Why does BBC iPlayer think I'm outside the UK?

You cannot stream programmes on BBC iPlayer outside the UK, even on holiday. This is because of rights agreements. 

Outside of the UK? The following page has more info on what content is available to you: Can I use BBC iPlayer when I'm outside of the UK?


What if I am in the UK?

There are several reasons why BBC iPlayer thinks you're outside the UK. The most common are: 

  • Your IP address, which is the address websites use to determine where in the world you are, isn't registered in the UK
  • You're using a VPN (Virtual Private Network), proxy, or similar service which masks your IP address
     
We understand that some Android users are unable to upgrade to the latest version of BBC iPlayer from the Google Play Store. The BBC iPlayer app is only available to people using the UK Google Play Store, so if you've changed the 'Country and Profile' in the Play Store to a different country, this will affect downloading or upgrading BBC iPlayer.


But you can do something about it. 

  • Using a VPN or proxy? Try disabling it.

    If you're using a VPN or proxy service and are in the UK, try disabling it to see if that helps. You'll need to wait a few minutes and/or clear your browser's cache after disabling the VPN for this to take effect.

    If we detect that you might be using a VPN, you'll be unable to play programmes. This is because we need to be confident you're in the UK, and if you're using a VPN or proxy, we can't detect reliably where you are. 
     
  • Maybe your IP address isn't registered in the UK

    If your ISP (internet service provider) has supplied you with a recently created or newly sourced IP address, it may be that it hasn't been registered correctly. Or sometimes it may just take a few weeks for the various databases across the internet and our own database to be updated to recognise the IP address as being located within the UK.

    You should check with your ISP whether this could be the case before deciding to contact BBC iPlayer Support. 
     
  • Check your IP address yourself

    While not definitive, there are various IP checking websites, such as www.whatismyip.com or whatismyipaddress.com for example, that will list your IP address, where it believes you are, what ISP the address is registered with and whether a 'network sharing device' (VPN) is being used. It's important to check all of your IP details.

    If those details are different to what you believe are correct, contact your ISP as it's possible the IP address has been recently obtained by your ISP, or it may not be registered correctly, or is awaiting certain databases to be added, which could take a few weeks. If you are going to contact BBC iPlayer Support, please include your ISP details. 
     
  • Web accelerator

    If you're using a web accelerator, try disabling it to see if that helps. 
     
  • Work computer

    Some companies and organisations might have an internal network which routes data outside the UK. It's worth checking with your company's IT support to confirm. 
     
  • Tor Network

    If you are using or participating in the Tor network, be aware that only Tor relay nodes are able to play programmes on BBC iPlayer. 
     
  • Using a mobile device? 

    In addition to the above guidance, check whether any data reduction features are set in your browser settings as some mobile browsers route data outside the UK when data reduction features are used. 

    Remember to check your browser is up to date! You can also try another browser.

    Also, data compression apps may route data outside the UK, so try disabling them.
     
If you've checked all of the above and still find that you're unable to watch, you can contact BBC iPlayer Support using the Contact us button below. Please include the name of your internet service provider, and provide details on what steps you've tried to resolve the issue.