As far as features go, Unblock Us has a pretty standard offering. We must mention the company’s own Netflix region switch, though; this is a browser (other other similar application) based tool that is instantly available from the main page (as well as setting up your DNS connection, but later on that), once you’re logged in.
As for getting things to work, you have quite a leisurely job. You do not have to be adept at using computers to set Unblock Us’ DNS connection up; in fact, the organization’s website provides helpful cues for you and even warns you on the main page if your progress is not yet complete. Still, the setup itself is done manually. Keep in mind that you do not have to access your hardware at all; all you have to do is change the DNS address of your device. This can usually be found in the settings of your internet connection. The Unblock Us site provides tutorials for every device they support, often adding pictograms into the formula.
Unblock Us has some supporters in the media, and these connections enabled them to become one of the most coveted smart DNS companies today, rightfully so. And, on a side note, we acknowledge the wordplay – the company’s name can also be understood as Unblocking in the USA.
Channels & Streaming Services
Most companies that have a smart DNS product distribute things in two main ways: either via multiple addresses assigned to countries or regions, or via one pair of addresses that handle all customers. Unblock Us employs the latter solution, which we do not favor all that much, but then again; they have a Netflix region switcher to provide at least some variety.
Regarding speed tests, Unblock Us did perform its job well. That is, our connection speeds were completely unaffected from the change of DNS addresses. Since there is just one pair of for you to use, it is good to know that they are working appropriately.
Unblock Us does have a VPN service next to the smart DNS. In fact, it is a SmartVPN that offers some additional security layers compared to the smart DNS alone. Its central thought is connecting to the company’s own servers, which will grant access by themselves to restricted material – much like a smart DNS – but with additional privacy. The setup process for this kind of special connection is lengthier to execute, but the Unblock Us site provides adequate guides for the devices and software it is available on – operating systems and mobiles. There is still a drawback to this, as PPTP security is used exclusively, which is the least safe among the VPN protocols of today. Still, it is more protective than a smart DNS proxy connection; if you are interested in safer online options, it is worth considering this one.
OS, Device Support
Unblock Us has more of a standard device support for a smart DNS service, even though you can find all types of commonly used machines for such purposes. In terms of operating systems, this means that Windows XP, Vista, and Windows 7-10 are all good to go, next to Mac OS X. Linux is more rare in smart DNS quarters and is not supported by Unblock Us. Gaming consoles are better off, though, with PS Vita, PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, Xbox One, along with Wii and Wii U favored. For Smart Televisions, you have Sony televisions, Panasonic VIERA, Samsung Smart TV and LG Smart TV that are compatible. Set-top devices include Apple TV, Roku, Google TV, Boxee Box and WD TV Live Devices. And lastly, mobiles suited for Unblock Us are Android, Amazon Kindle, iPod, iPad and the iPhone. Routers include Airport Extreme, Linkysys, D-Link, TP-Link, Netgear, Bell routers, 2wire, Siemens and Actiontec.
Prices are rather mediocre with Unblock Us. This was one of the very few companies that offered no discount for longer duration purchases until recently. It is a bit relieving though that you can decide for yourself first if you want to subscribe to Unblock Us, for free. This one week trial version comes with all that the paid variant includes, so you really can test out the actual Unblock Us experience. And, if you do decide next to a purchase, you have an opportunity to refund in the first week. However, we highly recommend that you consult the company’s staff in order to facilitate the refund itself.
Therefore, the monthly plan costs $4.99. The annual plan is 17% cheaper for this periodical fee, resulting in a total price of $4.16 per month or $49.90 in total. This not that bad, but there are some services that offer roughly the same for less money.
As far as payment methods go, we would like to quote the official website: Unblock Us accepts “Visa, MasterCard, (Visa and MC Debit), Pre-paid Visa, Diners Club and PayPal”. American Express is not among your options directly, but it can of course be used to pay through PayPal.
Unblock Us uses a particular customer service software provided by Desk.com. This comes with some defining characteristics. For one, there is no ticket submission system. Instead, you have a Public Question area, where you and any other customer can freely ask anything related to the organization. We presume this saves a lot of time for them, not having to always answer similar questions. Speaking of which, on the support page, you can actually search for any keywords, and the engine will automatically offer questions already asked based on what you typed in. Apart from this, you can directly write an e-mail to Unblock Us, or access their knowledgebase, found on the very same page. For social media outlets, the company also answers queries on their Twitter page, next to publishing smart DNS related news.
Thus, Unblock Us is a well established smart DNS service (primarily). It is indeed great that Barbados and Cyprus are both affiliated with them, as this means that you, the customer has to pay attention to the company only, and not some intricate legal system that the host country enforces. In our opinion, this is the biggest advantage of Unblock Us: they do not suffer from laws. The “SmartVPN” feature is also quite pleasant to have, along with an excellent customer support. Overall, Unblock Us is a decent choice, especially if you are interested in U.S. content.
- 14-day free trial
- Good customer support
- Favorable legal background
- Good for U.S. content
- Mediocre for other content