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In the last century, the way we listen to music has changed dramatically. We went from having to carry around large vinyl records to having access to millions of songs right in our pockets. These days, instant digital streaming is the easiest and most cost-effective way to listen to music. One of the leaders in this digital foray is Spotify.
Spotify has completely revolutionized the way we enjoy our favorite artists and songs. Available on most computers and mobile devices, the Spotify music streaming service is used by millions of people across the world.
Despite its accessibility and widespread reach, Spotify is still not accessible to everyone. Currently, it’s only available in 78 countries around the globe. The service is blocked in many jurisdictions. Not only that, but many organizations and businesses block user access to the streaming platform.
Luckily, there are ways to get around these constraints. Whether you’re living in an unsupported country or are unable to listen to your favorite songs due to a network owner blocking access, a VPN can help you get connected. A VPN, or Virtual Private Network, can get around access issues by disguising your IP address and securing your connection.
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What is Spotify?
First established back in 2006, Spotify has quickly become a big player in the music business. The company streams copyright-protected music files to Internet-capable machines. Instead of downloading songs directly to your device, Spotify sends data in real time. That means that you don’t have to take up valuable storage space or pay for individual songs. The service is considered to be the next evolution of digital media consumption.
Currently, Spotify operates in two different ways. You can pay a monthly fee to enjoy music without ads. Alternatively, you can create a free account that’s paid for with commercial breaks every few songs. The latter free plan is what made Spotify become the juggernaut that it is. As of 2019, the platform has over 210 million users around the world. It’s available for virtually every connected device. This includes everything from standard Windows computers to set-top streaming dongles and Kodi boxes.
Why is Spotify Not Available in Certain Countries?
Why Spotify isn’t available to every country all comes down to copyright laws and licensing contracts. Despite all of the advancements that have been made with music consumption, licensing is still relatively archaic. To make songs available to you, the listener, Spotify must have a license to play a song in your specific country. Unfortunately, these licenses aren’t available for every country around the globe. Rather, it’s done on a region-to-region basis.
Even if Spotify is available in your country, that doesn’t mean that you’ll be able to listen to every artist, song, or album that Spotify offers. Content licensing laws may limit availability in certain regions. In fact, the American Spotify library is the biggest in the world, boasting over 35 million songs. If you don’t live in the United States, you’ll have to use a VPN to access all those tunes.
How a VPN Can Unblock Spotify?
VPNs are a wonderful service that can change the way you browse the web and access digital content. These powerful virtual networks effectively hide your identity and keep your connection secure. While most people believe that the Internet is open and anonymous, that’s certainly not the case. Even in countries where censorship is not a concern, connecting to the Internet is not as private as you’d think.
You see, each time that you log onto the Internet, whether it’s from a computer or your smartphone, your identity is being recorded. This happens through your IP address, which is a unique series of numbers associated with your device. This IP address is recorded by your Internet Service Provider, every website you visit, and every streaming platform you use. Basically, everything you do online can be traced right back to you.
It’s your IP address that tells Spotify that you can’t access it. If you try to log on in a country where it’s blocked or unavailable, that unique identifier will guide you to an error message.
When you’re connected to a VPN, your data is heavily encrypted. It’s encrypted at the source and goes through a secured tunnel. This process hides your traffic from prying eyes. High-quality VPN providers will even prevent your ISP from figuring out what you’re doing.
Get Around Geographical Restrictions
As mentioned earlier, your IP address is tied to your location and device. VPNs can get around geographical restrictions and provide access to Spotify by swapping your real IP address out for a new one. VPN providers typically have server locations all around the world. Some of the biggest companies have several thousand servers that you can connect to.
When you connect to a server that’s outside of your own country, you’re assigned a brand-new IP from that particular region. As a result, Spotify will think that you’re accessing their platform from that area. It’s a clever workaround that’s incredibly effective for getting around geo-restrictions.
What About Network Restrictions?
This is another issue that Spotify users encounter. It’s not uncommon for network administrators to block access to Spotify for one reason or another. The act of content filtering is very common in schools and places of business. Essentially, network settings prevent you from streaming any digital content.
Luckily, VPNs can handle these blocks too. When you’re connected to a VPN server, whether it’s your own country or one that’s on the other side of the globe, everything you do is sent to that server first. Not only is your connection encrypted, but your data is sent to the VPN server before it goes to Spotify. This extra hoop effectively bypasses network filters. For all your employer or school knows, you’re visiting some random site that isn’t blacklisted by the network. They’ll be none the wiser.
