The 2016 world championships were streamed online on a French TV channel. But if you wanted to watch the champtionships, and lived in the USA, and went to La chaîne l’Équipe to watch the championships, what you saw was a “region restricted” message. You can see it HERE.
In this post I describe the tool that I used to get around the region restrictions and watch the championships. If you’re interested in the technology behind region restriction, and the ways to get around region restrictions, Google THIS.
The product/service that I used is called TunnelBear. TunnelBear is a highly-rated VPN provider, and it worked well for me. Here’s how you can do what I did.
- Get the Chrome web browser. It is a good, fast browser, and it is free. It can be downloaded from Google’s web site.
- Open the Chrome browser. Go to the TunnelBear web site and navigate to the DOWNLOAD page.
- On the DOWNLOAD page, scroll down until you see “Browser Extensions”.
- Download and install the TunnelBear extension for Chrome.
- The download comes with 500Mb of free data. That’s enough to watch several minutes of video and to make sure the browser extension is working, but it is not enough to watch an entire petanque game. I signed up with the TunnelBear service for a monthly subscription, which comes with unlimited data, at a cost of about $8 per month. That was enough to allow me to watch all 8 hours of the world championships. (You can also get the TunnelBear service for a much lower cost with a yearly subscription.)
- After you have watched the championships, assuming that you have no other use for TunnelBear, remember to go back to the TunnelBear web site and cancel your monthly subscription. (Technically, the way you cancel a monthly subscription is to downgrade it to a free subscription.) The cancel/downgrade process is quick and easy. If you don’t cancel/downgrade, your monthly subscription will remain in effect and TunnelBear will continue charging your credit card every month.
If you stream French TV, you need to be aware of time differences between France and the USA. Right now, where I live, we are on Mountain Standard time, which means that we are 8 hours ahead of French time. The French broadcast started at 1600h (4pm), which means that it started at 800h (8am) our local time. Depending on your time zone and whether or not you are on daylight-savings time, your time will vary.