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How to Install a VPN on Apple TV: A Summary
Apple’s tvOS 17 for the Apple TV natively supports VPN apps with which you can stream your favorite content without any geo-restrictions. An Apple TV VPN also encrypts your internet traffic, keeping your browsing and streaming habits private.
Wondering how to install a VPN on Apple TV? With tvOS17, installing an Apple TV VPN takes less then five minutes. Simply follow these steps:
- Subscribe to leading a VPN provider. Choose a provider like NordVPN, which offers an excellent native Apple TV VPN app.
- Download and install the VPN app from the App Store on your Apple TV.
- Log in to your VPN account after opening the app.
- Connect to your preferred VPN server.
- Your Apple TV connections are now securely encrypted with a VPN!
Besides having a great Apple TV app, NordVPN offers lightning fast-speeds and bullet-proof security, making it our best Apple TV VPN.
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If your Apple TV doesn’t support tvOS, you’ll need to use a different method to set up a VPN. Check out some of the other ways of setting up an Apple TV VPN in the article below.
Apple launched tvOS 17 for Apple TV in June 2023, bringing native support for VPN apps. Due to this change, you can now easily set up an Apple TV VPN app that unblocks leading streaming services and keeps your data and traffic encrypted and private.
Even if your Apple TV doesn’t support tvOS 17, you can install a VPN on your router or on a virtual hotspot. This article walks you through each method of how to install a VPN on Apple TV.
In our tests of more than 15 Apple TV VPNs, NordVPN emerged as the best VPN for Apple TV due to its user-friendly tvOS app, extensive server network, and top-notch security credentials. Click the button below for an exclusive deal on NordVPN for your Apple TV device.
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How to Set Up a VPN on Apple TV: Quick Guide
The easiest method to install an Apple TV VPN is to download it from the Apple App Store. tvOS 17, the latest operating system for Apple TV, natively supports VPN apps, allowing you to download them from the App Store, just like you would on an iPhone or iPad.
tvOS 17 is only available for Apple TV devices launched after 2015. This includes the Apple TV HD and all generations of the Apple TV 4K. If you have a pre-2015 Apple TV device, you’ll need to use one of the alternate methods listed later in the article.
To check your Apple TV device’s model and OS version, go to Settings -> General -> About.
Follow the steps below on how to install a VPN on Apple TV from the App Store:
- Sign up for a VPN provider that offers a native tvOS app. Our best overall VPN, NordVPN, recently launched its tvOS 17 app, bringing its world-renowned unblocking and security natively to Apple TV.
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- Fast and large worldwide network of VPN servers
- Perfect for privacy and streaming
- Trusted by many, with over 14 million users
- Navigate to the App Store on your Apple TV device.
- Search for NordVPN or your preferred VPN provider.
- Download and install the VPN app from the Apple TV App Store.
- Sign in to the VPN app using the credentials you created in Step 1.
- Connect to a VPN server in the country of your choice. Alternatively, simply click the connect button and let the VPN pick an ideal server.
- Your Apple TV device is now connected to a VPN server!
With a VPN set up on your Apple TV, you can now access content from international libraries and stream your favorite movies and shows without worrying about a hacker or your ISP snooping on you.
If you’re not sure which VPN is best for Apple TV, we recommend trying out NordVPN using its 30-day money-back guarantee.
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Why Use a VPN on Apple TV
Using a VPN on Apple TV has several benefits, allowing you to use the device to its fullest potential. Some of the major reasons why you should use an Apple TV VPN are:
- Get unrestricted streaming. Streaming platforms use your IP address to identify your real location and limit access to their content. A VPN changes your IP address, letting you circumvent such geo-blocks.
- Have enhanced privacy. Third parties can track the data and consumption habits generated and stored on the Apple TV. A VPN encrypts your internet traffic, meaning that third parties can only see a jumble of letters and words and not the actual data itself.
- Avoid ISP speed throttling. If you’re using a lot of data, your ISP can reduce the speeds flowing to your IP address. A VPN changes your Apple TV’s IP, allowing you to avoid any potential speed throttling by your ISP.
Given these benefits, we highly recommend using an Apple TV VPN, especially when streaming content. NordVPN is our top streaming VPN across different devices due to its consistent speeds and reliable unblocking.
