ESPN+ is a subscription-based video streaming service in the United States, which is distinct from ESPN (a live TV channel). Consequently, a user may not be able to watch ESPN with ESPN+ if he is only subscribed to ESPN+.
However, both of these services are accessible to their subscribers via the ESPN website or the ESPN app. ESPN+ is offered either as a standalone subscription or as part of a bundle with Disney+, Hulu, Xfinity, and others. The primary issue arises when a user cannot access ESPN+ content through the ESPN website or app on various platforms, such as mobiles, TVs, desktops, and laptops. This problem is not confined to any specific internet service provider (ISP).
The main reasons why ESPN Plus might not work include:
- Outdated or Corrupt ESPN App: An outdated or corrupt ESPN app may be incompatible with ESPN servers, causing the ESPN Plus-related components to malfunction and resulting in the issue at hand.
- Corrupt Cookies of the ESPN Website: ESPN Plus may not work if the ESPN cookies in a browser are corrupt, as this can disrupt server-client communication between the user’s system and ESPN servers.
- Incompatible Browser Configurations: A browser configuration that blocks essential functions like pop-ups from ESPN can prevent the ESPN website from fully executing its code related to ESPN+, resulting in operational issues.
- ISP Restrictions: ISP restrictions that interfere with web traffic between the user’s network and ESPN servers can prevent the ESPN website/app from loading correctly on the user’s device, leading to ESPN Plus malfunctions.
1. Force Close the ESPN App and Relaunch It
An ESPN app with a temporary glitch may not display ESPN+ content correctly. Force closing and relaunching the app can resolve this issue.
- Open Settings on your Android phone and select the Application Manager.
- Select the ESPN app and tap on Force Stop.
- Confirm to force stop the ESPN app and then relaunch it to see if the issue is resolved.
If this does not resolve the issue and you have a third-party subscription (e.g., through Hulu), verify that using ESPN+ through that service is functioning correctly. If not, check whether using the same credentials for ESPN+ with a third-party service resolves the problem.
2. Perform a Cold Restart of the Device and Networking Equipment
Temporary communication issues between the device (such as a TV) and ESPN+ servers can cause the ESPN+ working problem. Performing a cold restart of the device and networking equipment can potentially resolve this issue.
- Power off the device (e.g., TV) and unplug its power cord from the outlet.
- Power off your networking equipment (e.g., router or Wi-Fi extender) and unplug the power cable.
- Wait for 5 minutes before plugging the router’s power cord back in.
- Power on the router and wait until it is fully operational.
- Power on the device, and once it is fully functional, see if ESPN+ is now working correctly.
If the issue persists, ensure that your device model is supported by the ESPN app.
3. Update the ESPN App to the Latest Build
A missing update for the ESPN app can cause compatibility issues with its servers. Consequently, essential app components might not function as expected, leading to ESPN+ not working. Updating the ESPN app to the latest build can resolve this issue.
- Open Google Play Store and access its Menu.
- Navigate to My Apps & Games and select the Installed tab.
- Find the ESPN app in the “Updates Available” section and tap on it.
- Tap on Update (if an update is available), and after updating, launch the app to see if it functions correctly.
4. Re-Login to the ESPN Website or App
A temporary disconnect between the ESPN app (or the loaded website on a user’s machine) and its servers might prevent ESPN Plus from functioning correctly, as it prevents the full execution of essential code. Re-logging into the ESPN website or app might fix the issue.
- Open the ESPN app and tap on Settings.
- Now tap on Logout of the ESPN Account and then relaunch the app.
- Next, log in to the ESPN app (make sure you are using the ESPN+ login credentials, not those of your TV provider) and check whether the app is working correctly.
5. Clear the Cache and Data of the ESPN App
Corrupted cache and data of the ESPN app can lead to ESPN+ not working as the app might be accessing invalid data. Clearing the cache and data can resolve this issue.
- Go to the Android phone Settings and open Apps.
- Select the ESPN app and tap on Force Stop.
- Confirm to force stop the app and then tap on Storage.
- Now tap on Clear Cache and then on the Clear Data (or Clear Storage) button.
