Using a VPN on your Apple TV provides a secure Internet connection and removes geographical restrictions on streaming sites like Netflix and Hulu from anywhere in the world. This greatly increases the number of TV shows and movies you can watch on your Apple TV.
Find the best VPN for Apple TV. The five we recommended were easy to install, fast, and effective at unblocking streaming sites Disappointingly, there is no native VPN app in the tvOS App Store. However, there are some simple solutions to set up and use a VPN on Apple tvOS.
The simplest method involves a feature called Smart DNS, which allows you to connect to VPN servers by changing the DNS settings on your Apple TV. However, not all VPN services offer Smart DNS.
ExpressVPN, CyberGhost, and Surfshark all have Smart DNS, so it’s pretty easy to use them on your Apple TV.
NordVPN regularly makes it into our list of best VPNs for various features (as well as our overall list of best VPNs), and VPNs for Apple TV is no different. What you get is a top-notch provider that’s easy to use and offers excellent performance overall.
With NordVPN, you can unblock Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, BBC iPlayer, and many other streaming services. With a network of over 5,000 servers in 59 countries, accessing the international content library is no problem.
One of our favorite services is Double VPN, which encrypts your Internet traffic across two servers so you don’t have to worry about privacy issues. Handy if you’re using your Apple TV over your hotel’s Wi-Fi, for example, and want to make sure your Internet traffic is secure.
SmartDNS can also be set up, or users can install the software on their router. Also, NordVPN provides instructions and 24/7 support so you can set it up without much hassle.
There haven’t been many complaints about NordVPN, although we personally feel that the mobile app could use a makeover. Of course, if you only want to use the VPN on your Apple TV, that won’t bother you.
The best VPN app for Apple TV, ExpressVPN is our top choice. This VPN offers great speed, sparse performance, and easy setup, making it the best choice for streaming via Apple TV.
With this service, you get a great SmartDNS feature in addition to your subscription, which really makes unblocking content a breeze. The VPN is extremely reliable, extremely secure, and incredibly fast – perfect for a buffer-free, seamless HD streaming experience. It’s also one of the few VPNs that can still reliably unblock US Netflix.
Thanks to its 30-day, no-questions-asked money-back guarantee, you can try ExpressVPN risk-free today.
The famous US VPN IPVanish concludes this guide, and while it has some shortcomings, it still has a lot to offer.
The VPN in our Fire Stick VPN guide has the ability to unblock streaming services, of course, but unfortunately you’ll need to install it on your router if you want to use it as a VPN for Apple TV. That’s because IPVanish doesn’t offer smart DNS support, which is unfortunate because it excludes not only a significant portion of Apple TV VPN users, but also smart TV VPN users.
However, we’re including IPVanish here because it’s an excellent service once you set it up on your router, and the fact that you can install it on an unlimited number of devices is just icing on the cake.
Surfshark also offers a smart DNS service – all you have to do is enter your IP address into your Apple TV device’s DNS settings for it to become active. Alternatively, you can install Surfshark manually on your router.
Surfshark offers VPN apps that work on Windows, Mac OS, Linux, iOS (iPhone and iPad), Android, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, Xbox and Playstation consoles. The VPN provider also offers web browser extensions for Google Chrome and Firefox. Surfshark VPN subscription includes unlimited simultaneous connections, which is almost unique in the industry and makes it one of the best VPN offerings.
Surfshark is a high-speed VPN service that is great for bypassing the regional limitations of streaming services. Some of the best TV shows and movies are available through streaming services in the US. Surfshark has multiple VPN servers in the US, ensuring reliable and fast service for all VPN users. Surfshark operates a total of 1040 servers in 61 countries. You can get Surfshark’s free VPN for iOS and Mac OS from the iTunes store.
Based in Romania and Germany, Cyber Ghost has more than 6,000 servers in 90 countries and is best known for the many handy features it offers in its Windows, Mac, iOS, and Android apps. We particularly like the fact that CyberGhost displays how many times you last connected to the server. So if you’ve only logged into some countries, they’ll appear in the list and you can select them with one click. You can also set CyberGhost to start automatically when you run certain software, such as your banking apps, or to always connect to a specific Wi-Fi network.
The sheer number of servers means that users should be able to easily access geographically restricted content no matter where they are. That means streaming Apple TV, Netflix, HBO Now and other content is a breeze. CyberGhost offers a one-day free trial, and paid plans come with a 45-day money-back guarantee.
What are the benefits of using a VPN for Apple TV?
There are many benefits of VPNs. Most of them fall into one of three categories: Security, Privacy, and Freedom.
