You’ve invested in a smart TV and can now view all of your streaming entertainment without having to huddle around a computer screen or deal with many wires from the comfort of your sofa. However, there is an omission. You will still be unable to see all of the stuff you want because most of it is geo-restricted. The ideal option is a Virtual Private Network (VPN).
We’ll demonstrate how to safely access geo-restricted content through your smart TV in the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, France, Germany, or China, among other countries. We’ve suggested a VPN that is compatible with the most popular smart TV manufacturers, including Sony, Panasonic, LG, Philips, Samsung, and Vizio.
The best VPN for smart TVs
Contrary to popular belief, a VPN may be used with a smart TV. However, the majority of smart TVs do not have native VPN functionality. This requires using a VPN that may be installed on your router or that enables you to establish a secure wifi hotspot on your computer. Apart from that, you’ll want a VPN service that enables you to safely access many streaming websites while also delivering on other key factors such as speed, dependability, and security. Since not all providers are capable of providing all of these services, we’ve suggested the best based on the following criteria:
- Compatible with wireless routers.
- Rapid transfer rates provide buffer-free streaming.
- Compatible with major streaming services (Netflix, BBC, Hulu, Amazon Prime, etc.)
- Maintains a vast network of servers.
- Possesses robust security features.
- Adheres to a no-logging policy.
- Provides superior customer service.
NordVPN is compatible with a wide variety of streaming services, including Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, the BBC iPlayer, and Sky Go. It may be set to connect to your network, allowing secure access to all your content through your smart TV. Alternatively, FlashRouter manufacturers pre-configured Tomato and DD-WRT routers that eliminate the need for manual configuration.
NordVPN is quicker than any other VPN we’ve tried, and it even has dedicated streaming servers. With a massive network of over 5,000 servers in several countries, you should have no trouble locating one that works. If you have any questions, live chat customer support representatives are always here to assist you.
The service includes 256-bit AES encryption, perfect forward secrecy, a process-specific kill switch, and DNS leak prevention in its security package. Certain servers are geared to withstand DDoS assaults if that is a problem.
A basic account permits you to connect multiple devices concurrently. Desktop clients are available for Windows and MacOS, while mobile versions for Android and iOS are available for download.
Is it possible to use a free VPN with a smart TV?
While a free VPN may seem like a smart idea, these services often fall short. To begin with, it is less likely that a free service will function with a smart TV or that the provider will give enough assistance to help you set it up. Even if you do manage to get it started, there are further practical hurdles to face.
Free services suffer from sluggish bandwidth, a limited variety of servers, and lengthy wait periods to connect. And if you’re attempting to stream, a free VPN is more likely to result in a dreaded proxy error.
Apart from practical considerations, free services sometimes lack the robust security and privacy features offered by paid rivals. Many monitor user behavior or place tracking cookies on their computers, and then inject advertisements or sell user data to third parties. Several of them even include malware.
With providers such as those mentioned above providing such fantastic prices, it just makes no sense to spend time on a poor product.
How do I configure a VPN on a Smart TV?
Since smart TVs and VPNs are all somewhat different, there is no one-size-fits-all protocol for connecting. Numerous big electronics manufacturers have entered the smart TV market, including the following:
Certain companies’ newest television models provide the ability to install a VPN straight on them. For instance, since a majority of Sony’s smart TV models run on Android, they will be compatible with VPN software. Samsung smart TVs, on the other hand, are incompatible with VPN applications and must be configured differently, for example, via the router setup.
When you set up a VPN on your home network, it protects all devices linked to the router, including your smart TV. If your router’s firmware enables VPN configuration, you may follow the provider’s setup instructions (see below). If not, you may want to consider upgrading the router’s firmware to one that supports VPN connections, such as DD-WRT or Tomato. Keep in mind that flashing (changing firmware) might harm your router, so this is a task best left to more tech-savvy users.
Another option is to purchase a pre-configured router, such as the ones listed above. An ExpressVPN router is recommended because of its easy-to-use custom firmware. NordVPN and IPVanish both provide excellent choices created by FlashRouter, a third-party affiliate.
Because many smart TV VPN configurations require router configuration, you’re better off looking for router setup instructions for your specific router than for VPN documentation for your particular brand of TV.
Paid VPN providers are interested in ensuring that their service performs as expected and will provide support and troubleshooting help as needed. If you run into trouble, just contact your provider through live chat, email, or social media, and someone will lead you through the setup process or assist you in resolving any issues.
Our process for finding the best VPN for smart TVs
Numerous people use VPNs to access their preferred streaming providers on their PCs and mobile devices. However, you may like to view geo-restricted television episodes and films on a larger screen: your smart TV! The next section details our process for determining the best VPN for smart TVs.
Applications suitable for your smart TV: Of course, the first thing a VPN should have is apps compatible with your smart TV! This implies that it should support both Amazon Fire TV and Android TV. Additionally, the best VPN for smart TVs is router-compatible (although a manual setup is required).
- Worldwide servers: You don’t want to feel constrained regarding what you can and cannot access. That is why it is critical for a VPN to have a worldwide server network. This should cover a lot of nations, including the United States, allowing you to access Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, and Disney+, among others.