- Confirm your action and then open the ESPN app again to check if the issue with ESPN+ has been resolved.
6. Clear ESPN Cookies in the Browser Settings
Browser cookies are vital for server-client communication. Corrupted ESPN cookies can lead to ESPN+ not working, as they interfere with the communication needed to query the ESPN servers. Clearing the ESPN cookies in the web browser’s settings might resolve the problem.
- Open a web browser (such as Chrome) and navigate to the ESPN website.
- In the browser’s address bar, click on the Lock icon and select Cookies.
- Choose an ESPN cookie and click on Remove.
- Repeat the process for all ESPN cookies.
- Then, relaunch the browser and check if ESPN+ is working correctly.
7. Allow Pop-Ups from the ESPN Website
If the ESPN website cannot display pop-ups on the user’s browser, it may prevent access to ESPN+ content, as these pop-ups are crucial for the functionality of the ESPN website. Allowing pop-ups from the ESPN website may solve the issue.
- Open the Chrome browser and proceed to the ESPN website.
- In the address bar, click on the Lock icon and select Site Settings.
- Change the setting for Pop-ups and Redirects to Allow.
- Relaunch the Chrome browser and verify whether the ESPN Plus working issue has been resolved.
8. Reinstall the ESPN App
If the ESPN app installation is corrupt, its modules may not perform as expected, causing ESPN+ to malfunction. Reinstalling the ESPN app could potentially fix this issue.
- Navigate to Settings on your Android phone and select Applications.
- Choose the ESPN app and force stop it (as previously discussed).
- Then clear the app’s cache and data (as discussed earlier).
- Hit the back button and tap on Uninstall.
- Confirm to uninstall the ESPN app and then restart your Android device.
- After restarting, reinstall the ESPN app and check if it’s now functioning correctly.
If that does not work, try removing and re-adding the ESPN tile/channel from the home screen of a device like Roku (you may need to cancel the ESPN+subscription and subscribe again).
9. Reset Browser Settings to the Factory Defaults
Misconfigured browser settings (e.g., in Chrome) that interfere with the ESPN website’s functionality can cause issues. Resetting the browser settings to factory defaults might solve this problem.
- Launch the Chrome browser and open the Menu.
- Click on Settings and in the left pane, expand Advanced.
- Select the Reset and Clean Up tab.
- In the right pane, click on Reset Settings to Their Original Defaults and then confirm the reset.
- Relaunch Chrome and check if ESPN+ is working correctly.
10. Try Another Browser
Compatibility issues between a specific browser (such as Chrome) and the ESPN website can prevent ESPN+ from working due to failed loading of website modules. Using a different browser might resolve this issue.
- Download and install another browser (if you have not done so already).
- Launch the new browser (e.g., Edge, Firefox, etc.) and navigate to the ESPN website.
- Log in with your ESPN credentials, then verify whether ESPN+ is functioning properly.
If ESPN+ is still not working, check its functionality on another device on the same network.
11. Try Another Network or Use a VPN
ISP issues could impede the proper flow of web traffic between the ESPN website (or app) and ESPN servers, causing functionality problems.
- Force close the ESPN app (as previously discussed) and disconnect from any VPN (if connected).
- Disconnect your device or system from the current network and connect to another network, such as your mobile phone’s hotspot.
- Open the ESPN app and check if ESPN Plus is now operational.
- If that does not resolve the issue, force close the ESPN app again and clear the cache/data of the ESPN app.
- Connect the device to a VPN (e.g., NordVPN) and access the NordVPN settings.
- Select Protocol and choose an OpenVPN option.
- Go back and under Specialty Servers, opt for Obfuscated servers.
- Wait for the VPN to connect. Once connected, launch the ESPN app to check whether it is now working normally.
- If the problem persists, try connecting to a different VPN location to see if that resolves the issue.
If none of the aforementioned methods work, you may consider contacting ESPN support to troubleshoot your account or to clarify any related issues. Meanwhile, you might want to cast the screen from a working device (such as a phone) to your non-functioning device (such as a TV) by following the instructions found at this link.