Like Netflix, Sky Go is a streaming service that provides an incredible amount of entertaining content at reasonable subscription fees. Sky Go might be a bit different in that it is owned and managed by Sky (a media, telecommunication, Internet and TV company).
Moreover, Sky Go is more or less an online television service providing access to specific channels. Sky Go is easily one of the best streaming services in the UK (if not the best of the lot out rightly).
Sky as a company is headquartered in the British Isles, so it is not surprising to see Sky Go being made available only to residents of the United Kingdom or the Republic of Ireland. If you live in the UK or ROI and travel outside your country, you might actually find yourself struggling to watch your favorite TV show through Sky Go.
Sky implements a strict restriction policy to ensure that only UK-based IP addresses can stream Sky Go content. The same policy applies to even British citizens and expats living abroad.
Hence, a good number of users in countries where Sky Go access is restricted resort to VPN services to make it appear as if they were coming from the United Kingdom or the Republic of Ireland.
VPNs help users get past the restriction by masking their real IP addresses and presenting a suitable IP address to Sky Go servers. This setup works fine most of the time as far as we know. However, in recent times, Sky has begun to block the IP addresses they believe VPN services are employing to get users past the restriction.
You might have seen one of the following messages or notifications when you tried accessing content on Sky Go while you were in a geographically restricted location:
- “Sky go is only available to users connecting from within the UK or Republic of Ireland. You appear to be outside of these territories.”
- Sky ID Error 288 “Failed to set location settings”
- “Rights restrictions mean that this programme is not currently available”
- “Media streaming: unable to connect to stream”
- “Video unavailable”
- “This show is currently unavailable. Please try again later”
- “Unknown error: please restart the app”
Usually, users are not meant to see such messages when they go through a VPN since the service is supposed to be spoofing their IP to make it appear as if they are in the United Kingdom or the Republic of Ireland. But things have changed just as they always do.
In this guide, we will teach you how to remain at the top of your game and fix problems affecting the use of a VPN service to access Sky Go content. In other words, we will show you how to get Sky Go working with VPNs when you are abroad or how to enjoy content on Sky Go if you do not live in the UK or ROI.
How to fix the VPN not working with Sky Go problem and related issues?
Here, we walk you through a couple of tips, checks, and procedures you must perform to get everything working as they should. You will do yourself a whole lot of good by going through the operations in the order you find them listed here until you have resolved every problem that prevented you accessing the video content on Sky Go through your VPN.
Check your Date and Time settings:
First, you must understand that the Date and Time settings on your PC play a vital role in determining the configuration for a wide range of services. If you use a VPN, there might be some discrepancy between your computer’s time and the VPN’s time. After all, the VPN’s time is usually based on the time assigned to the IP address you are using.
Of course, any discrepancy or incoherence in the required settings does you no favor. These days, Sky Go takes advantage of as many measures as possible to block proxies and VPN services being employed by users in suspicious time zones. Therefore, here, you are going to work your way around Sky Go geolocation restriction policies by thinking ahead.
The obvious fix would require you to set your system time to mimic that of the UK or ROI IP server you are using to access the restricted content. This way, Sky Go will not block you since the service will have no choice but to believe that you are in the United Kingdom or the Republic of Ireland.
These instructions will guide you to make the necessary corrections on a Windows 10 PC:
- Open the Settings app: Press and hold the Windows button on your keyboard, then continue by giving the letter I key a tap. Once the program window shows up as expected, you must click on the Time and Language section to enter their menu
- You should end up in the Date and Time section (usually the first item on the list on the left pane). Well, on the right pane, you should see the options for manipulating your Date and Time settings. Now, you must move to disable both the Set time automatically and Set time zone automatically options
- Scroll down to the Time zone menu. There, from the options you can bring up by clicking on the drop-down menu, you must select the Dublin-London time zone
- Now, you must check if your time values are in order and correct them if need be. You can also click on the Set time automatically option to re-enable it if you like
- Close both your Sky Go and VPN apps if you have them running currently. Now, you must move to reopen the VPN app, connect to a reliable server in the UK or ROI and get the required connection setup up and running
- Reopen your Sky Go app, try to stream a video and see how things work out this time.
Reinstall the Sky Go app and shake up other things:
We hope the importance of the VPN service getting up to speed first before you try accessing the content available on Sky Go has not gone past you. If the problem persists even after you follow this sequence correctly, you must move on to reinstall the Sky Go app.
