Ask LH: How Can I Access iView Overseas?

Hey Lifehacker, I’m wondering if there is a simple way to get my IP re-routed to be recognised as an Australian address? I’m going to be travelling through Europe for several months for business and am hoping not to miss out on ABC iView! My current VPN doesn’t have any servers for Australia, and Hola Unblocker doesn’t seem to be much help either. Any ideas? Thanks, Travelling ABC Lover


The simplest solution is to find a VPN provider that offers an Australian exit point. One option worth considering is Witopia — this is a US-based virtual private network service that has exit nodes in Melbourne and Sydney. The premium service, which costs US$39.99 for six months, also allows unlimited, real-time switching between all cities and countries with unlimited bandwidth. This is handy if you want to access geoblocked content from around the world.

Pricing starts at $5.99 a month and there’s also an unconditional 30 day moneyback guarantee. In other words, if you wanted to be an unscrupulous jackass, you could get a month’s worth of ABC iView for free!

For more information on choosing the right virtual private network service, check out our in-depth VPN guide. You can also bone up on our favourite VPN service providers here; just be aware that not all of them will allow you to watch blocked Australian TV networks from outside the country. (Check each website for a full list of available services.)

Whichever VPN service provider you plump for, it definitely pays to do your homework — and we’re not just talking about checking whether you can access to ABC iView. Unfortunately, not all VPN service providers are to be trusted. Some keep detailed records of your connection times, dates, IP addresses, and even the types of traffic that you send through its networks while you’re logged in.

If you’d prefer not to be snooped on, check the privacy policy and terms of service and go with a provider that has its users’ best interests at heart. The aforementioned WiTopia is pretty good in this area: it does not log information that can be attributable to individual users, purges logs weekly, and only saves registration information and payment details when you sign up.

On a final note, it’s worth noting that the ABC will generally unblock access to News 24 if a major local story such as a bushfire is breaking. So even if you do nothing, you should still be able to keep tabs on important local events.

If any readers have additional VPN providers or workarounds they’d like to share, let TABCL know in the comments section below.


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