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How to Use the ABC iPad App in Canada and Outside the USA

by on April 19th, 2010

Disclaimer: For legal reasons we are stating that if you choose to use the method described below, you do so and your own risk and furthermore, you should also note that ABC states the broadcast of this US-Only TV content outside the United States of America is prohibited, due to international licensing agreements. This walk-through outlines a workaround for iPad users located outside the United States of America, and is used solely at the device owner’s own risk. This post is for educational purposes only.

If you’ve had a chance to check out the ABC iPad app, you know it’s an amazing app. TV shows are streamed in high quality with only a few sponsored commercials during each episode. If other networks can jump onto this model, the future of TV will change before we know it.

How to Use the ABC iPad App in Canada and Outside the USA

If you’re in Canada or any other country, due to US-only restrictions the ABC iPad app won’t work. You’ll get an error messages that states this app isn’t available in your country. How do we bypass this restriction? The method is to purchase a PPTP VPN (Virtual Private Network) to bypass non-US IP restrictions. This method will allow your iPad to play Pandora Radio and other US only apps (including the ‘future’ Hulu iPad app). Here we go!

1. Purchase a ‘personalVPN’ PPTP from Witopia.com (or any other VPN provider). It’s $39.99US/year, but use coupon code “shxpt” to save 10%–works out to $36.99US.

2. Activate your package and write down your login details.

3. From your iPad: Go to Settings–>General–>Network–>VPN. Tap “Add VPN Configuration”

4. On the PPTN tab, enter your VPN details:
Description: anything you want it to be
Server: pptp.witopia.net
Account: yourusername@witopia
RSA SecurID: OFF
Password: the password you created with your Witopia account
Encryption level: Auto
Send all traffic: ON

5. Tap ‘Save’. Your new connection should now be displayed in the VPN list.

6. Toggle your VPN to “ON”. If successfully connected, you’ll see the “VPN” icon beside your WiFi icon in the upper left screen of your iPad. PS – Modern Family FTW!

7. Download the ABC app with your US iTunes account–and enjoy.

The quality of the video is pretty good. The commercials might not be very clear at times, but don’t let that deter you. Once the video of your show buffers a bit, it clears right up. There is no fast forward feature, but you can pause your video. For those lazy Sunday mornings, you can sit back and watch all your favourite ABC shows right on your iPad.

This PPTN VPN also enables the usage of Pandora radio on the iPad too. Any US-only iPad app will work in Canada, or any other country. This solution would be handy for Americans living out of the county that want access to content from back home.

So, there you have it. Let your friends know about this educational tutorial. Thanks to RazorianFly for the help.

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Posted under: App Store, Reviews, Tutorials, Videos

  • Steve s

    Cool. My iPad comes today so I will be trying this out. Thanxs.

  • Steve s

    Cool. My iPad comes today so I will be trying this out. Thanxs.

  • Wuju

    This look interesting. Can this be done on multiple machines or it only works on one iPad? I have a Sonos at home, so I wonder if I can do this on my home wireless network so I can stream Pandora radio at home as well.

  • Wuju

    From their website I see personalVPN™ – PPTP for 39.99

    Where is the personalVPN™ – PPTN? Is there a typo or I'm missing something?

  • John Southin

    Was wondering the same thing. Also, there's a warning that it might be “throttled” in Canada. I assume that's not a good thing.

  • http://www.iphoneincanada.ca Gary

    Whoops, my bad. Fixed. The link takes you right there to the PPTP.

    Gary

  • http://www.iphoneincanada.ca Gary

    It works on my iPhone as well. Haven't tried my Mac yet.

    Gary

  • Steve s

    Just set it up and everything works perfect

  • http://www.iphoneincanada.ca Gary

    Good to hear! The VPN can be setup on your iPhone too.

    Gary

  • Wuju

    I have a fido and using edge to try to connect but it didn't work. Any idea why?

    I have everything the same as above with username and password being different. Must I use wifi or I can VPN with edge or 3G?

  • http://www.iphoneincanada.ca Gary

    I just tried connecting to the VPN via 3G on my 3GS, but it won't connect.

  • Wuju

    so it sounds like iphone or ipad must be on a wifi?

    Tried wifi with VPN on my iPad, still doesn't work. :( Wifi only works off course.

  • http://www.iphoneincanada.ca Gary

    Make sure your username is “yourname@witopia” —NOT yourname@witopia.net.

    I ran into this problem when I first setup my account on the iPad.

  • Wuju

    no .net. This is frustrating. :(

  • http://www.iphoneincanada.ca Gary

    Check your logins again…if it fails…just get a refund. :)

  • rorypiper

    Interesting workaround, but do I really want to pay $37 per year to watch the ABC network? I don't even watch it on my TV, for free!

  • http://www.iphoneincanada.ca Gary

    Haha. True. But for new apps like Hulu (if it ever is released) people
    will pay instead of waiting for downloads.

    Gary

  • Wuju

    Here are my results:

    VPN works at home via wifi with Bell ISP provider
    VPN not working at work via wifi, not sure what is the ISP
    VPN not working through FIDO either 3G or Edge.

    What are yours that works, not work.

  • http://twitter.com/iPhoneArena Steven Chi

    sweeet stuff. is the account shareable?

  • http://www.iphoneincanada.ca Gary

    VPN works at home on Shaw via WiFI

    Both iPhone and iPad.

