5 best VPNs for IPTV right now – Unblock globally
Online video streaming was a massive trend on the Internet already two years ago. But then, the covid-19 pandemic showed us its ugly face, and it put the already growing trend on steroids.
Among those platforms that offer a vast catalog of video entertainment, IPTV stands out because of the range of streaming sites and TV channels it provides to users. But in this website, as in almost every other industry, some sheep are more equal than the rest – the catalog availability depends on a user’s physical location, as its IP address reveals it.
The good news for you, if you happen to live in one of those countries for which IPTV’s content is restricted, is that you can get around the geo-location-based restrictions in the sites with the help of a good VPN provider.
And which VPN is the right one, we hear you ask? It’s a fair question. Unfortunately, the VPN industry has also exploded over the last few years, so picking a good provider is no longer as obvious (or, at least, easy) as it used to be. But there’s no need to worry; this is our job.
We’ve gone through the top vendors in the market, tried them out, and figured out which ones will serve you better when unblocking IPTV from abroad. So welcome to our guide for the five best VPNs for IPTVs in 2021!
Top IPTV VPN services – The quick list
So here are the best five options for unblocking IPTV right here and now:
- NordVPN: The best VPN provider for IPTV services as a whole. Strong security and privacy, good streaming functionality.
- ExpressVPN: Combines high speeds, friendly apps, and excellent service. The right combination of features for many IPTV enthusiasts.
- SurfShark: Excellent service at a lower price. Easy to set up, strong on every aspect.
- Windscribe: Underrated premium VPN network that delivers on all the essentials you need for a good IPTV experience.
- VyprVPN: The best option if you are looking for cost-effectiveness without sacrificing privacy or streaming functionality.
Unblocking IPTV from any country in the world – the quick guide
Unblocking IPTV content with the help of a good VPN service is such a straightforward process that you’ll find it very quick and easy to implement, even if you’re new to the VPN world. Once you’ve chosen the VPN provider you like, just try the following steps:
- Get an account with a premium VPN provide: NordVPN is the best option for most tasks needing a VPN. In the case of IPTV, it’s an even better option; it soars over the competition.
- Download and install the software you need: Depending on the provider you choose, you could need to configure your router or your operating system. But most of the present here include a tech platform of dedicated apps that will significantly simplify the configuration process. Just find the relevant apps, download them and install them and you’re ready to go.
- Launch the app: This is where the magic begins. Launching the app will enable you to pick a server in the network. It would be best to choose a server located in the country where the content you want is unblocked.
- Open IPTV: Choose the thing you wanted from IPTV, and enjoy it!
Top 5 VPNs for unblocking IPTV: The complete list
Unfortunately, the VPN market is overcrowded. Separating the wheat from the chaff takes time and expertise, even more so when you’re doing it with a particular task in mind instead of for more generic VPN tasks.
Fortunately, our staff is closely familiar with many of the providers in the industry. Their expertise is unmatched among reviewers, so they quickly compiled a list of five VPN providers working with IPTV and doing it in style. Some of them even offer great value for your money. So here are the best IPTV VPNs:
1. NordVPN – Without question, the best 2021 IPTV VPN
As we considered all the factors in which a VPN must excel to be a good IPTV option, we found NordVPN to be the best option, hands down.
The NordVPN server network is extensive, as it includes more than 5,400 nodes scattered over 59 countries. About 1970 of those are based in 15 cities inside the US, which is the location that counts the most when unblocking IPTV is your goal. These US-based servers will do the deed with IPTV, and they will also unblock most of the other big streaming platforms like Hulu, Disney+, or Netflix.
So NordVPN has US-based servers. Check. But it also has high-speed connections. This feature is also critical if your connection is going to support an HD stream. Our team achieved speeds as high as 250 Mbps with NordVPN – your speeds could differ significantly depending on your operating system, ISP, and many other factors. Still, the relevant point is that whatever speed you have available will be best used with NordVPN.
NordVPN supports every major platform and operating systems in the digital universe, such as Windows, macOS, iOS, Android, and even Amazon Firestick. Moreover, you can configure NordVPN on your router. In that way, you can have any device in your local network (smart TVs, IPTV boxes, or anything else) using the VPN connection without direct support from the device.
Are you worried that configuring your router will be difficult? Well, yes, it can be a tricky process. But it’s not a tough thing to do, you simply follow our guide on setting up a VPN on a router. Also, NordVPN’s customer service is very efficient. It includes a 24/7 live chat service if you need any help, and you’re guaranteed to get all the help you could need in making things work with your router or with any other issue that could arise for you as a user.
