Why ESPN Isn’t Working on Apple TV & How to Quickly Fix It

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Written by Jason Lin

Espn On Apple Tv Not Working

Struggling to stream live sports and ESPN content on your Apple TV? This comprehensive guide covers 17+ fixes to get ESPN working again.

Having issues streaming your favorite sports content on the ESPN app for Apple TV? You’re not alone. Thousands of Apple TV owners have reported problems with watching live ESPN events and shows.

The good news is – most ESPN problems on Apple TV can be easily fixed with a few troubleshooting steps.

Follow this guide to quickly fix ESPN streaming problems and enjoy non-stop sports action on your Apple TV!

Overview of Common ESPN Apple TV Issues

Before jumping into the fixes, let’s first understand the main issues faced by Apple TV users when trying to watch ESPN:

  • ESPN app won’t open or load content
  • Playback errors like “Error Playing Content”
  • Black screen instead of video
  • Authorization failed errors
  • Endless buffering and lag
  • other error codes like 0068, 0074, etc.

Issues arise due to ESPN service outages, software bugs, network problems or subscription errors. For example, many Spectrum customers face ESPN channel problems on their Spectrum TV service.

The good news is all these ESPN problems on Apple Apple TV can be easily resolved with some basic troubleshooting.

10 Reasons Why ESPN Isn’t Working on Your Apple TV

Here are the most common reasons why you may be facing issues with ESPN on your Apple TV:

  1. ESPN+ service outage – Server issues lead to authorization failed errors
  2. Slow internet speed – Buffering, lag due to limited bandwidth
  3. App or firmware outdated – Software bugs cause streaming failures
  4. Incorrect subscription – Don’t have ESPN bundle for Apple TV
  5. Too many devices logged in – Breached credentials lead to playback errors
  6. VPN enabled – Causes geo-restrictions and loading problems
  7. Incorrect Apple TV settings – Messes up streaming quality and speeds
  8. Corrupt Apple TV firmware – Leads to app crashes and black screens
  9. HDCP copyright protection issues – HDMI connectivity problems cause errors
  10. Temporary ISP network problems – Leads to authorization failed errors

Figuring out the exact reason why your ESPN app is not working will help you troubleshoot the problem quicker.

Next, let’s go through all the possible fixes…

17 Fixes to Get ESPN Working Again on Your Apple TV

Follow these proven troubleshooting steps to resolve various ESPN problems on your Apple TV 4K and HD models:

1. Check if ESPN Service Having an Outage

Streaming fails when ESPN servers are down.

To check – Go to the ESPN status page on Downdetector. If high outage reports, you’ll have to wait a few hours for engineers to fix it.

Espn Status Page On Downdetector

2. Restart Your Apple TV

Restarting resets minor software glitches causing ESPN app failures.

How to restart –

  1. Unplug Apple TV power cord for 30 seconds
  2. Reconnect and wait for it to reboot
  3. Launch ESPN app to test if issue resolved
Unplug The TV

3. Reboot Your Internet Router

Rebooting your router resets the internet connection, resolving any temporary network issues like speed lag.

To reboot:

  1. Unplug router power cable for 30 seconds
  2. Plug back in and wait for internet to reconnect
  3. Test ESPN app after router restarts
Restart The Router

4. Check Your Internet Speeds

HD ESPN streaming requires minimum 3-5 Mbps internet speeds.

Run a Speedtest to check. Upgrade internet plan if needed.

5. Use Ethernet Instead of WiFi

For consistent high-speeds, connect your Apple TV to router via Ethernet cable instead of using WiFi. Some users have also resolved ESPN issues on Amazon Fire TV, Sling TV and other devices by using wired connection.

Apple Tv Ethernet

6. Disable VPN on Apple TV

VPNs often cause geo-restrictions and connectivity issues.

Turn off VPN on Apple TV to resolve any location errors when streaming ESPN.

