Android TV devices are direct replacements for media center software such as Kodi or Plex. Due to their low setup requirements, they are perfect for those who lack the confidence, expertise, or time necessary to set up a typical digital media center. Additionally, since Android is a free, open-source operating system, the hardware is often rather affordable.
When you purchase an Android TV box, you’ll discover that it comes pre-installed with a slew of video applications. The issue is that these applications often geo-restrict their content. This implies they may be accessed only from a certain nation or area. For example, if you reside in the United States, you will be unable to access the BBC iPlayer.
This issue may be resolved by connecting to a virtual private network (VPN). VPNs encrypt and route your network traffic via a server located in a separate location. Outside observers will now see your traffic as originating from the area in which the server is located. Even better, your encrypted data is unreadable by anybody who does not have a decryption key. This stops your ISP from seeing the websites you visit and the content you stream, as well as selling or exploiting information about your online habits to justify slowing down your internet connection speeds.
Best VPN for Android TV boxes
There are plenty of VPN services accessible, but not all of them are optimal for users of Android TV boxes. We suggested the best VPN for streaming below, go through their features, and explain which platforms they support. After all, there is no reason why your VPN usage should be limited to your Android TV box. To determine the top VPN service for Android TV boxes, we searched for VPNs that provided the following:
- Rapid streaming and dependable connections.
- There is both an Android app and a separate APK file for manual installation.
- Secure access to popular streaming services.
- Data logging is kept to a minimum to ensure that your browsing experience is really private.
NordVPN provides a variety of server types, including those that are intended for ultra-fast streaming. This is a significant bonus if you’re interested in viewing 4K content on your TV box (if your hardware supports it). Even better, NordVPN supports multiple simultaneous device connections on a single account, far more than most other VPN companies. There is also live chat customer support available in the event that you run into any difficulties.
There’s also no slouch in terms of security when it comes to safeguarding your online activity. NordVPN employs military-grade encryption that is unbreakable at the time of writing. It does not track any personally identifying information, and its kill switch enables you to disable internet access for specified programs in the event that the VPN server connection is broken.
NordVPN offers programs for Windows, MacOS, Android, Linux, and iOS, as well as Firefox and Chrome browser extensions. It may be installed manually on a wide variety of WiFi routers.
How we decide on the best VPN for Android TV boxes
You cannot be expected to test every VPN that provides an Android TV app! We’ve tried to save you time by suggesting the top Android TV box VPN. The following sections detail our methods for identifying them:
- Compatible with Android TV: Naturally, we began by looking for VPNs that provide Android TV applications (not all VPNs do this!).
- Servers located across the world: It is critical that your VPN has servers in a variety of regions. This gives you more freedom in terms of the stuff you may unblock and in terms of locating a fast server near your actual location. A VPN with thousands of servers in dozens of countries, including the United States, has been detected.
- Speed: Our speed testing assisted us in determining the fastest VPNs for Android TV. All of these services are ideal for streaming, owing to their limitless bandwidth. This means that you can stream your favorite applications in high definition on Android TV without experiencing latency or buffering.
- Unblocking: Not all VPNs are consistently effective at unblocking content, especially streaming services. After putting each VPN to the test against a variety of geo-restricted websites and services, we feel they are the most trustworthy solutions available. This makes them all ideal for international travel.
- Security: Whether you use your VPN with your Android TV or your Android phone, you can expect strong encryption, a kill switch, and security against DNS leaks. This protects your data even while connected to public wifi networks. Certain VPNs even contain additional features such as Double VPN servers, which encrypt your data twice.
- Privacy: While many VPN providers promise to maintain no-logs policies, this is not always the case. We investigated over 100 VPN logging policies in total, finding those that retain user identification information and those that do not. This way, you can be certain that the VPNs we offer preserve your privacy.
- Ease of use: A VPN program for Android TV, like any other VPN tool, should be speedy and simple to use. You should be able to connect to a server in a matter of seconds, and the likelihood is that you will not face any complications. In case you want help, live chat and email support are accessible 24 hours a day.
- Value for money: Certain VPNs that do not include an Android TV client are more costly than the top Android TV VPNs. It helps that we provide promotional codes for the VPNs mentioned in this article. Even better, they all come with a money-back guarantee, allowing you to test them out risk-free and seek a return if you’re not happy.
Detecting the aforementioned is an integral component of our VPN testing approach. This entails exhaustively evaluating each VPN on our own to ascertain its speed, security, streaming capabilities, and more.
Is it possible to utilize a free VPN on an Android TV box?
While some free VPN services are accessible, we do not recommend them for a variety of reasons. To begin, they are much slower than the VPN mentioned above. Generally, you’ll discover that checking your email takes a long time while connected, much alone streaming HD video.
Second, you must analyze how these VPN companies generate revenue. Nothing prevents them from showing advertisements on every website you visit or selling your internet history to other parties if they are extremely unethical. While most individuals use VPNs to keep their surfing secret, if you use a free VPN, you may be more vulnerable than before.
