Is Netflix or BBC iPlayer detecting your VPN? The answer is probably yes. This is because VPNs use shared servers and streaming services like Netflix and iPlayer now have the ability to blacklist these VPNs. The workaround is simple. Get a dedicated IP. Here we explore the best dedicated IP VPN services.
What is a dedicated IP?
Every internet connection has its own unique IP “Internet Protocol” address. It’s a necessary part of any internet connection. In physical terms, you can think of your IP address computer’s equivalent of home’s postal address. And, normally, your IP address is given to you by your local ISP and you have no control over it.
IP addresses have multiple uses. Just take a look at Wikipedia’s IP Address page, if you want to see some of these. In terms of video streaming, IP addresses matter because they’re used to locate where users are connecting from. Each country has its own range of addresses and streaming services use these to only allow connections from a specific country.
Certain VPN providers now let customers buy dedicated IP addresses in certain countries.
Why do I need a dedicated IP?
If you want to stream Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Amazon, Sky Go, HBO, Hulu (pretty much any major online streaming service ) from another country, you’re going to need a dedicated IP. If not right now, you will do in a few weeks/month.
Netflix and BBC iPlayer are leading the way in blocking connections come from traditional VPNs. The way they block these connections is simple. VPNs share a (comparatively) tiny number only servers with a massive number of customers. This makes it easy for the likes of Netflix and BBC iPlayer to detect the VPN’s servers and IP addresses. When Netflix/BBC iPlayer detects an abnormal number of customers connecting from the same shared VPN server and IP they respond by blacklisting the offending IP address.
The response from VPNs was to begin a game of Cat and Mouse. When one of its IP addresses was blacklisted, they’d remove that connection and create a fresh one for customers to use. ExpressVPN is the king at this.
The game of Cat and Mouse isn’t a long-term solution. Netflix and BBC et al have got quicker and quicker at detecting shared VPN IP addresses. And as the number of blacklisted shared IPs grow, the number of customers connected through the remaining open IPs will increase. Making them even easier to detect.
Getting a dedicated IP from a VPN is the best way to combat the VPN ban. Buying your own dedicated IP means that your VPN connection is unique to you. Meaning streaming services such as Netflix or BBC iPlayer won’t be able to identify you as a VPN user as your IP address will not facilitate an abnormally large number of connections to its services.
The 4 Best Dedicated IP VPN Services of 2018
I’ve been using PureVPN’s dedicated IP service to watch BBC iPlayer since December 2017. It’s provided me with 100% uptime access to iPlayer (via a laptop). It only costs $1.99 for a server in the UK and allows me to watch BBC iPlayer content in HD and listen to TMS while abroad.
PureVPN is a little less specific regarding how its dedicated IP service works though. $1.99 buys you a dedicated IP – meaning your IP address in the UK is “static” and doesn’t change. The service is coy about how many people you’ll be sharing the dedicated IP with though. That said, there is no real reason to complain, providing PureVPN keeps the number of customers sharing dedicated IPs to a number that’s below BBC iPlayer threshold – I’m happy.
You can buy a dedicated IP with PureVPN in the following countries; Australia, Canada, Hong Kong, Germany, Malta, UK, US.
As with all VPNs, you will need a current PureVPN subscription before you can buy the $1.99 dedicated IP bolt-on. You can buy Subscribe to PureVPN for as little as $2.88/month (£2.14) when you sign up to the 2-year plan; alternatively, you can pay $10.95 (£8.15) for the monthly plan.
NordVPN offers an excellent dedicated IP service. The service costs $70/year and is available in the United States (Buffalo), Germany (Frankfurt), United Kingdom (Milton Keynes) and the Netherlands (Amsterdam).
Unlike some cheaper VPNs, NordVPN guarantees that you won’t be sharing your dedicated IP address with anyone else. It’s yours and only yours. This means your service will never be blacklisted from Netflix, BBC iPlayer or any service that detects and blacklists VPNs.
Like most VPNs, you need a buy a NordVPN subscription before you can buy the dedicated IP add-on. A 2-year plan with NordVPN costs $3.99/month, while the monthly plan costs $11.95.
Ivacy is another excellent VPN provider that prices its dedicated IP add-on competitively. It offers dedicated IPs in; Australia, Canada, Germany, Hong Kong, Singapore, UK, US.
Customers will like how up-front Ivacy is about its dedicated IP service. Ivacy guarantees that it won’t share your dedicated IP connection with other customers. The dedicated IP function is supported on its Windows and iOS apps too – customers using a Mac or Android can enter their dedicated IP details directly in the OS’s native VPN settings.
You need to buy a dedicated IP Add-on with your Ivacy subscription. You can get Ivacy for as little as $2.25/month + $1.99/month for the dedicated IP.
TorGuard is another VPN that’s recognised and reacted to the demand for dedicated IPs. With TorGuard, you can buy a dedicated IP that’s located in most major Western countries from $7.99/month – on top of an existing VPN subscription – which you can get for as little as $4.16/month when you sign up for 24 months.
What separates TorGuard from the competition is its Streaming IP ($7.99/month) service. This is a service that’s seemingly unique to TorGuard. It shares many similarities with a dedicated IP. However, the main differences are that it’s set up to specifically unlock streaming sites (hence the name). It will also let you have up to five simultaneous connections, whereas a dedicated IP only allows single connections.
That’s not all. TorGuard offers one more service. A Residential IP ($7.99/month). This, as the name suggests, will give you a VPN server with an IP that’s identical to regular residential IP addresses. This makes your connection to streaming sites, such as Netflix, undetectable. Which means they’ll never get blacklisted.
Note: You need to add you Dedicated/Streaming/Residential IP service to your order at Checkout.
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