VPN FOR FIRESTICK: Features of use, 5 paid + 5 free services (2020)
Launching a VPN to access geo-restricted content? Easy! Even if you use Amazon Fire TV Stick of the 2nd and 3rd generations. In this review, I will offer you 5 VPN services that will allow you to successfully unlock content on Firestick and 5 free VPNs that can help with some limitations.
- What should a VPN App for Fire TV be?
- Proper Firestick setup to use with VPN
- Best VPN for Firestick based on 2020 test results
- Free VPN For Firestick - Does It Work?
- The best VPN for Kindle Fire
The first-generation Fire TV (“Bueller”) was born in 2014 as a TV set-top box and a compact version, an insertable HDMI connector, called the Fire TV Stick. It allowed one to access streaming content without using a computer, but at that time had limited ability to install third-party apps, including a VPN.
To bypass the geo-restrictions of the first generation devices, you had to configure a VPN on the router.
In 2015, the second generation of consoles and compact Firesticks was released. It became possible to install VPN applications from Amazon Appstore.
From this moment on, Fire TV Stick has become a really convenient and universal tool for accessing video content in any region of the world. For that, however, you need to install not just any VPN app, but one that can bypass the restrictions of streaming services. Indeed, the complexity of accessing the desired regions consists not only of the configuration of the device itself, but also of the “struggle” with the restrictions of video services.
Let’s go through the best VPN providers that have shown the best test results with Amazon Firestick.
- ExpressVPN: The fastest of the tested services. It supports Netflix, Amazon Prime and most popular streaming services for almost any region.
- NordVPN: Also supports most countries and streaming providers. Showed a lower speed in US locations.
- Surfshark: The best option, given the price. Support for Firestick and streaming in most regions. Prices from just $1.99 per month.
- CyberGhost VPN: This VPN is interesting in that it has special locations for streaming, albeit different for different services. Speed is highly dependent on the selected country.
- IPVanish: Easy to install on Amazon devices, but does not support every streaming provider.
- Windscribe: The best of free VPNs for working with Fire TV, despite the monthly traffic limit of 10GB
- Hide.me: The same 10GB limit, but a smaller selection of available services
- ProtonVPN: Unlimited free traffic, but requires installation on a router.
- TunnelBear : It is also installed on the router but, on the other hand, it supports Netflix (the only one of the listed free VPNs).
- Goose VPN: Has a free trial plan of 30 days. A good alternative to completely free travel services.
- Recommendation: To watch movies, TV shows, series, or other video content in HD, Ultra HD and 4K quality, you need Internet speed of 6 to 25 Mbps. Free VPNs have either speed or traffic limits (sometimes both). Their speed is also unstable. If you are not sure that a VPN will solve your problems, and if in doubt about something, then I advise you to choose a VPN service with the possibility of a refund. All services presented in this review have a money-back guarantee of 30 to 45 days.
For comfortable use of VPN on Firestick or Fire TV Cube, the installed app must meet some important criteria. Some of them may seem strange, but in reality there are some hidden nuances that are worth considering.
Here is a list of the main features that a VPN should have:
- Speed should be more than 30Mbps. Even better - more than 50-70Mbps, as sometimes, with a heavy load, it can decrease.
- Available app for Fire TV (for Firestick, Fire TV Cube and other versions).
- Video streaming services support.
- Connection stability.
- A large number of servers.
- Country support.
- IKEv2 or WireGuard protocols support.
With most points, everything is clear, but I want to dwell a little more on the stability, number of servers and protocol support.
The Importance of Connection Stability for Amazon Fire Stick
Watching movies regularly, without a virtual private network, we assume that sometimes the player can stop for a few seconds to buffer content. This happens in cases if the speed of the Internet for one reason or another drops briefly.
But everything changes if you use an unstable VPN service. Such stops will occur regardless of the speed of your Internet service provider. But the most unpleasant thing is not this. With every loss of connection with the VPN server, the app will try to reconnect to it. This may take up to a minute. Moreover, services of a low level can simply “hang” and you will have to go to the VPN menu of the app, change the location or turn the connection off and on again. In practice, this can be quite common: up to 3 and more times per hour.
