As any Netflix user not based in the US will know all too well, the American offering as a considerable step up from the rest. The range of movies and TV shows on offer is simply far broader – and that’s if your country gets Netflix at all.
However, it has always been relatively straight forward to block any regional restrictions and access any Netflix content you like through VPN services and browser plug-ins. Indeed, Netflix has appeared to be happy to turn a blind eye to such efforts (these are still paying customers, after all).
Perhaps not for much longer, if a new report from TorrentFreak is to be believed. It claims that Netflix is starting to block users who bypass regional lockouts to access restricted Netflix content.
The report states that these measures “have been requested by the movie studios who want full control over what people can see in their respective countries.”
These studios claim that so-called “VPN-pirates” are hurting their licensing deals.
Now a number of VPN services, including TorGuard, are reporting errors with Netflix users attempting to use them. The Android Netflix app is also apparently now forcing Google DNS, which essentially services to block out various VPN services.
Related: Best movie streaming services
It seems as if this clamp-down is limited in scope at present. Rather than a full-scale blocking effort, it’s believed that this is merely a test ahead of a possible wider attempt to block such efforts. Alternatively, it could be a token effort aimed at appeasing movie studios.
Netflix itself has informed Engadget that there has been “no change” to the way it handles VPNs, so you should be able to continue enjoying that US content for a while longer.