Security is excellent on NordVPN. The service includes a kill switch (which ensures that not a package leaves your device if it’s not encrypted and within the security tunnel). In addition, the encryption is state-of-the-art, of the type used even by the world’s top intelligence agencies. This VPN will keep you safe from any online threats, hackers, and nosy ISPs who like to throttle their users’ bandwidth.
NordVPN has a 30-day money-back guarantee, so you can try this service in full detail for a whole month before you decide that it’s worth your money – but, trust us, you will. Prices at NordVPN can be very cost-efficient too. You can have an account for as little as 3.30 USD monthly if you choose one of the extended plans. This is less than a third of the industry’s average monthly fee, of about 10 USD.
2. ExpressVPN – Versatile and fast option to unblock IPTV
While ExpressVPN is not our top option, the phrase “second best” doesn’t quite capture how good it is. This service is fast and reliable, packed full of features. NordVPN is the market’s leader for sure, but ExpressVPN comes very close in every important regard.
The network spans 3,000 servers distributed in 94 countries. Fourteen US cities are in the mix, which will be the relevant servers for the IPTV use case. But this VPN’s high quality will also give you access to Disney+, Amazon Primer, Hulu, BBC iPlayer, and Netflix.
Our team managed to get 225 Mbps as the speed average with ExpressVPN. Granted, it’s lower than NordVPN, but it’s nothing you can notice as a user – especially as long as your video players don’t spend much time in the buffering stage. Furthermore, this transfer rate is good enough to support HD streams without any delays at all.
And since streaming is our main concern (and possibly, yours too), this VPN offers the ExpressVPN MediaStreamer. This piece of software allows you to unblock streaming websites on IPTV boxes and other devices that won’t support a VPN natively, like smart TVs.
This functionality is similar to what you can achieve if you directly install the VPN’s connection to your router, so ExpressVPN offers you an additional level of flexibility. However, the router option is also available for ExpressVPN users, and it’s one of the VPNs that makes it almost effortless for you to go down the “router route.” ExpressVPN can even give you some custom firmware that simplifies everything greatly.
ExpressVPN is indeed one of the best VPNs in the industry, but it’s still not our top choice. Why? Because of its price. The least you can spend monthly in ExpressVPN is 8.32 USD, which is much higher than NordVPN or SufrShark.
However, it’s still below the market’s average monthly fee of 10.00 USD. Also, those extra bucks you’ll pay could be worth it if you find that the ExpressVPN MediaStreamer simplifies the unlocking process more than any other VPN on the list.
3. SurfShark – Discover the world of unlimited IPTV connections
SufShark is a relatively new VPN in the market, but it’s been pretty disruptive. It offers a service that leaves nothing to be desired compared with the bigger boys at a fraction of the price. We’re big SurfShark fans. And the best news for you is that this VPN is also perfect for IPTV.
You can choose from 3,200 servers in 65 countries in the SurfShark network. More than 500 of those are in the US. The WireGuard protocol at SurfShark makes these US-based servers some of the fastest in the industry, as our team found by measuring transfer speeds as high as 262 Mbps.
Similar to the previous two VPNs, SurfShark will unblock IPTV successfully. Still, it will also allow you to unblock almost any other streaming platform you’d like to use – HBO Now, BBC iPlayer, Amazon Prime Video, and several others.
The SurfShark apps are friendly on every platform (macOS, Windows, iOS, Android, Amazon Fire Stick, and even Linux). If you are a more advanced router kind-of-guy, the website will provide you with all the necessary documentation to perform the installation successfully.
Furthermore, if you’re using IPTV in a set-top box and you don’t mind all that much about encrypting your traffic, the Smart DNS feature in SurfShark will unblock IPTV even more quickly – but then the VPN won’t protect your traffic.
And you can get all the features detailed above for 2.49 USD monthly. And yes, there is a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Last but not least, SurfShark gives every account the right to have as many devices connected as you can – most other VPNs limit the number of concurrent connections to about five.
4. Windscribe – Quality free VPN for IPTV
Windscribe is not as prominent or well-known as our previous three picks. Nevertheless, the feature list in this VPN is good enough that you should pay close attention to it.
The server network includes 500 servers in 63 countries. So, yes, Windscribe’s network is only a small fraction of the networks in other providers, but do not let numbers deceive you.
The number of servers in a VPN network is not as significant as the bandwidth available in each node and the performance of every server. So a smaller network can be every bit as good as a large one if it’s managed correctly.
Widscribe performs well when unlocking many video streaming platforms such as YouTubeTV, BBC iPlayer, DAZN, Netflix, and, the most important one for us, IPTV.