VPN Features That Will Affect Spotify
Once you have decided that you want to use a VPN to gain unrestricted access to all that Spotify has to offer, there are still some things you need to get done. There are many different VPN providers out there. Unfortunately, not all of them are going to give you the same listening experience. To ensure that you can jam out to heart’s content, here are some features to look out for on your hunt for the best VPN.
Fast Connection Speeds
What good is a music streaming service if you don’t have the speeds to listen without buffering? Granted, music streaming services like Spotify don’t require the same blazing fast speeds as Netflix or other video services. However, you should still make sure that a VPN can provide you with reasonable speeds that are close to what you can get from your ISP.
Due to the way VPNs work, there will be a slight decrease in the speeds you’re used to. Your connection has to go through more hoops to keep you safe and private. With that being said, some of the best VPN providers will optimize their servers to make that dip in speed as low as possible.
Streaming from Spotify can eat up a significant amount of data before you even realize it. To make the most out of your VPN investment, go with a provider that offers unlimited bandwidth. Many free providers put a cap on how much data you can transfer through their network. Once you’ve reached that threshold, you may be cut off or have your speeds throttled significantly. By going with a paid provider that has no data cap, you can avoid this and stream all you want.
Many Server Locations
The number of servers a VPN provider has can affect what you have access to. More servers are always recommended. Not only will you have more streaming options, but you’ll have more opportunities to find a server that’s fast and reliable. Some VPN companies even have optimized servers that are specifically made for content streaming, taking all the guesswork out of the equation.
Generally, music streaming is considered to be a low-risk activity, especially from a free service like Spotify. It’s not like torrenting, which could have significant legal ramifications. However, that doesn’t mean that you don’t need privacy features. If your real IP address is ever compromised during your time on the VPN, your ISP may take action to stop you from using the service again.
Furthermore, if you live in a country with strict censorship laws, you may have to face the consequences of accessing a blocked platform. To ensure that your streaming activity is private, go with a VPN that offers a no-logs policy. This means that they don’t keep any information about your time on the network that could ultimately be traced back to you.
Leak prevention features are also important. Your IP address could be recorded by your ISP due to a faulty VPN connection or unsecured DNS queries. To solve these problems, many VPN providers have a kill switch, which cuts your Internet connection if the VPN goes down, and a no-knowledge DNS server, which allows you to make queries anonymously.
Multiple security features can make sure that your connection is always safe from prying eyes. Go with VPN providers that offer security protocols like OpenVPN and L2TP/IPsec. When it comes to encryption, military-grade techniques like AES 256-bit encryption are preferred. These security features work to keep your connection as safe and anonymous as possible.
Like Netflix and other streaming services, Spotify doesn’t support the use of VPNs. They actively block IP addresses that are coming from known VPN servers. To get around those blocks, you’re going to need some obfuscation technology. Obfuscation protocols disguise the fact that you’re using a VPN. It does this by making your connection look like standard Internet traffic.
Finally, you’re going to need to make sure that your device is supported. Spotify is available on most major devices. They even have a dedicated web platform so that you can stream without having to download the Spotify app. To access the streaming service, you’ll need to make sure that the VPN works on your chosen device.
Most VPN providers have software clients for Windows, Mac, and Linux operating systems. Android and iOS mobile apps can often be found on their respective app stores. For a quick connection, separate browser extensions for FireFox and Chrome are available. If you use Spotify on your television or gaming console, you’ll be happy to know that some VPN service providers support those as well.
Best VPNs for Spotify
Now that you know what to look for in a VPN, here’s a collection of some great providers that fit the criteria.
ExpressVPN is one of the most trusted providers out there. They currently have a network of over 3,000 servers. The service is also quite fast and reliable, making it a great option for Spotify listeners. Multiple security protocols are used and the provider doesn’t keep any identifying logs about your activity.
Many server locations
Kill switch and DNS leak protection
Fast connection speeds
Support for Windows computers, Apple phones, and Android devices
30-day money-back guarantee
Higher subscription fee
Only 3 simultaneous connections
Another great option for Spotify, NordVPN has one of the largest VPN networks around. The provider has over 5,100 servers in more than 60 countries, allowing you to enjoy streaming music from anywhere in the world. The VPN service works on many different devices. There are even detailed instructions on how to get a secured connection on your Wi-Fi router.
Over 5,100 servers
No logs policy
Automatic kill switch and dedicated DNS servers
Higher subscription fee
Distant servers may be a bit slower
Or read our NordVPN Review
VyprVPN has a lot to offer Internet users. One of its most notable features is the Chameleon protocol. It’s an obfuscation feature that’s built to get around restrictions. It can make Spotify unblocked so that you can listen to popular music from anywhere. VyprVPN also owns its own network, ensuring that the servers are fast enough for reliable streaming.
