Do you want to hide your online streaming activities when watching your favorite shows or movies on your smart TV? We recommend installing a virtual private network (VPN) on your smart TV just like you would on your smartphone or computer. In this brief guide, we’ll explain how to install a VPN on a smart TV and answer some of the most frequently asked questions about VPN installations.
Can You Put a VPN on a Smart TV?
Most smart TVs in the market don’t come with virtual private networks installed right out of the box. However, this doesn’t mean you can’t install and use a VPN on them.
Most people download and use VPNs on their computers or smartphones to stream geographically restricted content, even though this isn’t its main or recommended function.
The core purpose of setting up a VPN on a smart TV or any device is to keep your online activities private by hiding your IP address and traffic from your internet service provider (ISP).
If you own an Android or Fire TV, you can install VPN apps directly by downloading one from the app store. You can also set up the VPN on your WiFi router or use SmartDNS when connecting your smart TV to the internet.
However, the latter process can be a bit complicated or tedious for most casual streamers.
Is there a Free VPN for Smart TVs?
Yes, many VPN service providers offer a free solution or an unpaid version for users looking to hide their IPs and stream anonymously. However, opting for a free VPN solution is highly unrecommended.
Free VPNs generally lack standard security protocols.
Moreover, many free VPN services hide your IP address and traffic from your ISP. However, they can track your data and sell it to third parties like marketing companies that display annoying adverts vigorously.
Therefore, you should opt for a paid solution since they have the resources and incentives to provide industry-recognized encryption standards. With a paid solution, you also enjoy other perks, such as customer support, high bandwidths, and more server locations.
How to Install a VPN on a Smart TV – A Step-by-Step Guide
As mentioned above, there are many ways you can install a virtual private network on your smart TV. Below are the most common ways, along with step-by-step instructions for a seamless VPN Install:
Installing a VPN Directly on Your Smart TV
Whether you’re using a Fire TV or Android/Google TV, you can download and install a VPN directly into your device from the Amazon App Store or Google Play Store as long as it’s compatible with your device. Once you’ve downloaded the app, you can connect to a server and hide your streaming activities.
Below is a step-by-step guide:
- On your smart TV, open the Amazon or Google App store;
- Next, look for a VPN app from the search bar;
- Download the VPN and let your device install it automatically;
- Once installed, open the VPN and create your account;
- Select your server and start streaming anonymously.
Note: Many VPNs offer a trial or free version to get started. To maximize security, you should convert to a paid account as soon as possible.
Installing a VPN on Your WiFi Router
If you want to connect all your devices (smartphones, smart TV, computer, etc.) to a VPN, you can install a VPN on your WiFi router. This complex process may require professional expertise, especially if you don’t have relevant IT skills.
Below is a step-by-step guide:
- Look up your router model and determine if you can flash it;
- Connect the router to a computer to access its web interface;
- Change the router’s firmware and install your preferred VPN into it;
- Connect your smart TV and other devices to the flashed router.
Installing a VPN on Your Smart TV through an Ethernet Connection
If you don’t have an Android/Fire TV or a VPN-compatible router, you can use your PC or laptop to share a VPN connection with your smart TV.
All you’ll need for this is an Ethernet cable and possibly an adapter, depending on your device. This solution might not be as practical as installing a VPN directly on your smart TV, but it’s an option.
Here’s a step-by-step guide:
- Connect your computer to your smart TV and go to Settings > Network & Internet > Mobile Hotspot;
- Create a new name and password for your hotspot by clicking on Edit;
- Under Share my Internet Connection Over, choose WiFi;
- Turn on the hotspot;
- Connect your computer to your VPN and then connect your TV using the hotspot you created on your computer and turn on the VPN
- Connect your Mac to your WiFi router via an adapter or Ethernet cable;
- Go to System Preferences and click on Sharing;
- Next, select Internet Sharing and choose your VPN connection from the connection-sharing dropdown menu;
- Set a network name and password by clicking on WiFi Options. (Make sure you choose a WPA2 Personal connection);
- Connect your TV to your Mac’s hotspot.
How Do I Set Up a VPN on My Samsung Smart TV?
Samsung smart TVs are among the best-selling smart TVs in the market. Therefore, it’s no surprise that Samsung receives the most questions related to VPN installation, especially considering its smart TV models don’t have native VPN support.
Therefore, if you want to use a VPN on your Samsung smart TV, you must either connect a VPN to your router (which we have explained above) or set up a Smart DNS to overcome basic firewall and ISP blocks.
Here’s a simple step-by-step guide to setting up a Smart DNS:
- Look for a VPN service offering the Smart DNS feature;
- Download the solution and install it on your Samsung TV;
- On Account Settings, you should find the option to turn on the Smart DNS feature. Activate the option;
- You should receive an email with your DNS key and instructions;
- On your Samsung smart TV, go to Settings > Network > Network Status > IP Settings. Here you will find the DNS Settings. Click on it and enter the DNS key manually;
- Click on “OK” and start streaming anonymously.
Connecting to a VPN on your Smart TV is an excellent way to hide your streaming activities and optimize security.
With this simple guide, we hope you know how to install a VPN on a smart TV and hide your IP address and traffic on every compatible smart TV model.