Using a Virtual Private Network (VPN) like ExpressVPN is the best way to protect your privacy and access geo-restricted content on streaming devices. This comprehensive guide will show you how to install and use ExpressVPN on Amazon Firestick, Fire TV, and Android TV platforms.
By the end of this guide, you‘ll know:
- The benefits of using ExpressVPN on streaming devices
- Step-by-step instructions to install and activate ExpressVPN
- How to troubleshoot connection issues with ExpressVPN
- Tips for testing your VPN to ensure complete privacy
- ExpressVPN‘s additional features like split tunneling and speed test
- How ExpressVPN compares to other leading VPN providers
- Current ExpressVPN subscription options and discounts
Let‘s get started!
Why Use a VPN on Streaming Devices?
Virtual Private Networks encrypt your internet traffic and route it through remote servers, hiding your IP address and location. This provides several key benefits:
Enhanced Privacy and Security
VPN encryption prevents hackers, your ISP, and even app developers from monitoring your streaming activity and collecting private data.
Access Geo-Blocked Content
Connecting through servers in other countries allows you to bypass geographic streaming restrictions and unblock sites like Netflix, Hulu, BBC iPlayer, and more.
Faster Streaming Speeds
Your ISP can throttle certain streaming traffic. A VPN masks the type of traffic, preventing throttling and buffering issues.
VPN Usage Statistics
- 55% of cord-cutters use a VPN to access streaming content.
- 78% of VPN users say privacy and security are important benefits.
- 52% of consumers use VPNs to bypass geographic restrictions when traveling.
Now let‘s see how to install and use ExpressVPN, one of the top-rated VPNs for Firestick, Fire TV, and Android TV devices.
Installing ExpressVPN on Firestick & Fire TV
Here is an step-by-step guide to installing and activating ExpressVPN on your Fire TV Stick, Firestick 4K, Fire TV Cube, and other Fire TV devices:
Step 1: Sign Up for ExpressVPN
First, sign up for an ExpressVPN account here to access their Fire TV app.
You can choose from three pricing plans:
- $9.99/month for 6-month plan
- $8.32/month for 12-month plan
I recommend the 12-month plan since it offers the lowest monthly cost.
You‘ll also get a 30-day money back guarantee so you can test out the service.
Step 2: Find the ExpressVPN App
Once signed up, go to the Fire TV homepage and select Find. Scroll down and choose Search.
Type in "ExpressVPN" and select the ExpressVPN app from the search results.
Step 3: Install the App
Choose the orange Download button to install the ExpressVPN app on your Fire TV device.
Once installed, select Open to launch the app.
Step 4: Log Into Your ExpressVPN Account
You‘ll now need to log into your ExpressVPN account within the app. Select Sign In and enter your account credentials when prompted.
Choose OK to grant the VPN connection permissions.
Step 5: Connect to a Server
You‘re all set! Just hit the large Connect button to establish a secure and encrypted VPN connection through ExpressVPN‘s servers.
That‘s all it takes to install and activate ExpressVPN on your Firestick or Fire TV device. Pretty quick and painless!
Next, we‘ll cover the process for Android TV platforms.
Installing ExpressVPN on Android TV
You can also easily install and use ExpressVPN on Android TV devices like NVIDIA Shield, Chromecast with Google TV, Xiaomi Mi Box, and more.
Just follow these steps:
Step 1: Get ExpressVPN App from Google Play Store
On your Android TV device, open the Apps menu and find the Google Play Store app.
Search for "ExpressVPN" and select the ExpressVPN app. Choose Install.
Once installed, choose Open to launch it.
Step 2: Sign In to Your Account
Just like on Fire TV, you‘ll need to enter your ExpressVPN account credentials within the Android TV app.
Select Sign In and input your username and password when prompted.
Step 3: Connect to a Server
With your account active, simply choose the large Connect button to establish a secure VPN connection on your Android TV device.
That‘s it! ExpressVPN is now protecting your privacy and allowing you to unblock geo-restricted content.
Troubleshooting Tips for ExpressVPN
ExpressVPN is generally quick and easy to set up on both Fire TV and Android TV devices. But here are some troubleshooting tips if you encounter any connection issues:
Restart your Firestick/Android TV device and router if ExpressVPN is not connecting properly. This often fixes connectivity problems.
Make sure your ExpressVPN subscription is active. You may need to log back into the app if your account credentials changed.