Best Vpn

7. Update Your ESPN App

  1. Go to App Store > Search “ESPN”
  2. If update available, click Update
  3. Relaunch ESPN app after updating
Apple Tv Open The App Store

8. Update Your Apple TV Software

  1. Go to Settings > System > Software Updates
  2. If update available, click Download and Install
  3. Check ESPN after Apple TV updated
Apple Tv Update Software

9. Delete and Reinstall ESPN App

  1. Delete ESPN app from your Apple TV’s Home screen
  2. Reboot Apple TV
  3. Redownload ESPN app and relogin

10. Sign Out and Sign Back Into ESPN App

Sometimes simply signing out and signing back in resolves app issues.

11. Reset Your Apple TV

Warning – Resets all settings and erases all data! If resetting Apple TV, you’ll have to re-login and setup ESPN+ on Samsung Smart TVs, LG TVs and other models.

How to reset Apple TV to factory settings:

  1. Go to Settings > System > Reset
Apple Tv Reset 1
  1. Choose “Reset and Update” or “Erase All Content and Settings
Apple Tv Reset And Update
  1. Set up Apple TV again and test ESPN

12. Change your ESPN Account Password

  1. Visit ESPN account on web browser
  2. Click Edit next to your username
  3. Go to Security > Change password
  4. Sign in again on Apple TV with new password

Having too many devices logged into your ESPN account can cause streaming authorization issues. Changing password fixes this.

13. Remove ESPN Login from Other Devices

Too many simultaneous ESPN logins can lead to streaming problems on Apple TV.

To kick out all other logged in devices:

  1. Go to ESPN viewer settings
  2. Click “Sign Out Of All Devices” and confirm
  3. Log back into Apple TV

Now only your Apple TV will be logged in.

14. Double Check Your ESPN+ Subscription

Don’t have the right ESPN bundle for your Apple TV? You’ll get authorization errors.

15. Enable HDCP on Apple TV Port

HDCP copyright protection needs to enabled on your Apple TV’s HDMI port.

To enable HDCP:

  1. Go to Settings > Video and Audio > HDMI > HDCP > On

Now ESPN will be able to verify copyright protection for streaming.

16. Use Different HDMI Port on TV

Try connecting your Apple TV to a different HDMI port on the TV to resolve any connectivity issues causing ESPN failures.

Tcl Tv Hdmi

17. Factory Reset Your TV

As last resort, reset your TV to factory settings if software bugs are disrupting communication between TV and Apple TV.

Check detailed steps to reset for your specific TV model online.

Pro Tip: Still facing ESPN problems on Apple TV after trying all fixes? Call Apple Support or ESPN+ Customer Service.

Why Trust Our Recommendations?

All the troubleshooting steps provided above are based on extensive research into the actual reasons why ESPN fails on Apple TV devices.

The fixes have helped thousands of Apple TV and ESPN+ subscribers successfully resolve various error messages and streaming issues.

These methods are also officially recommended on popular Apple and ESPN forums, technical blogs and customer service articles.

We have simplified the instructions so you can easily follow them at home without expert help.

Key Takeaways and Next Steps

To summarize, here is what you need to do to get ESPN working again on your Apple TV:

  • Check for ESPN+ outages before troubleshooting
  • Restart both Apple TV and your router
  • Ensure you have sufficient minimum internet speeds
  • Update ESPN app and Apple TV system software
  • Reset Apple TV if all else fails (backup data first!)

Following the step-by-step guides provided, you will able to quickly fix various ESPN problems on your Apple TV 4K and HD models including authorization failures, playback errors, buffering issues and black screens.

Now you can relax and enjoy interruption-free streaming of live sports events, sports shows and ESPN content!

Do you still face any issues with ESPN on your Apple TV? Tell us in the comments and we’d be happy to provide customized troubleshooting suggestions!

Jason Lin
Tech enthusiast with 10+ years of experience, providing guides, reviews, and tips on Smart TVs, streaming devices, and TV apps.

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