Why ESPN is not working on Samsung TV

When ESPN is not working on Samsung TV, you are likely to see a black screen, laggy pictures, or constant buffering. In other instances, you won’t see any response when you launch the app.

So, what causes these problems, and how do you fix them?

For many users, the network connection is the most common reason for ESPN not working on Samsung TV. Another common issue could be corrupt data files that cause the app to freeze.

In a few cases, we found out that the issue could be brought about by Samsung TV itself and has nothing to do with ESPN.

But many other reasons explain why ESPN is not working on Samsung TV.

Why is ESPN not working on Samsung TV?

If ESPN has stopped working on Samsung TV, the following may be the cause:

  • The ESPN app on your Samsung TV is out-of-date.
  • You have not activated the ESPN app for your Samsung TV.
  • Your internet connection is slow or unstable.

You could also have an issue with your video service or cable subscription if you encounter specific error messages while watching ESPN on your Samsung Smart TV.

How to fix ESPN issues on Samsung TV

Here are ways of doing it.

1. Update the ESPN app on Samsung TV

ESPN app

An outdated app could be why ESPN is not working on your Samsung TV. Therefore, update the app to continue. Here is how.

  • Press the Smart Hub button on your Samsung TV remote.
  • Select Featured.
  • Navigate to the ESPN app.
  • Press and hold the Enter button until a sub-menu appears.
  • Select Update Apps.
  • Choose Select All.
  • Select Update.
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The ESPN app, plus any app that requires an update, will start updating once you see the progress bar. However, you can ensure this does not happen in the future by auto-updating of apps.

  • Press the Home button on your Samsung TV remote.
  • Select Apps.
  • Go to the Settings icon and press enter.
  • While the cursor is on Auto update, press Enter to enable the function.

The ESPN app will update automatically when the next update is available.

2. Update the Samsung TV software

If your Samsung TV software is out-of-date, you might experience incompatibility issues trying to update the ESPN app.

Follow these steps to update the software on Samsung TV:

  • Go to Settings.
  • Select Support.
  • Tap Software Update.
  • Select Update Now.

If an update is available, it will download. Once done, open the ESPN app to see any changes.

3. Close the ESPN app and try again

Closing the ESPN app helps refresh its processes and allows it to start afresh. If the app is still running on your Samsung TV, press the RETURN button on your remote.

Once an information window appears, go to EXIT and press the enter button.

However, understand that pressing the RETURN button may close the app without opening another menu. But once done, open the ESPN app and see whether it works.

4. Reboot your Samsung TV

Samsung Smart TV
Image: Samsung

Rebooting your Samsung TV can solve many issues, including glitches, picture problems, and the ESPN app not working.

You can reboot the TV using your remote or unplug it from the power source. If you prefer the remote option, hold the Power button until the TV turns OFF and then ON again.

The entire process should take five seconds. You can also unplug the TV from the power source, leave it for at least 30 seconds, then plug it back in.

Launch the ESPN app to see if you have resolved the issue.

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5. Delete and reinstall the ESPN app

You may have to delete and reinstall the ESPN app if you cannot watch ESPN on your Samsung Smart TV.

Do the following:

  • Press the Home button on your Samsung TV remote.
  • Next, move the cursor to the ESPN app.
  • Press the Down button.
  • Go to Remove and press the Enter button.

To reinstall the ESPN app:

  • Press the Home button on your Samsung TV remote.
  • Select Apps.
  • Select the Search icon.
  • Type ESPN.
  • Select Done.
  • Click the ESPN app.
  • Select Install.

Once the app installs, open it and see whether it will work.

6. Activate ESPN on Samsung TV

If it is your first time watching ESPN+ on Samsung TV, make sure you have activated your device before proceeding.

But you must have an existing ESPN account, or you will have to create one.

ESPN activation screen
ESPN activation screen

Here is how to activate ESPN on your Samsung Smart TV.

  • Install the ESPN+ app on your Samsung Smart TV.
  • Select Settings.
  • Open Subscriptions.
  • Select ESPN+.
  • Select Log In.
  • An activation code will appear on your screen.
  • Go to espn.com/activate on your computer or mobile browser.
  • Enter the activation code.
  • Click on Continue.
  • Log in to your existing ESPN account or create a new one.

The process will activate ESPN+ on your Samsung TV if you are successful.

7. Check your internet connection

When you notice that your streaming quality is poor, videos take longer to load, the app freezes, or it keeps stalling, the issue could be your internet connection.

You can do several things to find a solution.

  • Run a network test on your Samsung TV to determine whether you have connected it to the internet. Go to Settings > Network > Network Status. The steps will differ depending on your device.
  • Check that you have connected all cables to the router.
  • Restart your router by unplugging it from the power outlet, wait about one minute, and reconnect it.
  • Connect another device to the router to determine whether the connection is a TV or router problem.
  • If you have a wireless connection, reduce the distance between the modem or router and your Samsung TV. Ensure the distance is not more than 15 meters.
  • Check that there is no obstacle between your modem, router, and TV.
  • Remove other devices connected to the same wireless network to improve bandwidth. You require an internet speed of 2Mbps or greater to enjoy streaming on ESPN.
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Wi-Fi connection
Image: Praveen

Invest in a wireless booster to improve connectivity if the distance between the devices is more than 15 meters and you cannot remove any obstacles.

But if the issue is your internet, contact your ISP for further assistance.

It is always important to get a router with the best speeds for you to stream content without lagging or freezing. We have created a guide with the best routers for streaming 4K content to help you make a better choice. These routers work quite well with Smart TVs.

Why the ESPN app is blurry on Samsung TV

When watching a video on the ESPN app on your Samsung TV, you may experience blurring of video or loss of sound.

The blurring is a content issue from ESPN. It occurs if the rights granted to ESPN differ from those given to traditional TV usage. Ideally, the problem should go away.

But if it continues, contact ESPN customer support services for assistance.

ESPN should now work on your TV

The ESPN app on your Samsung TV should work well after installing it. But if it stops working, troubleshoot the issue using the steps we’ve provided here. For example, fix your internet if the videos buffer, freeze, or take longer to load.

You can also update the ESPN app and your Samsung TV software. However, some simple fixes include restarting the app, activating ESPN on your Samsung TV, rebooting your TV, and deleting and reinstalling the app.

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