Skip to main content

Free VPN vs. Paid VPN: Which is best for you?

A free VPN, or virtual private network, is a wonderful thing — as many things that are free tend to be. But, as is also often the case, you get what you pay for and a paid VPN is often better. That said, it all depends on what you need. So which is the best VPN for you, free or paid?

The price difference between these two options is clearly big, going from totally free to the average monthly price of a VPN which is about $10. But subscribe for longer and you save money that way.

The downside of going for a free option — and one of the main differences between the two — is the amount of data you can use. A free service will have a limit on your data usage in most cases, be it daily or monthly. Once you've gone over that data limit you will no longer be able to use the VPN. There is one unlimited service, but there are other limits, more on that below.

So a free VPN is a great option for those that want it for limited use — perhaps to check a map or certain website while abroad, for example. But for those that want to check emails in bulk, stream music and watch online video — a paid VPN is going to be needed.

How much data does a free VPN offer?

One of the best free VPN options is Hotspot Shield Free VPN, which also has a premium version should you want to upgrade. At its most basic, the free service is good for up to 500MB of data per day. Not a small amount for browsing websites, but very little if you want to watch your latest Netflix show, for example.

A monthly data allowance of 15GB, which that equates to, does sound like a lot but since you can't roll over that daily limit, it's not that much. But, of course, it depends what you need it for. For bulk use, you might want to go for a service like Windscribe which offers a lower 10GB data allowance but it's spread over the month so you can use that as you need. Tweet about the service and you'll get an extra 5GB, and each time you refer a friend you get an extra 1GB also.

ProtonVPN has no limits on data but, before you get excited, this has other limits to incentivize you to upgrade. That means only one device can be used and there are only three server locations plus speeds can be limited. You will be throttled on speed if a lot of paid users are online as they get priority. There is also no P2P torrent support from this service.

ProtonVPN

Try it free at ProtonVPN

From the creators of the secure and encrypted ProtonMail comes ProtonVPN. There are no data limits here, but free users are deprioritized in favor of paid ones during peak usage times.

Hotspot Shield VPN

Try it free at Hotspot Shield VPN

As one of the best free options out there, you'll want to try Hotspot Shield VPN to see if the services are of value to you!

What are the problems with a free VPN?

Aside from the data limit there is also the issue of connection speed. A service like Hotspot Shield premium has over 2,500 servers across over 70 international locations. But if you go for the free version you won't be able to pick and choose servers. The result is spotty speeds.

You could get lucky and have a really great connection at a local server. But you could end up connecting to a slower server that's really far away and struggles with speed. In the case of Windscribe, which offers more liberal free data use, it is limited to servers in the U.S., UK, Hong Kong and Canada only.

Another issue is that with the free service you'll have to put up with ads. Yup, nothing is ever really free, as they say. But if you don't mind pop-ups then this could be a good option to save you a bit of money and still get you the security of a VPN.

What's good about a free VPN?

Despite being free, you'll still be accessing secure servers. This means that your location and identity, via your IP address, will be hidden. That helps you stay anonymous online as well as more secure than using an open connection.

In the case of Hotspot Shield you get military-grade encryption, meaning your data is kept super secure in transit so even if someone were to, somehow, get hold of it, they wouldn't be able to decipher it anyway.

What does a paid VPN get me?

This is the key question as you're committing to a monthly or annual payment for a service. Of course you'll get all the security of an encrypted connection but you'll also get unlimited data. That means you could be abroad and still watch all your favourite Netflix shows without worry of running low on your data allowance.

The other important thing to keep in mind is that you'll be able to select the server that you want. This is a huge advantage as you could connect to US Netflix while you're in Europe, say. This is also really helpful if you're somewhere like China where VPN use is restricted and you may need to try a few server locations to actually get online.

Best VPN Services 2020

Speeds are usually faster on paid-for VPN services. Although there is the free option, Speedify, which is all about rapid connections but that will be limited with just 1GB of data allowance per month. We recommend ExpressVPN for anyone looking to pay for a VPN.

What is the best free VPN?

Depending on what you need, as an all-around service, Hotspot Shield is great for free access to 15GB of data per month at 500MB per day with decent speeds and top security. Want to get bulk data that you use when you like? Then the Windscribe service with 10GB per month is for you. If it's all about speed and you don't need much data then Speedify is ideal. Don't care about speed but want unlimited data? Go ProtonVPN.

What is the best paid VPN?

