With the advent of the internet, you have hundreds — even thousands — of TV channels available online, and you can watch most of them whenever you want. This is known as internet protocol television (IPTV). In this article, we’ll be looking at the best VPN for IPTV, so you can watch online content from anywhere in the world, even if it’s blocked in your country.
Gone are the days when you had only a few TV channels to choose from, and you could only watch programs when the broadcaster chose to air them. Nowadays, you can watch anything you want online, whenever you want. However, a lot of IPTV content is geoblocked, which means that wherever you are in the world, you are going to need a VPN to get around any restrictions.
- IPTV can be anything from a streaming service, such as Netflix, to a library of previously aired TV programs, such as BBC iPlayer.
- Although a VPN is not necessary for watching IPTV providers in your country, you will need a VPN for watching IPTV providers in other countries.
- When choosing a VPN, make sure you get one that has decent streaming speeds to minimize the possibility of buffering. Our top IPTV VPN suggestion is ExpressVPN.
In our opinion, the best VPN for IPTV is ExpressVPN. However, as always, we like to provide a wide choice, so we’ll be profiling some other possibilities, as well. If you’re not familiar with using a VPN, keep reading to the end of the article for a nifty guide on how to unblock IPTV with a VPN.
To use a VPN on IPTV, simply set up a VPN account with one of our recommended services, switch it on and choose a worldwide server. Then go to the IPTV provider of your choice.
It is safe to use a VPN with your smart IPTV. However, to ensure your privacy online, make sure the VPN provider has a no-logs policy so that no record of your online activities exists.
In our opinion, the best VPN for streaming is ExpressVPN. However, if you don’t want to use ExpressVPN, then NordVPN and CyberGhost are the next two solid choices.
A VPN is definitely worth it for streaming if you want to expand your viewing choices beyond the borders of your country of residence.
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What Makes the Best VPN for IPTV?
IPTV is a broad term for streaming services, such as Netflix and Hulu. Even traditional TV programs played over the internet (like via the BBC iPlayer) fall under this umbrella. Here are the best VPN services to unblock streaming content online.
- ExpressVPN — The best VPN for IPTV
- NordVPN — Very fast VPN to ensure little or no IPTV buffering
- CyberGhost — The best VPN for streaming TV and movie content
- Surfshark — Fast speeds reduce buffering while streaming content
- Private Internet Access — Cheap and super-fast servers make this great for IPTV
The best VPN for IPTV needs to have good speeds above all else, as well as be easy to use. There’s no point watching programs, movies and sports if the IPTV VPN is continually buffering and timing out.
The VPN should also have a large number of servers to connect to, preferably several in each of the biggest countries (United Kingdom, United States, Canada and so on). So, if one VPN server doesn’t work — perhaps due to it being blocklisted by the IPTV service — then you can easily jump to another one.
The VPN should also be able to unblock online content. Some streaming services such as Netflix have really good VPN detection systems. So, the best IPTV VPN should be able to easily evade those detection algorithms.
What Is IPTV?
IPTV can be roughly divided into three categories. The first is online streaming services, such as Netflix, Hulu or Amazon Prime Video. This is known as “video on demand.” You choose what you want to watch, and it starts immediately. This is the simplest, most straightforward concept of IPTV.
Then there is something called “time-shifted IPTV,” which is how platforms such as BBC iPlayer work. These shows have already been on regular BBC Television, and now the BBC is providing them for a short time afterward on iPlayer for people who missed them the first time around.
Finally, you have “live IPTV,” which shows programs that are happening at the same time as people watching them. A classic example of this would be live sports.
The 5 Best VPNs for IPTV
If you desperately want to start binge-watching your favorite IPTV services, then you’re going to need a good VPN to ensure there are no hiccups. Here are the best VPNs for IPTV.
More details about ExpressVPN
- Pricing: $6.67 per month, plus three months free if you pay yearly
- Provider website: www.expressvpn.com
- Fast & secure service
- 30-day money-back guarantee
- No user logs
- You have to pay yearly to get the best price
- Some servers are slower than others
ExpressVPN is our favorite VPN service for streaming your favorite IPTV services. Whether it’s Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, BBC iPlayer or your favorite live sports, ExpressVPN can handle it for you, as well as keep your online privacy secure.
You also get unlimited bandwidth and can connect up to five devices, which is good if you have a family wanting to watch different IPTV providers at the same time.
