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How to Watch American Idol Online Outside of the US

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Monday, September 16th, 2013


American Idol is a singing talent hunt reality show which made its debut in June, 2002. The show was created by Simon Fuller for Fox TV and it is a part of Idols TV series which happens to be the most successful reality entertainment format in TV history. American Idol is considered as the biggest show ever to grace the American TV screen and it held #1 rating for a record eight consecutive years. The show’s past winners like Kelly Clarkson, Jennifer Hudson, Fantasia, Adam Lambert, Clay Aiken and Jordin Sparks have collectively produced hundreds of chart-toppers and won Grammy, American Music and Billboard Music awards.

American Idol Show Premise

The initial audition of American Idol is attended by thousands of people but only a few hundred make it past the preliminary stage. After clearing the preliminary round, the candidates are evaluated by the show’s producers’ and upon further approval by the judges. The contestants getting a go-ahead from the judges participate in the Hollywood and Las Vegas round and depending on the performance during this stage, about 24-36 candidates advance to the semi-final round. From semi-final onwards, the fate of the contestants is decided by the audience and every week contestants get eliminated until the final winner is chosen.

American Idol Availability Online

American Idol is usually telecast on Wednesday nights on Fox TV channel. The show is also available for online viewing through its official website (americanidol.com). The online portal also showcases exclusive photos and videos, best-of season videos, behind the scene footage and community features that are not available anywhere else. But there is one huge problem associated with the online version of American Idol; it is not yet available to people residing outside United States. When expats, travelers and fans of the show try to play the videos from outside US, they just see the “Content Unavailable” message – “The video you are attempting to watch is only available to viewers within the US, US territories, and military bases.”

How Fox Blocks Access To American Idol?

Fox blocks the international visitors from accessing the show online since it has signed content sharing agreements with other network providers. The location of the visitors is determined through their IP addresses and only people having a US IP address are allowed to access the videos while the rest of the visitors are redirected to the Content Unavailable page.

To watch American Idol from a different country, you would need to change your IP address and get an American IP so that Fox thinks that you are accessing the site from within US. There are several VPN and proxy providers that provide US IP addresses at a very reasonable subscription fee. However, when it comes to privacy and streaming speeds, VPNs offer several distinctive advantages that cannot be matched by most proxy providers.

How To Unlock American Idol Outside of US With A VPN

Step 1: Subscribe to a Virtual Private Network service offering US based IP addresses. To unblock American Idol episodes and videos, we recommend subscribing to unlimited speed-bandwidth plans from ibVPN, proXPN, IPVanish, HideMyAss, ExpressVPN and StrongVPN since these companies offer very high streaming speeds.

Step 2: Next, setup the service by installing the VPN client provided by your VPN vendor or by simply modifying your computer’s or Smartphone’s networking parameters. Almost all VPN companies provide detailed setup and installation instructions so make sure to refer to the instructions applicable for your device and Operating System.

Step 3: Save the network settings and restart your computer, if required. For mobile devices, you would need to close and restart the American Idol app after saving the changes so that the app uses the new network setting.

Step 4: Click on the VPN Connection name in order to establish a connection with the default VPN server. Depending upon the speed delivered by your ISP and your current geographical location, it could take few minutes for the service to establish the connection.

Step 5: After the connection is established, check your new IP address. If it is still not from America then search for a US based server located closest to your current location (check the welcome email or knowledgebase section on your provider’s site for the list of servers) and use it as your VPN server. Most of the vendors listed above offer IP addresses from several countries so you would need to choose a US based server manually in order to unlock American Idol website.

Step 6: Browse to the American Idol website, click on different video titles and check if you are able to watch them now. To unblock the videos on your mobile screen, close and restart the American Idol app after you are connected to a US VPN server. Congratulations, you are now in a position to watch full episodes and exclusive videos of American Idol from any place in the world.


September 16, 2013
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