Best VPNs for BBC iPlayer

BBC iPlayerIf you are an expat of the Emerald Isles or England and you have gone to watch some of your old favorites on the BBC iPlayer service, you have probably seen this message. “BBC iPlayer TV programs are available to play in the UK only.”  This is because the iPlayer media library is only available inside the UK.  Everywhere else in the world it is geo-blocked.  Your best solution to this dilemma is a personal VPN service.  A VPN will unblock all of the content from BBC iPlayer, as well as, give you access to it from almost anywhere.  Below you will see our list of the best VPNs to stream your favorite movies, TV shows, political commentary, and world news from the BBC iPlayer service.

RankProviderPriceRatingSoftwareLink
1IPVanish$4.87
60% Off
9.9
Read Review
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2OverPlay$6.25
37% Off
9.8
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3StrongVPN$5.83
41% Off
9.5
Read Review
SoftwareVisit Site
4VyprVPN$6.25
25% Off
9.6
Read Review
SoftwareVisit Site
5HMA$6.55
43% Off
9.5
Read Review
SoftwareVisit Site

A Brief History of BBC iPlayer

The BBC iPlayer started out in 2003 as the Interactive Media Player which went through various beta tests to bring downloads of television and radio broadcasts to UK residents. The BBC iPlayer as we know it started in 2007 with the “proof of concept”, BBC Redux which was a test system that digitally records television and radio in the UK.  BBC redux illustrated that a cross-platform Flash Player, video streaming service was feasible.  In July of 2007, iPlayer was released as an open beta for Windows XP and Windows Server 2003 users.

The BBC iPlayer service left beta at the end of 2007.  In July of 2008 a new version of the iPlayer which fully integrated the radio and TV services replaced the original one.  Originally the iPlayer distribution model was P2P file download service which used Microsoft Digital Rights Management (DRM).  It allowed users to download programs for 30 days from the air date and watch them for seven days from the first view.

In October of 2007, the BBC formed a strategic partnership with Adobe and in December of 2007 they released a limited streaming-only service for Mac, Linux, and Windows users.  It allowed users to view most programs for seven days after the broadcast date.  In January 2008, iPlayer added support for Mozilla Firefox under the Microsoft Windows platform.  At the end of 2008, the BBC iPlayer download manager was replaced with the desktop manager.  This moved the iPlayer service away from P2P file download distribution into the current HTTP streaming service we know today.

In 2010, iPlayer 3.0 integrated social networking sites through deals with Facebook, Twitter, Reddit, Delicious, Digg, and StumbleUpon.  It also introduced embedded videos to the service.  In 2014, BBC iPlayer changed the user interface to a responsive design which allowed it to be displayed on mutiple sceen sizes using a single version.  It also added a pop-out radio player to make it easier for users to play music.

The devices that BBC iPlayer can be streamed on include:

  • Computer: Chromebook, Linux, Mac, Windows
  • Connected TV: BT Vision, Chromecast, Freesat, Freeview, Now TV, Roku, Sky on Demand, Talk Talk, Virgin, YouView
  • Game Console: Xbox One, PS3, PS4, Wii U, Xbox 360
  • Mobile: Android, Blackberry, iOS, Windows
  • Tablet: Amazon, Android, Blackberry, Chrome, iOS, Windows

Support for the Apple TV is coming soon to the BBC iPlayer service.  As you can see, you should have no problem finding a device that you can stream the iPlayer library with.  Currently the iPlayer service will allow you to use its downloading app to watch programs for 30 days from the broadcast date.  You can also resume watching content on another device other than the one you started it on.  The download feature has also been reintegrated into the service.

Popular Programming From BBC iPlayer

Some of the most popular programs that are available on the BBC iPlayer service include many favorite oldies that have been mainstay in the UK for some time like the EastEnders, Dr. Who, The Graham Norton Show, Have I Got News for You, The Apprentice, and Top Gear.  However, there are also some newer ones in the mix which shows that the BBC is still producing great TV.  Among the newer popular shows are The Next Step, Class of ’92: Out of Their League, The Last Kingdom, Sherlock, and the documentary Murdered By My Boyfriend.  Lets have a closer look at some of these shows.