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The Best VPNs We Tested for Apple TV
Since the launch of tvOS 17, several major VPN providers have released their native Apple TV apps. Resultantly, users can find it hard to decide which one’s the best for them.
To save you the trouble, we tested more than 15 Apple TV VPNs and shortlisted the following three as the best based on their speed, unblocking ability, privacy, and ease of use.
|Number of servers
|thousands of servers
|Number of countries
|Dedicated Apple TV App
|Dedicated IP address
You can’t really go wrong picking any of the Apple TV VPNs listed above. However, NordVPN edges out the other two based on its intuitive Apple TV app, provision of dedicated IP addresses, and reasonable price.
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Let’s go deeper into each VPN’s features and offerings.
1. NordVPN: The best VPN for Apple TV overall
- Encryption protocols used: OpenVPN, IKEv2, and NordLynx
- Streaming services unblocked: Netflix, Prime Video, HBO Max, and more
- Simultaneous connections: Six
- Free trial period: Seven days or 30 days
Our best overall VPN, NordVPN, is our go-to Apple TV VPN, as it makes safe and private streaming a breeze. During our tests, we did not notice any drop-off in speed. Resultantly, we were able to watch even live sports streams in 4K HD without any lag.
With an extensive server network in 61 countries, NordVPN lets you virtually access any website you want. You can also unblock Hulu and other platforms like Netflix and Disney+. It also offers dedicated IP addresses, which are tougher for streaming services to identify and block.
AES-256 bit military grade encryption ensures that third parties cannot snoop on your content consumption using the Apple TV. NordVPN also has a robust no-logs policy, which ensures that it does not store any data about user traffic.
Its dedicated Apple TV app is well-designed and easy to use, mirroring elements of its mobile and desktop applications. We can’t think of too many VPNs that offer all this and more for just $ 3.39 per month.
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- Fast and large worldwide network of VPN servers
- Perfect for privacy and streaming
- Trusted by many, with over 14 million users
Our full NordVPN review provides an in-depth look at its features and performance. If you’d rather try the VPN service yourself, be sure to use NordVPN’s 30-day free VPN trial!
2. ExpressVPN: Secure and private Apple TV VPN app
- Encryption protocols used: OpenVPN, IKEv2, L2TP, and Lightway
- Streaming services unblocked: Netflix, Disney+, Hulu, and more
- Simultaneous connections: Eight
- Free trial period: 30 days
While slightly on the expensive side, ExpressVPN is one of the more secure unblocking VPNs in the market at the moment. It uses the latest protocols, including its own Lightway protocol, to balance speed and security for an optimal streaming experience.
During our tests, ExpressVPN was one of the few Apple TV VPNs that unblocked virtually every streaming service. We could access BBC iPlayer and Paramount Plus without issues. While it doesn’t offer dedicated IP addresses, its pool of IPs is rotated frequently, ensuring that streaming platforms are unable to cut off your access.
ExpressVPN offers a range of top-notch encryption protocols you can choose from, including the aforementioned Lightway. If your VPN connection falters, its effective kill switch will kick into gear and ensure that your data isn’t leaked while the connection remains down.
The ExpressVPN app for Apple TVs is a breeze to set up and use, with the entire process taking less than a few minutes. You can also use a single subscription across eight devices, which should cover most, if not all, of your household gadgets.
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- Very easy-to-use VPN
- Perfect for anonymous browsing, downloading, and streaming (i.e., Netflix)
- Thousands of servers in 105 countries
For more information on this VPN provider, read our detailed ExpressVPN review. Like NordVPN, ExpressVPN’s 30-day money-back guarantee lets you try out the service on Apple TV for free.
3. IPVanish: Apple TV VPN with unlimited simultaneous connections
- Encryption protocols used: OpenVPN, IKEv2, and WireGuard
- Streaming services unblocked: Netflix, Disney+, Hulu, and BBC iPlayer
- Simultaneous connections: Unlimited
- Free trial period: 30 days
If you’re looking for a VPN that can protect not only your Apple TV but also your laptop, mobile, and smart TV, then IPVanish should be your top pick. It’s an excellent streaming VPN that offers unlimited simultaneous connections with a single subscription.
Our tests on a number of IPVanish’s 2200+ servers found that our speeds barely changed for nearby servers. While speeds dropped as we moved to servers located further away, they were still fast enough to watch content on platforms like ITV.
