Last Updated on October 26, 2023
RTE Player in USA available for all Using a Simple VPN : Watch This !
Ireland, in all its scenic beauty is a holiday haven for many. The vast array of activities that this small country has to offer are enough reason for it’s tourism success, but if you are an international traveler, you might want to consider the benefits of watching RTÉ Player abroad.
RTÉ Player is a popular Irish Television Channel that broadcasts different programs for both residents and tourists alike. It has lots of unique TV programmes but also carries lots of shows from all over the world particularly from the UK and the USA.
What Exactly is RTE Player ?
RTÉ Player is a streaming service that allows you to watch the different RTÉ TV channels online. It’s a bit like the BBC iPlayer and is available for free across multiple platforms. It’s basically the online TV browser for the biggest Irish TV station – RTÉ. It was the Broadcasting Act of 2009 will require all broadcasters to make their content available online. This included RTE player, which is a streaming service that offers Irish TV channels including RTÉ One, RTÉ Two and TG4.
RTÉ has been making TV for a long time now and many people say that it’s some of the best coverage in the Republic of Ireland. The channel broadcasts all sorts of television shows on demand, plus movies, some great Irish documentaries and Irish sports events.
For anyone with a connection or love for Ireland it’s a great place to keep in touch. Even if you’ve no link with Ireland, RTE has some great TV programmes including lots of the top rated shows from the US and UK.
Why is RTE player not in the US
Like virtually every major media site on the internet, although RTE is free it’s only accessible to their domestic market. So basically if you’re based in the Republic of Ireland (and to some extent Northern Ireland) you can watch everything without restrictions. It’s exactly the same as you can watch BBC iPlayer in the UK, NBC in the US and so on. The minute you step outside the Republic’s borders then you’ll either get blocked or rerouted through to the cut down international version.
Just like all the US media sites they work out your location based on your IP address. This is almost always assigned directly from a provider in your country and is used to determine which country you are physically located in.
Why Do they do this? Well it’s normally a variety of reasons but often the main driver is copyright laws. Most TV shows and content are licensed on a ‘per country’ basis and can only be broadcast in that country. This is obviously awkward with the global audience you get from the internet so these geo-blocks are used to restrict access. Some of RTE’s content is not covered by these restrictions and you will find some things like the News that you can access wherever you are.
It actually works the opposite way around too, if I travel to Dublin for example I instantly lose access to my favorite online music site – Pandora which is only available in the USA.
You can Watch RTE in the USA
So is that it ? Do I have to just watch as individual companies start to segment and block the internet to suit their own commercial requirements ! Fortunately there’s a solution and a pretty simple on too – it’s called a VPN (Virtual Private Network).
How to Watch RTE Player in the USA
In order to watch rte player in the US with VPN you need a Virtual Private Network (VPN). A VPN encrypts your internet traffic and allows you to access geo-restricted websites and services from anywhere in the world without revealing your actual location.
There are many different types of VPNs; the ones we tested that work with RTE player at the moment are:
Basically what happens is that when you connect to a VPN your location is hidden. Any website or application you visit will only see the IP address of the VPN server not your real one. This feature means that as long as you have access to VPN servers in different countries you can effectively bypass all these online blocks. So if you’re in the USA and want to watch RTE Player you just need to start your VPN and connect to a Irish based server.
Have a look at this video to see how it works using one of our best VPN suggestions.
How to Watch RTE in USA
The actual process is exactly the same whichever country you choose. Just pick the appropriate country for the content you wish to gain access for. For RTE Player you obviously need an Irish IP address – from the Republic of Ireland not Northern Ireland which is British.
This means while connected you’ll effectively be treated like an Irish web surfer and so all of RTE will work perfectly. It’s worth remembering though that your new Irish IP address will block you from lots of US based sites ! So you’ll need to disconnect from the Irish server to watch US only sites again. The VPN does though give you control over most global geo-blocks like this as long as you have access to a server in the correct country.
So as well as a US surfer getting access to Irish TV sites like RTE, they can switch servers and watch stuff from France, Canada, Australia, UK or anywhere else. If you want to maximise the number of servers you have access to then NordVPN is probably the best bet as the basic subscription gives you servers in over sixty different countries.
What Can I Watch on RTE Player in the US
RTE Player is an online television service that offers its viewers the ability to watch their favorite RTE shows on demand. There’s a lot of shows you’ll see on other channels in the UK and the US but also a surprising amount of original dramas too.
Here’s a quick example of some of the entertainment options available on RTE.
2023 RTE Dramas
- An intriguing new TV show is the Canadian-Irish crime drama ‘Kin,’ which follows the lives of a fictional Dublin family in a gangland war.
- The popular Tv series Smother, which was written by Kate O’Riordan and filmed in County Clare, follows the gripping story of Kate’s family
- Angeline Ball is featured in the crime drama “Hidden Assets,” which follows the connection between a wealthy Irish family, a stash of rough diamonds, and a series of bombings in Belgium.
- Harry Wild – a recently retired English professor named Harry sees signs of a murder on the side as he keeps busy by joining her son’s police detective case as his associate. Harry becomes involved in a crime investigation connected to her own unsuspecting husband and is surprised when someone threatens her life.
- Ireland’s favourite drama Fair City, with the residents of Carrigstown continuing to share their lives with us every Sunday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday evenings.
- This Saturday’s “Saturday Night Lurve” will air on RTE at 1850-2000 and will feature new configuration of the stars along with a new format Karaoke-inspired game called Last Singer Standing. There will be four contenders: Nadine Coyle, Joey Fatone, and Samantha Mumba to answer questions about their phenomenally popular songs and which verse they prefer, as well as the opinions of the hugely popular panels including Nicky Byrne.
