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Top 15 Best VPN Services for 2023 Compared

A Comprehensive Review and Analysis

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Virtual Private Networks, or VPNs, are tools that help keep users safe and secure while browsing the internet. They also allow users to access content that they may not normally have access to. VPNs have become increasingly popular over the years and the Top VPN services continue to improve their already effective tools.

Most VPN services offer the ability to simply tap a button to connect to a secure, encrypted server, providing anonymity and security, even on public Wi-Fi networks. With hundreds of VPN providers to choose from, it can be difficult to determine which is the best for your needs. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of the top VPNs for 2022 to help take the guesswork out of the decision making process.

top 15 vpn services for 2023

In addition, we will provide information on how a VPN works and how to choose the best VPN service for your specific needs. Don’t miss out on the benefits of using a VPN.

1.Top 3 Best VPN Services in the World right now

2.Top 15 Best VPN Services to use in 2023

  1. ExpressVPN
  2. NordVPN
  3. SurfShark
  4. Private Internet Access (PIA)
  5. Proton VPN
  6. Windscribe
  7. IPVanish
  8. CyberGhost
  9. Mullvad
  10. Hide.me
  11. TunnelBear
  12. Atlas VPN
  13. PureVPN
  14. Hotspot Shield
  15. StrongVPN
  16. IVPN

3.How do VPNs work?

4.What are the benefits of using a VPN?

5.How to start using a VPN Service

6.Should you Pay for a VPN Service? Free vs Paid VPNs

7. Are VPNs Legal?

The top three VPN services for 2022, according to our recent comprehensive testing, are ExpressVPN, NordVPN, and Surfshark.

Top 3 Best VPN Services in the World right now

1.ExpressVPN:

ExpressVPN is our top pick, with an overall score of 10/10. It offers fast speeds, advanced security features, and excellent ease-of-use, as well as 24/7 customer support and free cloud backup. While it may be slightly pricier than some competitors, the quality of service is well worth the cost. You can even try it risk-free for 30 days to see why it’s our editor’s choice.

2.NordVPN

NordVPN is a close runner-up, with an overall score of 9/10. It’s a well-known and trusted name in the VPN industry, known for its rapid server speeds and extra privacy features like Double VPN encryption. It also has an independently audited no-log policy. While it’s jam-packed with features, the pricing becomes more reasonable if you sign up for a multi-year plan.

3.Surfshark

Surfshark rounds out our top three with an overall score of 9/10. It has recently increased its speeds and continues to excel at unblocking restricted services in 99 countries. At just $2.05 USD per month, it’s an affordable and easy-to-use option.

Top 15 Best VPN Services to use in 2023

1.ExpressVPN – Top VPN Services

ExpressVPN offers the best vpn services

ExpressVPN is a top choice for many users in 2022 due to its wide range of features and strong security measures. With a network of over 3,200 servers in 160 locations across 94 countries, it is able to reliably unblock popular streaming sites like Netflix, Amazon, Disney, and BBC iPlayer. It also offers 24/7 support and a 30-day refund period.

Ease of Use

One of the standout features of ExpressVPN is its easy-to-use apps, which are available for almost all platforms, including Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, and Linux. It also has a strong app for routers and setup guides for other devices. However, it only supports five simultaneous connections, which may not be enough for some users.

Privacy

In terms of security and privacy, ExpressVPN has a comprehensive approach that includes tight control over its server setup, strong encryption, its own secure and open-source Lightway protocol, and a bulletproof kill switch called Network Lock. It also has a clear privacy policy and has undergone third-party privacy and security audits.

Usability

In terms of usability, ExpressVPN excels due to its attention to detail and smart workarounds that make the VPN experience smooth and straightforward. It also recently added support for running its Mac app natively on M1/M2 silicon, which improves performance.

ExpressVPN offers the best vpn services plans
ExpressVPN plans

Performance

In terms of performance, ExpressVPN had average download speeds of 560Mbps in recent speed tests, which is sufficient for most users. It also excels in streaming, consistently unblocking a range of international Netflix catalogs, as well as Amazon Prime Video, Disney Plus, and BBC iPlayer.

Support

ExpressVPN also has a strong focus on customer service, with 24/7 live support available through chat or email. It also has a wide range of resources, including setup guides, troubleshooting articles, and FAQs.

Overall, ExpressVPN is a solid choice for most users due to its strong security measures, wide range of features, and excellent customer service. Prices start at $6.67 per month for a one-year subscription.

2.NordVPN – Top VPN Services

NordVPN offers the 2nd best vpn services

NordVPN is a close second to ExpressVPN in terms of its overall performance and features. It has a network of over 5,500 servers in 80+ locations across 60 countries, allowing it to reliably unblock popular streaming sites like Netflix, Amazon, Disney, and BBC iPlayer. It also offers 24/7 support and a 30-day refund period.

