How to Install VPN on FireStick Devices
In this guide, you will learn to install VPN on Firestick devices, which one to choose, why should you use it, and how to install this VPN on FireStick. The VPN recommended in this tutorial works with all the Fire TV devices including FireStick 4K and Fire TV Cube.
What is a VPN?
Before we show you how to install a VPN on Firestick devices, you may have some basic questions. First of all, you may be wondering what a VPN is? Well it’s an abbreviation for the term, Virtual Private Network. Now why is this necessary you may ask? Well it is important if you want privacy and security for your activities while online or perhaps streaming on a device such as a Firestick. In this guide we will specifically talk about its usefulness on the Firestick and how to properly take advantage of all its features, helping you enjoy unlimited content while having the peace of mind of not being compromised.
Amazon FireStick is inarguably one of the best streaming devices you will find today. This inexpensive gadget instantly converts any regular TV with HDMI port into a smart TV. FireStick is a simple device, which is not only easy to set up but also incredibly easy to use. It runs on the modified Android firmware and gives you quick access to the popular streaming services like Netflix, Hulu, Kodi, and even several satellite channels. I have tested many streaming devices, including Android Boxes and haven’t found anything quite like FireStick.
That’s all wonderful. However, I must not forget to tell you that I have experienced some major setbacks with FireStick too. No, there is nothing wrong with FireStick in itself. I am talking about several restrictions and limitations imposed by the streaming services, ISPs, and probably your Government too. You could be subject to:
- Online surveillance and monitoring by your ISP, Government and even third-parties like hackers and cryptocurrency miners. That puts your privacy in serious danger!
- Internet Throttling (which targets the video streamers) by ISP resulting in slow streaming and buffering issues. This totally ruins your entertainment experience!
- Content geo-restriction. This limits your access to content only to a certain location!
- Legal hassles while streaming through popular third-party Kodi add-ons and apps like Mobdro, Cinema APK, Live Net TV and more. You don’t want someone looking over your shoulder all the time!
Thankfully, you can easily overcome all of it by using a VPN for FireStick / Fire TV. A VPN will mask your IP address and subsequently your online identity, allowing you hundred percent privacy. We will discuss why you need a VPN on FireStick and how it helps at larger length later. You will also learn how to quickly install and set up the best VPN for Firestick.
Warning FireStick Users: Read before continuing
All governments and ISPs everywhere monitor their users’ online activities. If you are found streaming copyrighted content on your Fire TV Stick, it can land you in serious trouble. Currently, your IP is visible to everyone. I very strongly recommend you to get a good FireStick VPN and hide your identity so that your movie viewing experience doesn’t take a bad turn.
I use IPVanish which is the fastest and most secure VPN in the industry. It is very easy to install on any device including Amazon Fire TV Stick. IPVanish also has a special deal where you can save over 40% on many of their plans.
What is the best VPN?
Here is the quick overview of the best FireStick VPN I have picked.
I have used over a dozen VPN services during the past seven years and I finally came across one that works very well with all models of the Fire TV. One of the most important features to look at when comparing VPN services is download/streaming speed. No matter which VPN service that you choose, you will notice a drop in your download speed due to the fact that your traffic is routed through a separate VPN server.
IPVanish provides the best download speeds when compared to their competitors and they do not keep any traffic logs of what you stream/download or access on the Internet.
IPVanish VPN has recently come out with a new application for the Firestick, Fire TV, and Fire TV Cube that works excellent with a remote control. The new user interface makes it simple to use a VPN on your Fire TV device. Most VPN services do not provide a Fire TV/Fire TV Stick application which makes IPVanish the preferred choice due to its ease of use.
IPVanish does not keep track of any traffic logs so if they were ever requested to provide your streaming history, it doesn’t exist.
Not only do I use a VPN on my connected devices in my home, I also use it when I am traveling. You should NEVER connect to a public WiFi hot-spot without protection through a VPN service.
IPVanish will allow you to use their VPN service on ten devices at the same time with one account. This is great for those of us who use a VPN service on our computer, phone, and Fire TV or Stick.
IPVanish also provides applications that can be used on Windows, Mac, Linux, Android, and iOS. The mobile applications for both Android and iOS are outstanding. Due to their large ecosystem of supported operating systems, you can use your account on your different devices.
I have created additional VPN setup tutorials that you can use on your other devices as well.
If you ever travel and connect to public WiFi hot-spots, you should ALWAYS connect to the access point through a VPN service. You can use your same IPVanish account on your other devices which is a great benefit.
You will find both a video tutorial and screenshot guide below on how to install a VPN on the FireStick or Fire TV. The video covers installation instructions along with important settings that may be customized within the application.
