ProtonVPN Review

Top10.com StaffByTop10.com StaffNov. 24, 2019

In a Nutshell

ProtonVPN is a Swiss-based VPN service that is big on privacy. From the creators of ProtonMail, the largest secure email service developed by CERN, ProtonVPN takes internet privacy to the next level. Features abound to keep your sessions secure and anonymous at all times. Available for Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS, and Android devices, you can take your ProtonVPN anywhere you go. Check out the free plan or opt for more robust features.

pros

  • Swiss provider, absolutely no logging
  • Secure Core, encrypted VPN tunnel, TOR integrated
  • Unlimited bandwidth

cons

  • Not as many servers as some competitors
  • Can only access all features with higher plans

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ProtonVPN at a Glance

Best for: Total security and anonymity

Price Range: $0-$24/month

Location: 31 countries, 347 servers

Netflix: Unblocks Netflix US

Torrenting: P2P and torrenting allowed

Logging: None

Number of Devices: Up to 10

Operating Systems: iOS, Android, Mac, Windows, Linux

Browser Extensions: N/A

Privacy

As mentioned, ProtonVPN is based out of Switzerland, and that’s good news for anyone who values privacy. That’s because the Swiss have strong privacy laws in place, so citizens and users are protected automatically. What’s more, Switzerland is outside of both US and EU jurisdictions and isn’t a member of the fourteen eyes surveillance network. So, ProtonVPN has no one to answer to, no government body demanding logs, and even has the law on its side.

As such, ProtonVPN keeps no logs of your internet activity. No logging means there are no logs to hand over if asked for them. It’s that simple. To take things one step further, ProtonVPN integrates with the Tor network, so if you’re looking for the ultimate in anonymity and privacy, simply route your connection through the Tor network, and you’re a ghost.

Features

  • DNS leak prevention
  • Kill switch
  • Up to 10 devices simultaneously
  • Strong double VPN
  • No logging policy
  • Wide range of server countries
  • Torrenting allowed
  • Dedicated servers for streaming

ProtonVPN is a solid VPN that is really big on security and privacy. It comes with all of the right features to keep you protected, regardless of what you’re doing online. Customers who are concerned for their privacy will appreciate features like a kill switch which will sever your connection if the VPN server ever goes down even temporarily, DNS leak protection which prevents your DNA queries from being leaked, and strong encryption, including OpenVPN protocols and AES-256 encryption.

ProtonVPN has 347 servers spread over 31 countries. That’s not as many as a lot of other VPN services, which can have thousands, but customers haven’t seemed to notice a lag in service. So, if it doesn’t affect the quality of your connection speed, it doesn’t really matter about numbers. Country diversity is important, and ProtonVPN certainly has that. ProtonVPN uses resilient 10GB servers and double VPN so that even if one server isn’t working well, your traffic will automatically be transferred to another more efficient one.

As if that weren’t enough, ProtonVPN has a truly unique feature that privacy-snobs are going to love. It’s called Secure Core, and it shows that ProtonVPN takes security to the max. All servers operate on their own private, dedicated network. The data center, situated in rural Switzerland, is located in a former military bunker some 1,000 meters below the Swiss Alps. Nobody is getting their hands on your information.

Additionally, before your information is even sent out to anyone else, the traffic is routed through ProtonVPN’s Secure Core data center. So, your starting point is always the Secure Core, and nothing can be traced back to your IP address.

Speed

ProtonVPN provides no bandwidth limits, so you can stream, browse, and surf without fear of being throttled.

Pricing and Deals

ProtonVPN offers plans ranging from free to $24 per month, each with graduating features and accessibility. What’s really nice about ProtonVPN is that it even offers a free plan. To be clear, this option won’t give you the same level of security as the more advanced plans. But if you’re just looking for basic VPN services, then this is an excellent option.

Here’s a look at the details of each plan:


 Free 
 Basic  
 Plus 
 Visionary
Price 
Free
$4/month
$8/month
$24/month
Number of countries
All countries
All countries
All countries
Number of devices
1
2
5
10
Speed 
Medium
High 
High 
High 
P2P
X
Plus servers/secure core
X
X
TOR servers 
X
X
Secure streaming
X
X
ProtonMail Visionary
X
X
X

$4 a month is a very reasonable price for a reliable and safe VPN service. And if you are truly dedicated to optimal internet privacy, then spending a little more on the more advanced plans is well worth your investment. ProtonVPN also has a 30-day money-back guarantee, so you have nothing to lose by trying out this VPN service.

Torrents

ProtonVPN fully supports peer-to-peer sharing and torrenting sites. It's worth noting that P2P is not available on the free plan, but all other higher-level plans can access these torrenting channels. 

Netflix

ProtonVPN apps have specific servers that are better for streaming and using sites like Netflix. On the app, you’ll see these servers indicated for faster access.

Apps

ProtonVPN has both an iOS and Android compatible app. You can use the app for faster, easier access to a VPN or to stay protected even on the go. Users can unblock censored content, stay protected against cyberattacks, and hide your IP address even on your mobile with these apps.

The apps are powered by the same powerful protocols as the desktop versions, including IKEv2 and use ProtonVPN’s strong Secure Core as well. You can set your VPN to automatically connect to maintain privacy whenever you’re out.

How Does ProtonVPN Compare?


 ProtonVPN
 Bullguard
 PrivateVPN
 Price
Free to $24 per month
$2.97-$7.08
$3.82-$7.67
 Number of Devices
1-10
6
6
 Number of Servers
347
16
150+
 Best for
The truly privacy and anonymity   devoted users
Users who want an easy to use   but rigorously thorough security   VPN
Unlimited bandwidth and data   usage (and non-techy people)
 P2P or Bittorrent
Yes (except on free plan)
Yes
Yes

Customer Support

One area ProtonVPN doesn’t shine in is customer support options. You can only access support via email or online contact form. It would be nice to have a phone number or live chat option, as well.

However, ProtonVPN does have an excellent help center with plenty of information in question and answer form. So, you can get pretty much any troubleshooting support from there.

Ease of Use

ProtonVPN is easy to set up on almost any device. It’s neatly designed to be minimalistic but techie. Install the software, click on the activation button, and your VPN is ready to roll. You can search available servers or put it on autopilot.

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FAQs

Q: Which browsers can I use ProtonVPN on?

A: ProtonVPN works on most current browser versions. It will not work on Internet Explorer because the browser is too outdated to support the advanced technology.

Q: Does ProtonVPN work in China?

A: Yes! Using the TOR bridge or server, ProtonVPN allows users to access content that is restricted by the Chinese government.

Bottom line

ProtonVPN is a robust VPN service that focuses primarily on privacy and security. Being based out of Switzerland gives ProtonVPN users the advantage of no jurisdictions breathing down their necks and allows for a strict zero-logging policy. Other features that bolster security include ProtonVPN’s proprietary Secure Core, kill switch, and DNS leak prevention.

ProtonVPN offers a free plan, which is nice for basic services, and several other tiered pricing plans for varying degrees of privacy.

Top10.com StaffByTop10.com StaffJun. 18, 2019
Our editorial staff is comprised of writers who are passionate about the world of online consumer services. We specialize in simplifying the process of choosing the right VPN for your needs.
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