- Netflix unblocking
- Fast live chat support
- Customizable apps
- Owned servers
- Short trial
- Odd issue with usability
- No Bitcoin support
IPVanish is a VPN that's U.S. based. For some that might be a red flag for security but in this case the provider owns and runs its own servers, meaning it can offer privacy and anonymity. It also means, if you're U.S. based, you can get some great speeds on closer servers with over 1,300 dotted about more than 75 locations worldwide.
It's not only the local servers that are a big appeal here but also the fact they all support P2P. Yes that does mean torrenting support, but it can also mean the ability to download from nearby, meaning the best possible speeds too.
The clients, or apps, are also something worth mentioning as they stand out from the competition. These are easy enough to use for newbs but also offer deep levels of customization making them ideal for more knowledgeable users that want to really personalize their VPN experience.
So is this the VPN for you? Read on to find out everything you need to know about IPVanish VPN.
Pricing and plans
Like most VPN providers IPVanish offers a few options for payments which mean you can find the best for you that represents a saving.
If you don't want any commitment then a month to month payment could be the plan for you, costing around $8 per month.
But you can make savings by paying for a longer period up front. Go for three months and it works out at $7.20 per month or commit to a full year and you'll be paying the equivalent of $5.20 per month.
You also get a seven day money-back guarantee, effectively making this a free trial period. It's not as long as some of the competition offers but it's enough to let you give this a try without spending a dime.
Testing and performance
For IPVanish in the U.S., download speeds were impressive. We tested using Speedtest.net and TestMy.net to see what the performance was like. These tests were repeated across several days to get a more realistic spread of speeds to give us an average.
Tested in the U.S., we got back an average speed of 220Mbps – so, pretty impressive then. When you consider the slowest speed we got on an individual test was 153Mbps you get an idea why this is a decent VPN when it comes to connection performance.
Taking that further afield, to the UK, we tested using a 75Mbps line and achieved 69Mbps showing that there is very little lag on the part of the VPN.
The little mentioned but really useful feature of IPVanish is its ability to unblock Netflix. It does this really well allowing you to watch from any location. This also works for Spotify and YouTube. However, it falls down when it comes to BBC iPlayer where it was largely unable to unblock the content in our tests.
The apps are fantastic with lots of features. These work across lots of platforms including iOS, Android, Mac, Windows, Chromebooks, Linux, Fire TV and more. You get a quick connect button for easy use on the fastest server available. But you also get features like easy protocol switching, kill switch access, map based server views, useful stats on your details at a glance, a handy scramble feature for more anonymity, automatic protection for unsecured networks and white and black list building - to name just a few.
IPVanish comes with a free SugarSync account which is a cloud storage offering. That means for the price of your VPN you're also gaining 250GB of online storage capacity for use as and when you need.
Privacy and security
IPVanish uses some of the most solid industry-standard security in the form of AES-256 encryption to secure your data. It also has OpenVPN and IKEv2 protocols meaning speed while remaining secure. You can also pick your OpenVPN port and use that scramble option to get even deeper levels of anonymity. That translates to an ability to avoid detection in VPN blocking countries like China or Iran.
Useful features to keep you safe include a kill switch, in the Windows client, DNS and IPv6 protection so there is less chance your identity can be exposed.
Thankfully IPVanish operates a very clear no logging policy where it says:
Our strict zero-logs policy keeps your identity under wraps. We do not record any of your activity while connected to our apps in order to preserve your civil right to privacy.
Should you sign up?
If you want a U.S. based VPN provider that owns and runs its own servers then IPVanish is perfect. It offers great performance speeds, excellent security protocols and apps which offer in depth features as well as quick access options. The no logging policy is excellent and encryption is super secure with DNS leak protection to back that.
Pricing is reasonable with deals sometimes meaning you can get a great price if you're willing to commit to a longer period of use by paying up front.
If you're looking for other more affordable VPN options we have you covered on those as well.
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