Security

One of the standout features of NordVPN is its unparalleled security smarts, including its own custom version of WireGuard called NordLynx, which offers fast connection speeds of up to 820Mbps. It also has a range of other security features, such as Double VPN (also known as multihop), secure DNS, a reliable kill switch, and Threat Protection for malware scanning. NordVPN also undergoes annual audits of its no-logging policy by PricewaterhouseCoopers.

Ease of Use

In terms of its apps, NordVPN offers a wide range of options, including support for Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Chromebooks, and Android TV. It also has browser extensions for Edge, Chrome, and Firefox, and can be set up on compatible routers. While the apps are generally good, there are some minor usability issues, such as a lack of Favorites in the Windows app and longer than average OpenVPN connection times.

NordVPN offers the 2nd best vpn services plans
NordVPN plans

Performance

In terms of performance, NordVPN’s NordLynx protocol offers fast connection speeds, reaching a peak of 880Mbps in previous tests. It also excels in streaming, consistently unblocking a wide variety of apps and services, including WhatsApp, Hulu, and ESPN.

Support

NordVPN also has a strong focus on customer service, with 24/7 live support available through chat or email. It also has a wide range of resources, including setup guides, troubleshooting articles, and FAQs.

Overall, NordVPN is a strong choice for users who prioritize security and privacy, with a wide range of features and excellent customer service. Prices start at $2.49 per month for a two-year subscription.

3.Surfshark – Top VPN Services

best vpns in the market

Surfshark is an excellent, great value VPN service that scores well in every area. It has a network of over 3,200 servers in 100+ locations across 99 countries, allowing it to reliably unblock popular streaming sites like Netflix, Amazon, Disney, and BBC iPlayer. It also offers 24/7 support and a 30-day refund period.

Privacy

One of the standout features of Surfshark is its low prices, with unlimited simultaneous connections and no device limits. It also has a range of security and privacy features, including secure protocols (WireGuard and OpenVPN), strong encryption, a kill switch, private DNS, and Multi-Hop VPN. It also has ad, tracker, and malware-blocking to protect your privacy.

Performance

In terms of performance, Surfshark has seen a significant improvement in recent tests, with WireGuard-powered downloads peaking at 950Mbps. However, OpenVPN speeds were slower at around 150Mbps. Surfshark has a wide range of apps for accessing its network from various devices, including Windows, Mac, Linux, Android, iOS, and smart TVs.

top 15 best vpn services
Surfshark VPN plans

Ease of Use

In terms of usability, Surfshark’s apps have a lot of features and may look a little more complex than some competitors, but they are still easy to use. Surfshark also has some useful features, such as Bypass, which allows you to use the VPN only for certain activities, such as browsing or streaming, while everything else uses your regular connection.

Support

Surfshark excels in streaming, consistently unblocking a wide variety of apps and services, including WhatsApp, Hulu, and ESPN. It also has a strong focus on customer support, with detailed setup guides and troubleshooting articles available on its website. It also has live chat and email support available 24/7.

Overall, Surfshark is an excellent VPN service that offers a wide range of features and strong performance at a great value. Prices start at $2.05 per month for a two-year subscription, with an additional two months free.

4.Private Internet Access (PIA) – Top VPN Services

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Private Internet Access (PIA) is a strong all-round virtual private network (VPN) that has consistently improved over time, offering a wide range of features at an affordable price. It boasts an impressive network of over 10,000 high-speed servers located in 84 countries, with support for popular platforms such as Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, and Linux. PIA also offers a Chrome extension that includes additional privacy features such as cookie blocking. With a generous device limit of 10 simultaneous connections, you can easily protect all of your devices with PIA.

Privacy

In terms of security and privacy, PIA uses the highly secure OpenVPN and WireGuard protocols to protect your online activity. Its MACE feature helps to block ads, trackers, and malware, effectively blocking 111 out of 150 trackers and 217 out of 1,650 brand new malicious links in our testing. PIA has also open-sourced its apps, allowing users to review the code and verify that it functions as advertised. While the company has not yet undergone a widespread service audit, it has announced plans to do so in the near future.

Performance

PIA’s performance has improved significantly in recent tests, with WireGuard speeds reaching up to 450-510Mbps, up from 200-250Mbps in previous tests. While this may not be suitable for gaming or other speed-critical applications, it should be more than sufficient for most browsing and streaming purposes.