Ẃindscribe allows for any number of simultaneous connections with a single account, just like SurfShark. However, it is a rare feature in the market as most vendors will set a limit of around five devices. So you could share the VPN’s protective features (and unblocking capabilities) with friends and family if you’d like.
The unlimited connection number is instrumental as you consider that this is a VPN that works with a wide variety of platforms, routers can use it(good guides available to complete this process), so you can use your IPTV box through the router.
There is a free Windscribe service, which is a rarity among premium services. It has several restrictions, like the number of servers or the amount of data you can transfer in a month (10 GB). But the service remains excellent when it’s free of charge, which is even rarer among free VPNs. In every article we publish on VPNs, we strongly discourage all users from using any free VPNs.
They’re unreliable; they pose security threats, they end up being too expensive for what they charge – yes, that’s possible, even at zero fees.
The payment plans of Windscribe are very flexible as well. For example, you can get the service of a specific server for as little as 1 USD monthly, or you can get the full, standard VPN service for 4.08 USD, which is an attractive proposition.
VyprVPN is relatively modest compared to the other options in this list. Of course, 700 servers in 70 countries are nowhere near as impressive as NordVPN or ExpressVPN, but, as stated earlier, node numbers are never the whole story.
Despite its size, VyprVPN works well as an unlocking tool for IPTV. It’s fast, reliable, and gets easily around the geo-location restrictions we all want to avoid. And the same applies to DAZN, Amazon Primer Video, HBO Max, and Netflix.
The tunneling protocol on offer is WireGuard, which is excellent for high transfer speeds. We were able to get 240 Mbps in our tests, which is more than enough to support HD video streaming.
If you’re one of those unfortunate users located in a country that frowns upon (or even punishes) the use of VPN services, VyprVPN offers a feature called Chameleon 2.0. It’s a tunneling protocol that makes your VPN traffic look like web traffic so no external observer can “accuse” you of using a VPN.
VyprVPN also supports routers, and it has guides available for you to read if you need any help in completing the configuration. It is advantageous to unlock IPTV content from a device that doesn’t support VPN apps out of the box – like the IPTV box.
So VyprVPN is modest in size; it’s not as feature-rich as ExpressVPN, SurfShark, or NordVPN, but it does all the essential things you need to unblock IPTV restricted content, and it’s pretty cheap. You can have the entire network at your disposal for 1.66 USD monthly, so this is the most accessible provider on this list.
Our VPN selection process for the listed VPNs
VPNs are essential tools that can help with a wide variety of tasks online. But, unfortunately, the variety of networks in the industry is wide as well.
Some emphasize the privacy features; some prioritize high speeds. So there are plenty of excellent VPN vendors that are not suited for multimedia use because their priority is in additional encryption layers or other security features that come at the cost of connection speeds, thus making streams unpracticable.
So when we scanned the industry to find the best options to use with IPTV, we had to keep some features in mind. Here’s how we chose the best VPNs to unlock IPTV content:
- The unblocking or several streaming websites: Unlocking restricted content in streaming websites is quickly becoming the primary use case for VPN services. Yes, it’s becoming even more relevant than privacy and anonymity issues because so much more users around the globe have to stay at home because of the pandemic. Also, a VPN that unlocks one streaming website only is kind of specious. A good VPN should deal with many streaming platforms if the technology and its implementation are done correctly. If it can bypass the restrictions of only one, then the chances are that even that one will stop working soon.
- App availability: IPTV works on a variety of devices. So if you’re going to use it in full, the VPN you choose for the task should make it available to you on at least as many devices, but preferably even more.
- Reliability and speed: Supporting an HD video stream needs high bandwidth. But besides speed, the connections have to be very reliable, or you will find yourself endlessly reconnecting to the VPN server as you try to finish your movie or show.
- Customer support: You’ll probably need customer support only once in your lifetime as a VPN user. But on that single occasion, you should get your problem solved quickly and reliably. There’s no point in paying for the world’s best VPN if you can’t use it because setting it up is too hard. That’s why we’ve chosen only the best VPN networks whose high quality is supported by equally excellent customer service.
- Cost: VPNs come in all kinds of shapes and colors – and prices too. The options we picked for our list offer a reasonable balance of value for money. A couple of them are actually a great deal because of the low fee they charge.
- Security: Privacy, security, and anonymity are not the main concerns you have as a user whose purpose is to use a VPN to unblock video streams. However, these are the main tasks that any VPN worth the name should always perform. If a service doesn’t deliver on its most basic duties, you shouldn’t trust it to deliver on more sophisticated things.