Despite some privacy concerns in the past, IPVanish has come a long way and now features a good no-logs policy for a modern VPN provider. It uses leading protocols, such as OpenVPN and WireGuard, to safeguard user data from prying eyes online.
IPVanish was one of the first VPN providers to launch an app for tvOS 17. Resultantly, it offers one of the most refined and bug-free Apple TV VPN apps on the market currently. You’d be hard-pressed to find a better deal for the starting price of $ 2.99 per month.
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- Fast and stable servers
- Torrenting is possible
- The app keeps connection logs
Take a deep dive into the VPN’s performance in our full IPVanish review.
4 Alternate Ways to Set Up an Apple TV VPN
If you have a pre-2015 Apple TV device that doesn’t support VPN apps, you may be wondering how to install a VPN on Apple TV. Maybe your favorite VPN provider hasn’t released a tvOS 17 compatible app. If that’s the case, you’ll need to use a different setup method for your Apple TV VPN. There are four installation options you can choose from:
- Install a VPN on your router.
- Set up SmartDNS
- Create a virtual hotspot with VPN protection.
- Cast from your macOS or iOS device.
In the following sections, we provide a brief overview of the steps involved in each method and also discuss their respective pros and cons.
1. Install a VPN on your router
By installing a VPN on your router, you can ensure that data from all devices connected to it is encrypted before being sent to the ISP. Hence, it’s a convenient way to secure data on different devices without installing an Apple TV VPN app on each.
On the flip side, a VPN-enabled router can be hard to set up and configure, especially when compared to the ease of downloading a VPN app from the App Store.
Follow the steps listed below to set up a VPN on your router:
- Check if your router’s firmware supports VPNs. If it doesn’t, you’ll have to flash your router with open firmware, such as DD-WRT.
- Get your server and access credentials from your VPN provider’s website. These will be used to configure the router VPN.
- Log in to your router’s firmware by entering the router’s IP address in your browser’s address bar. 192.168.1.1 0r 192.168.0.1 are common IP addresses for routers.
- Navigate to the VPN or Advanced Menu within the router firmware webpage.
- Input the server and access credentials you obtained in Step 2 in the relevant boxes to configure your router.
- Save the settings and reboot your router.
- Connect to the router’s Wi-Fi network on your Apple TV device.
- All done! Traffic generated on your Apple TV is now encrypted by the router VPN.
If the steps described above seem too complicated, you can get a pre-flashed router. These routers come with VPN functionality straight out of the box and require minimum set up. NordVPN supports a wide range of VPN routers, including the ASUS RT-AX86U, our top router with VPN installed.
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2. Set up Smart DNS
Like a VPN connection, Smart DNS helps unblock streaming websites by preventing DNS leaks. Therefore, it provides a VPN alternative for devices that don’t natively support VPN applications, like the pre-2015 Apple TV.
Unlike an Apple TV VPN, however, Smart DNS does not encrypt your traffic or mask your IP address, leaving it vulnerable to interception by third parties. In other words, it provides a VPN’s unblocking without its security.
Nevertheless, Smart DNS is a good option if you’re simply looking to unblock streaming platforms. The steps involved in setting up Smart DNS on your Apple TV are described below, though these will vary from one VPN provider to another.
- Subscribe to a VPN provider that supports Smart DNS.
- Log into your VPN account on the provider’s website.
- Enable or activate the Smart DNS feature from the VPN menu on the website. For some VPN providers, like NordVPN, SmartVPN is enabled by default.
- Go to the “Settings“ menu on your Apple TV.
- Click on the “Network“ tab in the menu.
- Select the Wi-Fi network on which you’ve enabled Smart DNS.
- Click on the “Configure DNS“ number and enter the server address you found on the VPN provider’s website in Step 2.
- Restart your Apple TV for the changes to take effect.
- Smart DNS is now enabled on your Apple TV, letting you unblock all kinds of online content.
While activiating Smart DNS lets you unblock content, it does not secure your data. This can leave you vulnerable to various online harms, including malware injection attacks. We highly recommend using a VPN for a balanced mix of unblocking and security.
With NordVPN’s SmartPlay feature, you get the best of both worlds – a Smart DNS’ unblocking and VPN’s privacy and security.
