Enjoying premium TV has become quite pricey in New Zealand these days, particularly as a result of the increasing number of individual pay channels, TV networks have to dish out more cash to get hold of the TV series that already come late to our part of the world. With lots of people shifting to on demand, there is no reason why us Kiwis should be stuck with watching the content that is available in our region.
Netflix is amazing – it comes with a huge library, its own exclusive shows, and provision of on demand programming that’s got something for the whole family. Even though Netflix NZ is available in New Zealand now, we only get a fraction of the good stuff that viewers in other parts of the world, especially the US, get. If you find it hard to deal with this dilemma, there’s a way to access the US version of Netflix from New Zealand!
At a starting price of $7.99 per month, Netflix is a sweet deal for the wide variety of shows it brings. They have also incorporated a feature that provides different viewing profiles, so you can make one that’s suitable for adults only, and another one that’s viewable by the whole family.
Their own series such as House of Cards and Orange is the New Black, have been released to widespread acclaim from both the critics and the public. In fact, House of Cards has gained multiple Emmy nominations, and the best part is that you don’t have to patiently wait for the series to be released in weekly instalments over several months – Netflix releases the whole season in one go, meaning its ideal for binge watchers.
Try heading over to the US Netflix website and you’ll see that you’re restricted access. You can’t create an account since you’re not residing in the US! So basically, what needs to be done is to make Netflix think that you are. Do that, and you’re all set to use the US Netflix.
Even though this isn’t illegal, Netflix does frown upon this practice – even still, you are going to paying them legitimately for their service so there’s likely no issue.
Some time back, Virtual Private Networks or VPNS, were used for bypassing Netflix’s geo-restriction – a VPN is a virtual tunnel that links your computer to a computer in another country, thereby giving you access to the internet through that country. But they came with speed limitations and overheads, which meant that as soon as a better solution appeared, they waned in popularity.
Nowadays, we’re using something called DNS servers. DNS servers convert the name of a website to a number which is the actual address of the website. This technique lets your internet traffic be sent to specific websites in a way that it appears as if it is coming from another address. Simply put, this means that by using a custom DNS service, you can access the US Netflix website without having to alter your New Zealand IP; you can keep accessing the rest of your websites as usual.
Here’s the way to do it in detail:
Get an overseas address. There are lots of location specific Netflix websites, but we’re going to focus on the US Netflix.
In order to get a proxy US address, you can use plenty of websites that generate bogus ones for free, or you could use the YouShop service.
Even though Netflix isn’t free, it is still quite cheap when you compare it with other competitors in New Zealand. You could use a PayPal account for paying for the US Netflix subscription, but it’s much easier through a virtual credit card. For instance, Entropay is one card that is simple to set up and to maintain. You won’t have to bother yourself with using your normal card with its local billing address, or with keeping track of various PayPal accounts. Just bear in mind to recharge it periodically or you’ll risk losing your Netflix subscription.
The crucial DNS service subscription. Having used both Unblock US and Unotelly, and I can attest that both work fine, are easy to set up and are also quite affordable at that. My personal preference is UnblockUS since it also comes with a VPN service that provides Netflix access from any wireless connection (when you’re not at home). Still, UnblockUs vpn is a great.
Head on over to Unotelly.com and sign up for their free trial. Go for the Gold service if you want to avail their VPN as well. It starts at USD 8 per month, or USD 5 per year.
There are two ways to install:
- Separately on each device
Taking the router route is easiest, go to your router’s admin page, and replace its DNS addresses with the ones provided by UnblockUS.
These addresses are dynamic, meaning that that you can access different services from different countries at the same time without having to change any settings.
Once you’ve done this, log in to the UnblockUS website and update the IP address of your system – be sure that the banner gets green to indicate the all OK. If it doesn’t consult the troubleshooting guide.
Note that a dynamic IP address can be changed by your ISP, so if you have one of those and it changes, your browser will redirect to the UnblockUS website where you will have to update your IP address again.
Of course, if you can’t, or don’t want to access your router’s settings, you can set up each of your devices individually. Different guides are available for smartphones, smart TVs, computers and so on. Certain devices may require a Netflix app to be installed. For instance, if you want to run Netflix on an iOS device, you will have to make a US account to download the US Netflix app.
Once the DNS service is up and running, you can visit the US Netflix website and sign up for an account. Time to grab some popcorn and enjoy!