AirVPN Vs Hotspot Shield Comparison: Give Us 5 Minutes, We’ll Give You The Simple Facts

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Do you want to remain anonymous while surfing the web? AirVPN might be the best service for you if yes.

While anybody can declare to be distinct nowadays, when it concerns VPN suppliers, AirVPN shows that it genuinely is.

AirVPN stands out from other VPN services because of its commitment to securing user privacy. From the start, the AirVPN site begins with an appeal for your trust, specifying, “A VPN based on OpenVPN and operated by activists and hacktivists in defence of net neutrality, privacy and against censorship”.While anyone can declare to be distinct nowadays, when it comes to VPN suppliers, AirVPN shows that it really is.

AirVPN Home Page

They have actually been around a long time, since 2010, when it was started with the help of 2 lawyers and a little group of activists and hackers. The satellite communications service provider Iridium previously ran it, however AirVPN took control of in November 2012. According to the owner’s listing, AirVPN, based in Perugia, is presently owned by Paolo Brini (Italy).

Throughout the last years, it hasn’t been dogged by security scandals like some VPNs have. Nor has it been acquired by a larger organization either.

Across their About Us and Mission pages, the company’s history is explained and information the personal privacy projects that AirVPN has developed or supported. These consist of an online encryption tool, a net neutrality monitor, and other projects such as Tor, the Electronic Frontier Foundation, and WikiLeaks.

AirVPN takes the unconventional route and breaks the mold by supplying a VPN developed by enthusiasts for enthusiasts.

So how does AirVPN compare to its rivals with such strong privacy credentials?

AirVPN’s Key Features

Servers

AirVPN’s network is much smaller than many, with only 246 servers spread out across 23 countries.

Many servers are in Europe (besides those in the US, Canada, and Hong Kong). A small issue here is that the lack of variety of servers decreases the number of global AirVPN users who might access geo-restricted services in their home country while maintaining their personal privacy.

AirVPN Servers

That stated, Air is popular for its impressive performance across its server network, with many countries having high-performance physical individual servers.

They use transparent bandwidth allocation strategies to offer an accurate evaluation of performance, without any overbooking or overselling. Plus, they are totally unlimited, with no speed constraints or time limits.

To establish a connection between your machine and their servers, they use OpenVPN and WireGuard (in beta). OpenVPN is the most reputable and protected way to create encrypted tunnels. It uses more security than the military.

Various ports and protocols are readily available; they use OpenVPN on the following ports: 80 TCP/UDP, 443 TCP/UDP, and 53 TCP/UDP. Every Air server directly supports OpenVPN over SSH, OpenVPN over SSL, and OpenVPN over Tor. Forget about PPTP and other hazardous protocols.

When it boils down to it, no preference is given to any protocol, service, or application. Net Neutrality is maintained. Importantly, you can get rid of web restrictions such as avoiding censorship, geographic restrictions, and traffic shaping.

The use is OpenVPN is a big plus as it instantly improves users’ privacy and security and is highly reputable. Nevertheless, the absence of WireGuard as standard may reveal Air isn’t quite staying up to date with its rivals. That said, AirVPN says it is testing WireGuard, however it will not put the newer protocol completely in place till a few of its technical and personal privacy issues are attended to.

AirVPN has also included a lot for power users and tech-savvy individuals who like to try out things.

Switching is unlimited, so if you don’t like one server, you can quickly switch servers as often as you like.

You can keep track of the present load on each server, any existing concerns, and a history of previous problems on AirVPN’s network status page (which opens in a brand-new tab).

There is a detailed specifications page for AirVPN’s servers, with information like the available ports, protocols, DNS server info (AirVPN has its own DNS server), and the IP addresses of each VPN server’s gain access to points.

All of it is nice, however because there is no third-party audit, you have to rely on that what is being offered will work. However taking a look at the active community forum or the detailed open-source clients puts your mind at ease.

A good aspect of this is that you can see what other people say about the service prior to signing up. You do not have to take their word for it or the word of an audit.

Just How Private Is AirVPN, & Does It Keep Logs?

When it concerns AirVPN’s no-logging policy, the company is extremely clear. Online privacy and security are the absolute top priority, with protection from snoopers, data miners, and other entities that invade privacy. There is no individual details logged by AirVPN, which has a strong no-logging, tracking, or monitoring policy.

