Apple TV + UK Netflix + Unblock Us = US Netflix
In January I wrote a post about gaining access to US Netflix content from within the UK.
The solution I was touting at the time used a US VPN set up on a secondary router which the Apple TV box was connected to. This worked (and continues to work) well for me, however there is a degree of complexity in the set up and since I posted that article, an alternative solution has been brought to my attention.
Enter Unblock Us*. Although the word VPN is banded about on their website, this is not a VPN based solution. When you sign up for Unblock Us (there’s a short free trial period available), you are given access to their DNS servers to set up on any device that you wish. When Netflix (or iPlayer/etc) requests a connection, Unblock Us' DNS servers will return the US (or Canadian/UK, depending on how you've set up your account) IPs for the service.
Full “how-to” articles and videos are available for a heap of devices from Apple TV to games consoles, iPod/iPad/iPhone, smart TVs and even some makes and models of router.
It's simple, quick to set up and at $4.99/month it's around the same price as a decent VPN connection.
The second router
Since I still have the second router I got for my original US VPN solution, I decided this was the best way to set up Unblock Us for use by multiple devices.
I switched off all the VPN services that were set up previously so that the router was simply passing all traffic straight through to my main ADSL router. Then I changed the DHCP settings so that the router was handing out the Unblock Us DNS server addresses instead of the ones from my ADSL provider.
The upshot of this is that anything I connect to the secondary router (wired or wireless) will show US Netflix content, and anything connected to my main ADSL router will show UK content.
* This is an affiliate link and I’ll receive a small commission payment should you follow that link and sign up.