Most Smart TVs come pre-installed with various applications, but you may not be able to access them all due to geographical limitations. Furthermore, you may discover that some apps you want to install aren’t accessible in your country’s app store. Fortunately, you may alter your location in minutes by connecting to a VPN.
The issue is that each Smart TV is unique. While some offer full access to famous app stores, others only come with a handful of pre-approved applications, making installing anything new, including VPNs, impossible. But don’t worry: we’ll guide you through the steps of installing a VPN on your Smart TV so you can stream safely and access geo-blocked applications from anywhere.
Best VPNs for use with Smart TV
Before we go into how to set up a VPN for Smart TV, here’s a brief review of the VPNs we think are ideal for the job:
- NordVPN: The finest Smart TV VPN. There are almost 5,000 servers. Fast enough for lag-free streaming. Apps for Amazon Fire TV and Android TV No-logs policy and round-the-clock assistance
- Surfshark: The most affordable VPN. It is compatible with the most popular streaming providers. Over 3,000 servers in 65 countries with high-speed connectivity. Protect all of your gadgets.
- ExpressVPN has servers in 100+ countries, including the United States. There is no bandwidth limiting, and data is encrypted for security. It also has a customer support team available 24/7, seven days a week.
- Ivacy VPN: There are over 8,000 servers in over 90 countries. Server speeds are breakneck. Allows for up to seven concurrent connections. There is a stringent no-logs policy in place.
How to Install a VPN on Smart TVs
Because newer Smart TVs run Android, setting up a VPN is a breeze. In reality, the procedure is quite similar to that of installing an app on your phone or tablet.
Setting up a VPN for a Smart TV:
- First and foremost, sign up for a decent VPN. We prefer NordVPN, although Surfshark and ExpressVPN are also excellent options.
- Then, look for your VPN on the Google Play Store and install its app.
- Sign in and connect to a VPN server of your choice. For example, you’ll need an American server to access Netflix US, whereas BBC iPlayer requires a British server.
- Finally, launch the region-locked app you want to use and watch a video. It should start nearly immediately, but if it doesn’t, we recommend emptying the app’s cache or trying a new server.
Setting up a VPN on Smart TVs without Google Play Store
You won’t be able to access the Google Play Store if your Smart TV is outdated or is from a brand like HiSense, Magnavox, or Westinghouse. We’ll look at a couple of methods for installing a VPN on your Smart TV, independent of its manufacturer or app store:
Sharing a VPN Connection over Ethernet
Running an Ethernet wire from one device to another is the simplest and easiest way to share your VPN connection. This isn’t the most convenient solution, but if you only use region-locked applications occasionally, it’s probably your best bet. You may hide a smaller device, such as a Raspberry Pi, underneath your TV, eliminating the need for long, trailing cords.
Mistakes Worth Avoiding while Installing a VPN on your Smart TV
If you follow the steps mentioned above, you should have no trouble connecting your VPN to a Smart TV. However, if you want to figure things out for yourself, there are a few possible hazards to be aware of:
Don’t Install Apps that do not have an Android-based OS
You might be tempted to download VPN if you’ve read our tips on installing VPNs on Amazon Fire TV. This strategy, however, is not recommended for Smart TVs.
In the best-case scenario, your TV is running a supported version of Android, and everything functions properly. However, most newer televisions allow you to browse the Google Play Store, making manual installation optional.
But what if your television is running a different operating system? Most likely, you will be unable to install the file. Therefore it will simply take up space. It’s also conceivable that installing unsupported software can “brick” your TV, rendering it useless. Worse, it may not even be covered because you attempted to change it.
Don’t Strictly Rely on DNS Services
Some providers (like NordVPN) allow you to utilize Smart DNS services to circumvent geographical limitations simply by altering the DNS settings on your device. However, there are a handful of issues with this. For starters, they don’t encrypt your traffic, so your ISP can still know if you’re streaming or not. This is a serious issue because some ISPs block your network speeds if you swell regularly.
Furthermore, most Smart DNS providers only enable you to connect to a single location (usually the US). In comparison, the equivalent download VPN applications frequently allow you to connect to servers in dozens of countries, significantly improving their potential to unblock geo-restricted services.
Don’t hesitate to ask for Help
We understand how difficult it is to begin a project to find you’re over your head. However, would you rather spend several days trying to figure out what went wrong or call your VPN’s customer care team for assistance and receive a response in a matter of minutes?
Many big VPNs provide live chat assistance 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and their support specialists deal with router settings and other networking issues daily. If you’re having trouble, we highly advise you to contact them.