Ever tried using the BBC iPlayer outside UK? Chances are that you were met with a bummer on-screen saying the service is not available in your Location. The same predicament face globetrotters seeking more than DSTV and trying to watch US Netflix in South Africa.
Netflix is only available in the United States, partially in UK and Canada – while the rest of the world is “Netflixless”. And if you want to know about its official availability in South Africa, it’s not going to happen before the end of 2016 – even if that’s going to be a case. This partly is a problem to do with cross-border media licensing agreements and to a large extent a reluctance by its owners to venture in low-end markets such as Africa and Asia.
So why watch Netflix? Well, the forbidden fruits are always sweet – and so is Netflix. As a top rated online movie store, Netflix offers the world the perfect mix quality, affordability and variety of award winning movies, series, and documentaries. The companies also have billion dollar licenses agreements with top notch production hubs such as Sony pictures, Paramount, and Universal, implying great content on a daily basis.
Is it possible to watch Netflix in South Africa? Absolutely yes. The only way Netflix identifies you are in a geo-restricted zone is by using your device IP address. So all you need to access Netflix is mask your device IP address so that Netflix can’t tell your geo-location, or simply put – make look like you’re requesting Netflix from United States. That is pretty simple considering we previously discussed how to mask your IP address using a virtual Private network. In this article, we’ll take you through a few methods that will enable you watch Netflix anywhere from the South Africa, without a hitch.
Using a Virtual Private Network
A virtual private network (aka VPN) is by far the surest way to mask your IP address and make it look like you’re accessing Netflix from United States. A VPN establishes secure connection with a virtual server in a location of your choice, allowing you to access the web as if you were in the same country with the remote server. For Example subscribing to a VPN in United States routes all you browser traffic through the US, and Netflix then, would have no business blocking your connection. As simple is that! Additionally, VPN uses a virtual tunneling technology to encrypt your traffic making sure you remain safe while online.
How to set up a VPN
Setting up your own VPN is pretty simple, but rest assured you won’t get far with limited technical know-how. Alternatively, subscribing to a premium VPN service is much easier and effective. Frankly, a majority of free VPNs on the internet are not worth the sculpture they are written on and won’t work with Netflix or other video streaming sites (because of the demanding speeds needed for smooth streaming).
At this point, we recommend getting HideMyAss VPN service or picking an alternative VPN from a list of best VPN service providers. Notably, HideMyAss has over 700 VPN servers in over 107 countries. This comes with over 50,000 IP addresses to help you mask your IP addresses at cost less than $7 a month. That’s awesome, right? More importantly, the service is compatible with all major operating systems which include windows, Mac OS and Linux-based operating systems.
To set up HideMyAss on Widows or Mac OS, first download and install the Software (HMA VPN app, comes free with subscription), Create an account by entering a password/username the dashboard and then select the location of your choice. In this case select a remote server based in the United States to enjoy Netflix. Next, sing up for a Netflix.com account follow the simple guided steps on how to set up and start your free month of great content.
What if Netflix is rejecting my non-US card?
To kick start a month of free content on Netflix, you need to have paid at least $7.99 for a basic subscription to be activated on the second month. At this point, you need a PayPal account or US credit card which you most likely don’t have by now.
Fortunately, Entropay.com enables you to get a virtual US card that works perfectly fine with Netflix. This is how it works. Sign up for a free Entropay.com account. Use your non-US card to top up your new Entropay account. At this point Entropay will generate a virtual US card with a card Number and an expiration date. Lastly, use the new card number to activate your free month on Netflix.com. When prompted to give a US zip code, enter 90210 or Google and enter one of the millions US zip codes available on the internet.
Using SmartDNS proxy
Using a SmartDNS is another great way to watch Netflix geo-restricted service in South Africa. Basically, a SmartDNS service works more like a VPN service the only difference being the level of security and browsing speeds. Communications over VPNs are highly encrypted which in turn reduces your browsing speed. SmartDNS services are not encrypted and have minimal effect on you browsing experience.
Setting up a SmartDNS is easy. Go to SmartDNS proxy and sign up for a 14 day trial period. Charges will only apply after the expiry of the trial period, but you can always opt for another SmartDNS service provider or continue the service. Here is a list of best SmartDNS services that will work perfectly with Netflix. Next, log in to your SmartDNS proxy account, click on “How To Set UP” tab and follow the simple steps to configure your DNS setting.
If you followed all the steps correctly, your SmartDNS should be up and running by now. Remember you can set up SmartDNS with your router to enjoy Netflix on multiple devices. Before signing up for Netflix, restart your device. To confirm it’s working, Login into your SmartDNS account, Click on “My Account” tab to open a “SmartDNS proxy configuration Status’ window which should confirm your DNS is working correctly.
At this point, sign up for a Netflix account and follow the provided guide to set up the account and start watching Netflix from South Africa. In case you still have problems, restart your PC again or clear the browser cache. This is how to do it, open the “command prompt” on a windows PC and run the following command “ipconfig /flushdns”. Restart your device and it should be working by now. Remember to use Entropay Virtual card as described above or simply sign up for PayPal account.
Using Zenmate browser Plugin
Zenmate is by far the easiest and costless way to watch Netflix in South Africa. Unlike a VPN or Smart DNS service, Zenmate is currently free and very easy to install and use. On the downside, Zenmate only encrypts your Chromium browser’s traffic and won’t encrypt traffic from other programs in your computer.
To Install Zenmate, simply visit the Chrome store from here and hit “install” and it will be available in a matter of seconds. Next, enter an email address and password to create a Zenmate account. Click on the grey shield Icon that appears on your Chrome browser. Switch on Zenmate at the bottom. The Shield automatically turns green. As you want to Watch US Netflix, simply “change Location” to the United States.
Which Method Should I Choose?
If followed correctly, all the methods describe above will enable you to watch Netflix in any part of the South Africa. However, a virtual Private network is superior in terms of online privacy and security. On the Downside, VPNs slows down browsing speeds due to the high level of encryption required. A SmartDNS on part its does not interfere with your browsing but won’t hide your neck on the web. Lastly, Zenmate is not recommended for advanced users who have more than just watching Netflix on the Web.
Note: If Netflix detects you using any of the IP changer method listed above and restricts your access, worry not, just go to our Netflix proxy error guide to go through.
Top/Featured Image: By unserekleinemaus via Pixabay (http://pixabay.com/en/heart-south- africa-flag-love-symbol-280657/)