- Speed: Provide the required applications and servers is just the beginning. Additionally, a VPN must provide high-speed connections. Without them, streaming would be difficult without often suffering from performance difficulties such as lag and buffering.
- Streaming: Certain streaming services are renowned for being difficult to access when traveling. However, the finest VPNs are continually on the lookout for methods to enable you to utilize the same services safely as you would at home. This is partly due to their large number of servers and IP addresses, and some even provide obfuscated servers for concealing VPN traffic.
- Security: A VPN should ensure that you are always secure online. This begins with advanced encryption that protects your data from hackers. Certain VPNs provide additional security features such as dual VPN servers, an ad blocker, and a password manager. Thus, you may browse and watch with confidence.
- Privacy: Are you aware that certain VPNs record and sell your surfing history? If you’re looking for internet privacy, stick to the VPN mentioned in this article. They have “no-log” rules, which means that only you are aware of your internet activities. We examined over 100 VPN logging policies to determine the best.
- Ease of use: While some VPNs are needlessly difficult, we’ve discovered those with simple-to-use software. This means that you may register and configure your account in a couple of minutes, while connecting to a server takes just seconds. In all circumstances, live chat and email help are accessible 24 hours a day.
- Value for money: Just because a VPN offers all of the above does not imply that it should be expensive! While some VPNs are unquestionably pricey, we believe that the best VPN for smart TVs provides the greatest value. Indeed, you may save even more money by using our VPN promo code.
Each VPN is subjected to performance, security, and other testing. This is all part of our VPN testing approach, which enables us to determine what a VPN offers and does not provide, as well as if it qualifies as a top VPN for smart TVs.
Can I use a VPN without setting up my router on my smart TV?
If you are unable to install the VPN straight onto the TV and do not want to tamper with your home network, there are a handful of further possibilities. The most straightforward method would be to link your TV to a VPN-protected laptop or PC and just see what is shown on your computer screen. However, this completely negates the point of smart television.
Another alternative is to convert your laptop or PC into a wifi hotspot by creating a virtual router. This enables you to connect your smart TV to a secured network. For Windows users, our special guide on configuring a Windows VPN-enabled WiFi hotspot may be of assistance. Likewise, if you’re a Mac user, we offer a tutorial for configuring a VPN-enabled wifi hotspot on macOS.
While this is a more straightforward solution than setting up a router, it does require that you constantly have a computer operating as a router.
Which smart TV applications can a VPN assist me in safely accessing?
One of the most common applications of a VPN in conjunction with a smart TV is to recover access to the same services as you would at home. The following are just a few of the websites where a VPN may assist you in safely accessing:
- Amazon Prime Video
- BBC iPlayer
- ITV Hub
- Sky Go
Geo-restricted content isn’t the only thing available these days; some governments block access to famous websites such as YouTube and Google (including Google Play apps). Fortunately, a VPN can enable you to utilize any software for a smart TV that is region-locked. For instance, if YouTube is prohibited where you are, using a VPN to view it should be no problem.
VoIP calls are one area where smart TVs often fall short. Regrettably, for Skype customers, the business just terminated its smart TV app. Tellybean provides an alternative to some television brands, and its modest corporate size means it is unlikely to be detected by blockers, allowing it to be used without a VPN.
FAQs for Smart TV VPNs
Is NordVPN compatible with all smart TVs?
As with other VPNs, NordVPN is not compatible with all smart TVs. If your television is powered by an Android operating system, you may download the native NordVPN Android TV app. Another solution for other smart TVs is to configure NordVPN on your network. As a result, the VPN will protect any devices connected to your network, including your smart TV. Other possibilities are wirelessly or through an ethernet cable sharing a VPN connection from your PC.
Can I watch in 4K if I use a VPN with my smart TV?
The critical point here is to use a fast VPN. For 4K streaming in high resolution, you’ll need at least 40 Mbps internet connection. The majority of VPNs reduce your internet speed, although some do so more than others. NordVPN is the fastest VPN we’ve tested, making it the best option for 4K streaming.
Is it possible to utilize a DNS proxy in place of a VPN?
DNS proxy servers, similar to a VPN, disguise your location. That said, it’s really simple for websites to ban proxies, and chances are they won’t perform as intended.
Additionally, many DNS proxies are incompatible with smart TVs and home routers. Even if you manage to set it up, proxies often offer fewer geographic possibilities, which means you may be unable to access region-specific websites. ExpressVPN’s Media Streamer, which can be configured to operate with a smart TV, is a proxy that does not suffer from this issue.
Another critical area where proxies fall short is security. They do not encrypt your traffic, which means that your ISP or other snoopers may observe your activities. You may even be monitored by the proxy provider.
Is it possible to use a VPN to access Netflix on my smart TV?
Yes, a VPN may be used to stream Netflix on your smart TV. To do this, you’ll need to choose a VPN that supports Amazon Fire TV or Android TV applications. Another option is to do this via the use of a VPN on your router. This, however, requires manual setup. The good news is that the best VPN for smart TVs is router-compatible and includes Amazon Fire TV and Android TV applications.