Chrome/Firefox: Hotspot Shield, a VPN we’ve highlighted before, just unveiled a pair of proxy browser extensions, complete with the option to set your own virtual location. That makes it perfect for bypassing pesky location restrictions on streaming movies, music, and web pages.
Ever since that fiasco with Hola Unblocker earlier this year we’d been on the lookout for another browser-based VPN/proxy that can let you get around content restrictions if, let’s say, you’re travelling and trying to watch Netflix or want to stream your Spotify playlists while you’re abroad, or if you’re here in Australia and want to watch a foreign trailer or video but keep getting that pesky “this content isn’t available in your country” message. There’s no shortage of great ways to do it, but Hotspot Shield’s extensions make it super easy.
You’ll need an account to use them, but once you’re signed up and logged in, just pop open the extension from the toolbar, select your virtual location, and connect. Once you’re connected, all of your web traffic will go through Hotspot Shield’s proxy and look — to the service on the other end — like you’re in whatever location you set. Of course, this only works for your browser, so desktop apps aren’t affected (for that, you’ll need to use their desktop client.) Best of all, Hotspot Shield doesn’t limit you to a certain amount of bandwidth before you have to disconnect, and it’s completely free and ad-free.
Of course, Hotspot Shield already operates a free VPN, so it’s not so far fetched that this would be free too — they make money on premium subscriptions and features for their full VPN service. Keep in mind also that this service is designed to get around content blocks and restrictions — it’s not for privacy or security, so don’t get it confused with other types of VPN and proxy services. With that out of the way, it’s still worth a try. Hit the links below to try it out.