The two most popular online video streaming platform in the world are, without a doubt, Netflix and YouTube. Statistics says that YouTube has 1.3 billion users worldwide, and around 5 billion videos are watched on the video streaming platform every day. Netflix, meanwhile, is saying that they have around 104 million subscribers around the globe.
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These numbers are pretty impressive, and they only mean one thing‑ that these two video streaming platforms are everyone’s go-to for online entertainment. If you want to watch a trending TV series, for instance, chances are that the show is exclusively available through Netflix. We are talking about Stranger Things, Jessica Jones, The Defenders, and Orange is the New Black. And we are sure you can add more to this list.
On the other hand, if you want to watch vlogs, reviews, instructional how-to videos, or any random videos at all, YouTube has all these. Billions of people rely on these two video streaming platforms for the latest hits in the show business industry, which is why any issue involving access to YouTube and Netflix is a hot and major one.
The Issue of Geo-Restrictions
One of the primary concerns when it comes to Netflix and YouTube, and even other video streaming platforms, is that only people living in high-access countries have the opportunity to watch almost anything they want to watch. The United States is the best example of such country, perhaps owing to the fact that both YouTube and Netflix are US companies.
You may know this already because you’re reading this article, but Netflix content vary depending on your location. A subscriber in India will see a completely different list of movies and shows, as compared to what a subscriber from the US sees.
Netflix has stated that it intended to ultimately allow all its subscribers to access all of its contents and that Netflix cannot do so because of rights clauses cited by major media producers. So it looks like it is out of Netflix’s control. However, the company is still continuing to ban IP addresses that try to bypass the restriction.
YouTube, on the other hand, allows video owners to restrict access to their videos to certain territories only, citing rights issues as the reason. You may be wondering if there is any way you can watch any video you want regardless of your location. How do I access YouTube and Netflix from any country?
That would be the right question, and a valid one at that. You can actually be someone in the US who would like to watch a show or video that is available only in Asia. Or you could be in India and would want to watch something that is restricted in the United Kingdom. This is the problem that geo-restrictions create.
The internet should be a free world, bridging everyone from different countries. And although large corporations try to reduce the internet into a money-making machine, there are still people out there who believe in internet freedom. So the answer to your question is Proxies.
How to Stream Netflix with Proxies
First, let us explore what Proxies are. The internet settings on your devices such as your laptop, mobile phones, and tablets have “proxy” as one of the options available. When enabled, proxies act as a wall that keeps your information safe. You can still access websites and their pages, but these websites will not receive your information, i.e., your IP address. Instead, your IP address will be masked by another IP address.
The good thing about using Proxies is that you can choose what IP address to use, or at least which server to connect to. This is quite significant because location matters, especially when you want to stream Netflix and Youtube shows that has servers in an area outside your physical location.
In order to better understand this, let us cite an example. You are located somewhere in Asia and you want to watch a TV series that is available only for Netflix U.S subscribers. Your IP address will tell Netflix that you are physically in Asia, thus blocking the TV series you want to watch. Sad, but that’s how it works. However, if you use a proxy, you can actually use a server that is located in the US, say California. This way, your Asian IP address will be hidden or masked by a U.S. IP address. Voila! You can now watch the show you’ve been wanting to watch forever.
Aside from video streaming, proxies are also helpful when purchasing products and services online as it protects your sensitive and personal information against trackers and hackers. More and more people prefer to hide behind a proxy when going online as the number of cybercrime victims have gone up over the last few years. Proxies give you security and privacy, and at the same time it enable you to have your fill of the entertainment industry by allowing you to stream any Netflix and YouTube shows and videos.
So for the questions: how to stream Netflix with proxies and how to watch YouTube with proxies, we give you three answers: VPN, Smart DNS, and private proxies. Read on for more information about these three options.
Virtual Private Network Services
Whether for privacy protection or online streaming purposes, VPN services are the most widely-used method of proxy. A VPN provider has hundreds or thousands of IP addresses on its system. When you subscribe to its service, you can choose any of these IP addresses. This IP address that the vpn network provides will mask your real IP address, thus protecting your data.
In the case of streaming online movies with proxies, YouTube or Netflix won’t know your real geographical location, thereby enabling you to bypass the restrictions. The key is to choose a vpn that has an IP address in the country where the video you want is available such as LimeVPN. Therefore, if you want to watch a Netflix movie that is only available in the United Kingdom, then choose a vpn that has an IP address in the UK.
Before subscribing to a VPN service though, make sure to do some research about vpn providers. Here are a few tips that will help you choose the best virtual private network service provider:
- Choose a VPN provider that has several servers around the globe. This would mean that the provider has IP addresses from different countries all over the world, enabling you to select the right IP address for the website you will access.
- Make sure that your vpn service uses heavy encryption to avoid data and privacy leaks. LimeVPN uses military-like encryption method, making sure that your information is secure.
- Choose a vpn provider that explicitly states that they are not tracking your data usage. This way, you are sure that the vpn provider really cares for your internet protection and privacy.
