In this article, I will explain how you can fix Hotspot Shield not working with BBC iPlayer.
If Hotspot Shield isn’t working with BBC iPlayer, then the BBC has been able to block all of the IP addresses that Hotspot Shield can provide. This can be frustrating, especially if Hotspot Shield has only recently stopped working with BBC iPlayer.
Fortunately, there is a simple way you can fix this issue. In this article, I will go through some steps you can take to resolve Hotspot Shield not working with BBC iPlayer.
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Hotspot Shield not working with BBC iPlayer: Quick Guide
To fix Hotspot Shield not working with BBC iPlayer, follow these simple steps. If one step doesn’t work, move onto the next one:
Total Time: 2 minutes
Some websites ask you to accept cookies, and these might be tipping off BBC iPlayer that you’re using a VPN to access the streaming service.
Cookies are not malicious. They’re intended to make your online experience more streamlined. The problem is they sometimes contain information that discloses your location. BBC iPlayer can access this information and figure out where you are when you connect to its service and if you’re outside of its broadcast zone (the UK), it will block your connection.
The best place to start to fix Hotspot Shield not working with BBC iPlayer is to delete your cookies.
Connect to a different UK server
If Hotspot Shield isn’t working with BBC iPlayer, then the BBC may have identified the IP address Hotspot has provided you and blocked it.
Just because the BBC has been able to block this IP address, it doesn’t mean all of Hotspot Shield’s IP addresses have been blocked. By changing to a different server, you will be allocated a different IP address, and if that IP hasn’t been blocked by the BBC, then you’ll be able to watch BBC iPlayer with Hotspot Shield.
Upgrade to a better VPN
If the first two steps haven’t fixed Hotspot Shield not working with BBC iPlayer, then the BBC has been able to block all of Hotspot’s IP addresses. To get around this, you need to upgrade to a better VPN. We recommend NordVPN ($3.49/month) or Ivacy ($1.33/month). Both of these VPNs have reliable UK servers, they work well with BBC iPlayer and most importantly, they have measures in place to make sure what happened with Hotspot Shield not working with BBC iPlayer doesn’t happen with NordVPN ($3.49/month) or Ivacy ($1.33/month).
If you upgrade to NordVPN ($3.49/month) or Ivacy ($1.33/month), you won’t run into issues with these VPNs working with BBC iPlayer, and you’ll be able to watch the streaming service from anywhere in the world reliably.
Why has the BBC blocked Hotspot Shield?
The BBC, like other streaming services, Netflix, Hulu, ITV, Britbox and more, tries to block Hotspot Shield from connecting to its service. It does this because of international licensing and copyright restrictions.
The BBC doesn’t have the rights to broadcast its content outside of the UK. To avoid copyright and licensing issues, the BBC prevents users outside the UK from viewing its content.
Because Hotspot Shield allows you to spoof your location when connecting to BBC iPlayer, the BBC tries to block Hotspot Shield and all VPNs from connecting to its service. These blocks are why Hotspot Shield isn’t working with BBC iPlayer.
How does the BBC block Hotspot Shield?
The way the BBC blocks Hotspot Shield is all to do with the IP addresses the VPN provides. Hotspot Shield has more customers than IP addresses, and that results in customers sharing IPs.
The BBC monitors its connections for an abnormal amount (more than a standard household) of connections coming from the same IP. Since Hotspot Shield users share IP addresses, when the BBC can see hundreds or thousands of connections coming from the same IP address, it knows this is an IP address provided by Hotspot Shield, and it blocks it.
This is a problem for Hotspot Shield because Hotspot does not have measures in place to get around these blocks. Inevitably the BBC is able to identify and block all of Hotspot Shields IP addresses and the VPN won’t work with BBC iPlayer. This means you won’t be able to watch BBC iPlayer abroad, and even worse, it could result in you wasting money on a Hotspot Shield subscription.
Does BBC iPlayer still work with VPNs?
Both of these work well with BBC iPlayer, and they stay one step ahead of the BBC’s VPN blocking techniques. When the BBC identifies and blocks an IP address provided by NordVPN ($3.49/month) or Ivacy ($1.33/month), these VPNs will close that IP address and open a new one.
How to fix Hotspot Shield not working with BBC iPlayer
If you want to watch BBC iPlayer abroad reliably, then you need to upgrade to NordVPN ($3.49/month) or Ivacy ($1.33/month). These VPNs are very good at getting around the BBC’s VPN blocking techniques, and they allow you to watch BBC iPlayer without running into problems like the ones you have come across with Hotspot Shield.
Below is a list of the best VPNs to watch BBC iPlayer. All of these play that cat and mouse game with the BBC’s blocking techniques, and they all have reliable servers all around the world.
The best VPNs to watch BBC iPlayer
The best (& fastest) VPN of 2021!
Number of servers: 5,000+ | Speeds: >80% | Bandwidth: Unlimited | IP locations: 62 countries | Devices supported: 6 | Live chat: Yes | 30-day money-back guarantee: Yes
NordVPN is the most widely-used VPN in the world. And its easy to see why. It’s a polished app that delivers fast connections (more on this later) to a massive network of VPN servers.
It’s the most reliable at unblocking popular streaming services too – US Netflix, Hulu, Disney+, BBC iPlayer, HBO Max, Amazon Prime Video, etc. This is because NordVPN hired full-time technical team (that’s responsible for monitoring its servers connections with popular TV streaming services) and has been aggressively investing in its network of IP addresses in key locations.
