- Very fast top speed download rates
- Ridiculously good monthly subscription value for everything that's offered
- 5 devices included with subscription
- Very well laid out interface on both deskop and mobile app
- Tons of countries to choose between including normally closed locations like China
- Lightning fast 24/7 support and expansive tutorial/FAQ library
- Doesn't log specific activities
- Has no mandatory data retention laws in Hong Kong
- Can select dedicated IPs
- Shields email and messenger conversations to protect sensitive data
- Top notch AES-256 bit encryption
- 31-day money-back guarantee
- Somewhat inconsistent server speeds
- No ad blocking
- Records bandwidth usage and connection times
PureVPN feels like the athlete that's always on the verge of greatness but just can't quite clear the hump. The potential is there with some really unique features. Included with every package is a kill switch if the VPN connections drops, leak protection, secure DNS, and Wi-Fi security for public hotspots. When it's performing at its best, PureVPN IS the best. Unfortunately, the service gets tripped up with consistency.
Top speeds are among the best in the industry, but average speeds are only slightly above average. Privacy usually won't be an issue, but the service doesn't fully commit to it either. Sometimes streaming works perfectly and sometimes its blocked. But here's the deal - PureVPN costs less than $3/month if you prepay for 2 years. That's flat out the best value among VPN services. If you can find the right mix of servers then you will love PureVPN. If not, refunds can be made within 7 days of sign-up.
Privacy and Security
PureVPN is an interesting mix of amazing privacy functionality and a few quirky faults. They don't log any specific user activities but do record connections time and bandwidth used. The company justifies this practice based on continually improving the quality of the service. This is fair enough, but for someone seeking maximum anonymity it might be too much. Depending on servers selected, connections might also default to a weaker encryption protocol like PPTP. This is easy enough to change but is worth noting.
On the bright side, PureVPN offers some really top notch security features. They provide AES-256 OpenVPN encryption, currently the best available among VPN services. Their other core security features include a kill switch if the VPN connections drops, leak protection, secure DNS, and Wi-Fi security for public hotspots.
Anonymous payments can also be made via Bitcoin or gift cards, which is another nice touch. Finally, PureVPN is based out of Hong Kong. There are no mandatory data retention laws there, which means they are not legally obligated to store user data or share it with anyone. They are also out of reach from the US and EU jurisdictions.
This is one of the fastest VPN services available, when it works. Speeds will obviously depend on the individual's ISP, but we've been privy to downloads as fast as 60Mbps on PureVPN. Unfortunately, PureVPN has a tendency to be inconsistent with their service's download rates. The load balancing between servers isn't as tight as some competitors. Upload rates can also be finicky. If you can get on the right server though, there isn't much faster.
Once of the key features we like about PureVPN is split tunneling. This allows you route certain activities through the VPN and others directly through your ISP. This serves to maximize speed where anonymity isn't a factor without the hassle of disconnecting from the VPN server. Similar to NordVPN, PureVPN provides you with multiple server types to optimize based on activity. The options encompass Streaming, Internet Feed, Security/Privacy, File Sharing, and Dedicated IP.
Global reach is certainly a strong suit of PureVPN. They own servers in more countries than most people can probably name. The specific numbers sometimes change but the service consistently allows connections to over 700 cities in 140 countries. It's also currently one of the few VPN providers with a good presence in China. Users can drill down to a specific city in each country. If that's not enough, subscribers can also switch between 88,000 IPs. There's no limits or delays for these server switches either.
Ease and Usability
The intuitive PureVPN software installs as fast and easily as any. After setup is complete, the user selects one of the optimized server types (Streaming, Internet Feed, Security/Privacy, File Sharing, or Dedicated IP). The automatic protocol selection determines the best settings to match the preferred server type. These can modified easily for advanced users but is a nice touch for new VPN users. The global map menu provides a graphical interface to choose a specific city/country. The PureVPN app and desktop software is quite simply one of the best laid out.
As great and easy is PureVPN is, it's worth noting that many of their servers will fail to connect to streaming services such as Netflix and BBC iPlayer. Reports from users in these departments vary from no issue to never working. Less popular streaming services (like local sports broadcasts) don't appear to be fighting VPNs though and PureVPN is really awesome for those. Still, there are better VPNs for Netflix if that is a primary concern.
There are a ton of tutorials and FAQs available on the PureVPN site. These are usually adequate to answer most questions. When they aren't, the support staff is more than ready to assist. The 24/7 live chat is lightning fast. Expect to have all but the craziest issues resolved very promptly when contacting support.
PureVPN is currently offering a really nice special when prepaying for 2 years. The price is $70.80, which comes out to $2.95 per month. There's really not a better deal on the market. The regular price of $11/month is pretty reasonable too considering what all comes with the package. It can genuinely handle needs of all types and is the type of VPN service that has never been content to rest on their laurels. All purchases come with a 7-day no questions refund policy. That's not an inspiring guarantee but should be long enough to give the service a good test.
PureVPN may not be a model of consistency but for every strikeout, they also hit a home run. Applying a little patience with a PureVPN subscription will pay long term dividends. As stated in the review before, the peak speeds are surpassed by none. Many servers allow for unfettered access to every streaming service. The bandwidth recording is less than ideal but is unlikely to ever compromise anybody. And all of this comes with awesome support and software that is super easy to use. The service also allows connections from up to 5 devices simultaneously.Users just have to remember that some of the servers are flat out duds. It can take some time to find a network of servers/IPs that work for a variety of uses. If you don't mind saving a lot of money at the cost of spending some extra time to customize PureVPN then it's a no brainer of a purchase. It may not be right for everyone, but this deal is too good to completely ignore.