- Security: Hackers also target your personal information, such as your bank accounts. VPNs encrypt your internet traffic and make it harder for companies, governments, and hackers to access your data. That’s why a VPN can give you more protection online.
- Privacy: This means it’s harder for websites to attribute your online activity to you: They can’t reveal your identity as easily. This means that using a VPN can increase your level of anonymity and privacy.
- Ease of access/freedom: Most people use VPNs to bypass geographical restrictions. A VPN allows you to access content that is not normally available in your country. For example, you can access the US version of Netflix outside the US or BBC iPlayer outside the UK.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I use a free VPN for Apple TV?
We do not advise using any of the so-called free VPNs for Apple TV. First of all, most free VPN services require you to use their app, so setting it up on your physical router is not possible. While you can find profiles for free OpenVPN servers, they may be too crowded with other free users to use for video streaming. They will probably have bandwidth or data limitations, which means that you will have a lot of time to buffer and the connection may be interrupted in the middle of the broadcast.
Moreover, free VPN services are notorious for collecting the personal data of users who pass through their servers and then selling this information to third-party providers. Some inject tracking cookies or ads into browsers, while others download malware onto devices. Free VPN providers still try to make profit and do so by selling your privacy to the highest bidder.
Can I have one Apple ID from two different countries?
Yes, you can log out of your Apple ID and create a new one in a different country. When creating a new account, you can select any country. Please note that you need to have a local billing address and payment method if you want to make a purchase through Apple. Otherwise, you can choose any address in the country. You will not be able to access everything you have stored in iCloud in other accounts.
Can I use Airplay and a VPN on my Apple TV?
It depends on the VPN. In many cases, you can use Airplay with a VPN on the Apple TV without any problems. If that doesn’t work, check your VPN settings to see if there is an option that allows you to use your local network. Assuming the Apple TV and iPhone/iPad are on the same Wi-Fi network, this will prevent the VPN from blocking access to local devices like printers, portable devices, and also the Apple TV. Some VPNs are enabled by default, others let you choose in the settings, and still others simply don’t allow local network traffic.
Will Netflix on Apple TV work with a VPN?
Yes, as long as the VPN can unblock Netflix. Check out our list of the best VPNs for Netflix.
Is it illegal to use a VPN on Apple TV?
No, it is not illegal to use a VPN on Apple TV.
Some streaming services refuse to use VPNs to bypass location restrictions. This may violate their terms of service due to content licensing restrictions, but it is not illegal. Most streaming services do not penalize VPN users, although some rare services may suspend or terminate your account if you are caught using a VPN to change your location.
Is AppleTV+ the same as Apple TV?
Nope. Apple TV is a physical hardware device manufactured by Apple, much like a Roku, Chromecast, or Firestick. Apple TV+ is a subscription streaming service offered by Apple, similar to Netflix, Disney+, or Hulu. You don’t need Apple TV to use Apple TV+, and you don’t need Apple TV+ to use Apple TV. VPN can be used for both.
Does NordVPN work on all generations of Apple TV?
Apple TV does not support NordVPN or any other VPN. Instead, you’ll need to set it up in a different way.
- Set up NordVPN on your wireless router: You’ll need router firmware that supports VPN connections, such as TomatoUSB or DD-WRT. The setup can be a bit tricky and requires some technical know-how.
- Share a VPN connection to another device with your Apple TV: You can connect your Apple TV to another VPN-enabled device, such as a laptop or phone. Most laptops can send their own Wi-Fi signal, and most phones support connections.
- Instead, choose the Smart DNS service from NordVPN: To change the DNS server on Apple TV, go to General > Network > Wi-Fi > Configure DNS > Manual Settings. Smart DNS doesn’t provide the same security as VPN, but it can unblock zone-blocking content.
Can I use a VPN to play 4K video on my Apple TV without buffering?
Yes, all VPNs we recommend should have enough bandwidth to stream 4K videos. You need a download bandwidth of at least 25Mbps to stream 4K UHD. Note, however, that VPN speeds may be slower if you are connected to a remote or congested server. Apple TV should be powerful enough to decode videos in real time without stopping while buffering.
Apple TV is not easy to use with a VPN, but does that mean you’ll miss your favorite shows because they’re not available in your area? I don’t think so. I’ve given at least 3 different ways you can use a VPN on the Apple TV to use them. But make sure you choose the right VPN. It would be very sad if the VPN ends up not working for you throughout the configuration process. All the solutions in this list are great, but if I had to choose one, it would definitely be ExpressVPN.
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