Ease of Use

One area where PIA stands out is its usability. Its apps come packed with features, which can be overwhelming for some users. However, you can customize the app to highlight your favorite features and hide the rest, allowing both experts and novice users to get the most out of the service. PIA’s apps for Mac, iOS, and Android are particularly powerful, offering a range of options and settings that are often not found in other providers’ desktop versions.

Best 15 VPN services
PIA VPN plans

Support

In terms of streaming, PIA is able to unblock a range of popular services such as Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, iPlayer, C4, 9Now, and Disney Plus. It also has an average support site, with the added option of live chat for more immediate assistance. PIA’s customer support team has been consistently friendly and knowledgeable in our experience, providing accurate and insightful advice for any issues that may arise.

Finally, PIA offers great value for money, with monthly plans that are significantly cheaper than its competitors. These prices are not headline rates that double on renewal, but rather consistently low prices that make PIA an excellent choice for those looking to save on their VPN costs. Overall, PIA is a reliable and feature-packed VPN service that is suitable for a wide range of users.

5.Proton VPN – Top VPN Services

Proton VPN top 15 best VPN services

Proton VPN is a feature-filled virtual private network (VPN) provider that offers a great free version that users can try. It boasts a wide range of streaming sites that are unblocked, including Netflix, Amazon, Disney, and BBC iPlayer. While it does not offer 24/7 support, it does have a 30-day refund period and a free version that users can test out. Proton VPN’s network consists of over 1,700 servers in 63 countries across 85+ locations. It allows for up to 10 simultaneous connections on a variety of platforms, including Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Linux, Android TV, and Chromebook.

Privacy

In terms of security and privacy, Proton VPN offers strong encryption and the best protocols, such as WireGuard, OpenVPN, and IKEv2. It also has a feature called MultiHop VPN, which passes traffic through multiple VPN servers for added security. Additionally, it has an effective kill switch to protect users’ identities if the VPN connection is lost. In terms of performance, Proton VPN has recently seen improvements in speed and coverage. In testing, it achieved peak speeds of 510Mbps for WireGuard and 440Mbps for OpenVPN, both of which are above average.

top 15 best VPN services
Proton VPN plans

Ease of Use

Proton VPN’s apps are user-friendly and feature a map display of server locations, making it easy for users to connect. While it may have a large number of features that may be overwhelming for some users, a few minutes of exploration should be enough for most people to feel comfortable using the service. In terms of streaming capabilities, Proton VPN is able to unblock content from various regions on Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Disney Plus, and BBC iPlayer. However, these capabilities are only available with the paid Plus plan, not the free tier.

Support

Proton VPN’s customer support may have some overly complicated articles on its support site, but it does offer live chat support and usually responds to email inquiries within a few hours. While its Plus plan is on the pricier side, it does offer a variety of discounts and promotions, as well as a free version for users to test out. Additionally, Proton VPN has a number of other useful features, such as a built-in ad blocker and the ability to use split tunneling to choose which apps use the VPN connection. Overall, Proton VPN is a solid choice for those looking for a feature-filled VPN with a reliable free version.

6.Windscribe

Top 15 VPN services windscribe

Windscribe is a well-known and respected name in the VPN industry that offers a range of advanced features and unlimited device connections. It has open-source apps available for Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, and Linux, as well as browser extensions for Chrome, Firefox, and Opera. The company’s paid subscription plan allows for unlimited device connections, making it a good option for protecting all of the devices in your home.

Ease of Use

In terms of streaming capabilities, Windscribe has consistently performed well in our testing, with the ability to unblock popular streaming sites such as Netflix, Amazon, Disney Plus, and BBC iPlayer. However, we were unable to successfully unblock Netflix Japan in our latest test.

Privacy

One of the standout features of Windscribe is its advanced blocking capabilities, which go beyond just ad blocking to include tracking, malware, fake news, and even porn sites. These features can be highly customized to provide the specific level of protection desired.

Windscribe VPN service Plans
Windscribe VPN Plans

Performance

In terms of speed, Windscribe has shown improvement in our testing, with speeds reaching up to 700Mbps in our latest round of testing, up from 490Mbps in previous tests. While this is a significant improvement, it still falls short of some of the top performers in the industry.

Support

Although Windscribe does not offer 24/7 live chat support, customer service is still available through email or the company’s own subreddit. The company has also recently taken a step towards increased transparency by open-sourcing its desktop apps, though it has yet to undergo an independent security audit.

Overall, Windscribe is a solid choice with a range of advanced features and good streaming capabilities, though it may be slightly more expensive than some of its competitors. The company also offers a free plan with 10GB of data per month and access to all main features, allowing users to try out the service risk-free.

