Changing your DNS settings is a great way to unlock BBC iPlayer from abroad. However, not all DNS servers work will with BBC iPlayer 24/7 (more on this below) so make sure you do your research before you take the plunge and buy your DNS. Continue reading to find out what is the best DNS Server for watching BBC iPlayer abroad.
How to watch BBC iPlayer abroad using a DNS Server: Quick guide
- Go to Smart DNS Proxy and register for a 14-day free trial
- Activate your real IP address via the Account Home page
- Copy your two nearest server addresses from www.smartdnsproxy.com/servers
- Change your device’s DNS settings to the two addresses you copied
- Watch BBC iPlayer from anywhere in the world
That’s it. See below to find out how to change the DNS settings for your device.
What is DNS?
DNS stands for Domain Name System and, in simple terms, it represents the “system” that allows us to enter words inside of numbers to visit websites.
Most of you reading this will be automatically be using your ISP’s (Internet Service Provider’s) DNS (Domain Name Server). And in normal circumstances, this is fine. However, if you want to watch BBC iPlayer from outside of the UK, you need to find a way to trick the BBC iPlayer website into thinking you’re accessing its content from a UK IP address.
VPNs offer a user-friendly way of doing this. With VPNs, all you need to do is download an app. The rest is automatic – all your internet traffic will be encrypted and rerouted via a server/IP in a location of your choice.
If you’re looking for a way to watch BBC iPlayer on your laptop, smartphone or iPad, I suggest using a VPN instead – like ExpressVPN or Ivacy – as this is the quickest and easiest way to watch BBC iPlayer abroad.
However, if you’re comfortable with changing your device’s network setting on a semi-regular basis, then subscribing to a good DNS server is a great way to watch BBC iPlayer from outside the UK.
How does using a DNS server work with BBC iPlayer?
When you’re not using a specialist DNS server, your IP address will be assigned by your ISP. This allows websites – such as bbc.co.uk/iplayer – to see where you’re connecting to the internet from.
And if you’re outside the UK, your IP address won’t be from UK’s range of IP addresses – meaning you won’t be able to watch BBC iPlayer from outside the UK.
By changing your DNS settings, you can reroute your internet via your DNS server of choice. This means websites will see requests coming from your DNS servers IP address(es), not your real IP address. The end result, in this scenario, is BBC iPlayer seeing your connection coming from a UK IP address.
Services like Smart DNS Proxy go one step further, allowing you to configure which IP address locations are served to specific websites. BBC iPlayer, for example, will be served a UK IP address, while Netflix can be configured to be served a US IP address.
Best DNS Server for watching BBC iPlayer abroad
1. Smart DNS Proxy
If you’re looking to stream BBC iPlayer abroad, Smart DNS Proxy provides a reliable option. Smart DNS Proxy works with BBC iPlayer, US Netflix, Amazon Prime, ITV hub and literally hundreds of other streaming websites.
Smart DNS Proxy also lets you configure which IP location gets served to a specific website. This means you can easily set up your DNS to serve a US IP to Netflix while serving a UK IP address to BBC iPlayer; you can even configure it to serve a Saudi Arabian IP for BeIN Sports. All you need to do is change your DNS settings once.
Like any DNS or VPN service, the real value Smart DNS Proxy provides is uptime with streaming sites. This is the best DNS for providing its users for working IPs with BBC iPlayer.
There’s also a generous 14-day free trial, and you don’t even need to enter your credit card details, so you can test the server before deciding whether you want to pay $5/month.
From my tests, Getflix provides an identical service to Smart DNS Proxy. This means you can watch BBC iPlayer or US Netflix by changing your device’s DNS settings once.
Getflix also comes with a 14-day free trial (no credit card required) after that it costs $5/month, and you can cancel at any time. I’ve been using Getflix on my Apple TV for the past week (all the way from New Zealand) and have only had buffering issues once.
Like all good DNS providers, Getflix lets you configure your settings so you can choose which Netflix and Amazon region (US or UK for example) you are served.