How To Use VPN On Apple TV?

Fretting over how to use VPN on Apple TV? We’ve got you covered with the simplest solution of configuring it on your router. 

Though it might be a handful for people who aren’t tech-gurus it will surely get you around this problem. Setting up and using a VPN on Apple TV is only straightforward when you buy a pre-configured router. Until then, you can count on our guide to help you out!

In this quick guide, we cover three simple ways to answer how to use VPN on Apple TV and why you should use VPN in the first place. 

How To Use VPN On Apple TV?

Apple TV is a VPN-incompatible device, so you have to follow other means to get around this problem and stream geo-blocked content from the comfort of your sofa. 

We’ve taken ExpressVPN as an example here to explain how to use VPN on Apple TV

Switch your Apple TV DNS IP address

Switch the Apple TV DNS IP address by registering your Apple TV’s IP address on ExpressVPN’s official website. Head to Account Settings and select Set Up Other Devices. You’ll get a MediaStreamer DNS IP address (you’ll need this later). 

You will follow similar prompts for different VPNs because SmartDNS settings are almost the same. 

Once done, here’s how to use VPN on Apple TV by switching your Apple TV DNS IP address:

  • On your Apple TV, head to the Settings by clicking on the icon. 
  • Go to General > Network > Wi-Fi
  • Select your network > Configure DNS
  • Change it to Manual from Automatic > Enter the MediaStreamer DNS IP address
  • Select Done
  • Restart Apple TV to use the VPN! 

Or connect your VPN to your router

By configuring a VPN on your router, you can enjoy restricted content securely. As of now, ExpressVPN has firmware for Linksys, Netgear, and Asus routers

Once you’ve downloaded the firmware from the ExpressVPN website, enter the IP address of your router admin panel in the internet browser’s address bar. 

Upload the firmware to your router, head to ExpressVPN’s router dashboard, and finish up the process. 

Why Would I Use A VPN On My Apple TV?

The main reason behind using a VPN on Apple TV is to swiftly unblock geo-restricted platforms. Be it regional Netflix catalogs, Foxtel Go, Hotstar, or any other blocked site – you’ll be able to comfortably watch without any restrictions. 

As we said, Apple TV doesn’t natively support VPN apps and the best solution is to set up the VPN on your router. ExpressVPN is the most reliable VPN to use on your Apple TV as it offers a custom app for routers. 

Here are some reasons for using a VPN on Apple TV: 

  • Protect Apple TV: With a premium VPN subscription-like ExpressVPN, your Apple TV model doesn’t matter. For instance, you can protect 1st gen Apple TV, 2nd gen Apple TV, 3rd gen Apple TV, 4th gen Apple TV, and Apple TV 4K with ExpressVPN. 
  • Expansive server network: High-quality VPNs offer a global server coverage that lets users securely access geo-blocked content from across the globe. For example, ExpressVPN offers 3000+ servers in 160 locations which guarantees a secure unblocking experience on Apple TV  without a thought of overcrowded servers. 
  • Streaming-optimized servers: A premium VPN like ExpressVPN offers streaming-optimized servers to their users which ensures a buffer-free streaming experience on your Apple TV. 
  • Lightning-fast connection speed: The biggest reason for getting a VPN on Apple TV is to stream without any limits. It won’t even matter if you come across a lagging connection – this is why a trustworthy VPN subscription-like ExpressVPN is your safest bet to get uber-fast connection speeds on your Apple TV. 
  • Network anonymity: Network anonymity remains the biggest use of Apple TV VPNs. With such advanced security protocols including a kill switch, ExpressVPN is the best VPN to keep your online activities untraceable.
  • Simultaneous security on multiple devices: Many VPN providers allow simultaneous device connections letting you protect multiple devices at the same time. ExpressVPN offers 5 simultaneous connections – but you can get it on your router and push the limit as the router will only be counted as 1 device! 
  • 30-day money-back guarantees: You don’t have to worry about risking your money because quality VPNs like ExpressVPN come with a 30-day money-back policy that lets you test the service before making a purchase. 

You can install the custom ExpressVPN apps for PS4 and Amazon Fire Stick. It can also be installed on Roku which means you can stream your favorite content on your desired device. 

Before diving into the details about how to use a VPN on Apple TV, we thought it’s best to cater to why you’d even need to use a VPN for Apple TV!   

Benefits Of Using A VPN On Your Apple TV

From bypassing the geo-blocks on countless restricted sites to securing multiple devices, here are some benefits of using a VPN on your Apple TV: 

  1. VPN-connected Apple TV
  2. Unmatched online anonymity
  3. Easy access to geo-blocked streaming services 
  4. Protects other devices along with Apple TV
  5. Secure connection as long as the router stays on

Now that we’ve established the reasons and benefits of using a VPN for Apple TV, you’ll discover how to use a VPN on Apple TV in three different ways. 

3 Ways To Set Up A VPN On Apple TV

Apple TV isn’t compatible with VPN apps, so you need to follow a different process to set up a VPN and secure Apple TV. 

The process is somewhat similar across all VPN services, but we’ve used ExpressVPN as an example here as it offers advanced security features and uber-fast connection speeds. It’s our top recommendation to securely bypass the location-detection bots and unblock restricted sites. 

