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5 Best VPNs for Apple TV

Ray Walsh

Ray Walsh

June 15, 2017

Apple TV is a digital media player that lets people stream onto a TV from Mac devices and services such as Hulu and Netflix. Using a VPN with an Apple TV device opens up a lot of functionality for its users. This includes being able to login to your account back home while on holiday.

As so many people are interested in using a VPN with their Apple TV, we have created this 5 Best VPNs for Apple TV list. It will allow anybody to quickly understand the differences between the best VPNs for Apple TV.

The Best VPNs for Apple TV

  1. ExpressVPN
  2. VyprVPN
  3. VPNArea
  4. CactusVPN
  5. Buffered

For people that are fans of Apple TV, using it in conjunction with a VPN service can be a fabulous way to gain access to vast amounts of extra content. Geographic restrictions can stop people from accessing larger Netflix catalogs, sports events, and other TV channels and shows that are of interest.

Due to the fact that VPN allows subscribers to pretend to be in a different country, using one with an Apple TV device can turn anybody’s TV into a bottomless pit of entertainment. Of course, here at BestVPN.com, we understand just how crowded the VPN market has come, and it is all too easy to accidentally end up with a substandard VPN.

The VPNs in this guide will enable any Apple TV owner to unblock content, secure their privacy when browsing the web, and also secure their devices while on public WiFi. These VPNs are an all-around solution that really do what their subscribers need.

To access US-restricted services on Apple TV with a VPN you will need the following:

  1. A fast VPN for Apple TV with US-based servers
  2. A way to connect your Apple TV to a VPN server (A PC or Flashed Router)
  3. A US iTunes account and a US payment method

Just in case steps two and three seem daunting, this article will walk you through the entire process later on. In addition, it will clearly explain what consideration led to this particular list of VPNs for Apple TV.

5 Best VPNs for Apple TV Summary


BestVPN Editor's Choice Award
ExpressVPN Homepage
PROS:
  • Special Deal: Save 49% Today!
  • 30-day money back guarantee
  • No usage logs
  • Servers in 94 countries
  • Outstanding customer service
  • P2P: yes
CONS:
  • A bit pricey – but worth it!

ExpressVPN is an outstanding choice for people that want a VPN for Apple TV. It sells a pre-flashed router that will make hooking up Apple TV (and all your other devices) a cinch.

The VPN is incredibly reliable, is highly secure and is lightning fast – perfect for streaming in HD. Servers are located in 94 countries, which means that you will be able to unblock any stream you want. Furthermore, it is one of the few VPNs that unblock US Netflix.

The software is very easy to use and can be downloaded for all popular platforms. Finally, ExpressVPN also offers a 30-day money back guarantee, so that you can test it with your Apple TV risk-free.

Special Deal: Save 49% Today!

Visit ExpressVPN »30-day money back guarantee!
VyprVPN Homepage
PROS:
  • Fast connection speeds for Apple TV
  • Strong encryption
  • Three simultaneous connections
  • Can be used on flashed router
  • DD-WRT setup guides
CONS:
  • Some connection logs kept (but never any usage logs)

VyprVPN is owned by Golden Frog an Internet conglomerate that owns its own network of servers. For this reason VyprVPN is both secure and fast. The Switzerland-based VPN runs on excellent software that is very easy to use and can be run on three simultaneous devices. Also useful for your Apple TV is that Vypr provides a detailed DD-WRT setup guide. Furthermore, it can be purchased pre-flashed on a router.

VyprVPN is a fully featured VPN with a killswitch, DNS leak protection, stealth mode, shared IPs and everything needed to make the most out of your Apple TV. Finally, it provides a three-day free trial so you can test it risk-free.

VPNArea Homepage
PROS:
  • Zero logs
  • Five simultaneous devices
  • Very fast for streaming on Apple TV
  • Seven-day money back guarantee
  • P2P: yes
CONS:
  • Not much

VPNArea is an excellent choice for an Apple TV because it is very fast. It has servers in over 60 countries and will unblock anything you want. The software is very easy to use and can be installed on a flash router – or bought preflashed. It can be used on five simultaneous devices, and has a seven-day free trial that allows you to thoroughly test the service. An all around amazing VPN for Apple TV that has very strong encryption and a zero-logs policy. Plus, it has 24/7 live chat support!

4. CactusVPN

CactusVPN Homepage
PROS:
  • Zero logs
  • 256-bit AES OpenVPN and SSTP
  • Very fast connections for streaming
  • Reliable client with Application Killer
  • P2P: yes
CONS:
  • Does not accept Bitcoins
  • Restricted multiple connections

If you want a lightning fast VPN for Apple TV, this Moldovan provider is an excellent choice. Although it doesn’t have as many server locations as some of the VPNs above, it does have servers everywhere that you are likely to need them. For this reason, we think that this lightning fast VPN is perfect for most people’s Apple TV needs.

