PrivateVPN performed well in our speed tests, offering enough bandwidth to stream Netflix in high definition. Offers strong encryption, a kill switch, DNS leak protection, a zero logs policy, and allows up to 10 simultaneous devices are all included in a normal subscription.
Some free VPNs also sell your data to advertisers for profit, while others have been caught bundling malware in their downloads. Also, free services are rarely good enough for streaming as they tend to limit server locations, speed, and bandwidth in an effort to get you to upgrade to their paid plans.
Performance: ExpressVPN download speeds peaked at a somewhat-average 560Mbps in our latest rigorous speed tests. This is down a bit from our previous test (630Mbps), but we're confident it's the kind of speed you can realistically expect to achieve. We've seen other providers more, but realistically, Express is speedy enough for what most users will be doing.
Nord owns and manages many of its servers, for instance, ensuring others can't access them. Apps use only the most secure protocols with strong AES-256 encryption, and they're crammed with high-end privacy features. Double VPN (known as multihop elsewhere) routes your traffic through two servers for extra security, secure DNS shields your browsing, a reliable kill switch protects you even if the VPN fails, and Nord still can scan downloads for malware with its (somewhat limited) Threat Protection feature.
Performance: In the past, speed wasn't the greatest, but this time around it certainly earns back some points. Our latest testing shows WireGuard speeds up to 450-510Mbps from the 200-250Mbps at last check. But let's be realistic, too. Although speed may be a problem for gaming, downloading or using other speed-critical applications, if you're mostly browsing or streaming, then PIA should be more than fast enough.
If performance is your top priority, though, Mullvad's 770Mbps (down from 820Mbps at last testing) peak speed is nearly twice some of the competition. Valuable features include port forwarding, reliable kill switch, DNS and IPv6 leak protection, and a variety of stealth options. The apps are top-quality, too, fully leak-free and with a rock-solid kill switch keeping us safe in every situation.
StrongVPN doesn't have the stamina to keep up this pace, and other areas of the service look more under powered. There's no security audit. There's sometimes a year or more between mobile app updates. And its 450Mbps download speed may be enough for many, but that's half what we see from the likes of Hide.me and TorGuard in our speed testing. 2b1af7f3a8