7.IPVanish

top 15 VPN services ipvanish

IPVanish is a reliable and fast virtual private network (VPN) solution that offers a wide range of features and benefits to users. With over 2,000 servers in over 50 countries, IPVanish provides users with a large network of servers to choose from, ensuring that they can connect to a server that is optimized for their location and needs. In addition to its large server network, IPVanish also owns all of its servers, giving it complete control over how they are managed and maintained. This, combined with the fact that the company has recently passed a no-logs audit, demonstrates its commitment to user privacy and security.

Privacy

One of the standout features of IPVanish is its support for the efficient WireGuard protocol, which is available on all platforms and has been shown to deliver fast speeds in tests. In addition to WireGuard, IPVanish also supports the OpenVPN and IKEv2 protocols, giving users a range of options for encrypting their internet connection. The VPN also includes a kill switch to protect users if the VPN connection is lost, as well as a range of advanced features such as ad blocking, tracker blocking, and protection from malware and fake news.

Ease of Use

IPVanish’s user-friendly desktop apps are notable for their intuitive map interface, which makes it easy for users to choose a server and connect to it. However, some users may find the interface to be cluttered and overwhelming, with a large number of features that can be overwhelming for new users. The company’s support site is also not as comprehensive as some of its competitors, although live chat support is available and has been reported to be helpful and responsive.

IPVANISH VPN plans
IPVANISH VPN plans

Performance

In terms of streaming, IPVanish is able to unblock popular platforms such as US Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Disney Plus, and Amazon Prime Video. However, it has struggled with unblocking Netflix in other regions, such as Australia and Canada.

Overall, IPVanish is a solid and reliable VPN that offers a wide range of features and benefits to users. While it may not excel in every area, it is a strong contender in the VPN market and is worth considering for anyone who needs a fast and secure connection. Users can take advantage of the company’s 30-day refund period to try out the service and see if it meets their needs.

8.CyberGhost

best vpn services Cyberghost

CyberGhost is a feature-packed virtual private network (VPN) provider with a strong focus on configurability and impressive speed. With a network of over 8,000 servers located in 115 countries, CyberGhost offers a wide range of apps for a variety of devices, including Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, Linux, Amazon Fire TV, and smart TVs, as well as Smart DNS support for games consoles.

Performance

One of the standout features of CyberGhost is its impressive streaming capabilities, as it was able to effortlessly unblock US Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, and BBC iPlayer in our tests. However, it did fail to unblock Disney Plus and UK Netflix. The apps also have specialized locations for streaming Hulu, HBO Max, and more. In terms of speed, CyberGhost performed well in our tests with WireGuard connections reaching around 730Mbps and OpenVPN connections reaching 400Mbps or more.

Ease of Use

While CyberGhost has a lot of positive features, there are a few drawbacks to consider. The support site is not as comprehensive as some other VPN providers, and the device limit scheme may be seen as annoying by some users. Additionally, there has not yet been a security audit of the service. However, CyberGhost does offer a 45-day money-back guarantee and pricing for longer-term plans is reasonable, with prices dropping to under $2.50 per month for a three-year commitment. Overall, CyberGhost is a solid choice for those looking for fast speeds and strong streaming capabilities.

9.Mullvad

Mullvad is a virtual private network (VPN) provider that prioritizes security over streaming capabilities. The company offers 800+ servers in 38 countries across 68 locations, and allows up to five simultaneous connections. One of the unique features of Mullvad is the option to sign up for the service without providing any personal information, and the ability to pay with cryptocurrencies or even cash by mail. This level of anonymity is further supported by the company’s security audits of its infrastructure, including its apps and servers, and its commitment to regularly repeating these audits.

best vpn services Cyberghost Plans
Cyberghost VPN Plans

Performance

In terms of performance, Mullvad boasts impressive speeds, with a peak of 770Mbps in our tests. The VPN also offers a variety of features designed to enhance security, such as port forwarding, a reliable kill switch, DNS and IPv6 leak protection, and stealth options. However, it should be noted that Mullvad is not designed for streaming, and was unable to unblock popular streaming sites like US Netflix in our tests.

Support

Additionally, the company does not offer live chat or 24/7 support, and its monthly billing plan is the only option available, without any discounts for longer term commitments.

Overall, Mullvad is a solid choice for those who prioritize privacy and security, particularly for peer-to-peer (P2P) activities. Its fast speeds and advanced security features make it a suitable option for those looking to maintain maximum anonymity online. However, its lack of streaming capabilities and basic support may not make it the best choice for the average user.

10.Hide.me

best 15 vpn services HIDEme vpn

Hide.me is a VPN service that offers a range of advanced features and impressive server speeds. With over 2,000 servers in 75+ countries, it offers support for up to 10 simultaneous connections and has apps available for various devices including mobile, desktop, and even an extension for Edge.