Another interesting thing to note is that NordVPN is an industry leader in its development of Nordlynx technology. Nordlynx is built using the WireGuard, a new VPN tunnelling protocol designed to outperform current standards (OpenVPN and IPSec). The benefits, according to NordVPN, are dramatically faster transfer speeds while connected to a VPN. My tests – New Zealand to London – confirm that Nordlynx is currently the fastest VPN on the market. However, the difference isn’t dramatic, a few Mbps is all.
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The BEST low-cost VPN
Number of servers: 1,000+ | Speed: >65% | Bandwidth: Unlimited | IP locations: 275 in 100 countries | Devices supported: 5 | Live chat: Yes | 30-day money-back guarantee: Yes
If you’re looking for an excellent VPN, with an even better price tag, Ivacy ($1.16/month) is a great option.
This VPN has all the features you need to stream BBC iPlayer, in HD, from any country in the world. I’ve been testing the app recently on Mac, PC, Android, iOS and FireStick and the results have been impressive – unlocking BBC iPlayer, US Netflix, Hulu, Disney+, HBO Max, Amazon Prime Video, etc. with ease.
The Ivacy app is a little different in regards to its UX (user experience). Instead of just selecting a UK server, you need to select the specific BBC iPlayer server. Don’t worry, this isn’t a bad thing – by connecting to a dedicated BBC iPlayer server, it simply means that you’re connecting to an IP address that Ivacy knows works with BBC iPlayer.
For an extra $1.99/month (£1.74) you can add-on a dedicated IP. This will buy you sole access to an IP address in a country of your choice, meaning you won’t have to share your IP (and speeds) with any other use. I don’t recommend this though, using the regular Ivacy servers is enough 95 per cent of the time.
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A very reliable and fast VPN
Number of servers: 3,000+ | Speed: >80% | Bandwidth: Unlimited | IP locations: 160 in 94 countries | Devices supported: 5 | Live chat: Yes | 30-day money-back guarantee: Yes
ExpressVPN is still one of the best VPNs you can buy. However, we’ve got it ranked in the number three spot for a couple of reasons. First of all, it’s the most expensive VPN on the market. This was understandable when it was also the fastest and most reliable VPN too. But now it’s not. NordVPN is. ExpressVPN has recently been struggling to unblock some big streaming sites – BBC iPlayer and BeIN Sports – too.
And importantly, it ALWAYS has servers that are open with major streaming sites such as Netflix, Hulu, Disney+, HBO Max, Amazon Prime Video etc.
ExpressVPN is usually very good at playing Cat and Mouse with online streaming sites (apart from BBC iPlayer). Meaning, whenever one of its servers is blacklisted it creates a new one – giving its users a constant stream of servers that aren’t blocked. Needless to say, this is a valuable attribute if you’re looking for a VPN to unblock streaming sites.
Its app is easy-to-use and free to download on pretty much any device you can think of. Mac, Windows, iOS, Android, FireStick, Android TV, Roku, PS4, Xbox, Linux, even Apple TV (with a workaround). It’s got it all covered.
The app is another main reason this VPN is so good at unblocking TV streaming sites (that claim they block VPNs) is that its software takes a pragmatic approach to user management. While other VPNs tempt customers by promising them access to hundreds/thousands of servers in multiple countries, ExpressVPN does things differently.
With ExpressVPN you only have a handful of server locations to choose from. Once you select your location the app takes care of the rest. Assigning you to the fastest available server that’s not oversubscribed. This simple technique is so important, as it keeps ExpressVPN’s servers operating at lightning-fast speeds and prevent its IPs from getting blacklisted for “abnormal” usage in the first place.
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The BEST mid-range VPN for streaming!
Number of servers: 25,000+ | Speeds: >75% | Bandwidth: Unlimited | IP locations: 70 in 74 countries | Devices supported: 10 | Live chat: Yes | 30-day money-back guarantee: Yes
Private Internet Access is one of the leading no-log VPN services with over 1 million paying customers.
This VPN is one of the best in the industry at beating streaming sites’ VPN bans. It provides reliable connections with US Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Hulu, HBO Max, Disney+ Amazon Prime Video, etc. It also allows 10 simultaneous devices to be connected to its servers at the same time, so you can share the account with your close friends.
If, for whatever reason, you’re not happy with Private Internet Access, there’s a 24/7 live chat support available to assist you with your problem. PIA also offers the industry-standard 30-days money-back guarantee.
From my tests (from New Zealand) I was able to get download speeds of 70 Mbps while connected to a UK server using the Private Internet Access VPN (my non-VPN speed is 100 Mbps).
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Number of servers: 6,000+ | Speeds: >65% | Bandwidth: Unlimited | IP locations: 200 in 90 countries | Devices supported: 7 | Live chat: Yes | 30-day money-back guarantee: Yes
CyberGhost is one of the more established VPNs on the market. It has a well-established, and well-tested global network of servers that perform well.
From my tests over the past several months, CyberGhost has no trouble at unblocking major streaming services – US Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Hulu, Disney+, Amazon Prime Video, HBO Max etc. This VPN performed well at maintaining download speeds, well above 65 per cent of my regular (non VPN) ISP speed.
That said, there’s nothing really unique about the service. Which forces you to look at its price-point. And there’s nothing special here. Its short-term $12.99/month price tag puts is well above the industry average of $10.10/month. Similarly, its long-term $2.75/month for 3 years deal isn’t much of a “deal” either.
Oddly, CyberGhost’s most unique feature is its a 1-day, no obligations, free trial. This is an appealing offer to customers who are new to VPNs. However, it’s important to remember that most reputable VPNs will offer customers a 30-day money-back guarantee, so try not to be too seduced by the offer.
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