Finally, by using a free VPN, you expose your system to a wide variety of risks. This might be as basic as a VPN client infecting your computer with malware or as sophisticated as utilizing your machine as part of a botnet. To be secure, we advocate using only renowned, trustworthy VPN providers with comprehensive online privacy policies.
How to configure a VPN connection on an Android TV box
While downloading and configuring your VPN program is straightforward, if you’re unsure how to proceed, just follow our easy step-by-step instructions below.
- Select a suitable VPN service; we suggest NordVPN.
- On your smartphone, go to the Google Play Store.
- Locate the VPN provider’s app.
- Install the VPN client on your device.
- Open the app and pick any server, or the appropriate nation if you’re attempting to access regional content.
- Wait for the connection to be established before proceeding!
How to configure a VPN manually on an Android TV box
You should not be concerned if you are unable to access the app store using your device’s UI. Additionally, Android enables you to install and set up a VPN manually. We’ll walk you through the process in detail below.
How to manually install an APK file on an Android TV box
In essence, the app store is a more natural method of locating and installing APK files. If you locate the necessary file somewhere and transfer it to your device, it will be installed identically. This method of circumventing the app store is referred to as “sideloading.” To begin, go to the website of your VPN provider. Look for a direct link to the APK file under the Android title on the page where you pick your platform. To begin the download, tap on it.
To install the program, you must first enable installation from untrusted sources. This function is meant to safeguard you from potentially dangerous applications, however, there is no risk with this one since we know it is secure. Select the Lock screen and security option from the Settings menu. You’ll notice the Unknown sources option around halfway down the page; press it to enable it.
Then, launch the file management application on your smartphone. Navigate to the downloads folder and double-click the APK file that was previously downloaded. Once confirmed, the VPN program will begin installing, at which point you may begin using it.
Utilizing Android’s built-in VPN configuration
To begin, go to the Settings menu on your computer. Now, depending on the Android version you’re using, the following menu selections may be written somewhat differently, but it’s typically quite obvious which one you need. In my situation, I choose the VPN option after tapping the More option under the Wireless and networks section.
In the top-right corner of the screen, tap the Plus symbol. If you haven’t already, you’ll be asked to create a lock screen PIN or password. Once that is complete, give your VPN connection a name (in this example, I chose “IPVanish,” but you may want to call it something more descriptive of the location of the server to which you are connected).
The next step is to input your VPN credentials. This varies per service, however, the necessary information is often accessible on the company’s website under the Android setup instructions. IPVanish advises using PPTP for streaming videos, so choose that option from the list. Following that, you’ll need to enter the IP address of the server to which you want to connect. Again, they are available on your provider’s website. If you’re having difficulty locating the server address list, have a look at the Linux setup tutorials, since this step is also necessary on that platform.
Finally, in the boxes at the bottom, enter your login information and click Save. If you’d rather not log in manually each time, first enable the Always-on VPN option. Simply press the connection and, if everything goes well, you’ll be connected to the server of your choice. You may verify that your VPN is functioning properly by utilizing an IP address checker to determine the location to which your IP address is assigned.
Android TV box with VPN FAQs
Is it possible to connect to a VPN through my smart TV or must I use a computer?
This is very dependent on the app store that your TV can access and the degree to which its network setup settings are detailed. If you have access to the Google Play Store, you may be able to immediately install a VPN program. Alternatively, you may install a VPN on your home router, which will secure all devices on your network automatically.
Is there an Android TV VPN crack available?
To begin with, never install Android TV cracks, hacks, or unauthorized firmware fixes. In the majority of situations, they are superfluous, and some may cause irreparable harm to your system. Second, several big VPN providers have applications available on the Google Play Store, which means they can be installed without any manual settings.
How to install a VPN on an Android TV box through sideloading?
If your VPN does not yet have a Google Play Store app, you may sideload it just like any other software:
- To begin, go to the settings menu on Android TV and allow the installation of programs from unknown sources. It is located under Security & Restrictions.
- Locate the.APK file for the application you want to sideload.
- This should be uploaded to your chosen cloud storage site.
- Create a shared URL link for this file and paste it into the file explorer app on your Android TV.
- The.APK file should now be available for download and installation. Once the installation is complete, you should be able to connect normally.
Will a VPN affect my viewing speed on my Android TV box?
Each VPN may reduce your internet speed to some level, but on average, you can anticipate a 10% drop. Given that HD live streaming only requires about a 12 Mbps download rate, you should have no problem as long as your base connection is at least 12 Mbps.
There are a variety of additional variables that might affect the performance of your VPN. For example, you’ll often notice faster speeds while connecting to a server located close to your physical location rather than one located halfway across the globe. Similarly, you may see some slowness during busy hours, particularly if your selected provider’s network is quite tiny.
Is it permissible to use a VPN in conjunction with an Android TV box?
VPNs are first and foremost privacy utilities. They are used extensively across the globe by a wide variety of individuals and enterprises for totally legal purposes. As such, there is no reason why you should face prosecution just for utilizing a VPN (although there are a handful of countries with restrictions on the services you can use). The worst-case scenario is that you’ll be asked to disconnect from the VPN if your streaming platform detects your use.