Buying a VPN? Here are 7 things to look for

Discussion in 'General Programming Topics' started by jesseylee, Sep 22, 2017.

  1. jesseylee

    jesseylee New Member

    Choosing a VPN is like shopping for any other service: you’ve got to weigh up the features on offer – and the ones you’re likely to use – against the price of the subscription. While on the face of it this is no different from pricing and selecting any other subscription product, what makes things more challenging in terms of VPNs is the number of differentiating features – and the fact that novices may not even be aware of what to look for in terms of features. Also, it doesn’t help that many VPN websites run with very flashy designs, but are often short on the details of the spec and service. By spelling everything out in simple terms, this article will point you in the right direction in terms of getting the best VPN for your needs at an affordable price.

    1. Number of servers

    Remember that a VPN works by creating an encrypted data tunnel between the user and the provider’s server. While we think about the VPN as having ‘a server’, the reality is that any VPN will need to have many servers to handle all of this traffic, and to allow many users to connect.

    Better VPN services will state how many servers they have. For example, NordVPN says that it has just over 1,000 servers. A larger number of servers means that the user should get more bandwidth and therefore faster speeds when connected to the VPN.

    2. Location of servers

    You’ve more than likely heard the phrase ‘location, location, location’ when it comes to real estate, which hammers home the importance of the area in which you buy a house. Well, the location of your VPN server is equally important when it comes to your internet connection.

    On the one hand, having a VPN server located nearby can be advantageous for a no-lag, responsive connection, which is very useful when partaking of activities such as online gaming.

    Alternatively, a VPN server in another country can be an asset to overcome geo-blocking restrictions, as the user appears to be in the same country as the server and can thus access otherwise blocked content. This is how some users access the US version of Netflix from the UK, for example.

    3. Data caps

    Internet usage is all based on the transmitting and receiving of data. While many ISPs still have unlimited data plans, it is not so simple when looking at a VPN service. Some VPN plans offer a free tier and a paid tier. Of those that offer a free plan, the major restriction is that it offers a limited amount of data for the month, in the hope that the user will try the service out, use up the data in less than a month, and therefore decide to make the move to become a paid subscriber. One VPN, Windscribe, takes this approach with its free tier, but offers a generous 10GB of data for each month – far more than some rivals which might only give you 1GB (or even less).
    Norton Customer Service

Share This Page