If you want to watch BBC’s popular television show Match of the Day to see the highlights of the Barclays Premier League games every Saturday during the season, you can securely (and legally) gain access to the British TV show by using a VPN.
Howstuffworks.com describes a VPN (virtual private network) as “a private network that uses a public network (usually the Internet) to connect remote sites or users together. The VPN uses ‘virtual’ connections routed through the Internet from the [person]’s private network to the remote site. By using a VPN, [people] ensure security — anyone intercepting the encrypted data can’t read it.”
In the case of using a VPN to watch BBC’s Match of the Day (and other programming), the BBC website will assist those people who do not normally have access to the show. If you visit the BBC iPlayer or BBC website to watch its programming, here’s the message you’ll see:
The problem for people living outside of the UK is that you need a UK IP address to access the programming. However, the app Hotspot Shield accommodates folks living in the U.S. (and other countries around the world) in receiving a UK IP address (or another country’s IP address).
While it may seem complicated, Hotspot Shield provides simplified step-by-step instructions on how to obtain a UK IP address and then watch BBC programming on the BBC iPlayer. To start the process:
- Go to www.hotspotshield.com and download Hotspot Shield. Once the download is complete, the app will turn on and connect automatically.
- To access BBC’s programming, you must change your “virtual location” to United Kingdom in the drop down menu (this step will have given you a UK IP address. If you want to double check you can visit www.whatismyipaddress.com to verify).
- Now go to www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer and either click on any video you wish to watch, or type in the specific program in the search bar you want to view.
As you can see from the screenshot below, the picture quality of the legal stream is very watchable.
The only catch to watching BBC’s Match of the Day via VPN is that you need to watch it live. A replay of the program is available to view on the BBC iPlayer app and website on midnight UK time on the Monday after the show airs. If you miss the live broadcast of the show, NBCSN broadcasts its version of Match of the Day (same name, similar concept but completely different show) at 11pm ET on Saturday nights.
Hosted by Gary Lineker, Match of the Day features pundits Ruud Gullit, Phil Neville, Rio Ferdinand, Alan Shearer, Robbie Savage and Danny Murphy.
The show, which is entering its 50th year, is an institution in English soccer. The weekly highlights show features no-spoilers commentary of games as well as insight and analysis.
The commentators on the show for the 2014/15 season are Guy Mowbray, Steve Wilson, Jonathan Pearce, Simon Brotherton, Steve Bower and John Motson.
In addition to being able to watch Match of the Day, you can access other BBC soccer programming such as MOTD2, Football Focus and many more shows. Plus, the VPN can open you up to an array of other programming on BBC2, BBC3, BBC4, ITV, Channel 4 and much more — as well as other networks around the world.
Hotspot Shield isn’t, by any means, the only VPN option available, but if you are wondering about the Hotspot Shield company, they were started in 2005 and are highly-trusted and very secure. Last year, Hotspot Shield was awarded the Appy Award for Best Online Security/Privacy Application, as well as Softonic’s Best Apps of Mobile World Congress.
The company boasts that in addition to safe and secure browsing (they prevent hackers from stealing sensitive data even while using unsecured Wi-Fi networks), Hotspot Shield can provide access to domestic websites when traveling outside of your home country and also unblocks websites that have been restricted by governments or companies. Hotspot Shield has seen over 250 million worldwide downloads and is available in 13 different languages.