At least, we know that the reinstallation of a program forces a good number of changes that often help get rid of a wide range of issues. Connection problems or restrictions affecting the Sky Go client on your PC might go away after you reinstall the app.
Follow these instructions:
- First, you must navigate to the Apps and Features menu in the Settings app. We showed you how to launch the Settings app not so long ago, so we do not have to repeat what we wrote earlier; scroll up to see the step again if you have to.
You can also go through the Program and Features menu in the Control Panel app to uninstall the Sky Go client.
- Once the Settings program window is up, you should see Apps, which you must click on to enter its menu. On the left pane, you will end up on the Apps and Features menu (since it is the first item on the list there)
- On the right pane, you must go through the list of applications currently installed on your PC to locate the Sky Go app. Once you find it, you must click on it to highlight it, then click on the Uninstall button that appears.
- When the dialog box comes up to get confirmation for the operation you initiated, you must click on the Uninstall button there to confirm. Windows will now act to remove the selected application from your PC
- After the uninstallation operation is complete, we recommend you restart your PC. After your computer comes on and your system settles down, you must download and reinstall the Sky Go app you just removed.
You should be able to obtain the app through the Microsoft Store. You can also launch your web browser, search for the Sky Go client online and download it.
- Whatever happens, after you finish reinstalling the Sky Go app, you must restart your VPN and set up the appropriate connection using a UK- or RIO-based IP address, then try to stream some videos through the Sky Go client.
If you find yourself still unable to access the restricted content through the Sky Go client, then you might as well launch your web browser and try doing the same thing.
In general, we advise you try out as many browsers as possible (Chrome from Google, Firefox from Mozilla, and so on). We recommend you give things a go even on the unpopular Internet Explorer browser or the relatively new Microsoft Edge app. You never can tell which platform will deliver the result you want.
Do some work involving your VPN service:
At this point, given the measures taken or operations already executed, it is time you considered alterations that can be made to the operations or activities of the VPN service to resolve problems with Sky Go.
We have seen enough reports that indicate that Sky has gone on a campaign to block numerous VPN service providers, and it seems they might have achieved some success. A good number of VPNs (especially those services provided by relatively small firms) no longer work with Sky Go, and things do not appear to be changing any time soon.
Perhaps, Sky has found a reliable way to blacklist the UK- or ROI-based IP address that you and other users of the same VPN service have been using to get past their restriction policies on the content available on Sky Go. In that case, a switch to a new server or IP address might very much be the refreshment that will bring about the breakthrough you want.
If you use the VPN service provided by a top firm, then you will probably be able to access numerous servers or IP addresses based in the United Kingdom or the Republic of Ireland. The more servers or IP addresses available, the better for you. Try out as many of them as possible until you find the one that works perfectly for you.
Surely, Sky could not have managed to block all of them. We believe you should not have too much trouble finding one what works well with Sky Go. Subsequently, if Sky moves to block that server or IP address too, then you must switch to another one.
We understand that the constant need to switch back and forth from one server to another might constitute a problem for some users. Unfortunately, such movements are necessary to remain ahead of the measures Sky takes to enforce its content restriction policies as regards Sky Go.
At this point, if you are still struggling to find a server that supports stable streaming of video content through Sky Go, you will do well to ask for help from your VPN customer care. After all, your service provider is obligated to help you in such a scenario since they do not want you switching to a competitor’s service.
If your VPN customer care service fails to help you or if you realize they cannot help you because their servers and options are limited, then you might have no choice but to switch to another VPN provider (at least a service that is considerably better than the one you have currently).
Anyway, before you move on to pay for a new subscription from a different VPN brand, we advise you ask or confirm that they have servers that ensure you get past Sky Go restriction policies successfully. This way, you get to avoid paying for a service that you might not use.
In your search for a way to bypass Sky Go geolocation restriction policies, you find yourself having to download specific applications, carry out certain operations or even engage in activities you never saw yourself being involved with until now.
Therefore, there is a good chance you might compromise the security of your PC or expose your system to threats Windows is not equipped to deal with or even detect. You should be interested in improving on your protection setup while you still can. Auslogics Anti-Malware will help you do precisely that.
After you download and run the recommended application, your system will get an extra line of defense against all forms of threats.
Subsequently, the improvement in your PC’s performance against malicious threats brought about by the addition of the anti-malware app might come in handy in scenarios where something gets past your antivirus (if you have one as your primary security program) or your current protection setup.