Let’s make up … we’re broken. The world’s leading remote-click streaming services already offer thousands of TV shows and movies. But subscribers who take the time to learn a little more about SmartDNS can open up access to even better quality content.
In this article, we’ll outline what SmartDNS technology is, how you can use it to your advantage the next time you watch TV shows and movies on your favorite streaming device, and how they combine with VPN providers.
Why use SmartDNS?
Streaming services such as Netflix, Amazon Prime, Apple TV, and Hulu tend to have their content libraries tailored to the region of the world in which they are viewed. So while some movies may be available to Netflix users in the U.S., for example, Netflix subscribers in the UK or France may not be able to access the same choice.
Like the increasingly popular use of streaming VPNs, the use of SmartDNS is one way to unlock regional viewing restrictions, allowing subscribers access to the entire vendor content catalog, regardless of their location.
This means that if you are planning to go on holiday abroad and still want to access your subscription service, you will avoid being banned from watching shows restricted to your home region. Alternatively, by using SmartDNS you will be able to unlock geographically limited shows from the comfort of your home.
What makes SmartDNS different from VPNs
Unlike VPNs that mask the entire IP address of a device by redirecting it through an encrypted path to an external server, SmartDNS offers a more focused approach.
This means that although it does not hide your IP address or encrypt your data, it replaces the user’s domain name system (DNS) with a DNS address that will not reveal your actual geolocation. Instead, the user will be able to select the desired region from the list of proxy servers in specific countries.
The advantage of this more targeted approach is that it should not slow down your connection in the way a VPN can do, with the disadvantage that the IP address remains unchanged and your data is not encrypted – it will not offer the same level of privacy and anonymity.
Which VPNs have SmartDNS?
Beyond pure security, streaming is the most popular of all VPNs used today. It is therefore not surprising that almost all the best VPN providers have a SmartDNS function in addition to or in addition to their traditional functions.
NordPP’s SmartPlay feature uses both VPN and SmartDNS technology and over 80 server locations to successfully unblock Netflix, BBC iPlayer, YouTube and Amazon. With even more server locations (160) ExpressVPN’s MediaStreamer also uses SmartDNS and therefore does a similar job.
How to use SmartDNS on streaming devices
The SmartDNS function of a VPN provider serves a very valuable function on many of the most popular streaming devices.
If you’re dealing with an Amazon Fire TV Stick VPN, things are simple – just download a dedicated VPN app directly to your Stick and go.
But if, for example, you were more interested in Apple TV VPN or want to watch it through its game consoles, such applications do not exist. Instead, you need to use the DNS function of your VPN to stream to your device.
Risks of using SmartDNS and VPNs
It’s worth noting here that vendors like Netflix generally ban the use of SmartDNS, VPNs, or similar technology to override their regional blocks.
Thus, although subscribers are unlikely to be suspended because of this, users should be aware of the risk of accessing streaming services with the intention of viewing geo-blocked content that is not intended to be available in their region.
What is SmartDNS?
Thanks to its higher speed and often cheaper costs, SmartDNS is fast becoming the preferred option for using VPNs to geoblock the high-end streaming services offered by Netflix and Amazon Prime – just without the same level of network protection.