No logs policy
Fast servers and unlimited data
Built-in malware protection
24-hour customer support
Only three-day free trial
Confusing money-back guarantee
Ivacy is an affordable option for casual Internet users. The provider has a network of around 1,000 servers. While the network may not be as large as some competitors, the servers are quite reliable. Not only that, but they’re able to unblock Spotify and other streaming services. The VPN uses some of the most effective security protocols. They also have a strict no-logs policy, ensuring that your streaming activity stays private.
No activity logs
Fast connection speeds
Limitations on money-back guarantee
Or read our Ivacy Review
Surfshark is still relatively new in the VPN game. However, the provider has already made a name for itself thanks to its great features. The network of over 800 servers is fine-tuned for optimal performance. Features like No Borders Mode and Camouflage Mode make it possible to have Spotify unblocked. To make things even better, SurfShark doesn’t have any limitations on how many devices you can connect with a single account.
User-friendly VPN apps
Versatile subscription options
Built-in malware protection
Unlimited simultaneous connections
Some servers have slower speeds
Or read our Surfshark Review
With its generous money-back guarantee and numerous VPN apps, CyberGhost is a very user-friendly option for beginners. The provider does a pretty good job at unblocking most popular digital content streaming platforms, including Spotify. With a network of over 3,500 servers in 60-plus countries, it’s accessible to most. The provider even has a selection of NoSpy servers, which are optimized for better security.
Unblocks most streaming services
Support for many different platforms
Extra-Safe NoSpy servers
60-day money-back guarantee
Doesn’t have the fastest speeds
PrivateVPN is based out of Sweden and offers a true no-logs policy. The provider currently has servers in over 60 countries. Many of them are fine-tuned to get around restrictions and provide reliable streaming performance. Many devices are supported. There’s even a dedicated VPN app for Apple iOS devices so that you don’t have to configure your smartphone manually.
Unlimited server switching
Kill switch and strong security protocols
24/7 live support
Speed may be inconsistent
PureVPN is based out of Hong Kong. As a result, the provider doesn’t keep any logs about your activity. Great privacy features, such as an automatic kill switch, DDoS protection, and 256-bit encryption keep your data away from prying eyes. PureVPN has over 2,000 servers. There’s also a collection of optimized servers that are made for fast streaming.
Over 2,000 servers worldwide
Compatible with many platforms
Optimized servers for fast speeds
24/7 live support
Short money-back guarantee
With a dedicated app for most devices, setting up a secure connection with IPVanish is pretty easy. Not only that, but a single subscription allows for up to 10 simultaneous connections. You can enjoy Spotify on your computer, mobile device, and even Amazon FireTV. There are over 1,300 servers to choose from. In terms of speed, IPVanish is quite reliable. You can stream without having to worry about buffering or data throttling.
Zero traffic logs
Up to 10 simultaneous connections
Over 1,300 servers
Short money-back guarantee
Slightly higher subscription cost
Private Internet Access, or PIA for short, is a lesser-known VPN with a lot to offer. Speed tests show that PIA is one of the faster service providers out there. Many of the servers can provide you with near-identical speeds to your ISP. PIA also has the added advantage of malware protection. It can block pop-ups, phishing scams, and more from affecting your device.
Very fast speeds
No traffic logs
Built-in ad blocker
Over 3,300 servers
Short money-back guarantee
No 24-hour support
How to Use a VPN with Spotify
These days, using a VPN couldn’t be easier. Providers have simplified the connection process quite a bit so that it can be done by even the most tech-challenged web user. All you have to do is download and install the VPN client on your device. Once that’s done, simply log into your account.
From there, you need to choose your VPN server and initiate the connection. Most apps and clients are very user-friendly. Depending on the VPN provider you choose, you may have a list of countries to choose from. Some even offer dedicated servers that are known to work with Spotify and other streaming services. After you have found the server you need, press the button to connect.
At this point, everything your device does over the Internet goes through the VPN. So, you can start listening to Spotify like you normally would. Whether you visit the web player or open up the app, you should be brought to the country-specific landing page of the server you’re connected to.
If you’re unable to access Spotify due to government restrictions in your area or an overzealous network administrator, a solid VPN may be your ticket to enjoying the service unencumbered. The ability to experience Spotify unblocked is just one of the many perks that a VPN can provide. These secure networks can change the way you surf the web and enjoy digital content around the world.