A good service will not interrupt your viewing even once a day.
Why is it necessary for a service to have many servers?
Not many VPNs support popular streaming services well. But there are a lot of people who want to watch popular TV shows and every year, their number is growing rapidly.
What does this have to do with the number of servers?
Everything is simple. The server channel width is limited. Not everywhere in the data centers there are 1-3 Gbps channels on which, in the ideal case, the server should be located. I have been the admin of such servers for a long time and I know that often their speed is only 100 Mbps. And the server not only receives traffic, but also passes it to you, which halves its capabilities. For each user of the VPN service, you need to set aside at least 5, or even 25 Mbps. It is not difficult to estimate that the real technical possibilities are far from endless. But there are still users of other devices!
Obviously, this simple calculation shows the importance of having a powerful technical base for the service. And not just one that has 20 or 100 servers, but thousands. And there are such services.
The impact of a VPN protocol on video quality
Just like the number of servers, the speed is affected by the protocol used. But it does no longer happen on the server-side (although on weak VPNs this can also be true), but directly at your home.
The fact is that the VPN is not only a substitution of IP addresses. It also packs the traffic into a special virtual channel and then unpacks it. This is a rather complicated computational process and the higher the data transfer rate, the higher the load on the Firestick processor.
When watching a video in 4K, it works almost to the limit. So add a VPN here and failures can follow.
Most VPNs use the OpenVPN protocol. It is reliable, but not fast enough. Optimally, you want the support for IKEv2 or, even better, WireGuard.
Read on and you will find the best service for you that will meet all the requirements when used with Fire TV and other devices.
The only thing to consider when setting up Fire TV devices with virtual private network is setting up the desired region in your video service. For example, in Amazon Prime, it’s important not to forget to go into your account settings and change the region to the one you plan to unblock it for.
You do not need to change any additional settings on the device yourself.
It will not be superfluous to go into the settings of the VPN app and check which protocol is used, whether there is an automatic reconnect when the connection is broken, and configure the region for automatic connection when Firestick is turned on.
Based on the test results of more than 20 services that support this platform, ExpressVPN is the best one. This provider not only combines all the necessary features but also does it better than others. It has excellent stable speeds and the best coverage of streaming services to date.
I put NordVPN second. This provider is also great for Firestick.
The 3-5 places were taken by services that also successfully passed testing, but at the same time have some features (both positive and negative).
Next, I will dwell on each of the Top 5 VPNs.
Comparison of the main features of VPN services for Fire TV Stick
|Service||Ranking (out of 10)||Speed, Mbps||Country selection||Number of servers||Netflix||Price (monthly)|
|CyberGhost||9||>70||30||6000+||+ (4 countries)||$2.75-12.99|
- High speed
- High stability
- Easy setup
- Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, etc. support
ExpressVPN is the best choice if you want to access the video content of any region without slowing down the Internet.
The provider has everything you need for a stable permanent connection and has practically no problems with unblocking streaming services. The app can be installed in two ways - from the Amazon Appstore or using the APK installer, available on the ExpressVPN website. In this case, you need to use a third-party app to download files to Firestick (after sign up you can easily find detailed instructions).
The table lists the ExpressVPN tariff plans
|1 month||6 months||1 year|
ExpressVPN supports various types of payments, including cryptocurrencies.
- ExpressVPN effectively works on Fire TV Stick
- Easy installation in multiple ways
- Flexible pricing
- Supports all other platforms and allows up to 5 connections simultaneously
- It does not store logs and is known as a reliable and secure service.
- 5800+ servers
- Specialized server lists
- Visualized selection of locations
- Popular streaming services support
NordVPN also did a great job on Amazon Fire TV Stick. At most locations, it showed high speed and the stability of the connection is not inferior to ExpressVPN. It confidently supports all tested regions (I connected to more than 20 countries) and has advanced features:
- P2P support
- Obfuscation support to work in the UAE, China, and other countries with Internet censorship
- Dedicated IP Addresses
NordVPN is the most popular VPN provider according to Google Trends in most countries of the world. He is also one of the best VPN services for the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia and many other countries.
The table lists the NordVPN tariff plans
|1 month||6 months||1 year||3 year|
NordVPN supports various types of payments, including Amazon Pay.