Choosing the best VPNs for IPTV
Picking a VPN that you will specifically use with IPTV needs to find a handful of crucial features:
It’s your physical location that determines if a streaming platform will offer you its entire catalog or something else. Thus, the IP address your connection reports is the critical element in the unblocking process. So it’s vital that the VPN in question can offer you servers located in the country that will let you unlock all that content – the US, most often for most services.
Reliability is also crucial. It means that once you’ve unlocked the video you wanted, you’ll be able to see it all the way through. However, it also means that you will be able to perform this operation tomorrow, or next week, or next month. The five VPNs we offer in this guide have proven consistency in completing the task every time we try.
Do not forget the ongoing war between the IPTV providers and the VPN industry. The content distributors are not very fond of VPNs, and they keep investing resources to stop them. On the other hand, good VPNs are aware of this and keep rotating their IP addresses or taking additional measures to ensure users will always get the service they want.
And this is why a VPN that did the trick yesterday could not repeat it next week. Keeping up with your opposition is a tricky thing to do.
Speed is crucial, of course. For example, watching your favorite movie in 4k needs a lot of bandwidth, and you have to keep it going for hours sometimes. Unfortunately, significantly few VPN providers can support that type of activity. Therefore, the VPN that will perform this task for you must be fast and reliable.
This ensures that, though all your traffic goes through the VPN, no records of your activity will be available for anybody in the future. Not even to your provider.
So what are IPTV providers, anyway?
IPTV stands for Internet Protocol Television. It’s a type of video streaming service, simply. IPTV providers allow you to watch TV shows or motion pictures using your standard digital devices and dedicated hardware like IPTV boxes.
IPTV providers come in two flavors, which are legal and unverified.
You already know about the legal IPTV providers, for sure. These include the biggest names in the industry, such as:
- Peacock TV
- Redbull TV
- Xumo TV
- Pluto TV
- At&T TV
- YouTube TV
Most of the legal IPTV providers have apps on offer at both of the two major app stores and enjoy the approval of Google, Amazon, and Apple. In addition, their content is licensed, so it’s legal for them to show it to you.
However, there’s a catch to legal licenses: they’re rarely global. The copyright owner gives most of these providers the authorization to show this content only in a predetermined list of countries. Consequently, the content on offer in each platform varies from country to country.
Unverified IPTV providers are a different thing, entirely. They’re not the industry’s players, but they have some advantages for users. They offer more content at lower prices than the legal providers.
But their unverified status means that you can’t find them in the app stores. Moreover, as they are broadcasting material for which they have no licenses, Google, Apple and Amazon don’t want anything to do with them to avoid legal conflicts.
Last but not least, there is a gray zone on this map. Some unverified sites are perfectly legal. They remain in the unverified list only because the verifying process hasn’t finished yet. Some of these options include:
- Yeah! IPTV
- Apollo Group TV
- SSTV IPTV
- Gemini Streamz IPTV
- Hypersonic TV
Whatever kind of streamer you prefer (legal or unverified), your problems to use them are two: bypassing geo-blocks and disguising the fact that their license doesn’t allow them to show you a given piece of content.
Here’s the good news: a reliable VPN makes both problems go away simultaneously.
A VPN will show your IP number as one originating from your chosen server’s country instead of yours. Additionally, it hides all your activities completely, so nobody knows precisely what you’re doing online (including your ISP and the content’s right owners).
And why should I use a VPN for ITV?
There are plenty of good reasons for you to access your IPTV provider through a VPN server:
- Getting a service or content unavailable in your jurisdiction: Since while you’re on the VPN, the world will assume your VPN-assigned IP address as yours, you can sign up for content or services that wouldn’t be otherwise available in your original location. For example, maybe there’s this movie you want to see. But it’s only for US users, and you’re currently on holiday in the Bahamas. The VPN will give you a US IP address while you’re abroad so you can see whatever you want. The same goes for other countries.
- Saving money: Price plans with IPTV providers can vary a lot within countries. So you could sign up for an account in a country in which cheaper fees are on offer.
- Staying safe from legal complications: As we stated previously, some IPTV providers do offer unlicensed content. From a legal standpoint, they should not be offering that content to you, and you shouldn’t be watching it if you’re aware of its legal status. So, in principle, watching this content could get you in legal trouble. You could face fees or a lawsuit. Granted, with millions of users around the globe watching pirated videos, it’s unlikely that this will happen to you precisely. But why risk it if all it takes to avoid it is to use a VPN, which you should already be using for other reasons as well?
- Some ISP will block unverified IPTV providers outright. So, if you want to see those websites, you’ll need to get around your ISP’s restrictions. The VPN will perform that trick for you.
Can I use a free VPN for IPTV?