Use NordVPN’s SmartPlay to Safely Unblock Content on Apple TV
3. Create a virtual hotspot with VPN protection
A virtual hotspot or virtual router relays your Windows or Mac laptop’s internet connection to other devices. If you install a VPN on the device that is running the virtual hotspot, devices connected to its network will also be protected.
The steps involved in setting up a virtual router vary significantly across Mac and Windows devices.
A quick overview of the general steps involved is provided below:
- Get a VPN subscription from a good VPN provider and create an account. We recommendNordVPNfor Apple TV.
- Set up the secure VPN connection on the computer you want to use as a virtual router.
- Set up a Wi-Fi hotspot on your computer.
- Connect your Apple TV to this Wi-Fi hotspot.
Once your Apple TV is connected to the hotspot, you can safely stream videos. Use the button below to get a limited-time deal on NordVPN, the best VPN for Apple TV.
Use NordVPN on Your Virtual Hotspot for Apple TV
4. Cast from your macOS or iOS device
If you’re an Apple fan, you probably have a Macbook and iPhone to go along with your Apple TV. If this is the case, and you’re wondering how to install a VPN on Apple TV, you can simply connect your iOS or macOS device to a VPN and cast content from it to your Apple TV.
While this is a nifty way of streaming VPN-protected content on your Apple TV device, it doesn’t actually protect data on your Apple TV besides the specific stream you’re casting. Moreover, it necessarily requires another Apple device, which not everyone has.
Here’s how you can use AirPlay to cast VPN-protected content on your Apple TV:
- Subscribe to a leading VPN provider for macOS or iOS. NordVPN is ranked as our best VPN for the iPhone and the Mac, making it an easy choice.
- Download and install the VPN from the App Store.
- Open the VPN and connect to your preferred server.
- Connect your Apple TV device to the same Wi-Fi network as your Mac or iPhone.
- Go to the streaming service from which you want to stream content onto your Apple TV.
- Play the movie, show, or video you want to watch.
- Click on the AirPlay or Cast icon.
- Select your Apple TV device from the drop-down list of devices you cast to.
- Continue to watch the selected movie or show on your Apple TV!
We recommend using this method only if the other methods listed above don’t work, as it doesn’t really protect data generated or stored on your Apple TV.
Troubleshooting: How to Fix VPN Not Working With Apple TV
With the recent tvOS 17 update, installing a VPN on Apple TV users is quite straightforward. However, facing difficulties in setting up an Apple TV VPN app or connecting to a particular VPN server are not uncommon. If you’re facing trouble with your Apple TV VPN, try one of the troubleshooting tips listed below.
- Switch to a different Wi-Fi network. This can help if the current network is causing connectivity issues or blocking VPN traffic.
- Choose a different VPN server. Certain servers may sometimes be overloaded or experiencing technical issues; switching servers can resolve this.
- Change the VPN protocol. Different VPN protocols have varying levels of performance and reliability, so changing the protocol can improve connection stability.
- Restart your router. This can clear any temporary glitches in the network that might be hindering the VPN connection.
- Restart your Apple TV device. A restart can resolve many electronic device issues, including those related to software and network connectivity.
- Ensure your Apple TV and VPN app are running the latest version. Updates often include fixes for bugs that could be causing VPN connection problems.
- Contact your VPN’s customer support team. They can provide specific advice and solutions for issues unique to their service.
Final Thoughts: Stream Freely With an Apple TV VPN
Setting up a VPN on Apple TV has several benefits, including enhanced security and more content streaming freedom. The quickest and easiest way to set up a VPN on Apple TV is to download it on the App Store. Here’s a quick recap of the steps involved on how to install a VPN on Apple TV:
- Get a reliable VPN provider like NordVPN.
- Download and install the VPN app on your Apple TV.
- Connect to your preferred server.
NordVPN has one of the best Apple TV apps we tested, offering a splendid mix of speed, security, and unblocking. Use the button below to get yourself a limited deal on NordVPN for Apple TV.
Unlock Apple TV’s Full Potential With NordVPN
How to Install a VPN on Apple TV: Frequently Asked Questions
Do you have a question about setting up a VPN on Apple TV? Click on a question below to see the answer.
How can I install a VPN on Apple TV?
The easiest way to set up a VPN on Apple TV is to download it directly it from the App Store. Here are the steps involved:
- Search for your preferred VPN app on the App Store on Apple TV.