How to Install IPVanish VPN on a Firestick:
Turn on/plug in you FireStick or Amazon FireTV
Highlight Apps – located at the top of the screen – and then press your middle button on your Amazon remote to bring up a sub-menu in Apps
Scroll to Categories in the sub menu
Look for and select IPVanish VPN
Select Get to download the IPVanish app
After the installation has completed select Open
Sign into app using your IPVanish Username and Password
Select a server location
After you have connected you can press the Home Button on your remote to return to your home screen
To open the IPVanish app once installed select the IPVanish icon from Your Apps & Games.
IPVanish VPN Settings for Firestick & Fire TV
Note: If you don’t see some of these settings in your IPVanish app this means that you don’t have the most recent update. I suggest uninstalling your current app Fire TV Settings / Applications / Manage Installed Applications / IPVanish / Uninstall. Then, reinstall the app.
To access the settings section, click the gear icon in top-right corner.
Start IPVanish will automatically launch the application when the Firestick or Fire TV is turned on. I leave this off because there are some applications that I don’t use the VPN with.
Auto Reconnect will automatically re-connect the VPN if it is terminated for some reason unexpectedly. I keep this option turned on to allow for maximum protection in case the VPN disconnects for some reason.
Allow LAN access when turned on will not route local are network traffic through the VPN. I keep this turned on so that I can connect to the Firestick or Fire TV through the network with various apps such as Plex Media Server or Amazon Fire TV Remote control app.
Split Tunneling allows the user to choose applications that can connect to the Internet without being routed through the VPN. This is handy when using applications that don’t allow for VPN use such as Netflix. This feature is still in its infancy and may not work properly on all Fire TV models yet.
Once inside the Split Tunneling settings, you can check which apps don’t require VPN protection. Click the three vertical dots in top-right corner will allow you to show system apps such as Prime Video so you can activate this feature for those as well.
Show system apps button.
System apps are displayed after enabling “Show system apps”.
Scramble adds obfuscation to Open VPN which may allow it to bypass Websites or services that block VPNs. I keep this off unless there is a site or service that is blocking my VPN where this setting circumvents the action.
VPN Protocol is the connection protocol used by the application.
OpenVPN (TCP) and OpenVPN (UDP) are the available settings for VPN Protocol. UDP usually provides much faster download speeds when using a VPN so I recommend that option. If your VPN app is not connecting, it may help switching your connection protocol in this section.
Port is the tunnel through which your Internet traffic moves.
Port 443 is optimal since this is usually used for HTTPS traffic and may help get around various blocks. I suggest leaving this setting on 443 unless directly by IPVanish staff to change it.
Contact Support will direct you to the IPVanish support information.
Terms of Service provides their most recent document.
Licenses provides a document with the licenses used within the application/service.
How To Test VPN Is Working On Amazon Fire TV Stick, Fire TV, or Fire TV Cube
After you have installed and activated a VPN on your Fire TV device, you may wonder how you can test to ensure that the service is working properly. This is simple!
- Download and install Silk or Firefox Browser for free within the Amazon App store on your Fire TV or Fire TV Stick
- Click the connect button within the IPVanish Fire TV/Firestick VPN to activate a secure connection
- Open one of the browsers that you have installed
- Within the address bar of the browser, type the following address https://dnsleaktest.com
- When the Website loads, you will see your current IP Address & location displayed which should be different than your original
- Click Standard test or Extended test to ensure there are no DNS leaks when VPN is on
General Firestick VPN Troubleshooting Tips
Most of you will never need these, but just in case I have you covered.
- If your IPVanish Firestick/Fire TV/Fire TV Cube VPN application is not connecting, to into Settings / VPN Protocol and change to OpenVPN (TCP) or OpenVPN (UDP), whichever one isn’t currently active
- Restart both your Fire TV/Stick and router by unplugging from power, let sit for a minute and then plug back in.
- If your download speed seems slow or you are experiencing buffering, choose a different server, close to where you are located within the VPN application. Keep in mind that there are multiple servers available for each location and you can try each of them to see which provides better results.
- If you are having problems logging into IPVanish VPN, double check that there are no spaces within the email address that you use as your login. Sometimes a space is automatically added following the @ symbol.
- Uninstall the IPVanish VPN App on the Fire TV or Fire TV Stick by going into Settings / Applications / Manage Applications / IPVanish and then click uninstall. After you have removed the VPN, reinstall with the guide above.
- If the IPVanish application doesn’t appear in Amazon App Store on your device, follow the screenshot guide above for installing through Downloader app.
- If you forgot or lost your IPVanish password, you can reset it by clicking the “Forgot Password” link within the login area on the IPVanish Website.
- No VPN will work on 1st Generation Firestick (released in 2014) due to low processing power.
- If you need help with something, send IPVanish an email at firstname.lastname@example.org .