ExpressVPN has over 3,000 servers worldwide, so you are virtually guaranteed to find a country and a server that will meet your needs. Plus, its no-logging policy also ensures that no one can see what you are doing or watching.
The service offers a 30-day money-back guarantee. However, the best deal is most definitely the yearly plan, which gives you an extra three months free on top.
DNS Leak Protection & Kill Switch
ExpressVPN offers something called DNS leak protection and a kill switch. At its most basic level, DNS leaks are when you are connected to the VPN but wherever you have visited is “leaked” to your ISP. This normally occurs through a misconfiguration with the VPN.
ExpressVPN ensures that this will never happen. However, if the connection drops for any reason, its kill switch will shut down your internet connection until the VPN comes back again. You can learn more about this VPN in our ExpressVPN review.
More details about NordVPN
- Pricing: $3.71 per month when paying for two years upfront, plus three extra months free
- Provider website: www.nordvpn.com
- Good encryption via the ChaCha20 cipher
- Unlimited bandwidth
- Six simultaneous connections
- Paying monthly can get expensive
NordVPN is a robust VPN that has a lot going for it, including unlimited bandwidth and almost 6,000 worldwide servers. You can also use NordVPN on six simultaneous devices, so you don’t have to negotiate with the rest of the family when you can watch Arrested Development.
In terms of security, NordVPN uses a strong, 256-bit encryption protocol called ChaCha20. It also has a no-logs policy, so your ISP can’t throttle your connection for disapproving of your online IPTV watching.
NordVPN Features: CyberSec, Ad Blocker & More
Although you are not likely to need an ad blocker for watching reputable IPTV services such as BBC iPlayer, a few lesser-known and slightly more unethical channels might decide to leave some adverts on your devices. That’s why it’s very interesting that NordVPN has its own homemade ad blocker called CyberSec.
Although NordVPN is missing some features — such as split tunnelling — it does offer a “double VPN” feature, which sends your internet traffic through two VPN servers for extra security — though this might slow down your connection. However, you can see if NordVPN meets your needs with its 30-day money-back guarantee, and you can learn more about this VPN in our NordVPN review.
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More details about CyberGhost
- Pricing: $2.25 per month if paying for three years upfront (with three months free on top).
- Provider website: www.cyberghostvpn.com
- 45-day money-back guarantee
- Force-enabled HTTPS
- Free trial
- Expensive monthly rate
- Speed could be better but is good enough for IPTV
CyberGhost has around 7,800 servers worldwide, and offers a rare free trial, although it is only one-day long. However, it is more than balanced out with its very generous 45-day money-back guarantee. They also have security features that would help to protect your privacy while viewing online content, such as 256-AES encryption, DNS leak protection and a no-logs policy.
You can also force-enable HTTPS (secure URLs) in case some lesser-known IPTV services don’t automatically support HTTPS, which admittedly is rather rare in this day and age. You can also automatically block online ads and trackers, in case you start watching an IPTV service that decides to engage in unethical practices.
Bitcoin Payments & Three-Year Discounts
If you want to really protect your online privacy, then you need to reduce the amount of paperwork involved in a transaction. That’s why CyberGhost’s willingness to accept bitcoin is a plus. By paying in cryptocurrency, you avoid having your name attached to any transactions.
As per usual with VPNs, CyberGhost’s month-to-month payments will bite you in the wallet. However, if you are willing and able to pony up for three years upfront, you can turn that $12.99 a month into $2.25 a month, which is obviously a huge improvement. You can learn more about this VPN in our CyberGhost review.
More details about Surfshark
- Pricing: $2.21 a month when paying for two years upfront, plus three months free
- Provider website: www.surfshark.com
- Unlimited simultaneous connections
- Kill switch
- Ad & malware blockers
- Streaming isn’t as fast but good enough for IPTV
Surfshark is one of the newer entries on this recommendations list, but it does have 1,000 server options and offers service for an unlimited number of devices. For security, Surfshark offers the usual 256-AES bit encryption, no-logs policy, DNS leak protection and a kill switch.
Its “MultiHop” option — when the service funnels your data through two VPN servers for extra protection — may appeal to those who value their privacy over a little bit of extra speed. However, if your content is buffering a bit too much, you might be better off turning it off.
Paying from month-to-month will quickly prove to be extremely expensive at $11.95 a month. However, if you’re willing to pay for a couple of years upfront, the monthly price drops to $1.99 a month. You can learn more about the service in our Surfshark review.