  • http://www.iphoneincanada.ca Gary

    Haven't thought about that. Test it out and let us know! hehe ;)

  • Wuju

    Tt can work across multiple devices but only one can log on at a time. You can share with someone but you can't both using it at the same time.

  • Wuju

    Be warn, using 3G, with VPN and MyWi may crash your iPhone. It happens to me and now it's stuck. I may have to restore, hope not.

    3G + Mywi = good
    3G + VPN = good
    wifi = VPN = good
    3G + VPN + Mywi = dead phone. :(

  • http://twitter.com/robschertzer Dr Robert Schertzer

    Guess others figured out that it is witopia.net not .com http://www.witopia.net/welcome.php
    Looking forward to trying this for 'educatioal purposes only.'
    –R

  • http://twitter.com/robschertzer Dr Robert Schertzer

    I'm getting lost in the discussion threads here. Has anyone confirmed that the witopia.net VPN works over Rogers at least on the iPhone pending having a 3G ipad in our hands?

  • JerBear

    So this FOR SURE works? I have a VPN through blacklogic and it keeps telling me that itunes & the app store aren't supported in “my” country even though I'm successfully connected through the VIP connection. I'd hate to go and pay 40 clams for a witopia account only to find that I have the same problem.

  • http://www.iphoneincanada.ca Gary

    Obviously it works or I wouldn't post about it. Didn't you read my post?! ;)

    Plus, clearly stated there's a 30 day money back guarantee with Witopia.

  • JerBear

    Well, Witopia didn't work and Black Logic, as I previously mentioned, also didn't work. Oh well, I guess I'm screwed. Jailbreak, here I come!

  • Peter C

    Thanks Gary, this worked perfectly for me here in Ireland, and for me the witopia subscription is worth it as many of the programmes haven't been shown yet here. Thanks for your tutorial, I hope some more apps like this such as hulu come out soon on the iPad.

  • http://www.iphoneincanada.ca Gary

    Cheers! Enjoy. ;)

    Gary

  • ron_l

    does anyone have this working through rogers 3g?

  • ndhunay

    Gary, I followed the steps as outlined and when I go to turn on the VPN, I get the message “The server is unreachable. Try reconnecting….”. I'm trying this on an iPad on Wifi with Shaw as the ISP.

    Any idea?

  • mengbers

    Got it working…. ndhunay the issue is a typo in the instructions up above… it describes it as the pptn server and the server being pptn.witopia.net

    that's a typo… it should be (as shown in the graphic) pptp.witopia.net

    Got it working!

    One other option for those willing to wait, would be to get the 'cloud browse' app that is coming out for the iPad (currently iPhone) and brose the abc site directly…. no cost, but not as smooth.

  • http://www.iphoneincanada.ca Gary

    Typo fixed, my bad!

  • justin

    it would be great if you could make a video for this on youtube.

  • Fcavalieri

    Great suggestion. I can use now in Brazil. tks

  • Peter

    Follow all the steps, have the VPN connected but i can`t start the ABC player or load any site in the safari…
    Any idea???

    tks

  • Mike

    This may not work everywhere. It does not work in Ontario, more's the pity.

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  • Aloisio

    I live in Brazil and I just made all the steps above. The VPN is working but when I run the ABC aplication a message appears saying that I’m “Out of the Country”, just like before.

  • http://www.iphoneincanada.ca Gary

    It looks like the ABC app has recognized Witopia’s IP addresses.

  • Jetfieldson

    this no longer work!

  • iVictoria

    Gary will the HotspotShield VPN (posted on iPhoneinCanada for use of Pandoraon the iPhone) also work on the iPad for ABC Player? I set up the HotspotShield VPN on my iPad and Pandora is running smoothly on the iPad but ABC Player will not run. What is the difference between PPTP and IPSec – when setting up the VPN connection?

  • http://www.iphoneincanada.ca Gary

    It appears the ABC iPad app has changed as I cannot access it even with Witopia. I’ll update this post.

  • ilisa

    if you want to make a complaint to the ABC app, click on link and tell them you are Canadian, state your case then send away…i did and hopefully if enough Canadian’s make a complaint they will try to work it out for us, as we pay full price, if not more due to the dollar, and would like to use the ipad to the fullest extent like American’s.

    http://abc.go.com/watch/help

  • Langkaw1

    Def does not work anymore so dont waste your money. Shame

  • Naila

    ABC ipad application doesn’t work with witopia. Has anyone found a solution?

  • Justin

    USVideo.ca, follow the steps. It works but it cost $5/month after a one week free trial.

  • Karen

    You state we need to download the abc app with our us iTunes account. I live in Canada so of course don’t have a us account. How can I get around this

    Karen

  • http://www.iphoneincanada.ca/ Ex

    Read through the post again. This time, pay close attention to Step 7.

  • jalin2

    I paid for the VPN through Witopia and although I was able to get the VPN connection, I am not able to run either ABC Player or Pandora. Not a well spent $40.00.

  • Tonytouch

    Hahaha, this reminds me of my vetebrate biology professor’s responses on webct

  • S Sami95

    Would this work on an iPod or iPhone also? Is it specific to iPads only?

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  • Kendra

    Thanks for the article Gary. ABC Go offers some great shows and of course the ABC live feature. If you don’t live in US, you can use UnoTelly or similar tools to access it in your country.