Support and Ease of Use

It also has specialized streaming servers that make it easier to unblock popular streaming sites like Netflix, Amazon, Disney, and BBC iPlayer. In terms of advanced features, Hide.me offers split tunneling and MultiHop VPN, as well as its own unique Bolt technology, which is a collection of technical tweaks and customizations designed to improve speeds and optimize connections on Windows devices.

Performance

In terms of performance, Hide.me’s WireGuard connections reached impressive speeds of 880Mbps in our tests, making it one of the top three fastest providers. Even its OpenVPN connections consistently reached speeds of 450-550Mbps. In terms of streaming, it was able to successfully unblock Netflix in various regions, as well as other popular streaming sites like Disney Plus, C4, ITV, 9Now, and BBC iPlayer.

best 15 vpn services HIDEme vpn
HIDEme VPN Plans

Privacy

However, there are a few drawbacks to Hide.me. One is that it may be overwhelming for those who are inexperienced with networking, as it has a large number of features, options, and settings. Additionally, it does not have an independent security audit, which may be a concern for some users. Finally, while it offers a decent free plan, it is still more expensive than some other VPN options on the market. Overall, Hide.me could be a good pick for experts who will make use of its advanced features and impressive speeds, but those who are looking for a simpler and more reliable VPN service may want to consider other options.

11.TunnelBear

best 15 vpn services TunnerlBear vpn

TunnelBear is a user-friendly VPN service that offers some attractive privacy perks. One of the standout features of TunnelBear is its GhostBear feature, which helps users connect to the VPN in countries where VPN usage is restricted.

Privacy

It also includes a kill switch to protect users if the connection drops. Another notable aspect of TunnelBear is its commitment to security audits – the company undergoes a comprehensive audit of its entire service every year. This level of transparency is rare in the VPN industry.

Ease of Use

In terms of app features, TunnelBear’s apps are known for their simplicity and attractive design, particularly the mobile VPN builds. However, the focus on simplicity does mean that TunnelBear is missing some common features that can be found on other VPNs. These include support for PayPal and WireGuard, as well as a live chat feature on the support site. TunnelBear also does not offer refunds, although users can try out the limited free version before signing up for a paid subscription.

TunnerlBear VPN Plans
TunnerlBear VPN Plans

Performance

When it comes to unblocking streaming sites, TunnelBear falls short of the mark. In our testing, we were able to access Disney Plus, Amazon Prime, ITV, C4, and 9Now, but we encountered issues with Netflix and BBC iPlayer. As a result, TunnelBear is unlikely to be included on our list of the best streaming VPNs.

Overall, TunnelBear may not be the best choice for users who require a powerful and fast VPN with a wide range of unblocking capabilities. However, for those who want a simple and transparent VPN service, TunnelBear is worth considering.

12.Atlas VPN

Best 15 vpn services atlasVPN

Atlas VPN is a mid-range virtual private network (VPN) provider that offers a solid service for users with average needs. It provides access to streaming sites such as BBC iPlayer, Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, and Disney Plus, although it can sometimes experience issues with unblocking content from certain regions.

Ease of Use

The provider allows for unlimited simultaneous connections and accepts payment in cryptocurrency, making it a good choice for those looking for a secure payment option. It also has a relatively small network of 750+ servers located in 44+ locations across 38 countries.

Support

One of the standout features of Atlas VPN is its updated support site, which includes improved content and UI tweaks. However, the provider’s apps are relatively basic and may not offer the full range of features that some users are looking for.

Best 15 vpn services atlasVPN
atlasVPN plans

Performance

In terms of performance, Atlas VPN recorded above-average speeds in our tests, reaching 780Mbps. However, it should be noted that this is still lower than some of the top performers in the industry.

Overall, Atlas VPN is a good choice for users with mid-range needs who are looking for a reliable VPN provider at a reasonable price. While it may not offer the same level of performance or range of features as some of the top providers in the industry, it still provides a solid service that can get the job done. Its support site and payment options make it a particularly appealing choice for those looking for an easy-to-use VPN that prioritises security and privacy.

13.PureVPN

best 15 vpns PureVPN

PureVPN is a virtual private network service that has been in the market for a while and offers a wide range of features at some of the lowest prices in the industry. It boasts a network of over 6,500 high-speed servers in 78 countries, making it one of the largest VPN providers in terms of server count. It has dedicated apps for various devices, including desktops, mobiles, and smart TVs, and allows up to 10 simultaneous connections, making it suitable for use by multiple family members or devices.

