How To Watch BBC iPlayer on the Amazon Firestick
The BBC iPlayer is one of the most popular streaming channels anywhere. It carries mainly British TV shows but has a global audience counted by the million. Some programming is available outside the UK but not all of it. You can access BBC iPlayer on a multitude of devices, including Amazon Fire TV. This tutorial is going to show you how you can watch all programs on the BBC iPlayer on the Amazon Firestick.
If you’re a fan of Downtown Abbey, Luther, The Bodyguard, Doctor Foster or one of the many British TV programs around, BBC iPlayer is where you go to watch them. Britbox is great and will be undergoing something of a transformation soon as more UK networks sign up, but for now iPlayer is the place to go for UK TV shows.
Some of these shows are available here in the US and some are not. The BBC is hamstrung by licensing as other institutions and it should be no surprise that not all programs are available in all regions. As always there is a way around that if you know how. By the time you finish this tutorial you will know exactly how to get around such annoyances.
First we need to install BBC iPlayer on the Amazon Firestick.
Installing BBC iPlayer onto the Amazon Firestick
Being a legitimate streaming channel BBC iPlayer is available directly from Amazon. Adding it to the Firestick is then very straightforward. You may need to create a UK Amazon account to get full access to British shows but you also may not. First let’s install the app.
Turn on your Firestick and allow Apps from Unknown Sources if you haven’t already. That’s Settings, Device, Developer Options and Apps from Unknown Sources.
- Open your VPN and select a UK endpoint server.
- Restart your Firestick if you changed the Apps from Unknown Sources setting.
- Browse for the BBC iPlayer app and install it.
- Launch BBC iPlayer and check what programming you have access to.
When I tested this, I didn’t need to change my Amazon account to a UK one. When my buddy tried it, he did. That’s just a case of going to the Amazon UK website and signing up using a British address. This isn’t the most elegant solution as you have to find an address and remember to always log into your native Amazon account and not this one.
While not illegal to set up a fake Amazon account, it is certainly against the company’s T&Cs. You will also have to never buy anything using fake details while you have this account as that will be illegal. If you don’t want to set up a fake UK account, try changing the region of your real one.
You can change the region on your existing Amazon account if you need to like this.
- Log into Amazon as you normally would.
- Select Your Account in the top right and select the Settings tab from the main page.
- Select Change under Country Settings.
- Select United Kingdom and then Update.
Restart your Firestick so it picks up the new details and try using BBC iPlayer while still behind the UK VPN. If all went well, you should see the full range of programming and be able to stream anything you like.
BBC iPlayer and VPN
The Brits don’t seem as hot on blacklisting VPNs as American networks but they do keep an eye on access through VPN servers. Most good quality providers will watch for this action and offer alternative endpoint IP addresses if they find their current ranges being blacklisted by popular services.
I use a few VPN providers in my role here at TechJunkie and most of them have a UK endpoint server that allows you to watch BBC iPlayer without any problems. If you still don’t see the full range of shows, make sure your Amazon account change has stuck and filtered through to your Firestick and/or change the endpoint server on your VPN.
The BBC iPlayer offers programming to a global audience so arguably all the changing of the Amazon account region and VPN could be unnecessary. You can watch the iPlayer in the US or any country without doing anything else at all. If the show you want to watch isn’t available, that’s where all this other stuff comes in.
Do you use BBC iPlayer? Like it? What shows do you like most? What makes them different from our own programming except the accents? Tell us your thoughts below!