Try switching to different VPN protocols like Lightway or OpenVPN in the app‘s settings. The automatic protocol selection doesn‘t always work.
ExpressVPN may fail to connect if your router firmware is outdated. Check for router firmware updates and install the latest version.
If you use a custom router, ensure it is VPN-friendly. Some routers block VPN traffic unless specifically configured to allow it.
Contact ExpressVPN‘s 24/7 customer support if you are still unable to connect. They can help troubleshoot further.
Testing Your VPN Connection
Once you have ExpressVPN installed and working, it‘s important to verify that your traffic is fully encrypted and your IP address is hidden.
Follow these steps:
Method 1: Check Your IP Address
Connect to ExpressVPN on your Fire TV or Android TV device.
Then open a browser (like Silk Browser on Fire TV) and go to www.whatsmyip.com. This will show your public IP address.
Your IP should match the server location you‘ve connected to in ExpressVPN, verifying that your traffic is being routed through the VPN.
Method 2: Perform a DNS Leak Test
DNS leaks can expose your identity even when using a VPN.
To check for leaks, go to www.dnsleaktest.com after connecting to ExpressVPN.
Make sure only your VPN‘s IP address and DNS servers are listed in the results.
If you see your ISP‘s DNS servers, there is a DNS leak that needs to be fixed.
Method 3: Check Streaming Services
Try accessing streaming sites like Netflix or BBC iPlayer that are blocked in your country without a VPN.
If you can successfully unblock them through ExpressVPN, your VPN encryption is working properly.
ExpressVPN Features and Settings
Now that you have ExpressVPN installed and tested on your streaming device, let’s look at some of the useful features you can take advantage of:
Split Tunneling – This allows you to choose specific apps like Netflix that bypass the VPN tunnel. Useful since many streaming services block VPNs.
Kill Switch – Prevents internet access if your VPN connection drops to keep your IP hidden.
Protocols – Choose between protocols like Lightway UDP or OpenVPN TCP depending on speed vs security preferences.
VPN Server Locations – connect to 94 different country locations to unblock geo-restricted content.
Password Manager – Stores and auto-fills passwords for websites to enhance security.
Speed Test – Check the real-world speeds you are getting through ExpressVPNs servers.
Take some time to dive into each setting and customize ExpressVPN to best suit your needs for optimal security, speed, and accessibility.
How ExpressVPN Compares to Other VPNs
ExpressVPN is one of the top 3 highest-rated VPN providers for streaming devices like Firestick and Android TV boxes. But how does it compare to other popular VPN options?
Vs. NordVPN – ExpressVPN has faster speeds but NordVPN offers greater number of servers. Both have similar price points.
Vs. Surfshark – Surfshark is cheaper but has far fewer server locations. ExpressVPN has better speeds.
Vs. CyberGhost – ExpressVPN has faster speeds and lower ping times. CyberGhost sometimes has connecting issues.
Vs. Private Internet Access – ExpressVPN has better customer support and streaming unblocking capabilities compared to PIA.
For the best all-around streaming experience, ExpressVPN tends to come out ahead of competitors, especially in terms of speed and unblocking abilities. But test different VPNs using free trials to see which one works for your needs.
Current ExpressVPN Subscription Options
ExpressVPN offers three main subscription options:
- Can cancel anytime
- Best for short-term use
6 Month Plan
- $9.99/month (6 months for $59.95)
- 49% savings
- Must pay full 6 months upfront
12 Month Plan
- $8.32/month (12 months for $99.95)
- 35% savings
- Must pay full 12 months upfront
I suggest going with either the 6-month or 12-month plan to get the lowest price. Also look out for any limited ExpressVPN sales or discounts.
No matter which plan you choose, you’ll get a 30-day money back guarantee allowing you to try the service risk-free.
Conclusion and Next Steps
I hope this guide gave you a comprehensive overview of installing and using ExpressVPN on your Firestick, Fire TV, or Android TV streaming device. The process is relatively quick and easy.
Here are some final tips and next steps:
Run through the troubleshooting guide if you face any connection or streaming issues.
Test your VPN using the methods described to validate your privacy.
Take advantage of ExpressVPN features like split tunneling to optimize your configuration.
Consider the 6-month or 12-month plans for the best long-term value.
Check for ExpressVPN sales or discounts before subscribing.
With ExpressVPN protecting your Firestick or Android TV device, you can now enjoy safe, private streaming. Select from over 3,000 global servers to access any geo-blocked content worldwide.
Let me know if you have any other questions!