Privacy

One of the major highlights of PureVPN is its focus on security and privacy. It has had its no-logging claims verified by an independent audit, which is a reassuring sign for users who are concerned about their online activities being tracked or logged. It uses strong encryption and a range of protocols, including WireGuard, to ensure the security of users’ data. Additionally, it has a kill switch feature that is designed to protect users’ identities in case the VPN connection drops.

Performance

In terms of performance, PureVPN has consistently ranked highly in tests, with speeds that are often twice as fast as those of some of its competitors. This makes it a good choice for users who need a VPN that can handle high-bandwidth activities such as streaming or gaming. It also has a feature called Split Tunneling that allows users to choose which apps or websites should go through the VPN connection and which ones should use the regular internet connection.

Ease of Use

One area where PureVPN falls short is its streaming capabilities. While it has improved in this regard in recent years and now unblocks popular platforms like Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, and Disney Plus, it still struggles with unblocking some regional content. For example, in our latest tests, we were unable to unblock Netflix Japan. This can be a major drawback for users who rely on VPNs to access a wider range of content.

best 15 vpns PureVPN
PureVPN plans

Support

In terms of customer support, PureVPN offers a range of options, including email support, a support center with articles and guides, and live chat. However, it does not offer 24/7 live chat support, which can be inconvenient for users who need help outside of normal business hours.

One of the major selling points of PureVPN is its pricing. It offers some of the most competitive pricing in the market, with occasional special deals that can offer five years of coverage for less than $100. However, it is worth noting that these prices may not always be available and that the overall quality of the service may not be as high as some of the more expensive options on the market.

In conclusion, PureVPN is a solid choice for users who are looking for a budget-friendly VPN that delivers fast speeds and a range of security and privacy features. While it may not be the best option for users who need a VPN for streaming or who are particularly concerned about privacy, it is a good choice for those who are looking for a reliable and affordable VPN service.

14.Hotspot Shield

Hotspot Shield VPN best 15 vpn services

 

Hotspot Shield is a well-known name in the VPN industry, but it has been surpassed by many other providers in recent years. With a network of 3,200+ servers located in 80+ countries and 125 cities, Hotspot Shield offers a decent amount of coverage for its users. P2P is supported on all servers, and the service also includes a feature to block malicious and phishing sites. In terms of platform support, Hotspot Shield has apps for Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Linux, and smart TVs, as well as a Chrome extension and router support.

Ease of Use

While the apps provided by Hotspot Shield may not be as powerful as those offered by its competitors, they are still fairly easy to use. The Smart VPN feature allows users to choose specific websites and apps that will not have their traffic routed through the VPN, which can be useful for optimizing performance and accessing sites that don’t work well with the VPN enabled.

Performance

One of Hotspot Shield’s standout features is its ability to unblock streaming content from overseas. Instead of requiring users to try multiple VPN locations to find one that works for a particular service, Hotspot Shield has designated streaming locations for each country that users can connect to for seamless access to services like US Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Amazon Prime Video, and Disney Plus.

In terms of performance, Hotspot Shield used to be a top performer, but with the widespread adoption of the faster WireGuard protocol by many other VPN providers, Hotspot Shield’s custom Catapult Hydra protocol has struggled to keep up. While it is still fast enough for most connections and devices, with an average download speed of around 300Mbps, it falls significantly short of the speeds offered by many other VPNs.

Hotspot Shield VPN best 15 vpn services Plans
Hotspot Shield VPN plans

Privacy

One area where Hotspot Shield could improve is in security and transparency. While it does offer a kill switch feature to protect user privacy, it has not yet undergone an independent security audit, which is becoming increasingly common among VPN providers as a way to demonstrate their commitment to security and transparency.

Overall, Hotspot Shield is still a decent choice for users who prioritize ease-of-use, top-notch streaming support, and the security of purchasing from a well-known provider. The service offers a 7-day trial and a 45-day money-back guarantee, as well as a great deal on the three-year plan, giving users plenty of time to try it out and decide if it’s right for them.

15.StrongVPN

Best VPN services StrongVPN

StrongVPN is a robust virtual private network (VPN) provider that offers a range of features and capabilities. With 60,000 VPN IP addresses, support for six protocols, including the fast WireGuard protocol, and the ability to connect up to 12 devices simultaneously, StrongVPN has a strong focus on providing a strong and reliable service. In addition, StrongVPN is able to unblock a range of streaming services, including US Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Disney Plus, and BBC iPlayer, making it a good choice for those looking to access content from overseas.

Privacy

In terms of security, StrongVPN offers support for a range of protocols, including OpenVPN, IKEv2, and L2TP/IPSec, as well as the aforementioned WireGuard protocol. The provider also has a range of security features, including a kill switch, DNS leak protection, and IPv6 leak protection, to help keep your online activity private and secure.

