What to Expect from this PureVPN Review?
In a perfect world, choosing a great VPN would be very easy. It would be packed with great features and cost almost nothing. The VPN would even run in the background unnoticed, all while using highly advanced encryption protocols to add an impenetrable security layer. Today, we continue our search for the crème de la crème of VPNs. Is PureVPN that mythical VPN, which works smoothly with all the bonus features that you want?
In this detailed PureVPN review, we’ll discuss its pros and cons, key features, the parent company, and how it performed in our tests. Next, I will show you PureVPN’s available subscription options, its apps, what their customer support is like, how it compares to other popular VPNs, and is PureVPN a good choice altogether. Let’s dive right in!
PureVPN Pros and Cons
Before we jump right in, let’s go over its pros and cons.
Founded back in 2006, PureVPN is one of the oldest VPNs around. Because PureVPN is based in Hong Kong, the VPN isn’t subject to international surveillance alliances such as fourteen Eyes, Nine Eyes, or Five Eyes. This makes it very difficult for PureVPN to be forced by any country to hand over their user data, an excellent advantage for a VPN company. Although the company’s location doesn’t say anything about its reliability, it helps to not be bound to the government’s anti-privacy laws.
Now, over a decade since PureVPN was established, it has grown to have over 6,500 servers in more than 140 countries across the globe. This type of global presence is essential for a VPN mainly because your Internet’s speed partially depends on your proximity to a server. With so many servers across the globe, it’s likely that PureVPN has a server close to where you live.
PureVPN At A Glance
|Country of Origin:||Hong Kong|
|Number of servers:||6500+|
|Number of countries:||140+|
|Platforms supported:||Xbox, PlayStation, Chromecast, Raspberry Pi, Now TV Box, Boxee, Roku, Kodi, Microsoft Surface, more.|
|Supported protocols:||PPTP, SSTP, L2TP/IPSec, OpenVPN TCP, OpenVPN UDP|
|Support:||Articles, email, 24/7 live chat|
This is an open-source VPN protocol that’s used to create secure tunnels for your Internet traffic. The OpenVPN protocol is sometimes considered a gold standard when it comes to the best VPN protocols, which is true because it offers some outstanding balance between security and speed. It provides 256-bit encryption utilizing the Open SSL library as well as other security features that can be easily configured as needed with protocols such as SSTP, IKEv2/IPSec, L2TP, PPTP, and more.
- Zero log policy
- Kill switch
- Split tunneling
PureVPN Logs – Will They Keep Your Data?
A VPN company’s data logging policy is more important than any other fancy feature. The data logging policy clearly shows whether or not the VPN Company logs your private IP address and web traffic. So, does PureVPN record or store your session data?
Later, the Big 4, who verified the no data log status, audited PureVPN. Therefore, to summarize, you can rest assured that PureVPN won’t log your Private IP address or web traffic. PureVPN is among the few VPNs that different independent third parties have audited.
Does PureVPN Have A Kill Switch?
Also known as a network lock feature, a kill switch is a feature that kills your Internet if the VPN connection is lost. A kill switch will help if you are a reporter or downloading content that may be copyrighted. Without the network lock feature, a momentary outage might reveal your private IP address as well as the sites you’re on. The kill switch works by stopping your Internet so that your location and IP address aren’t exposed. Fortunately, PureVPN has a kill switch on Linux, Android, Mac, and Windows.
PureVPN Split Tunneling
Split tunneling is a feature that allows you to decide which of your web traffic gets encoded and which goes to your Internet Service Provider. Without split tunneling, the VPN is either ON/OFF. Why is it important to have this feature? Imagine you live in Colorado. You want to rewatch The Game of Thrones on HBO in high definition without any buffering. You also want to securely browse the web at the same time. Bam! Split tunneling comes to your rescue. The good news is that PureVPN offers split tunneling on Windows and Android.
