How to Watch Sky Sports in USA
Updated: June 25, 2017
**This Solution STILL WORKS to Unblock Sky Sports in USA**
- Start with setting up a VPN account
- Next download and install the VPN software to the device you will watch Sky Sports in USA from
- Open the software then connect to a UK-based server location
- Login to your Sky Sports account or create an account if you have not done so already
- Enjoy Sky Sports in USA
How to watch Sky Sports in USA in more detail:
Being a UK-born and raised kid, I was always in front of the TV with my dad on Sundays catching up on all the sports of the week he missed. Sky was the channel of choice for basically the entire day (much to my mum's dismay!), To say Sky Sports is a channel close to my heart is an understatement.
So to when I moved to the US for work last year, I took as many home comforts as I could to keep any home-sickness pangs at bay as much as possible. Thus, on the very first lazy Sunday I had once I was all setup in my NYC apartment, I went ahead and opened up my laptop to login to my beloved online Sky Sports account and catch up like always.
However, this time was not like any time before, because upon trying to access Sky Sports I was immediately denied and told that Sky Sports was not available in my location. I was devastated!
Yup, it just so happens that even Sky Sports' online streaming does not allow quite a lot of their videos to be streamed in the USA. I was not expecting this, so was in no mood to be defeated. It was time to find a solution!
And find a solution I did. Thus, to help anyone else out there who also wants to know how to watch Sky Sports in USA without any restrictions, I decided to put together a quick guide of the solution I figured out.
Why is Sky Sports Not Available in USA?
So the first thing I looked into for this issue was why Sky Sports was blocking USA access to certain content on their service, as I figured this would help me find the best solution.
It took a little searching, but I discovered that the blocks on content come from the licensing rights that Sky Sports acquire for each sporting event they offer users access to on the service. You see, in order to offer each piece of content, Sky Sports have to physically purchase licensing rights to do so, every time.
These licensing rights are also only purchased individually for each country. So when Sky Sports offer a stream to users accessing the service from multiple countries, this means that Sky Sports have purchased licensing rights for each and every one of those countries.
Thus, when you try to watch Sky Sports in USA locations but are not granted access, this means that Sky Sports did not acquire licensing rights to let users in the USA watch that specific stream.
How is Sky Sports Blocking Access in USA?
Understanding the reason why was one thing, but now it was time to get to the bottom of how, like, technically, Sky Sports was implementing the content blocks on their service.
After researching other media streaming providers and how such services employ blocks like Sky Sports do, I quickly discovered that a process known as "geo-blocking" was being used.
This process acts essentially like a cat flap on Sky Sports service. So for example, if you try to access a video on Sky Sports and you're located in the UK at that moment -- plus -- the video has only been licensed to be offered to users in the UK; you will get access instantly. However, if you are located in the US at that same moment and try to access the very same video stream; you will be denied and presented with the "sorry" text. I.e. the cat flap will not open for you.
This "cat flap" process of geo-blocking works by checking the IP address of every user the moment they arrive on the website. From each user's current IP address, their physical location is determined and used to allow or prevent access to Sky Sports' content appropriately.
Realising how this works helped me to decide on the best solution that would work most securely and effectively. I set to research the various ways one can change their IP address to make their location "appear" in whatever location they need to "appear" within to get access to the Sky Sports content that's blocked.
After checking out all the options of SmartDNS/Proxy/etc, I determined the most beneficial and sophisticated approach to use a Virtual Private Network (VPN). There are a lot of VPN providers around, so I personally reviewed the most reputable ones and settled on ExpressVPN for this solution. So I will reference it as the example while I walk through the setup steps below.
How to Use a VPN to Watch Sky Sports in USA
Step 1: Sign up for VPN
Head over to ExpressVPN's website and choose the plan that best fits your budget and needs. You'll then be prompted to choose a payment method. Once you've done this, confirm your new account details via email.
What's great about ExpressVPN, and 99% of VPN providers, is that when you first join you get 30 days essentially free (money back guarantee) if you don't like the service. Here's a few snapshots showcasing the account setup process:
Upon confirming account details, you will see a link to the download area in that email. Click on it and you'll be automatically directed there to download the VPN software...
Step 2: Download & Install VPN
In the download are you'll see that there are individual download links specifically for whatever device(s) you plan to use the VPN on. So for me, I like to watch Sky Sports on both my Macbook and Android smartphone.
This meant downloading the OS X software, which was automatically highlighted by ExpressVPN for me. Then on my Android device I went to the Google Play Store and downloaded+installed the dedicated app thereon:
Installing is as simple as any software install. Simply open the downloaded file then follow the few steps as guided.
Step 3: Connect to UK-based Server on VPN
Now comes the all important step in the process. Go ahead and open up the VPN software once it's installed, then you will be asked to select a location to connect to the VPN through.
Here's where you will be choosing what your IP address will change to, so select a UK-based server location and hit "Connect".
Below are some screenshots showing how clear the VPN software looks on both my Macbook and Android smartphone:
Step 4: Setup Sky Sports Account
Once you've connected to the VPN on a UK-based server, you will have successfully changed your IP address to reflect this. Good job!
Now, when you head to the Sky Sports website and choose to watch that video that was just minutes ago totally blocked to you because of your USA location -- you will have full access.
You may need to create a Sky Sports account at this point to sign into the service, depending on the media you want to watch. This is simply a case of filling in some general info; takes just a second.
Thus concludes a super quick step-by-step guide on how to watch Sky Sports in USA locations in less than 5 minutes. I hope you found the guide useful, and if you went through the steps as laid out you are now enjoying a completely unblocked and accessible Sky Sports from the comfort of your US location.
As mentioned earlier in this guide, I personally reviewed many VPN service providers before settling on ExpressVPN. So to give you some more options, here are the top five VPN providers I found that work best to watch Sky Sports in USA locations:
Thanks for reading. If you have any questions or comments at all, then let me know in the comments section below and I'll be happy to help you out when I can.
Happy Sky Sport'ing!