Performance

In terms of performance, StrongVPN has a relatively large network of 950+ servers in 60+ locations across 40+ countries. While this is a decent-sized network, the provider’s speeds are somewhat below average, with our tests showing download speeds of around 450Mbps. This may be sufficient for many users, but it is worth noting that other providers offer significantly faster speeds.

Best VPN services StrongVPN
StrongVPN plans

Support

One area where StrongVPN excels is in its customer support, with 24/7 live chat and email support available to help users with any issues they may encounter. The provider also offers a 30-day trial period, allowing users to test out the service before committing to a longer-term plan.

In terms of pricing, StrongVPN offers a range of subscription options, including monthly, annual, and biennial plans. All plans come with a free 250GB of cloud storage from SugarSync, which is a valuable bonus. While the provider’s prices are generally competitive, they are somewhat higher than some other providers on the market.

Overall, StrongVPN is a reliable and feature-rich VPN provider that is particularly strong in terms of its streaming capabilities and customer support. While its speeds may not be the fastest, and there are some areas where the provider could improve, such as mobile app updates and security audits, it is still a solid choice for those looking for a strong and reliable VPN service.

16.IVPN

IVPN best 15 vpn services

IVPN is a small, but highly respected and transparent virtual private network (VPN) provider. The company’s focus on privacy is evident in its open-source apps and website, as well as its annual security audits. IVPN’s commitment to privacy is further demonstrated by its ability to create an account without requiring personal details like an email address, and the option to pay anonymously with Bitcoin.

Performance

While streaming is not a strong point for IVPN, as it was unable to unblock popular services like Netflix and Amazon Prime Video in our tests, its performance is impressive. With peak download speeds of 810Mbps, IVPN ranks among the top ten fastest VPNs currently available. The company’s apps may have some small usability issues, but they are reliable and offer a range of useful features for both desktop and mobile devices.

IVPN best 15 vpn services Plans
IVPN plans

Ease of Use

One potential drawback to consider is the size of IVPN’s network, which consists of only 70+ servers in 45 locations across 32 countries. Additionally, the full-featured Pro plan can be pricier than many other VPN options. However, for those who prioritize privacy and don’t need access to streaming services, IVPN may be a worthwhile choice.

How do VPNs Work?

Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) are a popular tool for protecting internet privacy by routing web traffic through a secure connection to a VPN server. This means that instead of communicating directly with a website, your device first communicates with the VPN server, which then passes the traffic on to the website and back to the VPN server before it reaches your device. This helps to prevent others from snooping on your online activities, as they will only see connections between your device and the VPN server. The VPN server also encrypts your traffic, making it difficult for anyone to see what sites you are visiting or what you are doing on those sites.

There is a trade-off for this added privacy, however. Encrypting and decrypting traffic, as well as routing it through an additional server, requires additional processing power and can potentially slow down internet speeds. However, top VPN providers work to minimize any performance impact by using well-designed apps and the most efficient protocols. In fact, some of the best VPNs can reach speeds of 800Mbps or more, so you may not even notice any difference in speed when using a VPN.

Overall, VPNs offer a useful tool for protecting internet privacy by encrypting and routing web traffic through a secure connection to a VPN server. While there may be some impact on internet speeds, top providers work to minimize this impact and provide fast and efficient service.

What are the benefits of using VPN Services?

A Virtual Private Network (VPN) is a useful tool that can provide a range of benefits to users, both technical and non-technical. One of the main benefits of using a VPN is increased online security and anonymity. When connected to a VPN, your internet traffic is encrypted, making it more difficult for third parties to monitor your online activity or interfere with your browsing. This is especially useful when accessing public Wi-Fi, as these networks are often more vulnerable to snooping and malicious hotspots. Additionally, VPNs can help to protect your privacy by making it more difficult for websites and advertisers to track your online activities and by shielding your browsing history from even your own internet service provider (ISP).

Bypass Network Restrictions using VPN Services

Another benefit of VPNs is the ability to bypass network restrictions and unblock websites. Many networks block access to certain sites, such as YouTube or social media platforms, but using a VPN allows you to bypass these restrictions and access the content you want. VPNs can also be used to get around government censorship in countries with strict internet controls, although some governments, such as China, have implemented measures to detect and block VPN usage.

Access other country content using VPN Services

One of the most popular uses of VPNs is for streaming content from overseas. Many streaming sites block access based on your location, but by connecting to a VPN server in a different country, you can often bypass these restrictions and access content that would otherwise be unavailable in your region. This is particularly useful for accessing streaming services like Netflix or BBC iPlayer from abroad, or for watching live sporting events that are not being broadcast in your own country.

