, disable your VPN, or try a different show. If that doesn’t work, you can also try relaunching/updating Prime Video, updating your system, and clearing your cache & cookies.
Keep reading to learn how you can make streaming enjoyable again!
First, I want us to make sure that your connection is not having problems.
You could argue that internet service drops have decreased significantly over the last few years. But that doesn’t mean they don’t still happen now and then.
The tricky part about diagnosing a bad connexion is that sometimes, even when you have one, you won’t be completely cut off from the Internet. In some cases, you might still be able to do some light browsing or chatting while also being stuck on the spinning wheel on Prime Video.
Why? Because of the platform’s minimum requirements.
As a general rule, Prime Video needs a minimum Internet speed of 5 Mbps to stream in Full HD resolution (1080p) and a whopping 25 Mbps for 4K (2160p).
Solution: In households with several people, I normally recommend having a plan that offers 5-6 times the minimum required speeds of your favorite platforms. For example, if you want to stream Prime Video in Full HD, you’ll want to have a connection of at least 25-30 Mbps.
If you live alone, you might be able to get away with something slower.
Assuming that your current plan is already fast enough, you might want to try giving your provider a call and asking if they’re having coverage issues in your area. If they tell you everything’s fine on their side of the fence, you could try resetting your modem and see if that works.
If you’ve never done it before, don’t worry! It’s really simple:
Moving on, let’s make sure the platform’s servers are working normally.
As you may know, these are responsible for storing important information and providing millions of Prime Video subscribers with the service they expect for their money.
Given how crucial they are to their everyday operations, the company has put a lot of elbow grease into making them as resistant as possible. And while they won’t break just for looking at them, I’d be lying if I told you that they’ve managed to make them failproof.
Believe it or not, things that seem unimportant, such as a bad hard drive, a coding bug, or even minor hacking can greatly impact the platform’s performance and affect its features.
The telltale signs of these events are subscription verification issues, login difficulties, random flickering, out-of-sync audio/video/subtitles, and… of course, an infinite spinning wheel.
Solution: To either confirm or rule this out as a possible cause for this situation, we need to check the real-time status of the platform’s servers.
Luckily, this can be done in a matter of seconds. Here’s how:
If you see the equivalent of Mount Everest forming in the graph above, the platform is currently having some difficulties.
However, I wouldn’t worry too much about it. The people in the IT department over at Prime Video are highly efficient, and to my knowledge, there’s never been an instance where the service wasn’t fully restored within 24 hours.
VPNs are simply amazing. Not only do they provide us with secure browsing, but also open up a world of possibilities and international content to enjoy.
There’s really a lot to love about them, but if you ask anyone working for a streaming company, they might disagree.
In fact, several streaming giants, such as Disney Plus, Netflix, Prime Video, Hulu, HBO Max, and many more, have been outspoken about their dislike for these, even getting to the point of blocking subscribers who use them or targeting them with slow performance.
And believe it or not, there’s a good reason for this.
You see, most of the content available on these platforms is only licensed to be streamed in certain countries and regions. Since VPNs allow people from outside these areas of the world to stream said content, streaming companies have to either take action or face dire legal consequences with their partners.
If you just can’t live without using a VPN while watching something on Prime Video, I’d recommend getting a premium subscription from a provider that offers obfuscated servers.
These will make it much harder for Prime Video to detect your VPN traffic, thus decreasing your chances of being blocked or targeted with bad performance on the platform.
Solution: The best way to tell whether you’re current VPN provider is to blame for this situation is by disabling it and streaming without it for a couple of days.
If Prime Video is no longer stuck on the spinning wheel, there’s your answer. Time to start looking for alternatives.
You may not know this, but every piece of content within Prime Video has its own ID and space on its servers. This is why sometimes you might have trouble streaming a particular title, but be able to seamlessly enjoy another.
By keeping its content organized this way, the platform can prevent an isolated incident from becoming a general failure.
Normally, this countermeasure works wonders. However, sometimes it might also trick you into thinking that the problem is much bigger than it actually is.
Solution: Switch back and forth between different titles on the platform and see what happens. If you’re not stuck with an infinite spinning wheel on other shows/movies, it’s clear that the issue lies with what you were trying to stream.
