NZ Tech Podcast 182: LG G3, Vodafone $5 roaming, Chromecast cometh, Quickflix vs Netflix

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We discuss the new LG G3 smartphone, Apple’s smart home future, Telecom and Vodafone’s 4G LTE efforts, NIWA attack, Netflix pending arrival in NZ, a Quickflix update, Tom Tom’s new Multi-Sport Cardio and Runner Cardio GPS watches launch in NZ + more.

This NZ Tech Podcast hosted by Paul Spain (@paulspain) with guests Bill Bennett (@billbennettnz) and Paddy Buckley (@paddybuckley). Published by NZ’s Podcast specialists – Global Voice Media.

Get the Podcast here:

You can keep current with our latest NZ Tech Podcast updates via Twitter @NZTechPodcast, the NZTechPodcast.com website and facebook page.

28
May 2014
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How to setup Netflix in NZ

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Updated Oct 2013: We cover the major steps required to get yourself or your family up and running with the Netflix online TV and movie service in New Zealand. These instructions will also work in any other country outside of the USA and other on demand video services such as Hulu, Hulu Plus, Amazon Video, Vudu amongst others.

Our recommended configuration allows any appropriate networked device (Roku, Xbox, PS3, PC, Mac, iPhone, Windows Phone, Android, etc) in home network to connect to Netflix – or a range of other international media services.

The good news – once you’ve collected a suitable router and setup the 2 accounts needed – the setup can often be completed reasonably quickly. And the running costs can be as low as US$13/month!

What’s the challenge?

This issue with connecting to Netflix (and many other US music/TV/movie services) is that they are targeted at the US market and therefore check if your internet connection is US based. This is done by comparing your IP address (each internet connection has one) with a list of valid IP address ranges for the US.

What are the workarounds?

Option 1: The most complete and reliable work around is to connect via a VPN (Virtual Private Network) that links your existing connection to the USA and provides you with a trusted US based IP address. This is what Netflix and other providers expect you to have in order to provide service. We detail this in detail below.

Option 2: A second and often simpler option is to use a special proxy service called UnblockUS. This works for the large majority of users but we notice some ISPs can interfere with this service and unless you have a fixed IP address this service may need you to login to refresh it occasionally (very quick through your web browser) – such as if your router is reset. Also, a few services such as Xbox Video do not work using this technique. That said this is the most simple to setup and access Netflix and instructions can be found via this website. An added benefit, the proxy solution provides access to video services in multiple countries – including the UK based BBC iPlayer service.

How much does it cost?

Running costs start at about US$13/month excluding internet connection and the cost buying your connection device (such as a Roku, Xbox 360, PS3, PC, Mac, etc). Netflix on its own is US$8/month. Add to that a VPN to connection from NZ which is usually in the range of US$5 – $10/month.

As the video content is streamed using your home internet connection you may find a higher usage plan is required if you choose to use Netflix regularly.

What do I need?

In addition to a Netflix account there are only a few things you’ll need to get started:

  1. Internet connection
  2. Compatible router (in addition to your existing internet router if you use the VPN solution)
  3. An account with a VPN provider (or a proxy provider)
  4. Device for Netflix playback

Can you give me more details about those requirements?

Yes – here are the details broken down with more detailed specifications.

Internet connection

  • A fixed connection of at least 2.5mb/s is suggested – this covers most ADSL or cable modem connections in NZ
  • It’s important to realise that the more you watch the more data you’ll use. This may lead to your current internet plan being insufficient. It’s suggested you start with a plan that provides a minimum of 30gb data per month – more if you plan to watch Netflix regularly. Some users find a 60gb is more than sufficient, others use a 100gb or larger plan – this will also depend on how heavily you utilise your Internet connection for other downloads, how much video you watch and whether you stream in HD quality.

