‘Media Hint’ is the easiest way to access Hulu, Pandora, and Netflix from anywhere in the world


Many sites are Geo-restricted, these days. There are several options available to you if you’re outside of the US and looking to access US-only sites such as Hulu, Pandora, and Netflix, but none of them are as easy and straightforward as this one.

‘Media Hint’ is a free browser extension for Chrome and Firefox. Once installed, it runs in the background with nothing whatever for the user to configure. When you visit Geo restricted sites such as Hulu, the extension kicks in automatically and the videos or other content plays as per normal, without any problems or interruptions. It is ad-free and does not slow down your connection).

Note that ‘Media Hint’ does not work on all geo restricted sites. We were not able to access Spotify for example, but the three sites mentioned above (Hulu/Pandora/Netflix) worked great. (If Spotify is what you seek, see our tutorial on how to access Spotify from anywhere without bandwidth limitations)

Media Hint delivering HULU screenshot

How to use ‘Media Hint’: download and install the extension. On Chrome, you have to do this manually by opening the extensions page in the settings and dragging the crx file onto it. After this, you’re done. Browse as normal, go to Hulu or whatever, and your video will play magically without any geo-restrictions.

The verdict:

There are several services that can help you do this. For example, you can use a VPN service (virtual private networking) to tunnel through and get your internet service from servers in the country you seek, but free VPN’s (such as previously mentioned Tunnelbear) usually limit your monthly bandwidth or put ads in the browser.

Media Hint does no such thing; it does not limit bandwidth, does not slow down your browsing, and does not add ads. I don’t know how it tweaks your browser exactly, but it works great and without any user input whatsoever. In short, it is simply terrific.

[Thanks to reader Panzer for the tip about this software.]

Get Media Hint (Chrome, Firefox).

  • Toni

    Really, is it that simple? I am going to try this rightaway!

  • Alonzo

    Works for me in South America when I access Hulu and Pandora. Now if they would only make it work with the BBC’s iPlayer as well!

    • Anonymous

      mediahint works with iPlayer as well

  • Hmm this sounds great, but it does make one wonder what they pay their proxy servers from. Anyone any ideas?

    Their privacy policy looks okay, except that they do not say exactly that they don’t gather information connected to your IP address. But they do say they don’t collect any information about the websites you visit or what you do there, so that sounds good.

    • Toni

      It’s the same thing I wondered, because there is so little information on their site. How does it exactly work, do they use an existing proxy network or do they have their own? And what pays the bills?

      That doesn’t mean I am happy with it, it works very well. It just doesn’t feel like they are not trustworthy, but one can never know for sure.

      • Alonzo

        The way it works is seriously mysterious. I still have the same DNS server addresses and IP address in South America after I installed it. pbs.org still identifies me as being outside the US, so they must only use their proxy servers when you go to the specifically mentioned sites: Netflix, Hulu and Pandora.

        • Alonzo

          I looked at my DNS server addresses and IP address while logged into Pandora, and they didn’t change at all from when I’m not at the Pandora web site. Still, pbs.org can figure out that I’m not in the US, so I have to use Tunnel Bear to watch some videos there (PBS doesn’t block all videos from foreign viewing).

    • Perhaps due to the fact that this may have some legal implications it is probably not best to advertise how they do it?

      • Perhaps…but I’d sooner trust a company that was making money off me in a way that I understood: that way they have something to lose by betraying me. With these guys, I have no idea how or why they operate as they do.

        • golu

          I understand your concern,
          For people who would pay for an ‘established’ company there are many paid workarounds, this one is at least at present for people who do not want to pay, and do not mind a potentially shady company

        • Golu: I didn’t mean that I want them to charge me; I just meant that they must be making money off me in some way, and I want to know what it is. They might be selling my surfing statistics to some company. They might insert their own advertisements into pages that I visit.

  • neodoom

    Will they make a chrome/Firefox for android plug in as when I try it said not compatible with this version of Firefox (18)???

    • Anonymous

      I wonder about Chrome on iOS devices as well – anyone know of a workaround?

  • reglord

    Both netflix and Hulu do not accept non US paypal accounts

    • G

      Yes they do, I am from the UK and my paypal account workes perfectly.

  • meldric fernan

    Very helpfull thanks sir samer kurdi

  • robot_lima

    Hello Samer. I’ve been using MediaHint for a while. It’s great. However, I can’t helpt to feel a bit worried about the fact that it “access all of your pages” meaning that if I’m accessing my bank account through the internet, they might be getting access to it. What do you know about this? Is it safe?

    • Swordfishtrombone

      That’s what I was wondering too – in google chrome where I’ve got Media Hint installed, checking the extensions, under “permissions” for Media Hint, it says “It can: Access your data on all websites”.

      This does NOT sound very safe to me.

      I’ve resolved this by using only sites that I need Media Hint for (essentially, pandora) on Chrome, and not using Chrome for any other purpose; I use Firefox without the Media Hint extension for all other Internet needs.

      It would still be good to know what the permission to “access your data on all websites” means. My passwords? My user accounts? My bank details? Without some sort of answer to these security concerns, I would not use Media Hint on a browser that I use for anything potentially sensitive.

    • rosdi

      Your bank is using SSL (HTTPS) don’t they?, you should be fine. That is what https is all about.

      • Ryan Craig Moreland

        The simple solution here if your worried is use a dual browser. Say you stream from Hulu or iPlayer or whatever other service in Chrome/Firefox, but do your internet banking through IE. IE comes automatically installed on all machines anyway and currently has no similar app so would seem to me to be the most secure way of accessing sensitive data whilst still getting the benefit of this app.

  • Piet

    Media Hint works by modifying the proxy server in your browser. Basically they configure a “pac” file, which is a script file to determine whether or not to use a proxy for the requested site. Usually used in businesses (to script proxy usage for external sites, and no proxy for internal), media hints usage this functionality to provide proxies for netflix/hulu/spotify should it be needed for your connection.

    This also means that it does slow down your connection for sites that are configured to connect through Media Hint’s proxies.

  • Leftnutt43

    Ok is there anything that lets you go to other sites that are not US sites ? I am from the US i want to go to and use UK sites .

  • Abilash

    I thought this website reviewed only freeware? Media Hunt is a paid app with a 7 day trial – “not a freeware”

  • Scott Brown

    Great article Samer. The DNS option is better than using a VPN regarding content streaming because you can achieve direct connection with the media station ex. Netflix and avoid the “middle-man”. Personally, I am using UnoTelly which is similar to Mediahint. Perhaps you should check UnoTelly as well if you haven’t done so.

  • Kendra

    Thanks for the article Samer. VPN is good if you want to hide your real location. However, about content streaming, I prefer the DNS option. Currently, I am using UnoTelly and have no speed loss which allows me HD streaming with my 10mbps connection.