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Why Sling TV Goes Black Screen

Q. I have a problem. I love Sling TV, but sometimes the picture goes to a black screen and then back to the show. It doesn’t happen often, or on all the channels, but it happens often enough to bug me. Do you know why this happens, and does it happen to everyone? Is there anything that can be done to fix it? — Gina, Arlington, Virginia. 

Gina, this has been a recurring issue for some Sling TV subscribers for several months. I have seen it happen, too, and I have received several e-mails from readers complaining of the problem. You are watching a show when suddenly the picture flickers and goes to a totally blank screen. Then, after a few seconds, it goes right back to the program.

You are right. It doesn’t happen every often, but, yes, it happens. And not just to you, Gina.

Below is an example of this occurring today during AMC’s airing of The Others, starring Nicole Kidman:

The snafu has affected so many Sling viewers that the live streaming service has established a separate Help page with tips on how to fix it.

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Sling says the picture flickering is most commonly caused by a temporary lapse in bandwidth being delivered to your streaming device. Basically that means the stream is being temporarily interrupted by either a glitch in your Internet service or Sling’s servers.

The live streaming service suggests a few things to fix it.

One, click on the ‘My TV’ feature on your screen. Then, go to ‘Settings,’ and then ‘Connection.’ Try setting the Connection limit to ‘High’ and then go back to your show. If the flickering to black screen continues to occur, Sling says try setting Connection on Medium.

If that doesn’t solve the problem, try watching another channel for a minute or so. If you don’t see the picture go to black there, then return to your original show to see if the flickering has stopped there as well.

I have found that has worked for me.

Gina, hope that helps. Happy viewing!

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— Phillip Swann

About TV Answer Man (1616 Articles)
The TV Answer Man is veteran journalist Phillip Swann who has covered the TV technology scene for more than two decades. He will report on the latest news and answer your questions regarding new devices and services that are changing the way you watch television.

2 Comments on Why Sling TV Goes Black Screen

  1. I have this problem on Sling as well. I do not have any problems with PlayStation Vue. Probably going to go back to Vue

  2. Oddly enough we have the same problem. However it never happens while watching shows streaming on Netflix or Amazon Prime, only Sling.

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