In the same way that the security of a lock largely depends on how this lock stands up to abuse, the same thing can be said about encryption. If you are looking to safeguard your privacy on the Internet, then you require a VPN with more robust encryption. PureVPN employs advanced encryption standard (AES)– 256 for encryption, which might take millions of years for cybercriminals to crack. So yes, I can say that PureVPN encryption is secure and robust.
Can I Use PureVPN For Streaming?
PureVPN Netflix unlocking delivers seamlessly, accessing multiple libraries with ease. Also, it’s capable of accessing Disney+, which is considered to be one of the most difficult streaming services to unlock. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for Amazon Prime Video or BBC iPlayer; in our tests, we couldn’t open either of these streaming services. If you are interested in VPN for Amazon Prime Video check our suggestions here.
Can I Use PureVPN For Torrenting?
When it comes to torrenting, PureVPN is quite capable. You’ll get decent download speeds, NAT firewall protection, and split tunneling. Nevertheless, many popular server locations, including Australia, Canada, the US, and the UK, usually block P2P. Although there isn’t anything stopping you from choosing a different server, VPN like NordVPN and ExpressVPN allow torrenting on all servers.
Internet protocols control how data packets are transmitted across a network. The level of security a VPN offers depends on the chosen protocol. PureVPN uses IPSec/IKEv2 on iOS, OpenVPN on Android and macOS, and OpenVPN/IKEv2 protocols on Windows. The InfoSec community considers all these protocols to be secure. PureVPN allows you to choose between “No Encryption and the PPTP protocol for those that value speed over security. Read on to find more information about these VPN protocols.
PureVPN Speed Test
Speed is a crucial factor when choosing a VPN. According to our test results, PureVPN performance was mixed. In our morning tests on the 600Mbps US line, there were some excellent speeds of about 190Mbps to 250Mbps. This is very competitive as compared to the fastest VPNs around. With regards to our 75Mbps UK connection, we averaged about 64Mbps-65Mbps, which is very serviceable.
However, in our evening tests on the US line, speeds slowed to 2Mbps – 15Mbps. Nevertheless, the tests were carried out in April 2020 when the planet was plunged into covid-19 lockdown and Internet use had increased.
Now that you understand much about PureVPN let’s see whether their subscription plans are cost-effective. Keep in mind they have a 31-day moneyback guarantee. Also, PureVPN has a 7-day trial for only $0.99. At the end of the week, this automatically changes to a one-year subscription plan of $69.
As luck will have it, PureVPN subscription costs are very affordable, ranging between $3.33 and $10.95. The price further drops with a long-term commitment. With regards to payment options, you can use cryptocurrency, PayPal, or credit cards to pay for PureVPN.
If you are looking to buy PureVPN for your company, this price ranges from $8.45 to $9.99/month per user for a maximum of 10 users. The price further reduces if you add more users. You can pick PureVPN dedicated IP addresses from Singapore, Malta, Germany, Hong Kong, Canada, Australia, United Kingdom, and the United States.
For every subscription, you can easily connect five devices simultaneously from the same location with any subscription plan; you can switch between unrestricted number of servers.
PureVPN Customer Support
There are very few things that are as disappointing as having to contact customer support for technical issues. Unless you are a tech specialist or really good at browsing the Internet, the chances are that you will be glad to have help if a problem arises. So, does PureVPN offer good customer support service? Let’s check it out.
Customer Support Features
If you have queries, you can contact PureVPN customer support through live chat 24/7 or email. Also, they have a customer support center that is full of FAQs and help guides. Not to forget the “Contact Us” form that is similar to sending emails. Although live chat is my preferred contact method, some people still prefer telephone calls. If this is the case, then you are out of luck because PureVPN doesn’t provide support via phone calls.
Customer Support Ratings
The PureVPN has a 3.3 rating on Amazon out of more than 600 reviews, which is decent, but nothing to brag about. Out of the 15 reviews that mentioned customer support, nine were positive, slightly more than 60%. Whereas we are glad that most of the customer reviews were positive, it was with a very small margin. Some people said that the response times were fast, while others got a response too late or never received any response.