- Glow Up Ireland sees Maura Higgins challenge makeup artists of the highest calibre to compete against each other, with the two unforgiving judges putting them through their paces are industry professionals Cathyanne Mac Allister and Emma O’Byrne.
There’s much, much more and RTE produces a lot of high quality TV programmes across the different sectors.
FAQ: Is RTE Player free?
RTE is Ireland’s National Public Broadcaster and as such most of it’s income comes from a mandatory license fee. This is much like the UK model where the BBC is financed from a similar fee levied on all TV watchers in the UK. Unlike the BBC – RTE also generates a significant amount of commercial revenue from it’s advertising. Both channels also receive commercial income directly or indirectly from reselling the rights to their shows.
So if you’re a viewer in the Republic of Ireland, you have to pay the TV license fee but nothing else. If you’re using a VPN to access from outside Ireland you’re potentially skipping this charge too as the license is not available. You will of course though have the cost of the VPN service which will allow you to watch from outside the country.
How to Watch Irish TV in USA
It’s simple, you just need a VPN to change your IP address. You can watch Irish TV for free as long as you have an Irish IP address. A VPN can do this easily by hiding your real location and routing your connection through a server based in Ireland. It’s simple and usually involves a single click.
Does RTE Have a Download Feature ?
Copyright restrictions mean that RTE does not allow downloading of videos. There are a few features and programs which allow video capture or to copy from YouTube streams of RTE shows. However unlike the BBC there is no integral down load program with the ability to stream offline. You can watch most shows live online and the majority of non-time sensitive shows are available in the archive to stream on demand.
Try the Best UK TV from BBC iPlayer with your VPN
There are lots of other channels you can access using a VPN, certainly far too many to list. However for English speakers potentially the best resource online anywhere in the world is the BBC iPlayer. It’s the website of the UK’s public service broadcaster and contains probably the world’s largest collection of TV programmes.
The BBC iPlayer gives you access to the 15 or so live TV channels which you can stream online. You can also watch most BBC shows for up to six months after from the archive. The only exceptions are a few programmes which have more restrictive copyrights like Match of the Day (Premiership football) and various blockbuster movies.
To access instead of selecting an Irish server you should click on a UK one too. The BBC tries to block access from VPN just like RTE, so you should check that your VPN allows access as not all will. Again we tend to use NordVPN for this especially as they have a range of servers the optimize for BBC iPlayer access. You have to create an account to watch BBC iPlayer, but don’t worry it’s entirely free of charge. You will be asked your postcode (like a US ZIP) but you can choose anyone as longs as it’s in the UK – pick any online address and use it. You will also be asked whether you have a valid UK TV license, just say yes there’s no further checks.
Check out ITVX from the UK
Lots of people access RTE player because it has some great dramas and detective shows. There is another UK channel which also has a great selection of these sorts of shows. I’m referring to the channel which produced Downton Abbey – ITV, the UK’s largest commercial TV channel. Again you can use a VPN with UK servers which most of them have. ITV also blocks many VPNs though so check each one works before you take out a long subscription.
ITV does have advertisements throughout it’s shows. Don’t be tempted to upgrade to the advert free channel ITV Hub Plus unless you have a form of UK based payment. There are usually checks on most payment forms as part of the geo-targeting process, i.e. you won’t be able to use a US card for the subscription.
Other UK TV Channels
There are several other UK TV channels which are worth checking out and can supplement your RTE viewing choice. Channel 4 is another commercial UK channel which has a strong online site called All 4. It’s generally got younger, more arts based programmes than the other channels but also has some great documentaries.
Channel 5 is a more ‘entertainment’ based channel which imports a lot of US based shows too. Lots more reality and light entertainment shows especially for the younger generation. All of the main British TV channels are free to air so it’s worth having a look.
A VPN Opens up the World
It can get quite addictive when you get used to switching countries with just a click of a button. Often a website looks completely different depending on where you are connecting from. Generally though, the home or domestic market of a website will offer the best experience if you can work this out. You’re only actually limited by the number of servers that your VPN allows access.
There’s a fine balance here though, although it’s great to have a huge choice of different servers and countries many of them you simply won’t use. If you’re primary focus is watching RTE from the US – then the number and quality of Irish VPN servers is the most important metric. Having twenty servers based in Russia won’t help you watch the Gaelic football on RTE. Similarly it’s great to have a large number of servers in countries which you use the most – I primarily use US and UK based servers.
If you’re not using the servers for bypassing these geo-blocks then you should generally use servers in your location. These will generally be quicker as they are closer to you, you’ll still get the protection and privacy protection that all VPN services should provide.
Don’t Bother with Free VPNs Especially for RTE Player
Free is of course great, unfortunately though there are no real free VPNs that work properly for most popular online resources. Certainly any free proxy you find will never work with channels like RTE and BBC. Even if they’re not blocked, which they almost always will be, then there’s a huge risk to using them. No-one provides anything completely free especially if it costs them a lot of money to run. Free proxies are either riddled with malware or adware or even worse are run by cyber criminals who use them to steal your data.
The only free VPN that will potentially work are those like Hola. These are fully fledged ‘free’ VPNs but in exchange for their use you have to let other people use your internet connection while you’re using them. So basically anyone can be surfing or connecting online hidden behind your IP address. There’s loads of reasons you shouldn’t do this, I’m sure you can think of your own ! Certainly don’t do this from your home internet connection. In reality even these don’t work well for watching TV stations online as they’re too slow.