Financial Benefits of using VPN Services

In addition to these specific benefits, VPNs can also be useful for avoiding cookie-based price manipulation. Online prices for goods and services, such as hotels and airline tickets, can vary significantly depending on your location. By appearing to be in a different country through the use of a VPN, you may be able to take advantage of lower prices and potentially save money on your purchases.

Security Provided by VPN Services

Overall, VPNs offer a range of benefits to users, including increased security and anonymity, the ability to unblock websites and bypass censorship, and the ability to access content that may be restricted based on your location. Whether you are a seasoned network user or a newcomer to the world of online privacy, a VPN can be a valuable tool for protecting your online activities and accessing the content you want.

How to start using a VPN Service

If you are in the market for a virtual private network (VPN) and want to ensure that you are getting the best one for your needs, there are a few steps you can follow to make sure you are making the right choice. First, it is important to research and compare different VPN options to find the one that is the best fit for you. This might include looking at the types of security protocols they offer, the number of servers they have available, and any additional features they offer such as ad blocking or the ability to unblock restricted content.

Signing up for a VPN Service

Once you have narrowed down your choices, the next step is to sign up for the VPN you have selected. Most VPNs have an easy sign-up process that can be completed online, and many offer a variety of payment methods including the option to pay with cryptocurrency. It is usually more cost-effective to opt for a longer-term subscription, although keep in mind that you will typically have to pay for the entire subscription upfront.

Setting Up a VPN Service on you device

After you have signed up for your VPN, you can then download the necessary client or app for the devices you want to use the VPN on. For mobile devices, this typically involves downloading the app from the App Store or Play Store. Once the app is installed, you can then connect to the VPN and begin using it to secure your internet connection and protect your online privacy. If you want to use the VPN on other devices such as a computer or games console, you may need to install an extension or follow additional steps to set it up. It is also possible to set up a VPN on your internet router, which can provide protection for all of the devices connected to your home network.

Should you Pay for a VPN? Free vs Paid VPNs

When considering a virtual private network (VPN), it is natural to be drawn to the prospect of a free service. However, it is important to understand that free VPNs often come with significant drawbacks compared to their paid counterparts. The primary reason for this is that operating a reliable and efficient VPN requires significant resources, including fast servers, skilled developers, and a dedicated support team. These costs cannot be covered by a free service, resulting in subpar performance and potentially compromising the privacy of users.

Security Risks of using Free VPN Services

Free VPNs may offer a basic app with outdated servers and a tendency to flood users with ads, which can expose them to the same privacy risks that a VPN is meant to protect against. Some free VPNs have even been known to send screenshots of users’ devices back to the developer, allowing them to track the websites and apps being accessed.

While free VPNs may suffice for occasional use, such as unblocking a streaming site, it is not recommended to rely on them for anything involving sensitive information or privacy. It is generally safer to opt for a paid VPN service, which can be obtained for as little as $2-$3 per month. If you do decide to use a free VPN, be sure to research and choose a reputable one from a trusted source.

Are VPNs Legal

Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) are legal in most parts of the world, including North and South America, Western Europe, and Oceania. However, there are some countries where the legality of VPNs is more complex.

China and Russia do not outright ban VPNs, but they do only allow the use of government-approved providers. In addition, other VPN services, such as ExpressVPN, NordVPN, ProtonVPN, and IPVanish, have been banned in Russia. Turkey has not attempted to ban all VPNs, but it may block access to the sites or servers of providers that do not follow its rules.

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Oman have laws that may cause problems in certain VPN-related situations. More restrictive countries, such as Iraq, North Korea, and Turkmenistan, completely ban VPNs.

The legal landscape surrounding VPNs is constantly evolving, as countries introduce new laws. While it is unlikely that individuals will face significant consequences for using a VPN to access social media from a foreign hotel room, it is still important to research the laws and regulations of a particular country before traveling to avoid potential issues. Ignorance of the law is not a valid defence, so it is important to be aware of the potential risks.

If you want to download torrents then VPNs are just one part of the recipe to anonymity. You need to use additional resources like cloud download managers like ZbigZ in order to keep your privacy. You can learn more and select the best cloud based torrent downloading websites from here.

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Consumer Tech Enthusiast, Blogger, Web Designer and Internet Marketing Professional of 9 years. Interested in the Smart Phone evolution story that unravels every second, every hour, every day, just like most of you all are. Like spending time researching new ideas on the internet so that I can bring them to you in a comprehensive manner. Whenever you like a story of mine do make sure you share it. That would be a good way to buy me that proverbial coffee as a token of good will.

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