CactusVPN has some of the best VPN software out there and is fully featured with specific website rerouting and an application kill switch. Furthermore it has strong encryption. A much-loved VPN that for under $7 per month is truly a bargain.

5. Buffered

Buffered Homepage
PROS:
  • Fast speeds
  • No usage logs
  • P2P: yes
  • 30-day money back guarantee
  • Excellent customer care (live chat support)
CONS:
  • A bit pricey
  • Some connection logs

This Hungarian provider is a hugely impressive and trustworthy VPN. It has a strong privacy policy that keeps no usage logs, and its strong OpenVPN encryption is well-implemented. This VPN is particularly good for people that want to hook up their Apple TV to a Windows machine.

Servers are located in 37 countries, and are incredibly fast. The software is excellent and can be used on five simultaneous devices. Buffered is fully featured and even has extra features like port discovery (for use in hotels without getting the password from reception).

Finally, due to a 30-day money back guarantee you can test Buffered risk-free. In fact, Buffered even hands out refunds automatically if users don’t use the VPN in the first week!

Apple TV and a VPN

With the rise in popularity of rival products like Chromecast, Apple has spent a lot of time and money improving its flagship TV product. The 4th generation is fast because of an A8 chip with 64-bit architecture.  It also now comes with Apps, games, and even a Siri remote and touchpad remote for moving the cursor on the screen. Given these features, it’s no wonder that it has sold in excess of one million devices.

For Apple TV fans that are used to watching their Hulu, HBO, SlingTV, or Netflix accounts on their TV, going abroad can seem like a nightmare. At least with Netflix, you still get a restricted catalog. With SlingTV, on the other hand, you are left with nothing.

For people that reside outside of the US all year round, the temptation to get a VPN is even higher. The US is the holy grail of TV shows and sports events programming, and with a VPN anybody can make their Apple TV appear just like a US citizens’.

What’s more, a world-class VPN service that is suitable for streaming with an Apple TV device in HD really doesn’t cost much. For telly addicts that want to live like their US counterparts, a VPN for Apple TV is a million Christmases at once.

Is a VPN for Apple TV safe?

While using devices (like Kodi boxes) for piracy is illegal, simply using Apple TV to connect to US services isn’t considered a problem. It is true that Netflix does frown on VPN users and does threaten subscribers with disconnection should they be discovered using a VPN. However, in reality Netflix simply blocks as many VPN servers as it can instead of banning paying customers.

The same is true of other services and while many VPNs have already been blocked by the likes of Netflix. Others are still managing to keep unblocking those key services for their subscribers.

Furthermore, because the VPNs in this list all provide strong encryption, VPN subscriber’s ISPs won’t be able to tell what they are doing online. That means that even in location like Germany (where the government works with copyright holders to prosecute pirates) ISPs will not be able to tell that the VPN user has indeed accessed something they shouldn’t have.

Can I get a free VPN for Apple TV?

The answer to this question is that yes there are some providers that provide a VPN for Apple TV free. However, it is worth noting that those trusted free services do place restrictions on the service. That is because the free VPN is designed to entice people into getting the full premium VPN service. Due to the fact that you will be wanting to stream in HD and download a lot of content, the reality is that a free VPN will be extremely restrictive. However, a free Apple TV VPN is a good way to get a taste of what a VPN can do.

Apple TV VPN: Considerations

Privacy and Security

In order to make sure that you are able to relax when streaming geographically-restricted content, it will be important to have a secure and private VPN that implements strong OpenVPN encryption.

The vast majority of VPNs have outdated encryption and privacy policies that put their subscribers at risk. All of the services in this article have been carefully selected because they give people the privacy to use their VPN as they see fit – without having to worry about whether they are leaking data to snooping eyes.

Connection speeds

In order to watch shows in HD on an Apple TV media player, you are going to need a fast VPN. VPNs tend to slow down the internet a bit because your Internet traffic has to travel further (via the VPN server). In addition, encrypting and decrypting traffic does cost a little speed.

The vast majority of VPNs slow down traffic to sluggish speeds that make it very hard to watch anything without lagging and buffering. The VPNs in this guide have been selected because they provide excellent speeds for streaming onto a TV. That means that you will be able to enjoy live shows and sports events without fear of missing a moment.

Connecting your Apple TV to a VPN service

There are two options for connecting an Apple TV device to a VPN service. The best one is using a flashed router. However, most people choose the second option, which is to share their computer’s VPN connection. Both options are pretty straightforward.

Connect Apple TV using a flashed router

A flashed router is a router that has a VPN built into it. That means your home’s WiFi is always connected to the Internet via the VPN tunnel. The result is that all the devices in your home attached to the WiFi are protected with both a remote IP address and encryption. This is ideal when using with an Apple TV because you don’t have to do anything other than buy the flashed router (which can even be purchased setup to work with your VPN from Flashrouters.

