There are a lot of music streaming websites around, but none (in my opinion) can compete with Spotify. Their track library, streaming service, social integration, playlist sharing is head and shoulders above other services. You already know that though, you just want to know how you can access Spotify from South Africa (or any other non-supported country). This is my simple guide to doing just that without using a proxy.
Well this has always been extremely difficult as Spotify is exceptionally crafty when it comes to blocking users from different countries. You may have read articles on websites about using a proxy to access the Spotify website. Proxy’s invariably don’t work, they are a pain to use, have security issues and are just really slow (not what you want when streaming music over a SA internet connection!)
I have put together a guide on how to easily access Spotify from within South Africa without using a proxy service.
There have been a lot of changes in the last few months and I have had a lot of queries around this guide. I wanted to add some of this info in so that it makes your life a bit easier and clears up some of the queries.
1.) If you are willing to pay for Spotify i.e. the Premium Spotify account at $9.99 a month, you wont need to do any IP/DNS tricks or use a service like UnoTelly. The Premium Spotify account allows you to use Spotify (ad free) on any device (iPhone/Android/iPad/PC/Mac) and crucially also gives you Unlimited Travel – which essentially means that you can access it from SA (or any country int he world) without any issues. To do this you will need to set it up as a US account (which you will need the UnoDNS 8 day trial account and can follow steps below) and then buy Spotify gift vouchers from Jerrycards.com. You won’t need the UnoDNS account again as long as you pay for Spotify Premium.
2.) If you just want Spotify for Free (has some radio style ads every now and then and won’t stream on mobile devices) then you will need to trick Spotify into thinking you are in the US and will need a UnoDNS Gold account. Note: Spotify used to work just with the standard UnoTelly DNS settings, but they have changed their detection settings now. The UnoTelly Gold account comes with a Bonus VPN service that you need in order to activate Spotify every month or so. This works out cheaper than paying for Spotify Premium (at just $4.99) but you wont be able to stream on your iPhone and you will have to endue the radio style ads every few tracks.
Right, so how do you get around Spotify’s IP detection then? The trick is a company called UnoTelly which provides a service called UnoDNS. You can read my full UnoDNS review on my other site, PixelVulture. While UnoDNS provides access to a range of services (some of which you pay a monthly fee for) it offers Spotify access as part of its free package. Yes, free. You just sign up, download a small program that will help you setup your PC/MAC/Phone/Tablet etc. It takes 2 seconds and couldn’t be easier.
Once you have this enabled, you can access Spotify as a US user and voila! This will give you full speed access to Spotify US. The full process is explained to you with videos and instructions upon registering, however here are some step by step instructions:
- Head to UnoDNS and register for a free account.
- Download & install the UnoHelper software.
- Run the UnoHelper program and click the start button. In a few sections it will show up as active meaning you are now using the DNS service.
- If you want to set this up on alternative devices have a look at the QuickStart guide(it will also show you the list of channels you can access – i.e. Spotify and more). I suggest setting the service up directly in your router so that all the devices in your household are enabled (Xbox/PS3/AppleTV etc). To do that you need to manually edit your router’s DNS address – this is an optional step:
- All you need to do now is head to Spotify.com and register for your free US Spotify account, download the Spotify program and get listening.
After using Spotify for a while you may decide that you would like to pay for the Premium version – giving you additional features, no advertising etc. Well Spotify has another trick for you… you can’t pay with anything other than a US credit card. I even tried registering a US PayPal account and depositing money into it in order to avoid this, but Spotify requires a credit card to be linked to the account anyway. Dead end.
No worries, what you can do is purchase a US Spotify Gift Card. You get the details for your gift card via email. All you then do is follow the instructions that are mailed to you with your card – here is a step by step guide:
- Head to Jerrycards.com and select a Spotify gift card. Enter your payment details (I used PayPal) and complete the checkout process.
- Wait for your card details to be emailed to you. You will get an email to confirm (just click the link) following that you will get another email with the link to your card.
- Head over to your US Spotify account, head to the redeem gift card section. You can then go and select the option you want to upgrade to (Unlimited/Premium) and when asked to enter your payment details just enter your Gift Card details as you would a credit card.
All in all its actually pretty easy. Especially the UnoDNS / Spotify Free part. In fact you have no excuse. Get it done and come find me on Spotify (Username: matthewarnold). Drop me a comment below if you need any help or info.