Private Internet Access Review (VPN Service)
Private Internet Access is not a VPN service you hear a lot about. I don't know why though – It's an awesome service. There are a lot of great things about Private Internet Access that aren't obvious from the beginning, so read on to find out.
One thing that may put people off, and I'll admit, prevented me from doing a review of it for 3 years now, is the home page. A couple of kids wearing green helmets, and a cartoon robot for a logo. I didn't get it.
But I should have known better, because I've seen this before. It's often the sites without the “bells and whistles” that spend the most time creating a quality service that works like it's supposed to.
First off, they're mega cheap. I used to tout Switch VPN as the cheapest of cheap VPN services (worth promoting), but Private Internet Access now takes the cake. (Switch VPN is still $1 cheaper for a single-month account, but you are limited to 1-country access)
- 1 month – $6.95
- 6 months -$35.95
- 12 months $39.95
You pay only $4 more for an additional 6 months, making a 1 year plan $3.33 per month.
Moving on. So yeah, it's cheap, but does it perform? Yes.
You can see the speed test below.
Video: Private Internet Access Speed Test
And though speedtest.net isn't 100% accurate regarding how the VPN will perform for everyone, I can only say that the connection was fast. I know, I know. Every VPN service will tell you they're fast.
Well, you'll just have to try it (Click Here to check out their website.)
Video: Private Internet Access Gets Past Proxy Detectors
Sorry for the low quality sound, it's an old video. I can't guarantee this same trick will work all the time, but I was quite surprised when I found this out while testing PIA.
Ok,so it's cheap, and it's fast. What else?
It also supports VoIP and P2P. If that's not your thing, you may not care. If P2P is your thing, you should really care because many VPN services are starting to not support P2P.
Now that we're on the subject, what does Private Internet Access have to say about your privacy…and more specifically, what do they have to say about logs?
“We do not maintain any logs of any kind, period.”
It's that simple.
But they still collect payment data and your email address, right?
Well, that's up to you. If you're not worried about payment privacy, use your personal Paypal account or one of their many other options (Google Checkout, Amazon Payments, CashU, Liberty Reserve, OK Pay, major credit cards).
The most private way to pay for anything online.
You can read our write-up on Bitcoin here.
Private Internet Access is currently one of the ONLY VPN service providers that allows payments in Bitcoin, which I think is really strange, considering the point of using a VPN is for privacy.
Compatibility: iOS, Android, Mac, Windows, Linux, Routers (DD-WRT, Tomato, pfSense), Tor VPN Tunnel
Server Locations: US, UK, Canada, Switzerland, France, Germany, Romania, Sweden
VPN Protocols: PPTP, L2TP/IPSec, OpenVPN
Other Features: Unlimited bandwidth, free server switching, US based corporation = no data retention requirements, SOCKS5 Proxy included in all packages
So it's cheap, fast, private, compatible with almost any OS you can think of, gives unlimited bandwidth, unlimited speed, unlimited switching… is there anything wrong with it?
I have yet to find the perfect VPN service, and Private Internet Access is no different. Here are a list of faults I notice.
- No support for Nokia or Symbian Devices
- No live support
- Only 9 countries available
- No SSTP or IKEv2 VPN protocol
- No mention of money back guarantee, but I'm sure it's there
That's really not much to complain about. In fact, most VPN users won't even care about 50% of those faults.
Is there anything else I need to mention? Yes.
This is actually where many VPN services fail, but I can only say great things about their customer support team. Ticket support was fast, friendly, and professional.
Private Internet Access is an amazing VPN service for beginners and experience users.
You can go to their main website to browse or sign up here.