Compatible Router

  • For the
  • Recommended model is Dlink DIR-615
    • The DIR-615 is very easy to find in most countries incl NZ
    • Must be H/W rev C1, C2, D1, D2, E1, E3 or E4 (these are common and easy to find from most electronics retailers)
    • Connects to your existing (primary) ADSL or Cable router
    • Compatible with typical ISP routers which provide an Ethernet connection
  • Typical cost NZ$60-NZ$200 (Dependant on where you purchase and whether new or second hand)
  • Many other routers that are compatible with the full DD-WRT software (however these are mostly untested by us)
  • An account with a VPN provider who offers US IP addresses:
    • We have tried and tested StrongVPN – this is our recommendation
    • There are others that may provide better or worse results (faster or slower speeds)

Device for Netflix playback

The Roku player is the quickest and easiest to setup – and has the benefit of no ‘Xbox Live Gold’ subscription requirement when compared the Xbox 360. The downside is the Roku needs to be ordered from the US so will take a few days to arrive. The Xbox 360 provides the most impressive Netflix capabilities and with Kinect the benefits of voice control and gesture control.

    • Roku Streaming Media Player
    • Xbox 360 (all models are suitable) – setup with a US Xbox Live Gold account
    • There are lots of other options and have tested too:
      • Hardware imported from the USA such as the Roku box, some Blu-ray players come preconfigured to support Netflix
    • You can also use a PC or Mac

What steps do follow to get Netflix running (Option 1)?

Here are the steps broken down so just about anyone can follow them.

Step 1: Router

  • First step is downloading the appropriate DD-WRT firmware for your router to your desktop. In the case of the Dlink DIR-615 and many others you locate it on this page.
    • After visiting the link enter the name of your router – such as: DIR-615
    • The correct download for the DIR-615 should be labelled: Special image for initial flashing (or similar)
  • Disconnect your computer from your existing internet connection/router (turning off Wi-Fi if necessary)
  • Connect your computer any port on the Dlink DIR-615 (except for the WAN port)
  • Login to the router by navigating to the router’s webpage – you can do this by entering the following address in your browser (Internet Explorer, Firefox, Safari, etc): http://192.168.0.1
    • Username: admin
    • Password (leave this blank)

 

Step 2: VPN

  • Setup your VPN using the instructions from the VPN provider. Feel free to try any one you want.
  • As mentioned previously we have primarily used StrongVPN though there are a couple of other methods that seem to vary in their performance and reliability. Visit their website to sign up and for instructions for use in conjunction with a DD-WRT enabled router.
    • The method of configuration suggested is the ‘Modify Wan Connection Type’ and instructions are here.

Step 3: Device connection

  • In our experience for the best results use an Ethernet cable between your device (Xbox 360, Roku, PC, Mac, etc) rather than Wifi
  • If you prefer to use Wifi – then connect to your new Wifi connection using the details you setup in step 1

What steps do follow to get Netflix running (Option 2)?

It’s somewhat easier than Option 1 and works well in most cases for Netflix access –  follow the instructions here from Unblock-US.

 

Please let us know if we’ve left anything out and we’ll try and fill in the gaps promptly.

For more info on this topic be sure to tune into the NZ Tech Podcast each week via iTunes, Zune or you favourite podcasting tool. You can also follow us on Twitter or hit up our facebook page.

08
Oct 2013
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NZ Tech Podcast 142: New tech from Google, Netgear, Netflix and Logitech

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This episode the Prime Minister’s website goes offline, Vodafone 4G hits Wellington, NZ Business Podcast launches and new tech from Google, Netgear, Netflix and Logitech attract attention. We also discuss cloud capabilities from HP and SAP.

This episode produced and hosted by Paul Spain (@paulspain) with guests Bill Bennett (@BillBennettNZ) and Alastair Cooke (@demitassenz).

Get the Podcast here:

You can keep current with our latest NZ Tech Podcast updates via Twitter @NZTechPodcast, the NZTechPodcast.com website and facebook page.

Would you like to join the NZ Tech Podcast live? Most Tuesday evenings starting somewhere between 6pm-7pm we join with Geekzone for a live audio stream from the studio and a hosted chat room. Details here.