If you've decided what you need can't be provided by a free VPN then you'll want to take a look at ExpressVPN. In all our testing it's come out on top time after time. It's fast, secure, has great customer service with 24/7 live chat, gets you Netflix abroad, supports torrents and works on five devices at once with lots of clients to suit all sorts of tech. The pricing is average but what you get is anything but that.

ExpressVPN

See latest pricing at ExpressVPN

Take advantage of the 30-day money-back guarantee that ExpressVPN offers and give it a shot for yourself today!

Surfshark VPN

See latest pricing at Surfshark

With plans starting out at about 8 cents per day, it's really hard to skip over Surfshark because it's a paid service. It offers a ton of great features that you'd expect from a VPN provider and is super simple to use.

How do I find the best VPN deals?

Free versions not cutting it for you? You don't have to go broke while signing up for a new VPN service. We've rounded up all the best VPN deals for you. We keep it up to date with coupons, price drops, and other promotions that are available. Be sure to check back often!



Source: androidcentral

Popular posts from this blog

How to watch England vs New Zealand: Live stream 2nd Test series cricket on

With the first Test ending in a draw, the series is on a knife edge at Edgbaston, as Joe Root's side look to put off the field controversies to one side and claim a much needed win against the Kiwis. Don't miss a single ball of the 2nd Test with our England vs New Zealand live stream guide below. The series has been somewhat overshadowed by the emergence of offensive historic tweets posted by Ollie Robinson who made his debut in the opening Test but has since been suspended. With the controversy still brewing amid interventions from politicians and accusations leveled at other members of the team, Root has a battle on his hands to keep his side focused on the game ahead. One positive for Root coming into the game is that they'll be playing in front of a near capacity crowd at Egbaston, with the overwhelming majority of the expected 18,000 spectators set to be cheering on the home side. The tourists have been delivered a huge blow coming intot his final match, with s

6 things Apple stole from Android at WWDC— and one that Google should steal

Every year, Apple and Google trade ideas for their newest versions of iOS and Android, respectively. But this year, during Apple's WWDC 2021, it seems like Apple purloined more than a few ideas that Google's integrated into Android over the last few years. Millions of iOS users won't get their hands on iOS 15 and iPadOS 15 until later this year, so until then, we don't know until then how the new features will fare in the real world. For now, here's a tongue-in-cheek look at six features Apple, um, borrowed from Android with its latest software releases. Jump to: iPad widgets and app drawer Live Text Apple Maps AR navigation iOS notifications New Siri capabilities Apple Photos Bonus: What Google needs to steal iPad widgets and app drawer iPad OS 15 introduced two big new updates for the iPad home screen today: widgets and the App Library. If you think this sounds awfully familiar, there's a good reason for that. 2020's iOS 14 introduced both

Best Roku Stick deals May 2021: $30 off Roku Ultra, Streambar and more

Transforming nearly any TV into a smart TV is affordable and easy with a Roku streaming stick. These tiny devices plug into your TV's HDMI port to unlock access to a world of streaming services, live TV channels, and other apps that will never leave you without entertainment. While prices are rather comparable to its main competition, the Amazon Fire TV Stick , Roku's devices have a few interesting features you won't find on a Fire stick. Roku Ultra - HD/4K/HDR/Dolby Vision with Dolby Atmos | $31 off at Amazon The Roku Ultra is the fastest, most powerful Roku streaming device so far, and it's even compatible with Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos for a more cinematic experience. It has a better wireless range than other models as well. Today's deal saves you over $30 off its regular price. $69 at Amazon Once you've plugged in your new Roku streaming device, you can download the Roku app and use it as a remote or even plug headphones into your phone and listen to

EU calls out Google, Amazon, & Apple for 'unfair competition' in IoT market

The report blames the lack of interoperability in the consumer IoT sector on the prevalence of proprietary technology and lack of common standards. What you need to know The European Commission has published the preliminary results of its inquiry into the consumer Internet of Things (IoT) sector. The report has identified a few potential concerns, including prevalence of proprietary technology and accumulation of large amounts of data by "providers of smart device operating systems." The European Commission is expected to publish its final report in the first half of 2022. The European Commission today shared the initial findings of its consumer Internet of Things (IoT) sector inquiry. The inquiry was launched in July last year as part of its digital strategy. Along with confirming the rapid growth of the Internet of Things market, the report highlights a few potential concerns with regards to the "current functioning of consumer IoT markets, as well as to th