Streaming has been one of the great entertainment revolutions of this generation. Twenty or thirty years ago, who would have thought that you could watch whatever you want, whenever you want to, all without ads? It has truly changed the way we consume media.
There are many great choices for watching video online. Of course there is Youtube, Netflix and Hulu, but Amazon Instant Video is another great contender. Many international users don't know so much about their service because it is only available in the US.
Did I say it's only available in the US? What I meant to say is that it's ‘technically' only available in the US. Who cares about technicalities?
The great thing is that there is a way for you to access the excellent range of content on Amazon Instant Video, even if you live internationally. You will still require a subscription, but if you set up a VPN correctly, they won't be able to tell if you are outside of the US or not.
Using VPNs to Get Around Streaming Service Geo-Restrictions
Amazon Instant Video isn't the only company that has geo-restrictions. They all do, because of the complex web of international licensing agreements. Streaming services that operate internationally, like Netflix, may own the content for the US, but they might not own it in other countries.
This is why the Netflix library changes dramatically from country to country. This is another reason why many streaming services such as Amazon Instant Video are yet to go international; they simply don't have the international rights to the content.
Streaming services know that some of their subscribers use VPNs to get around geo-restrictions. It's a legal grey area that does go against their terms of service, but isn't technically illegal at this stage. It's certain that no one is going to get prosecuted for using a VPN to access geo-restricted content any time soon.
One problem with streaming services being aware of this technique is that they are trying to block it. Now we are engaged in a cat and mouse game between streaming services and VPN providers as one party tries to shut-down the vulnerabilities, while the other tries to find new ways around them.
With this in mind, you need to be aware that the list of VPNs that are able to work around geo-restrictions is dynamic. One VPN may work until suddenly their method is blocked by the streaming service. Who knows whether they will come up with a new way around it in the near future? At the same time, some VPNs that were previously blocked may figure out a way to get through again.
Because of this, we recommend that you take advantage of the free trials that many VPN providers offer. Use it to see if you can get through to Amazon Instant Video before you make any huge commitment. At any time, things could stop working, so if your primary reason for subscribing to a VPN is to watch Amazon Instant Video, it may be best to only purchase your VPN on a month-to-month basis.
What's the Best VPN For Ubuntu?
With all this in mind, you must be asking what is the best VPN? Take the following list as a guide only, because by the time you read it, things may have changed. Our top five for accessing Amazon Instant Video are:
#1 & Editors Choice: ExpressVPN
ExpressVPN is a trusted weapon for getting around those pesky geo-restrictions. They take their service very seriously, which is why they always seem on the ball when it comes to technical and security matters. Because of this, they are our first choice for trying to use Amazon Instant Video from outside of the US.
They have a lot of servers based all around the world, which helps to give them their fast connection speeds. This is crucial if you want to use a VPN for streaming. They also have a no usage logs policy, accept Bitcoin and offer a great level of encryption. Their customer support is also good, with attractive clients that are very functional.
Of course, all of this comes at a price and it is one of the more premium VPNs on the market.
While VyprVPN do keep some logs, this shouldn't be much of a concern if you only plan on using it to get past Amazon Instant Video's geo-restrictions. In fact, it shouldn't be too much of a problem for most other users, unless you are someone who needs the utmost security and anonymity. They offer great speeds that won't have you waiting all day for videos to buffer.
They also offer good customer support and their service comes at a great price.
TorGuard is a very versatile VPN that is great for subscribers who want to use it for a variety of things. Their speeds are super fast, although it is known to occasionally have connection issues. They are also fine with torrenting, have good quality encryption and don't take any logs.
They also have a very reasonable rate and offer a 30 day money-back guarantee. They really are a great provider.
#4: Private Internet Access
Good speeds should be easy to achieve with Private Internet Access. This is because they have more than 3000 servers in 24 countries. You should rarely have to see the buffering icon on Amazon Instant Video with their great service. They also don't take any logs and allow you to pay in Bitcoin for complete anonymity.
They are another good choice that are suited to many different uses.
If you need high speeds for streaming Amazon Instant Video, why not check out Buffered? They are a great VPN company that is based out of Hungary. They may still be one of the smaller operators, but that doesn't mean that they can't offer a competitive service.
They have excellent security measures and a no log policy, which are both important for anyone who cares about their privacy and anonymity. They are a very versatile VPN provider that are great for many uses, not just streaming. One of the only problems is that their customer support is somewhat inferior to many of their competitors.