With a flashed router you won’t need to set up your computer network settings, or worry about having to have your PC near to your Apple TV set-top box (much easier with a laptop).

The two most recommended types of flashed routers are DD-WRT and Tomato.

Do bear in mind that flashing a router with new firmware can ‘brick’ it (make it unusable). For this reason, it is only recommended to tech-savvy people. However, if you do wish to do it yourself, the following links will teach you everything you need to know:

  • DD-WRT – a full list of compatible routers can be found here, information for installing and configuring DD-WRT can be found here, and these links will show you how to setup PPTP and OpenVPN encryption. In addition, plenty of general info about using DD-WRT can be found here.
  • Tomato – for a comprehensive list of compatible routers look here. For information about installing and configuring Tomato look here, and a guide for setting up OpenVPN is located here.

A flashed router truly is a great idea that will mean families with a lot of smartphones, tablets, PCs laptops, games consoles, (and, of course, your Apple TV) will all be protected by the VPN connection which is always running on the router.

Sharing a VPN connection with AppleTV

Sharing a VPN connection through a Windows or Mac computer is easy. All that you require is a VPN account, and a PC connected to the internet via WiFi or Ethernet (adapter required for Mac). Following that, you will need to have your Apple TV plugged into your computer with an Ethernet cable.

Share a VPN connection in Windows 10

1. Connect your computer to one of the fast VPN services in this guide.

2. Connect your Apple TV to your machine with an Ethernet cable

3. Right click on the ‘Network’ icon in your system’s taskbar. Select ‘Open Network and Sharing Center’.

windows10_share_1

4. On the left-hand side, select ‘Control Panel Home’ and click on ‘Change adapter settings’.

windows10_share_2

5. Right click on the VPN’s connection icon and click on ‘Properties’.

windows10_share_3

6. Navigate to the ‘Sharing’ tab and put an x in the Allow Other Network users to connect through this computer’s Internet connection’ checkbox. If a popup appears, click ‘OK’. Select ‘Local Area Connection’ from the ‘Select your private internet connection’ drop down menu. Keep all the other checkboxes unchecked, and click OK.

windows10_share_47. Connect to your VPN service and reboot your Apple TV device.

Share a VPN connection in OSX (PPTP or L2TP)

To share a connection with a Mac is a bit more tricky if you want to use OpenVPN. If this is your wish we recommend this guide: TunnelBlick. 

To get you up and running, however, we will demonstrate how to setup  PPTP or L2TP using your Mac’s the built-in VPN client.

1. Subscribe to a VPN service, download the Mac software, and set it up on your Mac by following the VPNs instructions.

2. With your Apple TV switched off, connect it to a USB port using an Ethernet cable and adapter.

3 In OSX open System Preferences (Apple icon at top right of the screen -> System Preferences) and click on ‘Sharing’

osx-1

4. a) Drop down the ‘Sharing your connection from’ menu and choose your VPN connection.

b) In the ‘To computers using’ box, click ‘USB Ethernet’.

c) Check ‘Internet Sharing’, and a pop-up box will appear. Click ‘Start,’

d) “Internet Sharing: On” will show green to let you know that everything is working correctly.

osx-3

5. Turn on your Apple TV.

Get a US iTunes Account

To enjoy your Apple TV account from outside the US you will need a US iTunes account. If you are an American resident and want to use your Apple TV on vacation simply ignore this part. For everyone else: connect to a US server using your VPN and create an American Gmail account. With your American Gmail, you can get an American iTunes account.

Turn on US Apps

As you are connected using a US VPN server, US apps will automatically appear. If they don’t appear automatically turn them on by going to Settings -> iTunes Store -> Location -> United States

Setting up a US validated payment method

Services such as Netflix will probably require a valid US payment method, which is the trickiest part. If you have a credit card you might be able to  register it like this:

  1. Use the digits (not letters) of your postcode e.g. if your postcode is BS4 5DR, use 4 and 5
  2. Add zeros to it until you have 5 letters e.g. 45000
  3. Go here to check to see if the zip code is valid
  4. If it isn’t valid, add another number on the end until you get a valid zip code i.e. 45001, 45002 etc.

If this doesn’t work (for example you get a ‘Please check that your ZIP corresponds to your billing address’ message), then you will need to set up a ‘virtual US credit card’ account with EntroPay (4.45% on loads), which should work perfectly.

Apple TV VPNs: Conclusion

A VPN service is an absolutely amazing way of getting the most out of an Apple TV device. In this article, we have explained everything you need to know about using a VPN with Apple TV.

All five of the Best VPNs for Apple TV in this list provide the best levels of service for unblocking more content on your device. Every VPN is slightly different, but all are at the very top of the VPN industry and are known to work excellently with an Apple TV. We hope that the guides have everything you need to get your VPN working but if you have any questions please don’t hesitate to leave us a comment.

AppleTV VPN Summary

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