Net neutrality has been a hot topic in the mainstream press for several months, and for good reason. In a post-Snowden world of increasing awareness towards the protection of privacy and the maintaining of a Free and Open Internet, users worldwide have looked for resources on how to keep their connections clean, safe, and void of outside intrusion.
However, as time moves on, this has become more and more difficult. With snooping governments, massive data mining by websites and advertisers, the increased attention towards privacy (brought on by Edward Snowden’s revelations) have caused at least some changes in the United States government’s relationship with Internet security. This is a step in the right direction, but a fix-all this is certainly not.
How Does Net Neutrality & Bandwidth Throttling Work?
“Throttling” is defined as “the deliberate regulation of the data transfer rate in a communications system.” As Verizon FiOS and other ISPs attempt to divide the Web into a highway-like structure of “fast” and “slow” lanes, companies like Google and Netflix find themselves at the mercy of ISPs, who provide two options: pay up or find yourself in the slow lane.
The way that the major US Internet Service Providers- AT&T, Comcast, Time Warner, and especially Verizon Fios – have handled their grip on Internet connections can only be described as “Mob-like”, to reference comedian Jon Oliver’s now infamous 13 minute rant on Net Neutrality. Oliver’s speech on his HBO series Last Week Tonight offered an extremely entertaining yet well-researched perspective on this important topic. It is definitely a recommended watch…
How Can I Fix Netflix Throttling as Caused by Verizon and Other ISPs?
What does this bandwidth management mean to you? If Netflix throttling continues, you can start to expect very slow buffering speeds. Already feeling the tension from watching House of Cards? Well, the saga of Frank Underwood is going to get much more intense, as you spend every episode at the edge of your seat praying that the shows twists and turns aren’t interrupted by a spinning red circle.
However, aside from signing petitions or just hoping for the best, it would appear to your average Internet user that there is not much one can do about preventing Netflix throttling, and that bowing down to the Great Cable Gods of Verizon and Comcast is simply unavoidable. But you are not the average Internet user, and you know this is not the case.
Using a VPN- or Virtual Private Network -provider is an incredibly useful way to encrypt one’s online presence, hiding from both the behemoth-like ISP providers and peeping United States Government. VPN service providers such as IPVanish provide users with access to servers all around the world, “tunneling” their connection to make it appear to outside sources they are located at a different IP address, be it in California or Singapore.
Using a VPN will prevent an ISP from being able to deeply monitor your service, making Verizon FioS or Comcast unaware of what services you are using, whether it is streaming video, downloading torrents, or hosting a web server. Encrypting your activity disables these pathway operators’ ability to target specific services and users and to slow them down for that reason.
Top VPN Services to Prevent Bandwidth Throttling
If Verizon cannot see you are using a specific streaming video or music service, then how can they throttle Netflix or Pandora or Hulu or WatchESPN? When changing your IP and encrypting your connection to avoid monitoring by cable companies, it would be best to keep the new IP address close to your current location, to prevent the VPN from slowing down. Most providers have a large amount of US addresses but certain providers have a large amount of international locations you can connect to, enabling you to encrypt your connection and activity with limited loss of speed from doing so.
Best Routers for Preventing Netflix Throttling
Are you planning to use Netflix on a streaming media player like Apple TV, Amazon Fire, Xbox One, Samsung Smart TV, or PS4? Unfortunately, these devices have no native VPN support. However, there is a way that you can use your VPN provider account alongside your streaming media player, preventing Netflix throttling.
What is this way, you ask? Using a FlashRouter.
A FlashRouter is an advanced router with upgraded DD-WRT or TomatoUSB firmware. Due to the nature of this upgraded firmware, VPN service provider integration becomes a very rewarding option. With a FlashRouter, you can use one VPN account on any number of streaming media devices.
Looking to stop Netflix throttling and provide added security to a network that includes multiple laptops, iPads, a SmartTV, and other streaming players? The powerhouse Netgear Nighthawk R7000, with its 1 GHz processor, three external antennas, and high-end DD-WRT ARM firmware will shine in any busy setup.
Have a current router or modem/router setup you don’t want or can’t replace? Use our popular Dual Router Setup.
In a Dual Router Setup, use a FlashRouter as a VPN account connection, while using your current router to maintain a basic ISP network. This setup enables you to create two wireless networks, and selecting a VPN connection for any device is as simple as selecting to which network the device connects. The Dual Router Setup also allows you to get the most out of your VPN, segmenting your network and not overriding the device maximum on a VPN account with a myriad of devices.