How to Watch Rakuten TV Outside Japan

Last Updated: March 21, 2021

Rakuten TV is a Japanese video streaming platform (very similar to Netflix) that offers TV shows, sports, and movie content for streaming. The TV’s catalog covers a range from different sources and results in a slew of amazing movies and TV series available to the Japanese people.

Rakuten TV has the clearance to air in Japan and about 40 other countries (including Italy, Spain, UK, Germany, and France). This is because of the copyright restrictions on content streamed on the Rakuten TV platform. That isn’t a very pleasant policy for users outside of the borders of the “allowed” countries that are interested in the content.

A Virtual Private Network (VPN) deals with that by masking your real IP address with a Japanese address. So, the streaming service sees you as being in Japan, hence granting you access to stream its content.

How To Watch Rakuten TV with a VPN

To get started with Rakuten TV abroad, you simply have to activate the services of your preferred VPN. Follow the step-by-step instructions spelled out below to access Rakuten TV:

  1. Register to create an account with the VPN with an active email address and password.
  2. Download and install the VPN app either from the website or your device’s app store.
  3. Select a Japanese server: Click Location, navigate through, and select Japan.
  4. Stream Rakuten TV.

Sometimes you have to clear cookies and cache on your browser, before the VPN swings into action fully.

Top VPNs for Accessing Rakuten TV Outside Japan

Since we now know why no one can stream on Rakuten TV abroad and the way through, we should discuss the best VPNs that can help grant access to Rakuten TV specifically for those outside Japan. This section recommends five top VPNs that have been tested to be effective.

1. ExpressVPN 

Overall best in our tests

  • Super-fast servers
  • AES 256-bit encryption
  • Supports private protocol, Lightway
  • Money-back guarantee

ExpressVPN is not a newbie in the VPN industry. Despite that, the network is still waxing more potent by the day. It is an undisputed champion in the league of VPNs. This VPN service has over 3,000 servers around the world, and a couple of them are specifically dedicated to Japan. The servers are also speedy and stable.

Japan is known to be an internet-friendly country in terms of browsing speed. To enhance that, ExpressVPN doesn’t reduce your speed; instead, it delivers Rakuten TV to your screen at an amazing speed. This VPN service is an excellent choice for content streaming, and it offers unlimited bandwidth data. ExpressVPN is therefore also a good choice for Japanese TV in general, letting you also access other shows AbemaTV or GYAO abroad.

This VPN doesn’t only deliver a top-notch streaming service; it has a bunch of security and privacy features. ExpressVPN has been known to keep a strict no-logs policy. Concerning that, no bit of your online activity is available to external parties. Also, this VPN service has a kill switch whose presence trips off your internet connection if you lose connection with the VPN. The company also uses a private Domain Name System (DNS) in a bid to bypass transmission traffic and further cement security.

ExpressVPN uses military-grade encryption, so your traffic data is in great hands. It also has a split tunneling feature that allows you to stream Rakuten TV abroad and check your local bank account without switching off the VPN. This VPN delivers top-notch streaming service regardless of your location. It allows you to connect a maximum of five devices to just one subscription.

Best offer: $6.67/month (save 49% + 3 months free)

Visit ExpressVPN

2. NordVPN

Definitely the fastest in our tests

  • Incredibly fast servers
  • Great security features
  • Verified no-logs policy
  • Unblocks streaming platforms

This VPN is not just a regular VPN if you ask tech enthusiasts. It is second only to ExpressVPN (yes, it’s that good). NordVPN has 5,400+ ultra-fast servers across the globe and 80 in Japan alone. Having such a high number in Japan gives you the luxury of multiple choices. The NordVPN servers are incredibly stable and steady with breakneck speed; they are also well optimized for streaming.

NordVPN has a SmartPlay feature that is targeted at easing you into streaming platforms like Rakuten TV, irrespective of how strong the geo-restriction is. This VPN also offers unlimited bandwidth of data, so you can stream as much as you want without having to worry about limitations.

Even if hackers try to snoop your data from NordVPN, they can’t. This is because NordVPN operates a strict no-log policy system, and that, in its own way, takes privacy to a higher level. Also, hackers can’t take advantage if you lose connection with the VPN server for a split second due to the power of its kill switch.

The encryption of your traffic with NordVPN is ensured by the best-in-class 256-bit Advanced Encryption Standard (AES). In addition, the service routes your data through two servers just so you get extra protection from double encryption. It has DNS leak protection and uses a couple of security protocols. Finally, NordVPN blocks off ads and pop-ups that might interrupt your Rakuten TV streaming experience. You can connect up to six devices simultaneously to one NordVPN-enabled device.

NordVPN is also a good choice for streaming similar Japanese streaming plattforms overseas, such as the Japanese version of Netflix or Amazon Prime Video Japan.

Best offer: $3.71/month (save 68% + 3 months free)

Visit NordVPN

3. Surfshark 

Best for connecting multiple devices

  • Allows unlimited simultaneous connections
  • Integrates Stealth mode
  • Multihop feature available
  • 3000+ servers

Surfshark really deserves all the credit it gets because the VPN service speaks volumes. Speaking of volume, Surfshark has over 3,200 servers across 60+ countries in the world, including Japan, of course. Those servers have proven to be some of the fastest in the world, delivering content at split-second speed.

Surfshark is widely known for its ability to deliver streaming services fast and securely. It masks your IP address and encrypts it to prevent attacks from snoops. That bid to ensure privacy by masking your IP address also works to help bypass geo-restrictions on Rakuten TV. You don’t just get access to the content though, Surfshark gives you an amazing streaming experience with no buffering and no limitations to bandwidth data. This VPN blocks ads and malware and keeps your Rakuten TV stream sane.

