Updated: Jan 14
If you're like me, based in the UK and envious of how much choice the US market has when it comes to streaming services, you'll want to know know how to install region-locked or "geo-blocked" apps on your streaming device. In particular, on your TV set-top-box. Here's how.
1. Create a US-based App Store account
This is the trickiest step, because people don't know how to do this. The first thing to do is to sign up for a service like StatesCard (not sponsored... yet), and they'll set you up with a prepaid US debit card, complete with a billing address. You'll need to keep hold of these details for setting up the account.
You'll want to head to appleid.apple.com and create a new AppleID with the location set to the United States; when prompted to do so, enter in the US billing details and then you're done with the first step!
2. Sign into your TV with your new US account
The hard part is over and done; don't worry, you won't lose your purchases/downloads if you simply choose to "Add Account" under the Settings App of the TV.
3. Download all your region-locked apps!
Now, it's just a matter of going into the App Store, selecting the apps you'd like to download, and waiting for them to install. This gets you access to Hulu, HBO Max, The CW and more, so it's well worth it!
4. Press and hold the Screen button to switch profiles
Switching profiles doesn't delete the content already on the device, which is really neat! All it does is converts the prices from $ back to whatever your local currency is, meaning you'll be able to pay for something like HBO Max by just using your stored card.
This is the only potential upset. I have a VPN router through a company called StreamLocator (again, not sponsored... yet) and, when I set up the TV, I just connected it to my StreamLocator, which intelligently routes your internet traffic through the US if it's a US-based service, or defaults to the local one if you so choose. This means I don't have to fiddle around with router settings and install a VPN onto the router, the StreamLocator does it all for me. If you're comfortable enough with tinkering around the DNS settings, more power to you, but the point I'm getting at is that you need to be able to actually watch the content on the apps you've installed.
If you've got any other questions, let me know either through Twitter or via a submission on the site. Otherwise, happy streaming!