Here’s how to use a VPN on Apple TV by setting it up in three ways: 

  1. Set up a VPN on a router for your Apple TV
  2. Set up a virtual router with a VPN for your Apple TV
  3. Set up Smart DNS on Apple TV

Method 1: Set up a VPN on a router for your Apple TV

The simplest way to use a VPN on your Apple TV is by directly installing the VPN on your router. Here’s how to use a VPN on Apple TV by setting up a VPN on your router: 

  • Sign up for a premium VPN service (Recommended: ExpressVPN). 
  • Ensure that your router is compatible with the ExpressVPN app
  • Install ExpressVPN and a VPN client on your router. Check out ExpressVPN’s guides for all supported routers
  • Connect to a server location and check if it works by searching your IP on Google. 
  • That’s it. You can now use a VPN on Apple TV!  

Pro tip: Check out our in-depth ExpressVPN setup guide for routers. Also, set up a virtual router if your router isn’t VPN-compatible! 

Method 2: Set up a virtual router with a VPN for your Apple TV

If your router isn’t compatible with the VPN, there’s no need to waste money on buying expensive routers – simply set up a virtual router through your Windows or Mac computer. 

Here, we’ve used Windows 10 as an example to create a virtual router. By following these steps, you’ll turn your PC into a virtual router to protect your Apple TV and access geo-blocked sites from the comfort of your sofa. 

Follow these simple steps to set up a virtual router with a VPN for Apple TV:

  • Download and install a premium VPN on your computer (Recommended: ExpressVPN). 
  • Navigate to “Settings > Network & Internet”. 

  • Go to “Mobile Hotspot on the right, and toggle “Share my Internet connection with other devices on.
  • Edit your network name and network password
  • Scroll down to “Related Settings and select Change adapter options”. 

  • Note the connections that show green-colored connected bars. You’ll see one Wi-Fi connection and a “Local Area Connection”. 
  • Locate the connection with “ExpressVPN Tap Adapter” and right-click on it > “Properties”.

  • From the two tabs (Networking and Sharing), go to “Sharing” > Check “Allow other network users to connect”.
  • From the drop-down menu, select the Local Area Connection” you noted earlier and hit OK”.

  • Open up the ExpressVPN app and connect to a server you want. 

  • Switch on the Apple TV, and navigate to Network” > “Connection”.
  • From the list of available connections nearby, select your virtual router network and connect using the created password. 
  • You have successfully connected Apple TV to a VPN connection!

Note: The virtual router will only work when you’re connected to the VPN. 

Method 3: Set up Smart DNS on Apple TV

It’s important to note that ExpressVPN’s MediaStreamer feature (Smart DNS) changes the DNS (Domain Name Servers) used by your internet connection to show that your internet traffic is coming from somewhere else. A Smart DNS doesn’t ensure security-related features that come with a VPN. 

You can follow these steps to set up Smart DNS on Apple TV (1st, 2nd, and 3rd generation): 

  • Sign up for a premium VPN service (Recommended: ExpressVPN). 
  • Register your IP address by going to ExpressVPN’s DNS settings page. Sign in if required. 

  • You’ll receive a verification code in your email inbox. 
  • In “IP address registration”, select “Register my IP address”. If you see registered right next to it, then skip this step. 

  • Enable Automatically register my IP address to get the changes in your IP address tracked. 

  • Head to the ExpressVPN set-up page and log in with your credentials. 
  • Next, enter the verification code you received earlier in your email inbox. 

  • Locate the “MediaStreamer DNS server IP address” on your right. Do not close this window; you’ll need this later on. 
  • Now, you need to configure your location settings on the Apple TV. 
  • Switch on the Apple TV and go to “Settings > “iTunes Store”. 

  • From location, select “United States”.
  • Navigate to your home screen. You should now be able to see the apps you want. 
  • To configure the DNS servers on your Apple TV, go to “Settings > “General”. 

  • From “Network”, select “Ethernet or “Wi-Fi based on the current Apple TV internet setup. We’ve selected Ethernet here.  
  • Go to “Configure DNS” > Manual”.

  • Enter the “MediaStreamer DNS IP address” you received earlier. 
  • Restart your device; you’ve completely set up MediaStreamer on your Apple TV!

For more clarity, check out our how-to guide to install ExpressVPN on Apple TV


Can you use a VPN with Apple TV?

Unfortunately, you cannot use a VPN directly with Apple TV as it isn’t compatible with the VPN software, but you can install a VPN on the router Apple TV is connected to or create a virtual router.

What VPNs work on Apple TV?

Sadly, VPNs don’t directly work on Apple TV as it doesn’t support the VPN software. You have to manually set up a VPN on your router or share your VPN connection via a virtual router. If these seem too much of a problem, leverage ExpressVPN’s MediaStreamer feature, and access geo-blocked content. 


In this quick guide, we took up how to use VPN on Apple TV and hope that you’ve got your answers. Lastly, if you just landed in the world of VPNs and want to invest – it’s best to look at our top VPN recommendations before making a purchase!