If you’re not connected to the VPN service, you won’t have access to Rakuten TV. The same goes for security; if you’re not connected at any point in time, your connection becomes open to attack from cyber snoops. To that effect, Surfshark has a kill switch to stop data transmission if your VPN connection drops. Also, the VPN provider operates a strict no-log policy.

Despite all that has been discussed so far, there’s more to Surfshark and the security it offers. As expected of a premium VPN, Surfshark uses the robust AES-256 detail and supports it with a MultiHop feature. This VPN service does not put a limit to the number of devices you can protect with one Surfshark subscription. It also offers a Whitelister that allows you to select which apps or devices should bypass the VPN service despite being connected to the VPN-enabled device.

Surfshark is also working fine with other Japanese streaming plattforms overseas. If you for example would want to watch Japanese DAZN in China or TVer in Hong Kong, Surfshark would be a good choice.

Best offer: $2.21/month (save 83% + 3 months free)

Visit Surfshark

4. CyberGhost

Offers the best money-back guarantee

  • 45-day money-back guarantee
  • 7000+ reliable servers
  • Strict no-log policy
  • Tough security features

CyberGhost is another very reliable VPN provider. It ticks all boxes, ranging from top speed to content unblocking and even to privacy and security. This VPN has a very simple and direct navigation design that makes it easy to use, even for VPN first-timers. It has an extensive server database of 7,000+ servers globally. 71 of those servers are dedicated to Japan.

The CyberGhost servers are very vast in their productivity. They are adequately optimized for streaming, and that means Rakuten TV comes by as easily as it can be— seamless, zero-buffering, no throttling. Also, CyberGhost offers unlimited bandwidth of data, so you can stream as much as you want without restrictions.

In the advancement of privacy, this VPN does not keep a record of what you do online. Also, it does not record timestamps. Due to that policy, if the government requests that they provide your records or hackers try to snoop in on your data, they’ll be left empty-handed. This is because CyberGhost does not keep such records. To finally seal off your anonymity, CyberGhost uses a kill switch.

In conclusion, this VPN uses the uncrackable 256-bit AES. That encryption standard is the same one used by government agencies and even the military. Also, CyberGhost uses various secure protocols like OpenVPN, IKEv2, and WireGuard®. The VPN’s leak protection details are also worthy of note. CyberGhost software allows the connection of a maximum of seven devices to one subscription.

Best offer: 2€/month (save 83%)

Visit CyberGhost

5. ProtonVPN

Best VPN with a free version

  • Free version available
  • Strong security features
  • Reliable no-logs policy
  • Allows Perfect Forward Secrecy

This VPN is amazingly top-tier. Being the last on this list, it is still ahead of hundreds of other VPN providers. ProtonVPN has 1,000+ super-fast and stable servers spread out across the world, with 23 Japanese servers. If you want top speed, fantastic streaming service, privacy, and security features at its peak, ProtonVPN is a big-game VPN.

The servers are engineered to support streaming to the very best of their abilities. However, there’s a condition with this VPN— a fantastic streaming service is reserved for users that subscribe to the Plus and Visionary plans. On the free version and Basic plan, you might not be able to get past censored content on Rakuten TV. Overall, as long as you get the required subscription, you’ll get top-notch streaming delivery with unlimited bandwidth.

ProtonVPN is headquartered in Switzerland, and as a result, it reflects the country’s privacy laws. The VPN is under no obligation to record your online activity, and it stays true to its no-log policy. ProtonVPN also keeps to a Perfect Forward Secrecy standard that ensures your traffic data remains secure even if the encryption key gets hacked.

Furthermore, this VPN service has a kill switch, an Always-On feature, and security protocols that have been tested and confirmed to be entirely secure. It also uses military-grade encryption and gives you the advantage of streaming on up to 10 devices at a time.

Best offer: €4/month

Visit ProtonVPN

How to Choose a Good VPN for Rakuten TV

VPNs are built differently, and the features embedded in these VPNs make them good, average, or the best. There is no particular order of preference for these features. The premium placed on any depends on your choice.

However, the features to consider are universal, even though a few might be negligible to some people. This section highlights the characteristics to be considered before finally deciding on which VPN to choose.

1. VPN-Device compatibility

The type of operating system (OS) your device works on determines which file type it can launch. So it’s important to download the VPN software format that your device’s OS supports.

2. Servers in Japan

To unblock Japan-exclusive content on Rakuten TV, you need to connect to a Japanese server. The presence of a VPN service in Japan and the number of servers are equally important.

3. Connection speed and streaming quality

You can run a speed test (if available) or test run the service yourself to see how fast it is. However, all the VPNs in this guide deliver the fastest speeds in the VPN industry today. Also, buffering and speed throttling are a big turn-off. Look out for those lags in play.

4. Bandwidth limit

A premium VPN shouldn’t restrict your bandwidth data.

5. Privacy and Security features

Characteristics like no-log, and multiple security protocols play a vital role in promoting the security of a user’s connection.

6. Advanced features

They include split tunneling features (Whitelister), multiple encryption features (DoubleVPN and MultiHop), ad and malware blocker (CyberSec and CleanWeb), etc.

7. Price and money-back guarantee

Even though some VPN subscriptions are expensive, there are relatively cheap ones that even come with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

8. Reviews 

“No man is an island of knowledge.” When you seek opinions of people that have used these VPNs, you get a more informed detail from their experience. Review articles like this one could also help in guiding you through picking the best VPN for you.

Conclusion

When Japanese people travel out of the country for a vacation or an official assignment, it’ll be unfair to deny them of their favorite sights of live sports and TV shows on Rakuten TV. A good VPN brings fairness to the equation and gives everyone access to all sorts of content regardless of location. You can trust the VPNs we recommend in this article to deliver top-notch streaming services with toppings of adequate privacy and security.

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