In this case, all you can do is wait until things get back to normal.
Sometimes, the simplest answer is the right one.
Believe it or not, there’s a really good chance that all you need to do to stop Prime Video from being stuck on the spinning wheel is close and relaunch the app.
Why should that work? Because it acts as a forced restart.
You see, whenever we use our favorite apps, there are thousands of background processes running simultaneously. We may not see them, but they’re certainly there.
Most of the time, they work normally and provide us with the functions we value on them. However, on some rare occasions, they can crash and affect how Prime Video works.
By closing and relaunching the platform, you’re getting rid of any corrupted files or bugs that might be acting up, restarting them from scratch.
And the best part is that this fix works for about 90% of all technical difficulties out there, so don’t be afraid to try it out!
I know how keeping your apps slightly outdated doesn’t sound like a big deal. And while it’s not a federal crime, it can certainly be the source of several technical difficulties as time passes.
With every new release, app developers try to keep as much backward compatibility as they can, but it’s not always entirely possible. Using an older version of the platform’s software on a fully updated streaming device could explain why Prime Video is stuck on the spinning wheel.
Now, automatic updating should normally make this no concern of yours. However, sometimes network interruptions, background process crashes, or even strict device privacy settings can get in the way and leave the pending downloads stuck in Limbo.
In that case, you’ll have to manually install the latest software version to your streaming devices.
Solution: With so many streaming devices out there, it would take me hours to guide you through the process of updating Prime Video within each one.
And while I’d love to, I’m sure your plate is already full as it is!
Instead, I’d recommend going to Google and searching for “How to update apps on <Your Device’s Make And Model Go Here>”. This search should bring up several resources with detailed instructions for your specific case.
That being said, I don’t want you to leave this section empty-handed, so here’s how to do it on iOS and Android devices, as well as on Roku to give you a general idea of what the process looks like.
For iOS devices:
For Android devices:
You may be prompted with a notification asking for your permission to proceed with the updates. If so, simply accept and be patient.
While keeping your Prime Video app fully updated will greatly improve your situation, what will truly drive this whole thing home will be to also keep your streaming devices in the same condition.
Not unlike with the app, this should be done automatically by your system, but if it isn’t, you’ll have to interfere again.
Solution: As I said before, there are too many streaming devices out there to guide you through the updating process of each one here.
To make the most out of your time, please go to Google and search for “How to update my <Your Device’s Make And Model Go Here>”.
Here’s how you can manually update your Roku to paint you a picture:
Last but definitely not least, let’s talk about your cache and cookies.
If you don’t know what these are, that’s perfectly fine, most people don’t. But since you’re already here, I’d love to take this opportunity to shed some light on the concepts, starting with the cache.
This is where your favorite apps store important information. In it, you’re likely to find user preferences, preset configurations, audio, video, and sometimes even login credentials. By keeping this data handy, Prime Video can load much quicker on startup and provide you with an enjoyable experience.
Cookies, on the other hand, are tools used to make your browsing more efficient and increase the accuracy of targeted ads. They’re the reason why you’re suddenly bombarded with ads for music lessons right after looking up the best Maplewood neck guitar for beginners.
Most of the time, leaving them both untouched will do more good than harm. However, in certain cases, this could also be the reason why Prime Video is stuck on the spinning wheel.
In that scenario, your best bet will be to clear them.
Solution: Deleting your cookies and cache should be very simple in any major browser and operating system out there. For this example, I’ll use Chrome and an Android OS.
On Google Chrome:
On Android devices:
Knowing how to frequently clear your cache and cookies is a good practice that will save you a lot of headaches down the line.
Having Prime Video stuck on the spinning wheel can be really annoying. Especially if you just got home from a long day at work and all you want to do is relax and enjoy your favorite shows.
What a disaster!
Luckily, as I hope you’ve learned in this piece, addressing most of the causes behind this issue is fairly simple and quick. More often than not, simple actions, like using the right VPN, and keeping your Prime Video app fully updated, should do the trick.
Thank you so much for sticking with me all the way to the end. If you found this article helpful, you’ll be glad to know that we upload new content weekly. Please be sure to check out all our other incredible resources below to become a Tech Detective yourself!
Best of luck to you.