Over the years, the BBC website has developed to an incredible extent. In fact it’s one of the most popular sites on the internet and receives millions of visit every single day. As far as TV broadcasters sites go, it’s without doubt a world leader with an incredible depth of content and services – all completely unsullied by internet advertising too.
In fact the only drawback, is that the real BBC website is normally inaccessible from outside the United Kingdom even if you are a license fee payer. Yet fear not, there is an answer a way of having full access to the BBC wherever you are – it’s called a BBC Live VPN.
Now there are in fact two BBC websites, an international version and a domestic version. The international site is a decent enough news site with a world focus, but it’s nowhere near as good as the domestic site. The UK BBC website has live TV of all it’s channels, all the radio stations (national plus regional variations) plus one of the biggest media archives on the planet – the BBC iPlayer.
It’s no exaggeration to say that the BBC website is capable of supplying all the news, entertainment and information that anyone would need. The array of news, drama, documentaries, comedies and current affairs programmes is incredible – all available for nothing and free of advertising breaks. Which is why there’s a whole industry sprung up to allow people to access the domestic site from anywhere in the world using something called a VPN.
Using a BBC Live VPN
Although it sounds difficult, using a VPN to access the BBC is quite simple – my eighty year old mother uses one all the time! It’s simply a method of connecting through an intermediate server in order to hide your real location. If the VPN server is based in the UK then you will appear to be in the UK too. So when you visit the BBC through a VPN then you will have full access instead of being redirected or blocked.
Here’s a very simple demonstration of a VPN service being used to access the BBC from abroad.
When your computer is connected to the VPN it’s real location is invisible, all the BBC website can see is the VPN server. In fact you can use the BBC iPlayer VPN workaround on sites in other countries too, try the US or Canadian TV stations. There are some hidden gems like the RTE TV from Ireland which has some great documentaries and dramas. Often you can find sporting coverage from different countries too, although watching the Premiership on US TV and hearing the word ‘soccer’ all the time can be slightly distracting!
Beware though, the BBC has recently conducted a crackdown on these methods and some of the simplest VPN services have been blocked. The good news is that although the BBC iplayer blocking VPN services quite extensively completely blocking them is quite difficult and the best VPN systems still work. If you’re having problems with iPlayer not working it’s best to simply switch VPN providers.
Don’t be put off by all these reports that state that BBC iplayer VPN not working anymore, it’s not completely true. There’s plenty that still work but stay away from those that use the BBC logo or copyrighted material on their website, they won’t last long.
The software demonstrated is a BBC Live VPN called Identity Cloaker and just sits in your taskbar until you need it. You can also use your account on other devices like tablets, smartphones and iPads by connecting manually (instructions in the members area). No restrictions on downloads and you can use on a number of different devices at the same time.
To give you an example of how I personally use it –
- Installed on my Laptop for browsing and Using all UK only sites but mainly BBC, ITV Hub and Channel 4
- Installed on my iPad for UK websites especially Amazon and BBC.
- Installed on my iPhone primarily to access BBC radio, mainly Test Match Special abroad and the Local news broadcasts.
It’s very simple to use, but it’s always best to try out the short trial first to see how it works. You’ll be impressed and remember it enables all the other UK channels too like ITV, Channel 4 and 5. Even use it to watch Sky Go abroad and UK Netflix, although you’ll need subscriptions to those.
Try it here – IDC