IPTV services continue to become more popular and a viable alternative to satellite and cable subscriptions.
This increase in popularity also means increased scrutiny and pressure from content providers and ISPs to monitor – and sometimes ban – IPTV services.
Wondering why people are recommending using a VPN for IPTV?
Many ISPs have taken to throttling and blocking IPTV services, so you can’t access them. The good news is that there is a way around these efforts; using a VPN.
What is a VPN?
The term VPN stands for “Virtual Private Network” and is a secure private server where people can anonymously browse the internet.
These providers have encrypted servers that network traffic passes through securely. The encryption means that ISPs and government agencies can’t see what is happening and what the user is accessing.
It is impossible to spy on or tamper with traffic passing through a VPN server.
VPNs serve three main functions:
- Protecting your identity by hiding what you do online from your Internet Service Provider
- Unblocking censored content in regions with strict internet laws
- Helping you to fake your digital location to access content and services for specific regions, such as the American version of Netflix or Hulu
How Does a VPN Work?
You may be wondering how VPN services work, especially if you are considering signing up for one. Let’s take a look at the basic functionality of these essential services.
When one usually browses the internet, you connect to your ISP first. The ISP then connects you to the internet and the content you want. Given that the ISP makes the final connection, they can control and see which sites you access.
Your ISP has the edge over you as they can prevent you from accessing certain content by not making the connection. ISPs can also see your internet traffic and spy on it as it passes through their servers.
Because their servers are tied to a physical location, websites can block the IP address of connections from specific regions, preventing you from accessing content.
This all changes when you add a VPN to the mix. Rather than connecting directly to websites and services through your ISP, your internet traffic passes through the encrypted VPN server first.
The VPN creates a barrier between the ISP and your computer. People refer to these encrypted connections as a “VPN tunnel.” Internet traffic travels through this VPN tunnel and is sent to the destination as if it came from the VPN server.
The VPN connection means that you are browsing anonymously, but keep in mind that VPN providers may keep logs of what you do. The law may stipulate that they keep these logs and hand them over in the event of a criminal investigation.
The services you use through your VPN appear to come from the location of the VPN server itself. For example, if you lived in South Africa, you could use a UK VPN server to make websites think you were located in the UK.
Anyone who is considering IPTV should also consider getting a good quality VPN.
Four Reasons to Use a VPN With IPTV
We feel that anyone who uses an IPTV service should consider using a VPN and here are four reasons why.
Circumvent Your ISP Throttling IPTV Services
Many internet service providers do not hide the fact that they throttle internet services for users, connecting to some websites and services slower than others.
Even so, many people are surprised to learn that their ISP engages in these tactics.
The likely reason for this is that the average internet user doesn’t know what throttling is. To put it simply, throttling refers to your ISP, slowing down your connection speed.
ISPs claim to use throttling as a way to reduce network congestion and prevent internet congestion on their networks. There is some validity to that claim, but that’s not what you’re paying for them to do.
Imagine if you paid extra to receive 60Mbps from a streaming service only to find you have 30Mbps after throttling.
Perhaps you typically download files at 56Mbps, and then suddenly, the download speeds drop to 12Mbps.
This is what throttling does to connections. ISP throttling stops you from watching online videos without buffering.
Throttling is more of an issue since the FCC voted to eliminate Net Neutrality, which prevented ISPs from creating “internet traffic lanes” where service providers could charge people more money for accessing certain services without throttling.
When you use a VPN, you prevent your ISP from being able to throttle your traffic and slowing your connection speed. This means you can access all the content you want without worrying about having your connection slowed down.
Because ISPs typically throttle connections based on the content you are accessing, using a VPN connection means your ISP can’t tell what data you transfer – meaning they can’t block it.
Better Privacy Protection
As mentioned before, your ISP could track you and what you do online if you don’t have a VPN obfuscating your traffic when accessing content and streaming online.
Your ISP can see everything you do, including which websites you visit and what content you stream and download.
If you try to access content that is prohibited in your region, your ISP can – and will – report you to the authorities. This is particularly troubling in areas with restrictive internet laws, such as China.
Using a VPN means that your ISP can’t see what you are up to online. The VPN connection encrypts everything that passes through. You won’t compromise your location or your actual IP address to the websites you visit.
A VPN guarantees you a level of privacy and safety when browsing the internet and streaming media online – whether it be media from an IPTV provider or another source.
Having this extra layer of online privacy protection also protects you against being issued copyright infringement notices. However, don’t take that as an excuse for online piracy as we do not condone such actions.
As more areas ramp up their attacks on internet freedom, using a VPN for IPTV can help you access blocked websites and avoid the authorities’ prying eyes.
Circumvent ISP Blocks
IPTV services are legal, but that doesn’t mean cable companies will sit back and let them take away their business. Rather than try and be better, cable companies call up their lawyers to pressure ISPs into blocking IPTV services.
Fighting the competition with lawyers and courts is easier than fighting them by offering better services.
Some IPTV providers get around these legal battles, but the best way to ensure you stay safe and stream IPTV without worrying about ISP blocks is to use a VPN.
VPN for IPTV is the best way to prevent streams from being blocked or interrupted by ISPs.
VPNs May Improve Streaming Performance
One problem people have with using a VPN for IPTV is that they slow down your internet speed. Having to connect to an extra port means that it can take a little longer for traffic to pass.
With that said, VPNs can improve streaming performance and improve online performance by channeling connections through less congested servers.
If you connect to a country through a VPN that isn’t getting much traffic, you may find that your content streams better than if you weren’t using a VPN.
Also, VPNs prevent throttling from governments and ISPs, which can cause a small improvement in streaming performance. Using a VPN won’t improve your raw connection speed, but it can improve performance.
Think of it as being like driving down an empty highway. You technically can’t drive above the speed limit, but nothing is stopping you from going faster for longer, and you’ll likely reach your destination more quickly.
We do have one word of warning when it comes to using IPTV with a VPN. Please check to ensure that the IPTV service you use allows VPN connections.
Most IPTV providers allow VPN connections, but some of them might not let you connect over VPN. Services are getting better at detecting VPN connections, as anyone who has attempted to use a VPN for Netflix likely knows.
Some services see and block connections from VPN tunnels.
Having the option to stay anonymous while using the internet is essential for anyone interested in protecting their privacy. An IPTV VPN does more than just keep you anonymous online, however.
These VPNs can improve your streaming performance while also circumventing blocking and throttling from internet service providers.
There are many VPN providers to choose from, so check out some different options and see what they have to offer.
We recommend choosing one that maintains a no-logging policy. These policies mean that the VPN doesn’t track what you do with their servers, giving you extra anonymity when browsing the web.