- Opt for a paid vpn service rather than a free one. Free services come with a number of problems when you use them. First, they may have limited IP addresses so you cannot be sure that the service is fit for your online streaming needs. And most importantly, their free service may come with a higher, albeit subtle, price – your privacy. The fact that they are offering their services for free would make you wonder how they can pay their bills. These type of free vpn services may be earning a lot of money from selling the information they get from their users. They track their users’ online habits and sell it to advertisers and other interested parties. This is pretty scary, so might as well choose to pay for a vpn service.
- Select a vpn provider that has a decent customer support. We are not talking about superb or best-in-the-world type of customer service, but rather a support that responds to your query in a timely manner and answers your questions satisfactorily.
Keep these tips in mind when researching on the right vpn service provider for your online streaming needs. We would like to warn you though that as mentioned before, Netflix has banned several VPN-owned IP addresses. If you happen to use one that has been banned, you will receive this prompt while waiting for your video: “You seem to be using an unblocker or a proxy. In cases like this, you need to switch to another IP address, and due to the large number of banned IP addresses, you may have to switch often. For video streamers, this is a small price to pay since they would still be able to watch their favorite TV series and movies.
A DNS or Domain Name System translates domain names into a machine-friendly string of numbers which is called an IP address. With this, computers are able to identify one another over a network, just like how physical addresses tell us where a person is living.
Smart DNS works the same way as virtual private networks or VPNs in that it masks your real IP address. This is a new technology which was developed in 2012 primarily because of the increase in geo-blocking methods employed by streaming platforms such as YouTube and Netflix.
When you access a content that is unavailable in your area, Smart DNS changes the DNS of your computer or gadget and reroutes it to a server located in the country where the content is accessible. A noteworthy difference of Smart DNS from VPNs is that Smart DNS does not interfere with your network speed because there is no encryption involved.
Smart DNS has been more effective in bypassing geo-restrictions recently, which could be because VPNs has been the target of Netflix for a long time. There is a high possibility though that Smart DNS services will suffer the same fate as VPNs, so make sure you do some research before subscribing to a service.
Classic private proxies are the simplest way to bypass Netflix and YouTube geo-restrictions. Although you need enough technical knowledge to set it up, private proxies are the simplest compared to VPN and Smart DNS because you won’t be that affected by Netflix’s banning of IP addresses. It is the safest method against the IP address banning rampage of Netflix and other video streaming platforms.
This is how it works: Not a lot of people know this, but you can actually buy a batch or several batches of proxies from companies such as LimeProxies. The price of buying a couple of proxies is equivalent to a Smart DNS or VPN subscription. Of course, the more batches you buy, the more it will cost you. The best thing about buying batches – or even just one batch – of proxies is that these IP addresses will be exclusively yours.
This exclusivity will give you more privacy and more security while using the Internet. With the right technique, you can watch any Netflix shows and YouTube videos from anywhere in the world. Only make sure that you choose a proxy provider that has several servers in different countries. You can contact the provider’s customer support to make sure what countries are supported before ultimately buying a batch of proxies.
This proxy method is very difficult for Netflix to stop because they simply cannot ban every IP address in the world. Many of these IP addresses are used for different purposes apart from video streaming. Thus, Netflix cannot just go ahead and ban each one of these IP addresses.
And even when they happen to ban your IP address, you can always request for a new one from the proxy provider. They even allow their consumers to change IPs regularly.
Just a heads up though: you might not be able to access contents from all countries just like VPN and Smart DNS, but you will definitely be able to watch United Kingdom and United States contents.
How to Stream YouTube with Proxies?
The short answer to this question is: same as the above. You can use either a virtual private network service, a Smart DNS service, or a private proxy provider for your online streaming needs. The options for Netflix that were explained above work similarly for YouTube.
However, it looks like it is not yet that complicated with YouTube because it has fewer measures against bypassing geo-restrictions. Unlike Netflix, YouTube is not yet banning proxy-related IP addresses full scale.
The glitch, however, is that you won’t always know in what country a blocked YouTube video is available. And because YouTube is just too large – thousands of videos are being uploaded every minute – there is no way to list the videos available in every region. This makes the VPN proxy method unideal because you will need to employ trial and error techniques just to find the right server to unblock a single video.
Thus, here are a couple of applications you can use to bypass YouTube’s geo-restrictions:
With ClipConverter, you will be able to download the blocked video so that you can watch it in your computer. Always make sure that you have an antivirus in place when downloading anything from any website though. Also, you will encounter a number of pop up spam messages while downloading, and even after successfully downloading the blocked video, so be prepared.
This method works as simply as copying the URL of the unwatchable video and pasting it on Unblock Youtube. A new page will open in your browser and you will be able to watch the video.
The Bottom Line
Before we end, we would like to make it clear that you will still need to pay your Netflix subscription even when using any of the bypass methods discussed above. A proxy will not give you a free access or subscription, it will only allow you to access content that are otherwise blocked in your country or region.
With that issue out of the way, this article will hopefully serve as your easy guide in bypassing the geo-restriction methods that Netflix and YouTube employ. One, if not all, of the options provided above should work for every online streaming enthusiast out there. We also encourage you to do more research on each proxy method before choosing the right one for you. Not everyone is cut out from the same cloth, so what works for us may not work for you.
Our aim is to make all corners of the digital world truly free to use and free to access. This is a bit of a challenge, but best of luck to you as you go on streaming!