01
Aug 2013
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Episode 76: NZ telecommunications, Kim Dotcom’s pool party, Microsoft gets it right

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This episode on the NZ Tech Podcast we discuss NZ telecommunications topics, Kim Dotcom’s pool party with Twitter followers, Microsoft’s strategy with Surface and Windows 8, a local IT distribution merger, US and UK TV to watch via Netflix and TUANZ funding challenges. We also give some time to discussing if Linux will flourish if Microsoft upsets PC vendors with their foray into selling Windows tablet PCs.

You can follow our host and guests via Twitter, Facebook or Google+. This week we featured Paul Spain (@paulspain) along with Paul Brislen (@PaulBrislen) and Bill Bennett (@BillBennettNZ).

Get the Podcast here:

Please look out for the latest NZ Tech Podcast updates via Twitter @NZTechPodcast, the NZTechPodcast.com website and facebook page.

Would you like to join the NZ Tech Podcast live? Most Tuesday evenings around 6pm or thereabouts we join with Geekzone for a live audio stream from the studio and a hosted chat room. Details here.

27
Jun 2012
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Episode 71: Spotify, Galaxy SIII, Windows 8, new MacBooks, facebook IPO

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In this episode we discussed the Samsung Galaxy SIII (it just arrived) vs HTC One X (again), Windows 8 and Windows Server 2012, new MacBook Pro rumours, Spotify lands in NZ, Kiwi domain names, paperless receipts, facebook IPO, video service updates including Vevo, Netflix, Foxtel and Amazon Instant Video.

You can also follow our host and guests via Twitter, Facebook or Google+. This week we featured Paul Spain (@paulspain or Facebook.com/paulspain) along with funny guy and Apple fan Dai Henwood (@DaiHenwood) and Microsoft’s Nathan Mercer (@NathanM).

Get the Podcast here:

Please look out for the latest NZ Tech Podcast updates via Twitter @NZTechPodcast, the NZTechPodcast.com website and facebook page.

Would you like to join the NZ Tech Podcast live? Most Tuesday evenings around 6pm or thereabouts we join with Geekzone for a live audio stream from the studio and a hosted chat room. Details here.

NZ Tech Podcast: Episode 36

Episode 36 sees the NZ Tech Podcast speak with NZ’s world beating Free Range Robotics team and we remember Apple founder Steve Jobs. Other topics covered include the Apple iPhone 4s, the new Facebook app for iPad, Sony’s Netflix box and a review of the HD Homerun.

As usual you will find our latest updates via Twitter @NZTechPodcast, the NZTechPodcast.com website and our facebook page.

Get the Podcast here:

13
Oct 2011
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NZ Tech Podcast: Episode 32

This week we kickoff with an interview with Paul Boshoff of Hewlett-Packard NZ regarding recent announcements and where the company is heading.

We also discuss Windows 8 and the BUILD conference, big new hard drives, a ‘mouse without borders’, Jelly batteries, a new music service for NZ, a smart Netflix credit card workaround and Star Wars on Blu-Ray.

And we picked the winner of the TouchPad 16GB provided courtesy of Gorilla Technology (IT Services). And thanks to HP we also had a surprise runner up prize too.

As usual, you can stay tuned for latest updates via Twitter @NZTechPodcast, the NZTechPodcast.com website and our facebook page.

Get the Podcast here:

13
Sep 2011
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NZ Tech Podcast: Episode 28

Topics covered during episode 28 of the NZ Tech Podcast include Google’s Motorola acquisition announcement, Citrix and Netflix on Chrome OS, Wi-Fi at Rangitoto College (NZ’s largest high school), Firefox 6, Chrome 14 for OS X Lion, the government sponsored Training for Employment (T4E) programme, Xbox 360 changes, HP Touchpad and our Windows Phone 7 Mango competition winners.

We also highlighted the new web show – Social Life launched last week. You can watch it here.

If you’re keen to hear about local Netflix setup refer to our article: How to setup Netflix in NZ – also relates to Hulu, Amazon video, Zune, etc.

Stay tuned for latest updates via Twitter @NZTechPodcast, the NZTechPodcast.com website and our facebook page.

Get the Podcast here:

16
Aug 2011
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