EastEnders

EastEndersA program that consistantly tops the most watched list on the BBC iPlayer service is EastEnders, a British soap opera that airs on BBC one.  It was first broadcast in February 1985 so its an oldie, but still one of the most popular shows and a favorite of many expats.  It has consistently been one of the UK’s highest rated shows and has won six British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) Awards.  The show has also won a myriad of other awards including: Inside Soap Award for ‘Best Soap’ for ten years running, eleven National Television Awards for “Most Popular Serial Drama”, and ten awards for “Best Soap” at the British Soap Awards.  It has also won eight TV Quick and TV Choice Awards for ‘Best Soap’, six Television and Radio Industries Club (TRIC) Awards for ‘Soap of The Year’, and four Royal Television Society Awards for ‘Best Continuing Drama’.  In 2006 the series was inducted into the prestigious Rose d’Or Hall of Fame in Lucerne, Switzerland.

EastEnders centers on the lives of the residents of Albert Square, in Walford, a fictional Borough in the East End of London and its neighboring streets; Bridge Street, Turpin Road and George Street.  Albert Square is a Victorian square of terraced houses that encompasses a pub, street market, night club, community center, funeral parlor, café, wine bar, a park, and various other small businesses.  The series is built around the varied relationships of the square residents and strong families that reside there, many of which are matriarchal.  Strong females are a stalwart of British soaps.  The entire community is a family of sorts, often fighting and conniving against each other, but pulling together in times of trouble too.  If soaps are your cup of tea, then EastEnders should be on your daily watch list.

Doctor Who

Doctor WhoDoctor Who is a British science-fiction television program which was first produced by the BBC in 1963.  Doctor Who is one of the most nominated and award winning dramas of all time winning both national and international awards during its run, including a BAFTA award for best drama series in 2006.  It depicts the Doctor (no last name), an alien-humanoid Time Lord.  The Doctor travels around in a stolen Mark I Type 40 Time and Relative Dimension in Space (TARDIS) machine that he took from his home planet Gallifrey before its apparent destruction by the Daleks.  He explores the universe in the TARDIS, a sentient time-travelling space ship and has developed a fascination with the earth and humanity and set himself up as their protector.  He is usually seen with companions from earth that he has chosen to travel with him in his journeys.  The TARDIS has a chameleon circuit to camouflage it, but the circuit is broken and the TARDIS is stuck as a “blue British police box” which was a common site when the series first aired.

The Doctor and his companions, combat a variety of foes, while working to save civilizations and help humanity when it is in danger.  Oftentimes, all he has to do this is his ingenuity and a sonic screwdriver.  Whenever the Doctor is mortally wounded, he regenerates.  After regeneration, he has a new appearance and personality.  This has allowed the Doctor to remain as relevant today as it was in 1963.  This has allowed it to garner new generations of British television viewers, as well as, a multitude of international fans.  To date, their have been 12 Doctors, with Peter Capaldi, being the last.  His current companion is Clara Oswald, played by Jenna Coleman.  The Doctor has made numerous enemies during his travels, including the Daleks, the Cybermen, the Angels, and the Master, a renegade Time Lord.  Although the Doctor is a pacifist, preferring not to kill, many cultures have found out that his wrath should be avoided, at the peril of utter genocide.  If you like science-fiction, then you will not want to miss the next episode of Doctor Who.

The Graham Norton Show

The irreverent Graham Norton Show is a British comedy chat show broadcast on BBC One in the United Kingdom.  It was shown on BBC Two from February 2007 to May 2009 and has been on BBC One since October 2009.  The show is hosted by Irish comedian Graham Norton. Originally, the show’s format was similar to many talk shows.  It started with a short monologue from Graham, and then he introduces two of his guests.  Unlike most talk shows these guests are usually related in some way , either professionally or personally.  Sometimes he has special surprises set up for his guest like Sarah Beeny’s dating website, a TARDIS on the South Bank when David Tennant (Doctor Who) appeared, and a wine-tasting group drinking Gérard Depardieu’s wine when he visited the show.  The show also features performances by many popular musicians.  He also has comedians on with his regular guests.  Lately, the show has changed somewhat.  It has less monologue, followed by the introduction of a featured guest, a comedian, and then the musical guest.  At the end, an audience member is chosen to tell a story to Graham and his guests.  If his story bores Graham or his guests, then the audience member is dumped out of his chair.

