Netflix more or less looks the other way if you’re a VPN user accessing its services from Australia. Unless, it seems, you’re an Android user. Is this a sign of a tougher crackdown to come?
For years now, the not-so-secret way to access Netflix’s US services, or indeed any of Netflix’s other international operations from Australia has been to use a DNS-based service. Having previously indicated that they wouldn’t crack down on VPN users prior to their Australian launch next year, it looks like Netflix might have had a change of heart, becoming just a little more aggressive.
Ausdroid reports on current versions of the Android Netflix app, DNS is hard-coded to use Google’s DNS servers, which means that it won’t work with a simple workaround solution, although as commenters there note, it may have been this way for quite some time.
That doesn’t mean it’s impossible for Android users to access Netflix, because it’s largely a cat and mouse game of detection and blocking, something Netflix itself admits, but it does make it harder to implement, and could well signal that Netflix will start implementing the same kind of ideas across other services.