5. Private Internet Access
More details about Private Internet Access
- Pricing: $2.19 a month, plus two months free, when paying for two years upfront
- Provider website: www.privateinternetaccess.com
- Super-fast connection speeds
- 10 simultaneous connections
- Nearly 24,000 servers in 77 countries
- Doesn’t work with BBC iPlayer
Private Internet Access (PIA) is a highly regarded VPN that provides unlimited bandwidth and brags about having super-fast connection speeds. It certainly isn’t exaggerating, either. We didn’t encounter any buffering issues at all. However, the service does not work with BBC iPlayer.
PIA has a lot of servers — over 24,000 servers in 77 countries; in comparison, NordVPN has 6,000 servers. It also allows up to 10 simultaneous devices, which is a lot more than any of the other VPNs on this list, except for Surfshark.
For privacy and security, PIA does not keep traffic logs, and the service protects your data with either 128-bit or 256-bit encryption. It also offers other security features, including automatically blocking ads and malware.
The monthly price is the usual $11.95, but as with all other VPNs, if you pay for two years upfront, you can get that monthly payment down to $2.19. If you want to give it a test drive before committing to two years, it offers a seven-day money-back guarantee. You can learn more in our Private Internet Access review.
Honorable Mention: VyprVPN
There are always so many options when it comes to VPNs that choosing only five can seem a bit impossible. Therefore, here is a sixth option if you’re still struggling to decide the right VPN for you.
More details about VyprVPN
- Pricing: $8.33 per month if paying for one year upfront
- Provider website: www.vyprvpn.com
- 30-day money-back guarantee
- Can break through most IPTV geoblocks
- Proprietary Chameleon technology
- High monthly rate
- Speed could be better
On the surface, VyprVPN has a lot going for it. The company heavily advertises on its website that it can break through most IPTV platforms, including BBC iPlayer, Sky, HBO Max and live sports. Plus, it has a proprietary Chameleon technology that conceals the fact you are using a VPN server to access content. Sounds perfect, right?
Unfortunately, what knocked VyprVPN down into sixth place was the fact that the servers were slow when we tested them; compared to rivals such as PIA, VyprVPN’s speed was left wanting. However, you can still see if it’s right for you with VyprVPN’s 30-day money-back guarantee. Learn more in our VyprVPN review.
Why Use A VPN for IPTV?
A VPN is absolutely essential for watching IPTV if the provider is in another country. That’s because virtually all IPTV content is geo-restricted due to legal and licensing reasons. So if the IPTV provider detects you are not in the correct country, you will be blocked from viewing its content.
In order to tweak your IP address and fool the IPTV provider into believing you are in the correct country, you will need a fast and secure VPN. The VPN will also help protect you from legal repercussions for streaming geo-restricted content.
Is Using a VPN With IPTV Safe?
A VPN is absolutely safe for viewing IPTV content. However, in order to keep your identity and online activities completely safe from your ISP, make sure you choose a VPN that has a no-logs policy. This will ensure that whatever you are connecting to online is not recorded and kept by your ISP.
It is also ideal that your VPN has AES-256 bit encryption, which is standard in most VPN services. However, it doesn’t hurt to check that the VPN offers it before signing up.
Step by Step: How To Unblock IPTV Using a VPN
Using a VPN is simple enough; it’s mostly a plug-and-play affair. However, if you’re a first-time VPN user, here are a few steps for how to unblock IPTV using our favorite VPN, ExpressVPN.
- Download and Install ExpressVPN
First, install ExpressVPN onto your device. Set up an account and log in, where you will then see the default country and the connection button. Don’t worry, if you don’t like ExpressVPN’s “selected location,” you can change it.
- Connect to Any VPN Server Around the Globe
To change locations, click on the “selected location” box, and a list of other countries will appear. Choose the one you want to connect to, and it will connect in seconds.
- Enjoy Streaming Content on Your IPTV With ExpressVPN
Once your VPN has connected, go to the IPTV platform of your choice and log in. You should now have access to the programs available in that country. If the program refuses to start, try another VPN server in that country or wait a few minutes.
There are a lot of IPTV services out there, but most of them are geoblocked to one specific country. A classic example of this would be HBO Max, which is restricted to the United States only. Luckily there are many excellent VPNs that will help you access IPTV content, including our number-one recommendation, ExpressVPN.
Do you use a VPN to access IPTV providers? If so, which VPN is your preferred choice, and what IPTV services do you watch? As always, please leave your comments below, and thanks for reading. If you’re looking for a VPN to unblock live sport action, be sure to check our best VPN for sports guide.