The show’s latest series, the eighteenth, premiered on 25 September 2015.  As of 6 November 2015, 272 episodes of The Graham Norton Show have aired.  Among the featured guests that have sat in his chair in his latest series include Matt Damon, Robert De Niro, Anne Hathaway, Sir Kenneth Branagh, Meryl Streep, Colin Farrell, Tom Hanks, Peter Capaldi,  and David Walliams, Benedict Cumberbatch, Johnny Depp, Daniel Radcliffe, and many others.  Musical guests have included Duran Duran, The Shires, The Corrs, 50 Cent, Ellie Goulding, and  Justin Bieber.  The Graham Norton Show is one of the most popular talk shows not only in the UK but in Australia and the US because of its irreverent attitude and at times almost baldy nature.  It won the BAFTA award for Best Comedy Series in 2015.  Be sure to catch the latest episode on BBC iPlayer.

Have I Got News for You

Have I Got News for You is a panel based British TV comedy series.  It has been aired since 1990 and is the genre’s key standard-bearer.   It has made such panel based shows popular with British viewers over the years.  In recognition of this, the show received the Lifetime Achievement Award at the 2011 British Comedy Awards.  It was the first time the honor had been bestowed upon a collective instead of an individual or double act.   As of 6 November 2015, 435 episodes of the show have been broadcast.  The show has garnered a reputation for skirting legality in matters of libel with its topical and satirical comments.  A running gag on the show is that whenever a panel member is about to say something that might be considered libelous, they will use the word allegedly to skirt the issue.  It is a satirical quiz show where guests embarrass people caught up in scandals in the news.

The show format has two teams who answer quiz questions.  The original line-up, from 1990 to 2002, was Angus Deayton as host, with Ian Hislop, the editor of Private Eye, and comedian Paul Merton as team captains.  Angus was fired in 2002 after his own scandal hit the news.  Each captain is accompanied by a guest, usually a politician, journalist or comedian, or somebody particularly relevant to recent news.  The teams answer questions in four rounds.  The first round has them look and video clips of news events for the week and identify them.  They get two points for correctly identifying the clip but much of the round is spent in banter about the clips after a correct answer.  The second round involves some tabloid headlines with the panelists identifying and commenting on them.  Round three involves the teams seeing four pictures and figuring out the one that does not belong.  Often these pictures have an obscure or ridiculous link that they can poke fun of.  The last round involves the panel filling in missing words in obscure publications.  Examples of Missing Words include  “I’ll take Edward up the _____”, “Church may be forced to sell _____” and “PM sucked into _____”.  After all the scores are tallied and made known, the panelist are shown amusing pictures and asked to supply captions for them.  If you enjoy a good chuckle about the weekly news, then check out Have I Got News for You.

The Apprentice

The Apprentice is the UK spin-off of the American TV show with the same name starring Donald Trump.  Lord Alan Sugar, a billionaire in his own right who owns a bevy of high profile companies in the UK plays the role of Trump in the UK version.  He and a few of his advisors put contestants through a series of tests to determine who has the most business savvy.  Originally, the contestants vied for £100,000 and a position with one of Lord Sugar’s companies.  After the winner of series six, Stella English described the job as a “sham”, and sued Lord Sugar for wrongful dismissal, the prize was changed from an employment opportunity to an investment of £250,000 in a new enterprise chosen by the winning contestant, with Lord Sugar retaining 50% ownership of the new venture.   This show has often been called the “interview from hell” because of the grueling interviews contestants are put through by Lord Sugar and his two advisors.  The show has garnered positive critical reviews from The Sun, The Daily Mirror, The Guardian, and other publications for its realistic, jaw dropping look at business.  Some others have criticized it for showing the seedier side of business by glorifying back-stabbing, greedy, disloyal, and selfish people.

It is probably this dichotomy of views about what it takes to succeed in business which makes The Apprentice and its spin-offs:  The Apprentice: You’re Fired!; The Apprenticast; The Apprentice: Why I Fired Them; and The Apprentice: The Final Five one of the most popular programs on British TV.  The series has also led to a number of one-off series and specials including Comic Relief Does The Apprentice, Sport Relief Does The Apprentice; The Apprentice: Tim in the Firing Line which followed the first winner for a year, The Apprentice: Beyond the Boardroom, The Apprentice: The Worst Decisions Ever, and The Apprentice: Motor Mouths.  If you want to see what it really takes to succeed in business, tune in to this years series.

Top Gear 

Top Gear is a British television series about motor vehicles, primarily cars, and the most widely watched factual television program in the world.  It began in 1977 as a conventional motoring magazine program, but it has developed a quirky, humorous, and often controversial style.  With its hosts Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond, and James May going on road trips and challenging each other in reasonably priced cars, many not quite street worthy.  The frequent breakdowns, and good-natured competition the host have while trying to race from place to place adds to the shows appeal.  The show also featured the track speed test that many of its guest took with speed comparisons to other guest and and anonymous test driver called “The Stig.”   It took some criticism for its content and politically incorrect commentary which also added to its allure for many viewers.

