When you connect to the internet and type in a website address, it loads and you go about your business. You probably might not think too much of what goes on behind the scenes, which is a lot. For example, your internet service provider (ISP) knows which websites you’re visiting, which is why in some countries, you might come across a message saying that access to that website has been blocked.
Changing your DNS will allow you to get around these types of problems. Making those changes on your computer is pretty easy, but did you know that you can also change your DNS on your Android smartphone as well? It only takes a couple of seconds and here’s what you need to do.
Change DNS On Android
- Go to your Android phone’s Settings
- Go to WiFi
- Since this differs from Android phone to Android phone, you’ll want to change the settings of the current network you’re connected to. You might need to tap an arrow button on the network name or long-press on it
- Once you’ve gotten into the network settings, look for either IP Settings or Advanced
- Change it from DHCP to Static
- Under DNS 1 put in 188.8.131.52 and under DNS 2 put in 184.108.40.206
- Tap on Save/Done
- Your WiFi will disconnect for a second or two before reconnecting and you’re good to go
DNS is short for Domain Name System. It converts the URL you type in, like ubergizmo.com, and converts it into an IP address that matches the servers it is hosted on. Think of it like a phone book, where you know the name of the person you’re trying to call, but you don’t have their phone number until you look it up.
There are several reasons to change your DNS. One of which is speed, where the DNS server supplied by your ISP might not be maintained or up-to-date, meaning that sometimes you could get bounced around until the website loads. Using a different DNS server could potentially shave seconds off your loading times, and over the course of the day, it adds up.
Changing your DNS also helps protect your privacy because your ISP logs your browsing activity. Like we said earlier, this is how your ISP knows which sites to prevent you from visiting because your requests are essentially passed through their server. Changing your DNS can help bypass those restrictions, and in some cases, even bypass georestrictions so you can see content that would normally be exclusive to certain parts of the world.
In the guide above, we used 220.127.116.11 and 18.104.22.168 because these are Google’s DNS servers. It is public and it is free to use and because Google Public Resolvers use DNSSEC, it helps guarantee that the responses they offer are authentic and from authoritative sources. You are more than welcome to use alternate DNS servers, just change the address from the ones we provided in the steps to the one your DNS server uses.
There are both free to use and paid DNS servers. For example, Google and Cloudflare both provide free DNS servers so you can use those if you’re looking for an alternative to the one your ISP has provided you. However, there are also paid DNS servers, but are they better?
That will depend on your needs and preferences. If you’re fine with whatever that Google or Cloudflare does for you with their free DNS, then maybe you don’t need to pay for a DNS server.
However, paid DNS servers might come with additional features and customization options to help optimize traffic/bandwidth. Paid servers might even have more server locations to choose from, so you might be able to find a server closer to you.