As a massive enthusiast of gadgets and technology, I tend to keep up-to-date with the latest launches and reviews on YouTube.
A couple of days back, one of the channels I’m subscribed to, released a video on a device that I was interested in.
However, when I loaded up the video, I just got an error that said, “This video is unavailable on this device.”
I tried refreshing the browser and restarting my internet under the assumption it was a network issue, but it wasn’t.
After reading a bit about the issue online as well as going through YouTube’s help sections, I was able to figure out the issue.
If a YouTube video shows the error “This video is unavailable on your device”, it means the video is locked by the uploader or a geo restriction. You can bypass geo restricted videos by using a VPN.
Why Some Videos Are Unavailable on Your Device
There are a few reasons why some YouTube videos won’t play on your device.
The main reasons are usually copyright issues, because the original uploader has made the video ‘Private’ or deleted it, and in some cases, the video might be restricted in your location.
If you know the uploader of the video, it might be possible to get in touch with them and ask them to share it with you, but if it’s a bigger YouTube channel, that might not be possible.
For videos restricted by location, you can use a VPN to bypass these restrictions.
If the video is copyright striked, then there is nothing you can do till the uploader has resolved the copyright issues on their video.
Apart from these issues, problems with your network, excess cache on your device and problems with YouTube servers can cause the same error.
Use A VPN To Bypass Geo Restricted Content
For a lot of videos, you’ll get the message that the video is unavailable because it’s location is restricted.
To bypass this you’ll need a VPN such as Express VPN Windscribe. These apps will allow you to modify your location and access these videos.
While you can use free VPN services apart from these, free VPNs are extremely slow and you won’t be able to buffer your videos properly.
If you know the country from which the video was uploaded, you can connect to that country or a neighboring country to access their content.
If you’re unsure of the country you need to connect to, try a few of them and your video will eventually start playing.
Clear Cache and Restart Your Router
While most videos that are unavailable are for specific reasons or restrictions, there are some instances where your device cache or network might be causing the problem.
You can clear the cache on your device by following the steps below:
Open your browser and click on the ‘History’ setting. This will open a new tab with your search history.
On this page you’ll see an option labeled ‘Clear Browsing History.’
Once you click on it, you’ll be prompted to select what information you want to delete.
Make sure you check ‘Cookies and Site Date’, and ‘Cached Images and Files.’
Now click ‘Clear Now’ and your cache and cookie data will be cleared out.
Restart the browser and your videos should load without issue on YouTube.
On Android devices, open ‘Settings’ and navigate to ‘Apps.’
Search for ‘YouTube’ and click on it. Now click on ‘Storage and Cache.’ or ‘Storage’
From here select the option ‘Clear cache’ or ‘Clear data’ and your cache will be deleted.
If you click on ‘Clear Storage’, it will clear the cache, but it will also sign you out of YouTube and clear any saved settings you had on the app.
On iPhones and iPads, open ‘Settings’ and navigate down till you find the ‘YouTube’ app.
Click on it and navigate down again till you see ‘Clear temp data on next start.’
Once this is done, you can go ahead and open the YouTube app and it will clear the cache when you start it up.
After clearing the cache on your device, I’d also recommend restarting your router for good measure.
Simply switch off the power to your router and remove the power cable for roughly 15 seconds before plugging it back in and powering it on.
Now you should be able to view videos that were unavailable on your device.
Please note that if the video still doesn’t play, it’s because of one of the reasons mentioned above.
Contact YouTube Support
If you’re unable to view videos even though none of the restrictions above apply to your device, then you’ll need to contact YouTube support.
They might send a response stating that their servers are down or undergoing maintenance which can also be a cause for unavailability of videos.
But if it’s an account related issue, they’ll be able to help you sort it out.
Getting Access To More YouTube Content
Geo restrictions and copyright issues can be annoying for consumers like us, but by following the steps outlined above, you’ll have access to way more YouTube content.
Additionally, since YouTube is such a large repository of content, even if an uploader has deleted or moved a video to ‘Private’, there will most likely be someone else who has uploaded it as well.
Use a good VPN service and you should have ample bandwidth to access any location restricted content from anywhere in the world.
Frequently Asked Questions
Where can I find the YouTube playback setting?
During video playback, click on the ‘Settings’ icon denoted by a gear to access the playback settings.
How to watch geo restricted YouTube videos?
You can access geo restricted YouTube videos by using a good VPN service. While free VPN services can be used, you won’t get fast enough bandwidth at times to watch videos.