Like it or hate it, their is no question that it is the BBC’s most successful show in recent years.  With its mix of testosterone and petrol fumes delivered in a humorous and adolescent manner, it is estimated to have over 350 million viewers worldwide.  On 25 March 2015, host Jeremy Clarkson was informed by the BBC that his contract would not be renewed.  Not long after, his co-hosts Richard Hammond and James May and executive producer Andy Wilman announced that they would not return to the show without him.   On 16 June 2015 Chris Evans, of TFI Friday and The Chris Evans Breakfast Show was confirmed as one of the new hosts.  Tune in to Top Gear and see if Chris and any new host can recreate the chemistry that was evident with Clarkson, Hammond, and May.

The Next Step

The Next Step is a Canadian teen drama series that premiered on 8 March, 2013.  It focuses on a group of A-list dancers who attend The Next Step Dance Studio as they strive to win a series of dance competitions.  It is presented as mock documentary of their lives, relationships, and rivalries.   It is one of the newest hits now on BBC iPlayer.  It is now in its third season and the teen drama is gaining in popularity with each season.  Tune in and see what the troupe is up to this season.

Class of ’92: Out of Their League

Class of ’92: Out of Their League is a docu-drama series that follows a low level football team’s players, the people who run it, own it, play it, watch it and just sit around and talk about it.  It shows how some people take football way too seriously.  It follows the famous Manchester United “Class of 92”; Phil Neville, Gary Neville, Ryan Giggs, Nicky Butt and Paul Scholes as they go from retired footballers to team owners.  They have bought a funny little Salford club with intentions to raise its ranks to a higher league.  Heroes to many footballers with millions of fans and members of the hall of fame, can they operate and contribute to the success of the small Salford club?  The Neville brothers seem to have the most hands on approach to the team but is this helping or hurting the team?

Do you think you could run the team better?  Owners and fans alike are on a learning curve as the Nevilles, Ryan Giggs, Nicky Butt, and Paul Scholes build Salford City’s team future.  It is a fresh look at grass root, non-League football both as a player and an owner.  So far the the new owner and managers philosophy seems to be working as Salford won promotion to the Evo‑Stik League Northern Premier last season.  They are going for another promotion this season and a win against the Notts County team, from three divisions above, on Friday can not hurt their aspirations.  Is it an indication of greater things to come or is it just a fluke?  Check out Class of ’92: Out of Their League and see what you think.

The Last Kingdom

The Last Kingdom is a historical drama (based on the books by Bernard Cornwell).  The shadow of Game of Thrones hangs over The Last Kingdom.  Comparisons are inevitable, because of unwashed fighters with swords, daggers, and leather cloaks.   The mud, blood and the realistic imaginative violence add to the effect but The Last Kingdom is based on real life people and not fictional characters.  It also has the ladies too; some are beautiful; some are wise; some are brave; some are bad; and some are dead!  It is in its first season but has already become one of the most popular series on the BBC network of stations.

The plot revolves around Uhtred, the 10-year old son of one of the Saxon Kings of Northumbria.  His father is killed by the Vikings and he and a girl called Brida are taken as slaves by the Viking chief Earl Ragnar.  The boy saves Ragnar’s daughter from Sven, son of a lesser Viking chief, Kjartan.  Kjartan is banished and Sven blinded in one eye.  Uhtred and Brida are raised as Danes.  In adulthood, Uhtred and Brida see Earl Ragnar killed and his daughter taken by Kjartan and Sven.  Uthred decides to embark on the task of regaining his lands from his uncle who is aligned with the Danes.

Uhtred is constantly struggling with his heritage as a Saxon and his upbringing as a Norseman.  Only the land of Wessex still stands against the Danes with king Alfred being the only Saxon king still standing.  King Alfred and Uhtred have an uneasy truce to try and save the future of England.  Leaving the cover of the marshes, a united King Alfred and Uhtred must get word to Saxon forces.   Consequently, they make a rallying call to all Saxon armies to converge at Egbert’s Stone to fight a decisive battle against the Danes.  But what about Uhtred?   Tune in to The Last Kingdom and see what fate awaits our young protagonists.