- NordVPN is almost not inferior to ExpressVPN and even surpasses it functionality-wise in some ways.
- Support of Netflix and other popular streaming services .
- Easy installation from Amazon Appstore.
- Has a subscription from 1 month to 3 years.
- Does not keep logs.
- Low price
- NoBorders (Obfuscation)
- Stream with no buffering
- Static IP, MultiHop (double VPN)
Surfshark combines the best performance and great features on Fire TV with an ultra-low price. Moreover, it really supports most of the tested countries (including all popular regions), which was confirmed by my repeated tests on Netflix.
Also, it supports obfuscation, P2P and is one of the few services that allow connecting from an unlimited number of devices with one subscription.
As a disadvantage, the speed on the US servers rarely exceeds 30 Mbps (it can affect viewing in 4K).
The table lists Surfshark VPN plans.
|1 month||1 year||2 years|
Surfshark supports many payment methods, including Amazon Pay and cryptocurrencies.
- Surfshark is the cheapest VPN in this review
- Functionality is not inferior to the leaders
- Netflix, Hulu and other services support
- Unlimited number of devices per subscription
- 6200+ servers
- Special servers for streaming
- US, UK, DE Netflix
- Seamless integration
CyberGhost VPN is the largest VPN provider in 2020. Its impressive 6,200 servers are located in 90 countries and provide stable, fast, and secure Internet access from any device, including Firestick.
Speaking of advantages, there is a number of special servers for various streaming services. To select them, there is a separate menu item of the application where the name of the service and the country are indicated:
The table lists the plans for Private Internet Access.
|1 month||1 year||2 year||3 year|
The provider supports payment with cards, PayPal and Bitcoin. The dedicated IP function is available for extra $5 per month.
- CyberGhost VPN is a good alternative to the first three services.
- There is a convenient choice of servers for a specific region and video provider.
- Netflix support in 3 regions. No Hulu support.
- Up to 7 devices with one subscription.
- Low price with current discounts
- Easy setup
- High popularity in the US and UK
- 75 countries
IPVanish has a good stable app for Amazon Fire TV, protects the IP address and encrypts traffic, but it isn’t the best service for streaming — more precisely, for circumventing the geo-restrictions of popular services such as Netflix. It may take a while to find the right server. Also, many regions are not supported at all.
I put IPVanish in the top 5 just because it has very fast servers with speeds of over 100Mbps. However, there are not many of them and they are mainly in Europe.
The table lists ZenMate’s pricing plans:
|1 month||3 months||1 year|
The provider supports not only payment with cards and PayPal, but also some alternative payment methods. Cryptocurrency is not supported.
IPVanish often holds discounts during which the first payment is reduced by 2 times. Usually, this happens on the eve of popular holidays.
- IPVanish supports Firestick, but not all video services
- Has basic features
- Some servers have a speed of more than 100Mbps
The issue of using free VPNs with Fire TV Stick is more complicated than it might seem at first glance.
There are free providers that support this platform but they have no good features for circumventing geo-restrictions. Among the free VPNs, only TunnelBear works with Netflix. But at the same time, it doesn’t work directly with Firestick. It needs to be configured on the router to which the device is connected via Wi-Fi.
Other Free VPN services are more suitable for torrent video apps such as Popcorn Time.
Warning: All free VPNs have significant drawbacks. For Firestick, this is insufficient video speed for high resolution, limited traffic and choice of countries (up to the total lack thereof). Many of these services are available only through the settings of the router. For this platform, it is wiser to use a cheap paid VPN, the prices for which start at $1.99 per month.
Read on to see a list of 5 free providers. Each of them has significant differences and, perhaps, some of them will suit you.
- 10GB per month for free
- Advanced features
- Good paid version
Windscribe is the best option for free VPN access from a technical point of view. It doesn’t support streaming, but it allows you to use Firestick quite effectively for torrenting content, but only within 10GB per month.
The provider can be used not only for free, but also for a fee. The paid version supports Netflix and works at a good speed.
- 10GB per month for free
- Minimum features
- Only 3 countries available
I can only recommend hide.me as an alternative to Windscribe after the latter runs out of traffic. The provider doesn’t have a developed technical infrastructure, which is why it is not suitable for paid use.