On Trustpilot, we found they had a rating of 3.2 from 200 reviews. This doesn’t sound good, but they had a good number of five-star reviews (75%). Many of the customers who gave PureVPN one-star review reported long waiting times for a response or difficulties getting a refund.
Are you looking to buy a PureVPN account? You will be pleased to find there are several ways through which you can pay for their service. They accept payments through PayPal, credit cards, and debit cards. The good news is that all payments are processed securely through either Plimus or AlertPay. If you’re concerned about privacy and don’t want the payment details tracked back to you, you can use bitcoin to pay for the VPN service.
PureVPN Cancel – How To Do It?
You need to sign in to your PureVPN account to fully access live chat and ask for your refund/cancellation. After you’ve logged into the Member Area, you should click on the bottom right-hand corner of your screen. Once you are connected to an agent, let them know you intend to cancel your account and ask for a refund.
PureVPN App – Android, iOS & More
Most of the time you’ll spend dealing with a specific VPN will be on their apps, so a great user experience is quite important. Let’s look into PureVPN app – what it offers, supported devices, and whether it has impeccable functionality.
The PureVPN app is fully supported on Amazon FireOS, Android, iOS, Mac, and Windows. Inside PureVPN apps, you’ll find a big bar or button to turn on this VPN service. This is a simple user experience that is intuitive for everyone. And the good news is that it seems many customers think highly of their apps. PureVPN has an excellent 3.7 and 3.4 rating from Apple Store and Google Play, respectively.
PureVPN vs. Hotspot Shield
PureVPN is a popular VPN with many similarities to Hotspot Shield. Both have a higher number of servers, but PureVPN wins with more than 6,500 servers compared to Hotspot Shields 3,200 servers. Also, PureVPN is based in Hong Kong, a country that isn’t subject to any data retention laws or international surveillance alliance. On the other hand, Hotspot Shield is headquartered in the US, a member of the Five Eye International surveillance alliance and stringent data retention laws.
PureVPN vs. Hotspot Shield
Although both VPNs don’t log data that can tie your Internet traffic back to you, Hotspot Shield Premium is known to long more information than PureVPN. Hotspot Shield Premium logs the duration of your sessions, accessed domains (on an anonymized basis), and the bandwidth consumed. PureVPN says it doesn’t store such information.
Both VPN have kill switches/network lock feature, an important security feature, but Hotspot Shield only offers the kill switch on Android, macOS, iOS, and Windows devices. PureVPN offers split tunneling, something that Hotspot Shield doesn’t. However, you can torrent files and stream from Netflix with both VPNs.
Both give users a dynamic IP address that keeps changing every time you connect. I strongly prefer how both VPNs frequently rotate their IP address because it makes it difficult for a cybercriminal to track you. PureVPN and Hotspot Shield are fairly similar in price. PureVPN is slightly cheaper if you consider the monthly fee ($12.99 vs. $10.95). But then Hotspot Shield is somewhat expensive if you look at the prices for long-term commitments ($6.99 vs. $ 3.33).
Now that I’ve gone through how Hotspot Shield and PureVPN features compare let’s check out their performance. PureVPN worked faster on Mac and Windows than Hotspot Shield. Neither system had any WebRTC or DNS leaks. Overall, I would recommend PureVPN over Hotspot Shield because of its faster speed and stringent data logging policy.
PureVPN Final Verdict
Overall, I think PureVPN is a great VPN option. PureVPN apps have all essential features. Our speed test results showed it’s fast, although not the fastest. And although they should be more transparent about their no data logging policy in the past, it’s relaxing to see they changed their policy and are independently audited by third parties who have confirmed they don’t keep logs. So, below is a breakdown to help decide whether PureVPN is the right VPN for you. Choose PureVPN if you want: speed, split tunneling, Netflix streaming, and no data logging. However, keep looking if you don’t like a VPN with lackluster apps.