Sherlock

SherlockSherlock is a British crime drama television series and a contemporary adaptation of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes detective stories.  It was created by Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss, and it stars Benedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock Holmes and Martin Freeman as Doctor John Watson.  Nine episodes have been produced, the first three of which were broadcast in 2010.  Series two was broadcast in 2012, and a third series was broadcast in 2014.  The third series has become the UK’s most watched drama series since 2001.  A forth series has been ordered following a New Year’s special in 2016.

Sherlock depicts the detective, Sherlock Holmes (Benedict Cumberbatch) solving various mysteries in modern-day London.  Holmes is assisted by his flatmate and friend, Dr. John Watson (Martin Freeman), who has just returned from military service in Afghanistan.  At first, Metropolitan Police Service Detective Inspector Greg Lestrade (Rupert Graves) and others are skeptical of Holmes, but over time his remarkable intellect, powers of observation, and deductive abilities persuade them to ask for his help.  Consequently, Holmes becomes a reluctant celebrity with the press reporting on his cases and eccentric personal life.  This results in both ordinary people and the British government asking for his help to solve mysteries and crimes.

Although the series depicts a variety of crimes and perpetrators, Holmes’ conflict with arch-nemesis Jim Moriarty (Andrew Scott) is a recurring feature.  Molly Hooper (Louise Brealey), a pathologist at St. Bart’s Hospital occasionally assists Holmes on some of his cases.  Other recurring roles include Una Stubbs as Mrs Hudson, Holmes and Watson’s landlady, and series co-creator Mark Gatiss as Holmes’ elder brother Mycroft.  If mysteries get you excited, pit your wits against the master sleuth, Sherlock Holmes.  It is elementary, my dear viewer, watch Sherlock and see if you can solve the crime before Holmes.

Murdered By My Boyfriend

Murdered by My Boyfriend is a BAFTA Award-winning one-off fact-based drama that first aired on BBC Three in 2014.  It stars Georgina Campbell as Ashley Jones, a 17-year-old victim of domestic abuse at the hands of her controlling boyfriend, Reece, portrayed by Royce Pierreson.  The program won a Royal Television Society Award for best Single Drama in 2014 and Campbell claimed a BAFTA Award for Best Leading Actress in 2015.  It is a realistic look at the domestic violence that permeates the UK.  Murdered by My Boyfriend is the true story of what happens to a naive teenage girl when she falls in love with the wrong man.  The love story turns dark and sinister when the charming stranger seeks to dominate every aspect of the young woman’s life.  This is a gritty drama that every father should show his daughter and hopefully help her to avoid the fate that befell Ashley.

These are just a few of the critically acclaimed programs that are the standard fare of the BBC and available on the BBC iPlayer service.  Their are many more great comedies, documentaries and other features available, but if you live outside the UK you will only be able to watch them with a VPN.

How Can a VPN Help You Access BBC iPlayer?

First, let us look at what a VPN is.  A VPN is a group of computers that are connected though a secure encrypted tunnel to each other.  Such connections have been used to make VPNs in business for years.  This has allowed workers to securely connect to their corporate networks over the Internet and transfer confidential information between their home machine and the corporate network without worry that it would be compromised.   Recently, because of all of the revelations of NSA and GCHQ spying, corporate hacks, and cases of identity theft, more interest has been shown in having a personal VPN service.  A personal VPN functions much like a business VPN except that instead of providing access to the corporate network, it provides a more anonymous way to connect to the Internet.  This is generally how a personal VPN service functions.  First a secure tunnel is established between your device and the VPN server using various tunneling protocols and encryption algorithms.  Once this tunnel has been created, all traffic between the server and your device is encrypted before being transmitted.  The VPN server then masks your public IP address.  Next, it replaces your public IP address with one at its location.  This new IP address is all the Internet sees, so anyone tracking your surfing habits will only see this as your location.  In this way, the VPN not only makes you more anonymous but also allows you to appear to reside almost anywhere in the world.

Now, back to accessing the content from the BBC iPlayer.  Since the BBC iPlayer requires an IP address to unblock its geo-restricted content and connecting to a VPN server in the UK gives you such an address, you can watch everything that the BBC iPlayer service has to offer.  This allows you to watch the latest Dr. Who, EastEnders, Sherlock, and any other of the critically acclaimed content provided by the BBC iPlayer service that you want to watch or download.  The BBC iplayer allows you to see the content for 30 days from air-time for most shows.  If you are an expat of the UK, this means you can easily keep up with all of your favorite shows from the past, as well as, many new shows that may become your new favorites.  It will also allow others from other countries who do not have as good of television content, to watch all of the great shows offered by the BBC iPlayer service.   British citizens traveling abroad will also be able to watch their favorite shows and keep up with their local news and politics just as if they were sitting on their sofa at home.  What is more they will be able to do this from anywhere that has Internet access.