Yes, in some cases, you could, but you should never do that for many reasons that go from functionality to personal safety.
We always advise against using free VPNs for any task at all. There are common reasons that apply in every case, but there are additional ones in the case of streaming video websites.
Let’s start with the least essential reason: Functionality.
Free VPNs are not investing as much effort as NordVPN (or any other premium VPN) to keep ahead of the game relative to video streaming websites. Consequently, many free VPNs on the Internet are already identified and banned by IPTV servers. That in itself will prevent you from using these free VPNs to see IPTV content.
However, let’s assume that you find a free VPN that does allow you to unblock the login to the IPTV you want. Congratulations on that! The problem you will find is that most free VPNs do not support high speeds or cap the data you can transfer every month. As a result, your video player will spend long periods buffering or, if you’re luckier, you’ll be able to see about 20 to 30 minutes of the movie you wanted before you deplete the data allowed to you.
So you see, a free VPN could work in principle. But the practical limitations it has will prevent it from working correctly, or even at all.
But there is a more critical reason besides practical problems, and it has to do with your privacy.
Free VPN won’t charge you for the service they provide to you with money. But they still have to pay their bills, so they must be getting something out of you anyway. What is that? It’s the record of your online activities.
The most common business model in free VPN companies is to keep detailed logs of everything you do from within their network. Then, they sell that record to their commercial partners, who know how to monetize all this information. So, you see, if keeping your privacy and anonymity safe while you’re online is essential to you, using a free VPN defeats that purpose because all your information ends up in the hands of a few corporations that shouldn’t have it anyway.
And that is why you should never use a free VPN. Not even for unlocking IPTV websites.
If you absolutely must use a free VPN, for whatever reason, some reputable providers do have a free option available (Windscribe, which is on our list, has a free version). So use one of those, but stay away from any of the more generic free VPN on the web because sooner or later, you will find that those services are too expensive indeed – even if the payment isn’t money.
Recommended internet speed for smooth HD video streaming
Speeds are always elusive in Internet technologies because they depend on so many factors to varying so widely. Watching an HD video stream from an IPTV service will need a fast connection for sure. Adding a VPN to the mix always slows things down because you have to sacrifice a little performance to have all your data encrypted and rerouted.
So how fast is fast enough? HBO says that you need at least 3 Mbps. Netflix puts the magic number at 5 Mbps. These numbers could look pretty modest in the current environment, but keep in mind that reaching a peak of 5Mbps is not the real trick – it’s keeping it that high for hours at a time.
You probably already know what happens if your Internet speed is not high enough to support the video stream you want to see:
- Your player will spend long periods buffering the data arriving from the server
- Quality will suffer
- The stream will be jittery
- The stream could break up now and then
But even if your ISP gets you the transfer speeds you need to support that HD video stream you want, your experience could still be ruined if your VPN is not fast enough to keep up with the task.
A VPN will always cost you in terms of performance. Even if you’re just doing a fundamental task, the VPN will encrypt all the data and route it through its network. So the time your device will spend processing your data will increase, and the path your data must travel will be longer, too, especially if you’re using a VPN server that’s far away from you. And that’s just the basic mechanics.
In addition, some VPNs will route your data through more than one node in the network, thus adding distance in the path and additional encryption layers. The increased complication in the process allows for better privacy features, but it also creates new potential points of failure, which become more evident when you’re trying to perform a task in real-time.
So, if you want to have a VPN working in tandem with your IPTV platform, it has to be a premium one. Only the best VPN in the industry can quickly manage the large amount of data involved in video streaming, so you won’t notice all the things happening under the hood.
Luckily, every single one of the five options we’ve provided you in this guide can manage an HD video stream without any complications.
Nobody could possibly blame you for being an IPTV enthusiast. It’s a fantastic way to watch equally excellent content from a wide range of sources!
That being said, getting the best out of your IPTV experience requires a VPN.
The benefits you will get from a VPN include:
- Unblocking geo-restricted material.
- Avoiding ISP throttling.
- Remaining anonymous as a viewer.
- Avoid tracking of any kind.
So you see, there are just too many advantages in having a premium VPN service not to have one. And that’s just when it comes to IPTV viewing, but a good VPN will make every online activity you enjoy safer.
About the author
Isa is a Nigeria-born professional writer and editor with more than 10 years of experience under his belt. Having worked with some of the most renowned organizations worldwide, he’s been able to produce and publish hundreds of high-quality articles across a wide range of niches. Over time, Isa has developed an immense interest in digital security and privacy. He has always been a privacy enthusiast, and now, he's giving it all to educate people on privacy, security, and geo-blocking issues around the world.