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If you are a fan of Japanese TV but not living in Japan, you’re in the right place. This article will explain how you can watch Japanese TV in the USA.
Due to various reasons, many online streaming services are geo-restricted.
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To this restriction, people in the US region cannot watch Japanese TV online usually. But, still, Japanese TV shows, anime, and movies are popular worldwide, especially in the United States.
So how can you watch them?
The answer is simple. Despite being restricted within Japan, people easily bypass the restrictions and watch Japanese TV online. What has made it possible? You will learn this in today’s article.
Can you watch Japanese TV channels in the USA?
Yes, you can watch Japanese TV channels in the US if you use a VPN.
You can watch Japanese TV online in two ways: live streaming or video-on-demand, and both have advantages.
Finding a namahousou, or live broadcast, streaming online is the closest you can get to sitting in front of a Japanese television set without purchasing a plane ticket.
The best part about a live TV stream is that it plays indefinitely, eliminating the need for you to constantly look for another show to watch.
The only way to watch Japanese TV channels abroad is to use a VPN. A VPN service enables you to do two things on the internet: become private and partially anonymous on the internet, and unblock geo-restricted or censored content.
However, you can gain access to more than just streaming services. The same is true for foreign news websites, torrenting websites, foreign gaming platforms, and other websites that contain Japanese content.
You can access Japanese Netflix, Abema TV, Gorin, and many other services. Furthermore, the ability of VPNs to circumvent geo-restrictions and unblock blocked content quickly made them the go-to apps for anyone looking to access such content.
How to pick the best VPN for Japanese TV abroad?
This is the trickiest part. It is often hard to choose a VPN that is ideal for Japanese TV streaming. However, if you want to choose a VPN yourself for Japanese TV, there are a few aspects to consider.
When you access Netflix, you are usually served the local Netflix catalog. For example, if you live in the United States, you will receive the US Netflix catalog, if you live in the United Kingdom, you will receive the UK Netflix catalog, and so on.
You get the local site because Netflix knows where you are because of your IP Address, which reveals your location. A VPN works by providing you with an IP address from a different country. When watching Japanese Netflix, an IP address from Japan is required. When you visit Netflix, it detects that you are in Japan.
VPNs also work by rerouting your internet traffic through a country of your choice, in our case Japan. This causes websites and apps to believe you are in another location, allowing you to bypass any restrictions that some services may have in place.
When you’re online, you’ll want to keep your internet traffic secure, especially if you’re sending sensitive information like a Japanese show subscription payment information.
A VPN with a no-logs policy and security features such as DNS leak protection and AES-256 encryption, as well as secure protocols (such as OpenVPN, Lightway, IKEv2, or WireGuard) and a kill switch, are the best match.
You can find below our top pick VPN for Japanese TV, how to use it, and more.
How can I watch Japanese TV Channels in the US?
1. Subscribe to a suitable premium VPN
The first thing you need is a quality VPN service that has a server in Japan. There are many VPNs that have servers in that country. However, after doing some analysis, we have found that ExpressVPN is the best VPN for this purpose.
ExpressVPN has features that can bypass any VPN-blocking technologies enforced by any Japanese TV or show provider. Also, it has a server there that performs excellently when you stream any video content.
After considering these things, ExpressVPN should be the ideal choice if you want to stream Japanese TV from the USA. Besides, there are some other VPNs you can try for a similar purpose. These are Private Internet Access, NordVPN, CyberGhost VPN.
2. Connect to a Japanese server
- Go to the VPN provider’s official website (We’ve tested ExpressVPN).
- Download the correct VPN app for your device.
- Install the VPN on your device.
- Login with VPN credentials.
- Connect to a Japanese server.
When you connect, choose a Japanese server that is tagged as streaming optimized for the best performance.
Some VPN providers may not have such servers. In that case, choose the Japanese server with the lowest ping.
Another thing you should know is that any quality VPN app should show the ping or the streaming tag beside the server name or location.
ExpressVPNUse ExpressVPN to connect to Japanese TV from the US or anywhere in the world!
3. Access the popular streaming platforms
When everything is okay, you can look for platforms where you can watch Japanese TV in the US. You can pick one or multiple platforms depending on your preferences.
There are live streaming platforms as well as platforms for on-demand video content. But, we have picked a list of the best places where you can start watching Japanese TV shows, movies, etc.
Amazon Prime is a great source of Japanese shows. Particularly, if you like animes and cartons, Prime Video can give you a great experience.
Note that Prime Video is not free to access. You must have a subscription to watch Japanese shows on this platform. The subscription fee is also relatively cheaper.
If you prefer live-streaming of Japanese TV channels, TV Japan Live is a perfect platform. There are numerous channels available there. But, the best thing is it is totally free. So, you will not need to worry about any subscription fee.
Viki is a very popular free streaming platform that features a lot of Japanese TV Shows, movies, and many other Asian programs. With a VPN, you can access it easily from unavailable regions.
Netflix is the most popular on-demand video streaming site where you can find many Japanese TV shows, anime, movies, documentaries, etc. Especially, by connecting a proper Japanese server, you can start streaming thousand of Japanese shows.
Netflix is a paid service that may cost differently in different regions.
If you want to watch live Japanese TVs, Streema is a great platform. It has around 37 free Japanese TV channels, including Fuji TV, NTV-News 24, TV Tokyo, etc.
6. Hulu Japan
Hulu is another paid platform similar to Netflix. Though many people think Hulu is only available in the USA, it has a Japanese version too. You will need to use a VPN to use Hulu Japan as you are living in the USA.
Hulu has many Japanese TV shows and movies available in both USA and Japan. In the USA version, most of the shows are dubbed in English and also have subtitles. So, you will enjoy these shows in your own language on this platform.
But, the Japanese version of Hulu is different. There are countless Japanese and international shows available in their native language.
7. Nippon TV
Nippon TV is a very good platform to watch Japanese TV from the US. You will need to use a VPN to stream this site. But, Once you are there, you can explore countless Japanese shows there.
Crunchyroll is a platform for anime lovers. It has hundreds of anime, dramas, and many other programs at no cost. This platform lets you enjoy these amazing Japanese shows with English subtitles. Note that this platform has thorough geo unlocking and not all VPNs may work on it. But a reliable tool and proper configuration will do.
HBO has many Japanese contents available along with other international shows, movies, etc. Though HBO is highly popular for its exclusive shows, it is still worth checking for Japanese TVs.
AsianCrush is another platform like Rakuten Viki. It is also free that has featured a lot of Asian dramas, TV shows, movies, etc. A significant number of them are Japanese programs.
4. Start streaming the shows
After picking the platform(s) you prefer and subscribing if required, you can start watching Japanese TV in the USA via the Internet. Make sure you connect to the VPN before accessing a platform that is not available in the united states.
Some of the platforms are available for desktop browsers only. Some have apps for smartphones, PCs, tabs as well as smart TVs.
Can you watch Japanese TV online for free?
The straightforward answer is yes. Many Japanese TV channels are available online at no cost. Else, many TV shows are there that you can stream without paying anything.
Many shows and TV channels are also available as paid content. In that case, you must have a subscription to the relevant platform to watch these shows.
If you live outside of Japan, technically, you cannot watch any Japanese TV at no cost. Because, except for some exceptions, in all cases, you will need an additional paid service to bypass the geo-restriction.
Now, it may seem a bit harder to get access to these fantastic TV shows. But it’s not. There are some easy steps to do it.
Basically, these are the steps to follow if you want to play Japanese channels, shows, and movies online in the USA. By the way, if you want, you can let us know in the comment box which technique you have been using to watch any Japanese TV online in the US.