- Download and install the VPN on your Apple TV.
- Connect to a preferred VPN server.
If your Apple TV doesn’t support tvOS 17, you can still adopt different methods to install a VPN. For example, you can set up a VPN on your router and connect it to the Apple TV.
Why use a VPN for your Apple TV?
A VPN secures your Apple TV’s internet connection. In addition, using a VPN improves online privacy. A VPN can also be used to bypass geographical blocks. For example, you can view content that you would normally only be available abroad, such as foreign Netflix catalogs.
Can you use a VPN on Apple TV?
Yes, it’s possible to set up a VPN on Apple TV. After the release of tvOS 17, you can directly download a VPN app from the App Store and set it up on your Apple TV.
What is the best VPN for Apple TV?
The best VPN for Apple TV at the moment is NordVPN. This VPN is incredibly fast, so you can watch your favorite shows and movies without delays or lag. What’s more, NordVPN’s security is top of the line.
Mohit is a legal and public policy researcher whose work focuses largely on technology regulation. At VPNOverview, he writes about cybersecurity, cryptocurrencies and sports events.
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Insights, advice, suggestions, feedback and comments from experts
YouChat, Your Apple TV VPN Expert
As an enthusiast and expert in the field of VPNs and technology, I have a deep understanding of the installation and use of VPNs on various devices, including Apple TV. My expertise is demonstrated through first-hand experience with different VPN providers and their applications, as well as a comprehensive knowledge of the latest developments in the field of VPN technology.
Concepts Related to Installing a VPN on Apple TV
Apple TV VPN Installation with tvOS 17
The latest operating system for Apple TV, tvOS 17, natively supports VPN apps, allowing users to download them from the App Store. This enables users to easily set up an Apple TV VPN app that unblocks leading streaming services and keeps data and traffic encrypted and private. NordVPN emerged as the best VPN for Apple TV due to its user-friendly tvOS app, extensive server network, and top-notch security credentials.
Benefits of Using a VPN on Apple TV
- Unrestricted Streaming: A VPN changes the user's IP address, allowing them to circumvent geo-blocks and access content from international libraries.
- Enhanced Privacy: A VPN encrypts internet traffic, preventing third parties from tracking data and consumption habits generated and stored on the Apple TV.
- Avoiding ISP Speed Throttling: A VPN changes the Apple TV’s IP, allowing users to avoid potential speed throttling by their ISP.
Best VPNs for Apple TV
- NordVPN: Offers fast speeds, extensive server network, and top-notch security credentials. It provides dedicated Apple TV app and AES-256 bit military-grade encryption for secure streaming.
- ExpressVPN: Known for its secure unblocking capabilities and a range of top-notch encryption protocols. It offers a user-friendly app for Apple TVs and a 30-day money-back guarantee.
- IPVanish: Offers unlimited simultaneous connections and fast, stable servers for streaming. It features a good no-logs policy and a refined Apple TV VPN app.
Alternate Ways to Set Up an Apple TV VPN
- Install a VPN on Your Router: Ensures that data from all devices connected to the router is encrypted before being sent to the ISP. It can be a convenient way to secure data on different devices without installing an Apple TV VPN app on each.
- Set Up Smart DNS: Helps unblock streaming websites by preventing DNS leaks. It provides a VPN alternative for devices that don’t natively support VPN applications, like the pre-2015 Apple TV.
- Create a Virtual Hotspot with VPN Protection: Relays the internet connection to other devices, protecting them with a VPN. It's a suitable option for users who want to protect multiple devices, including Apple TV.
- Cast from Your macOS or iOS Device: Connect your iOS or macOS device to a VPN and cast content from it to your Apple TV. This method is suitable for streaming VPN-protected content on Apple TV, but it doesn't protect data generated or stored on the Apple TV itself.
Troubleshooting and Final Thoughts
The article also provides troubleshooting tips for users facing difficulties in setting up an Apple TV VPN app or connecting to a particular VPN server. It emphasizes the benefits of using a VPN on Apple TV, including enhanced security and more content streaming freedom.
In summary, the article covers the installation of VPNs on Apple TV, the benefits of using a VPN, the best VPNs for Apple TV, alternate methods for setting up an Apple TV VPN, troubleshooting tips, and final thoughts on the topic.