The discerning music listener is unpredictable, and their behavior has changed a lot alongside technology improvements over the years. We’ve gone from vinyl to tape, onto CD and back to Vinyl again. Vinyl has surely enjoyed a resurgence, but will the tape make a glorious comeback? Probably not. One thing that’s proven endlessly popular over recent years is the use of online streaming services, both for viewing and listening entertainment.
Paid subscription services like Spotify and Apple Music are an excellent way to stream and download all types of music—new and old—without having to purchase the individual works of each artist. Websites like SoundCloud, MixCloud and YouTube are all equally as useful when it comes to sharing and digesting music, as well as scoping out amateur and professional releases.
But a lot of these services, while available mostly everywhere, use region locks to adhere to their licensing agreements. Sure, it’s understandable. If they’ve negotiated terms with an artist or label to make their content region specific, then they must adhere to those terms. But what does this mean for you – the paid user? It hardly seems reasonable that for someone who pays for a service, not all content is accessible. There is a way around this, though, and it comes with a lot of extra perks in the process.
How To Get Around Region Locks
- Install a VPN (you can choose yours from our list below)
- Connect to a server in your desired location
- Log in to your account (Spotify, Apple Music, etc.)
- Enjoy the content you’re missing out on!
A Few of The Best VPNs Available
Often considered the most reliable service out there, ExpressVPN is an ideal choice for those looking to defy region locks promptly and securely. Because it’s based in the British Virgin Islands, a location without any data-retention laws, users needn’t worry about their data or activity being traced. With a powerful 256-bit AES encryption – along with DNS-leak protection, an automatic kill switch, and split tunneling, among other features – users can stream and download anything without worrying about prying eyes.
It offers access to more than 2,000 servers based around the world, complete with unlimited bandwidth and zero throttling. And like the others featured, it comes with an easy-to-use interface across all devices and platforms.
NordVPN is a household name in the VPN industry – partly due to its military-grade encryption, CyberSec and Double VPN protection. Like the others, it comes with advanced DNS-leak protection, an automatic kill switch, and a strict no-logs policy. But Nord also provides the combined benefit of a VPN with the Onion Router to ensure maximum online security.
It measures up highly on performance too, with over 5000 servers in over 60 countries to choose from; without any caps on switching. Its integrated SmartPlay technology creates fast, secure, throttle-free streaming without compromising your online security. NordVPN also welcomes P2P sharing, with servers that are optimized for those looking to share content quickly.
Ivacy is a great choice for streaming services like Spotify. Not only does it have servers in more than 100 countries worldwide, it comes with unlimited server switching and data transfer, so downtime is never an issue. It comes with five simultaneous logins, so you can enjoy the music you’ve been missing on the move or at home. If you tend to torrent music, then you’ll benefit from P2P-optimized servers, as well as an automatic kill switch in the event of a connection loss.
It protects its users with a 256-bit encryption, identity theft and data protection, IPv6 leak protection and Secure DNS, as well as plenty of other features.
VyprVPN is easily one of the most powerful services out there. Not just that, but it’s one of the most secure ones, too. By only using its own network and hardware – which means it’s not buying server space from third parties, for example – they’re able to offer a level of protection which a lot of other services can’t. It employs a 256-bit encryption, an exclusive zero-knowledge DNS feature, and it also offers multiple protocols for encryption.
And it combats throttling from your ISP to ensure unrestricted internet speeds.
In terms of performance, users have unlimited access and switching across more than 700 servers based worldwide. Since it made substantial improvements to its network and infrastructure, starting with EU, customers are experiencing clear enhancements to speed and reliability.
A decent VPN (virtual private network) is the crux of cyber security for both businesses and personal users. It’s there to protect you and to provide more freedom when using the internet. Connecting to your service’s private networks over your public connection has many far-reaching benefits, the top one being online anonymity.
It spoofs your computer into thinking you’re positioned in the same location as the server you’re connected to. That, and it prevents your ISP – and the majority of hackers – from being able to monitor and document your online activity. In the case of hackers, your personal life can be used against you – whether that’s for personal photos, account logins or bank details – so it’s especially important to choose a service you can trust.
The benefit isn’t just privacy, though; far from it. Spoofing your device into thinking you’re in another country means you’re able to access their region-specific content. Keeping in mind music services like Spotify or Apple Music, these region locks are no longer an issue when you adjust your location to elsewhere.