How to Choose the Best VPN to Watch BBC iPlayer

  • One question to ask when choosing a VPN to stream movies from BBC iPlayer is whether or not it has servers in the UK so that you can get an IP address from there.  Having servers in the US is also desirable if you want to access even more great content from services like Netflix and Hulu.  Having a worldwide network presence is also best.
  • How easy is the service to use?  Does it have a nice VPN client?  Is their user interface easy to use?
  • Speed is also key as the encryption used by the VPN can slow your connection.  For downloading content, lower encryption is better as long as privacy is not an issue.   Make sure to test yiour VPN service to see if its speed is acceptable to you.
  • Reliability is another key metric to look for when choosing a VPN for the BBC iPLayer.  It can be annoying when the VPN drops your connection while you are watching your favorite movie.
  • Another thing to look at is does it support the devices that you want to watch content on.? Can it be setup on desktops, mobile devices, set top boxes, smart TVs, or other devices you may have?  Does it support routers?  Remember, once you set up the router to use the VPN, all the devices attached to it can easily stream the content from BBC iPlayer.
  • Another thing to look at is the extra features that the VPN offers.  Does it have a kill switch to auto-disconnect it from the Internet if the VPN drops like Ipvanish and VyprVPN.  Does it have a NAT firewall to protect you against malware, malicious ads, and bots while you are connected to the service?  Do they have more specialized protocols like stealth to help scale firewalls like VyprVPN and StongVPN if this is something you have a need for.  Does it support port forwarding and multiple encryption strengths to help to optimize it like IPVanish and others in our list?  Does it have a separate SmartDNS so you can bypass encryption if your want to like OverPlay does?
  • Is the cost within your budget?

Final Thoughts

BBC iPlayer is one of the most popular streaming media services in the world.  Its shows like EastEnders, Dr. Who, Top Gear, and Sherlock are loved the world over.  However, if you live outside of the UK, then these shows are geo-blocked from your location.  Its content is geo-resticted to the UK due to various copyright agreements with its distributors.  So, what is an expat to do?  Your best choice to unblock all of these shows is to use a personal VPN service.  The VPN will give you an IP address in the UK and thus all of the content on the BBC iPlayer service will be made available for you to watch and download to view at your pleasure.  The BBC iPlayer makes most of its content available to users of its service for a period of 30 days from its air date.

We have examined many of the strengths of the best VPN services for streaming the BBC iPlayer service.  For instance, OverPlay’s JetSwitch makes it easy to watch your BBC favorites while still being able to access content from the US and other countries.  It supports SmartDNS so you can stream your favorite TV shows without encryption.  IPVanish gives you the choice of multiple encryption strengths so you can decide the balance between your online security and the speed of your download.  It also supports port forwarding so you can connect through firewalls and maintain your anonymity.   This can help keep your ISP from analyzing your traffic with packet inspection and possibly throttling your speed.   This can often be useful if you P2P and want to mask your activity.  The IPvanish Network Address Translation (NAT) firewall can protect your device from malicious traffic while it is connected to their service.  StrongVPN and VyprVPN have stealth features to help scale firewalls like the Great Firewall of China more easily and keep your traffic uncensored and protected from prying eyes.  In addition VyprVPN has a kill switch which will disconnect you from the Internet if the VPN service is dropped.  Thus, it keeps your public IP address hidden from prying eyes.  It also provides a NAT firewall to protect you from malicious bots and unwanted advertising.  All of our chosen VPNs have an excellent reputation in the industry.  They are fast, reliable, and have good support for many devices as well as value added features.

If streaming is your primary purpose for a VPN, then speed, reliability, and overall performance should be your most important criteria when choosing a VPN because no one wants to watch jittery videos.  Next, you should compare the cost, device support, and extra features that the VPN offers.  Remember to buy what you can afford and soon you will be streaming feature films, documentaries like Murdered by My Boyfriend, and all of your other favorite British television shows.  Remember, if your primary reason for using a VPN is streaming BBC iPlayer, then you should probably use lesser encryption strength to speed up your video downloads.  Also you should choose a VPN with support for many devices including routers.  If you connect the VPN to your router, then you can stream content from all your devices connected to it.  Any of the VPNs in our list can help you to access the content library offered by the BBC iPlayer service.  All have guarantees so examine them yourself and determine which one is best for you.