There’s Still A Way To Unblock US Netflix Abroad, Despite Netflix’s Best EffortsBy Steph Myers / October 29, 2016 / Tags: How-To, Netflix, Unblock Content
[Last updated: Dec. 5, 2016] Netflix has been trying to keep non-US customers from getting access to US Netflix. But there’s one way that still works to unblock US Netflix in Canada, the UK, Australia, and anywhere else.
When Netflix went global earlier this year, TV fans around the world rejoiced. With Netflix in over 100 countries around the world, all one needed to do was get around the streaming service’s geographical restrictions and bam — watch your Netflix library exponentially expand.
Unfortunately, it didn’t take long for Netflix to crack down on the practice. Then, Netflix struck again, shutting down other unblocking services across the UK. While Netflix has been successful in nixing many of the workarounds (Unblock Us, Blockless, and others — full list of what doesn’t work below — are now dead), my colleagues and I conducted an extensive study to see if any method survived.
We found one way that works extremely well, with almost 100% reliability: ExpressVPN. ExpressVPN works today — and in fact has always worked — to unblock US Netflix in the UK, Canada, and elsewhere. Right now, you can get 3 months extra free with ExpressVPN’s 12-month plan (offer appears on the order page).
Unblocking Netflix Means Tons More Titles In Your Library
Unblocking Netflix in other regions is in demand because of the fact that Netflix doesn’t treat all its subscribers the same. It treats them differently based on the country they’re in — selectively restricting access to thousands of TV shows and movies. For example, subscribers in Canada have access to one group of titles on Netflix, while those in the US have access to a different selection. But, if those choices could be combined to give a subscriber access to them all — well, that’s the dream Netflix users have been chasing.
And until recently, Netflix didn’t make it very hard. But even as the world was still celebrating the company’s global expansion, Netflix was taking steps to crack down on the practice of bypassing its geo-blockers.
What Doesn’t Work To Unblock Netflix US
Lots of customers who were using services to unblock US Netflix found that they no longer did the trick. SmartDNS and proxy services stopped working overnight, leaving Netflix users to mourn their shrunken libraries.
As for VPNs, there are lots of them out there making claims and promises. However, many don’t work at all to unblock Netflix, while others are so slow, unreliable, frustrating, and generally offer a poor user experience that they aren’t worth using.
Some services we tried that do not work reliably to unblock Netflix are: Blockless, CactusVPN, Unlocator, PureVPN, Unblock-Us, Flixed, UnoTelly, TunnelBear VPN, OverPlay, VPN4All, Expat Telly, AceVPN, Getflix, IPVanish, WiTopia VPN, and Private Internet Access.
What Does Work To Unblock US Netflix
Even through the worst of the upheaval one company remained steadfast, and today still works to let users outside the US get US Netflix abroad: ExpressVPN. In our testing, ExpressVPN performed the best and fastest, with zero downtime. It works to unblock US Netflix, Netflix UK, Netflix Canada, and others. You can use to watch Netflix on a laptop or desktop computer, iOS or Android device, or Apple TV.
ExpressVPN works seamlessly 99% of the time to give users abroad access to Netflix titles available in different regions. Streaming speeds are also incredibly fast — in fact, often faster than without using it, since ExpressVPN prevents ISP throttling. Their 30-day money-back guarantee is a nice touch to reassure customers who’ve been burned. You can get 3 months extra free when you sign up for the 12-month plan ($8.32/mo).
We also had good results using NordVPN to unblock US Netflix. However, NordVPN did not work well to unblock Netflix in other regions, like the UK. So if you want other regions in addition to the US, you’re better off with ExpressVPN. VyprVPN performed well with the US, UK, Canada, and Netherlands regions of Netflix as well.
Although Netflix won the battle against SmartDNS, it will prove much tougher against the best VPN providers. VPNs are becoming increasingly important for online security and privacy, as those threats mount. They are recommended for anyone who does online banking, shopping, or uses public WiFi. Using Kodi with a VPN is a must. And because so many people use a VPN to stay secure online, blocking them all would be a big problem for Netflix. While nothing is infallible, a good VPN is the single best option for Netflix region unblocking.
The fact that ExpressVPN works so well to unblock Netflix is a big win for Netflix subscribers who feel the company’s geo-restriction policies cheat them out of content option. The issue itself is a controversial one. For a long time, it seemed that Netflix didn’t care too much about users bypassing its geo-blocks. But content providers likely started objecting too loudly for Netflix to endure.
If you’re wondering, the geo-restrictions exist because of licensing agreements, where a network gives permission for its content to be shown in the US but not in Canada, for example. Personally, as an advocate of ‘TV Without Borders,’ I think the restrictions are arbitrary and unfair. And they may even backfire on Netflix, as already the trend to watch free Netflix (Blackmarket Netflix) is on the rise — even though the user experience is poor and the practice is very sketchy. So thankfully for ‘our’ side, some companies are fighting the good fight to let TV freedom ring.
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