The connection speed is acceptable for the average video quality, but often there are connection failures, during which the connection to the Internet disappears.
- Unlimited free traffic plan
- 7-day trial of the “Pro” version included in the free plan
- Suitable for paid use
- No app for Fire TV
ProtonVPN is the best universal free VPN, but unfortunately, it doesn’t work well with Firestick because it did not create an application for Amazon devices. Even the support service claims to have no formal solution to this problem.4. Free CyberGhost
This situation is also current in 2020.
The only option is to use it on a router. How to do this is described in the VPNs for routers review.
- Netflix Support
- High speed
- 20+ countries
- 1500Mb of traffic per month
- No app for Fire TV
TunnelBear is the only one really fast Free VPN on this list. However, due to the extremely small traffic limit, you cannot take advantage of its capabilities for long.
The service is well-suited for one-time use. True, it will also have to be configured on the router.
There is no other service with good speeds, Netflix support and a good selection of countries.
- Available for free for one month only
- Good speed
- Fire TV Voice Remote support
GooseVPN is not a completely free service. This is a Free Trial Provider. At the same time, it has a very long trial period (30 days), which is why it can be used on a trip or to familiarize yourself with the principle of VPN on Amazon Fire TV.Goose VPN
Amazon Fire tablet, also known as Kindle Fire (just Fire as of late) was developed by the Amazon company in 2011 and became well-known in the United States and outside the USA thanks to five features that differ it from the tablets of other brands:
- Pre-installed Amazon Appstore due to which there’s an opportunity to access over 400,000 applications.
- Easy access to streaming movies, series, reading e-books (Kindle store), and other entertaining and educational Amazon content.
- Technical characteristics customized for the tasks mentioned in the second subparagraph.
- Low price. It happened after 2015 when the Fire tablet became available for less than $50 in the US. The device doesn’t fare worse than models of other known brands.
- Battery performance is more than 8 hours when mixing.
It’s no surprise that the device has come into widespread acceptance. It created the demand for a VPN for Fire that allows to get access to geo-restricted content and to increase the speed significantly in some cases.
Is it easy to set up a VPN on Kindle Fire?
There's nothing easier if you choose the right VPN!
VPN services and their software described in this article are the perfect choices for this tablet.
Have a look at each provider offered by me and find the one that meets your demands. I also advise to take into consideration the efficiency of VPN software. More on that you may read in the review dedicated to the choice of VPN for Android.
Special aspects of the VPN use for Fire
The key requirement for users who need to change their IP address is the support of popular streaming video providers like Amazon Prime Video, Netflix, Hulu, and others.
The second most important feature is the speed of VPN services. It influences the peak speed of the Fire use if the virtual network is used to bypass speed restrictions imposed by internet providers for downloading in particular.
Besides, many people use a tablet with a VPN for games, especially multiuser ones, when ping and graphics processing time is important. In this case, it’s better to choose a fast VPN service that offers many supported countries to connect to the realms in any country.
What Kindle Fire versions support a VPN?
Every single Fire device started from 1 to 10 versions support VPN apps setup. It is related to the fact that they all are built on Android.
However, not all of them are available on Amazon Appstore. For example, NordVPN can be installed without any extra actions.
It’s necessary to install the Google Play Store app beforehand for Surfshark and some other VPNs. It’s required to choose the latest version of the app, download, and install the APK file. It’s totally safe as the software is worked out by Google. And this difficulty is due to Amazon and Google stopped short of placing software for each other from the very beginning. It’s obviously concerned with rivalry.
But I should remind you that it’s possible to set up a VPN available in the Amazon catalog.
Thus, it’s possible to set up it on Kindle Fire, Kindle Fire HD, Kindle Fire HDX, Fire 7, and Fire HD 8.
Is VPN available for Kindles?
Perhaps, you’re looking for a VPN for a black and white Amazon Kindle e-reader or Kindle app for Windows, Mac, or iOS?
If it’s an e-reader than the only way to change your IP is to use a VPN on your router.
If it’s an app for another OS than just find the best VPN for your platform. It will protect all the installed apps and programs.