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A worldwide VPN just became the best Netflix accessory ever

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Travel the world from your very own couch

Netflix just announced that it's launching in 130 countries around the world today — adding countries like India, Russia, and South Korea to the service footprint. That's kind of amazing; Netflix CEO Reed Hastings straight up called it the launch of "a new global internet TV network."

And that's true, from a certain perspective: Netflix is making more and more original content than ever, so shows like Jessica Jones and Narcos will indeed be available around the world simultaneously, because Netflix owns all the rights. That's unprecedented, and pretty cool.

There's a ton of stuff on Netflix that's only licensed in various regions

But there's also a ton of stuff on Netflix that's only licensed in various regions: Better Call Saul is available in the UK, but not in the US, for example. So now that Netflix is everywhere, it's even more tempting to mask your location and watch things that might not otherwise be in your market — both for Hollywood movies not available in the States and local content from other countries that might not ever show up at home.

I personally use a VPN service called TunnelBear and it works great, but simpler services that just mask your location and don't affect data speeds are simple to try out as well — most offer free trials. Thomas Ricker wrote about services like UnblockusGetflix, and Media Hint last year — they get around geoblocking by tricking websites and internet services into thinking you’re still at home, or wherever you want to pretend is home. You just pick a country and then point your laptops, tablets, and smartphones to the chosen service’s DNS servers to start watching localized Netflix content.

Of course, it's possible Netflix could get wise to this trick and shut it down in some way, but so far the company has been pretty tolerant of people doing things like sharing passwords and masking their locations. Even still, if you're interested in exploring the international side of Netflix, the window might never be as open as it is right now.

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