Incredibly it’s been more than two years since we touched on the watching US Netflix in the UK thing, so I figured I’d update our instructions – focusing on the iPad and iPhone for starters.
Contrary to popular belief, watching US Netflix in the UK is incredibly easy, and requires literally no understanding of VPNs or DNS addresses or anything even vaguely technical. If you can type a number in a box, you can do this thing; it takes all of five minutes.
A little background first of all. Due to licensing deals, Netflix content varies wildly from region to region, and there’s a whole ton of stuff you can get on US Netflix that you simply can’t get in the UK.
I’d be here all day if I were to list all the US Netflix content that doesn’t appear o’er here (I might do so later in the week if it’s feasible), but highlights include the ninth and final season of The US Office, and the first four seasons of The Walking Dead.
Fortunately, fooling Netflix into thinking you’re in the US is easier than… pie? I should mention, however, that we’re technically – technically – breaking the rules.
For the record, here’s the relevant part of the Terms & Conditions: “You also agree not to: circumvent, remove, alter, deactivate, degrade or thwart any of the content protections in the Netflix service.”
But don’t worry; we’ve yet to hear of anyone being banned for accessing US Netflix from the UK. As Nelson Muntz would say: "It's a victimless crime, like punching someone in the dark."
Ok, so, if you’ve decided to throw caution to the wind and grab yourself some US Netflix action in the UK (er, presumably that’s the case if you’re still reading), we simply need a number – a DNS address – that convinces Netflix we’re in the states.
There are free DNS addresses available if you’re willing to spend time trawling through forums, but the problem is: the addresses tend to stop working after a while, and you’re back to square one – trawling through forums in an attempt to find something that actually works.
For our money, it’s absolutely worthwhile going with a service like Unblock-Us. It’s $4.99 per month, and offers a free one-week trial. You don’t need to install any software or cancel after seven days or provide your credit card details, just pop in your email address. Easy! Better still, the DNS addresses never change.
Regardless of where your DNS address comes from, the process is fundamentally the same: we simply want to open your iPhone and/or iPad Settings and change one number. That’s it.
Specifically, tap Settings, Wi-Fi then <your network name>. Don’t worry if this screen looks daunting; it’s dead easy. Just tap on the DNS field and enter the number you’ve obtained (Note: it’s a good idea to first jot down the number in that field in case you need to revert back for any reason).
For Unblock-Us, enter ‘126.96.36.199, 188.8.131.52’, being sure to include a space between the two numbers - as on the right.
At this point, it’s probably a good idea to restart your device – or at least force close the Netflix app (just double tap the Home button and swipe up).
The next time you open the app, you should be looking at the US Netflix library. Admittedly it doesn’t look a whole lot different at first glance, and you’d be forgiven for thinking it hasn’t worked.
However, do a quick search for US Netflix content like The Walking Dead, Parks and Recreation or Salem, and they should pop up as viewable content.
And that’s the end of that. Operation Watch US Netflix in the UK: complete. If you’ve any questions, hit us up below. I’ll be back soon with a similar guide for Android. (EDIT: Here it is! Watch US Netflix on your UK Android smartphone or tablet. And what's this? Watch US Netflix on your UK Windows Phone.)
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