AirVPN doesn’t track what you do when you’re connected to the VPN, date/time stamps, or your IP address. It only gathers non-identifiable “technical information” to keep the server running and improve services, but you can ask for this information to be erased at any time. This makes it one of the most privacy-friendly VPN services.

As a result, no one can identify you online; not even your ISP can figure out what sort of traffic or protocol you’re using.

There’s no listening in, so you can connect to any wi-fi network without fretting about your computer and the Wi-Fi hotspot spying on your information.

Even the most ruthless surveillance, censoring, throttling, and traffic shaping methods will fail against AirVPN due to the fact that your ISP and government will just see TCP or UDP communication on a single port.

They also state they comply with EU personal privacy policies which any servers outside the EU will be treated with the same or greater levels of personal privacy and data protection as those in the EU.

You can get a new IP address to conceal your IP so that nobody can use it to find out who you are. You’ll stay safe with the top-level protection offered.

If your ISP or country obstructs OpenVPN, you can still connect to an AirVPN server through OpenVPN over SSH, SSL, or Tor.

Open-source clients and a lively community forum allow you to get a sense of what current users are saying about the service before registering.

All of AirVPN’s software is open-source, which is a huge plus. This implies that anyone can look into AirVPN’s security. ProtonVPN, Private Internet Access, and Mullvad VPN have open-source apps, however only ProtonVPN’s apps have been checked by a 3rd party.

Concerning security, AirVPN’s cryptography is perhaps the best offered. The very first exchange utilizes 4096-bit RSA to attain Perfect Forward Secrecy (PFS) via Diffie-Hellman key exchange.

When creating an account, you are not required to input any personal info, not even your genuine email address. That’s fantastic since it lets you prevent leaving any sort of digital footprint. Be mindful that you will not be able to change your account’s password if you don’t use one.

Italy, where AirVPN is based, is a member of the 5/9/14 Eyes Alliances (a group of nations that share intelligence information). Even if the government asked for user information, AirVPN would have absolutely nothing to provide them.

Who Or What Is Eddie??

The Eddie UI is the name of AirVPN’s primary open-source application, readily available on all significant platforms and OSes, consisting of Windows, Mac, Linux, and Android. Despite Eddie’s substantial capability with OpenVPN, it does not yet support WireGuard, so performance isn’t quite as excellent as those providers who use it as standard.

AirVPN Eddie Overview

Establishing the app is easy, and it has all the info you require to connect to a VPN.

Sadly, there are no maps or clearly indicated buttons to direct you. While it’s not difficult to get things working, it does not have the most easy to use user interface, so it might be a more challenging learning curve for inexperienced users.

With Windows, there are a heap of download alternatives. There are builds for various operating systems (from Windows XP to Windows 11), in 32- and 64-bit tastes, and in installable or portable formats. In addition, there’s a changelog to explain what’s new and an archive of past releases in case the most present does not function on your setup.

After introducing it, select ‘Connect to a recommended server,’ and the app will connect to your closest place. When you’re completed, you just click Disconnect. Simple enough for anyone, however Eddie can do a lot more considering that AirVPN provides more fine-tuned complete control over operations than any other VPN app we have actually seen.

AirVPN Eddie Servers List

2 crucial AirVPN functions through Eddie are its auto-connect and kill switch. AirVPN permits you to connect when your computer starts up, but you can’t select which VPN server it will connect to; it will always connect to the one you picked last.

Although it defines “kill switch” anywhere in the settings, AirVPN has actually a tab called “network lock” that does the exact same thing. The distinction is that AirVPN’s “network lock” stops all traffic that isn’t going through its secure tunnel. Many basic kill switches just do this when the VPN is on, but you can establish the “network lock” to filter your traffic at all times.

Eddie’s design is easy to understand. Along the top, there are 6 tabs: Overview, Servers, Countries, Speed, Stats, and Logs.

The Overview merely displays the server to which you are connected, the download and upload speeds, the exit IP address, and the connection time. This is where you log into your account.

The Servers page displays all readily available servers in the network, in addition to comprehensive details about each one, such as the server’s nickname, place, latency in milliseconds from your location, and current users and server load. Impressive stuff!

This tab likewise has an amber/green signal that lets you understand whether a server is recommended for you.

The Countries page shows the number of servers available in each nation at a glimpse, together with an indicator of server load and user numbers. Just like the Servers page, the amber/green sign is likewise shown. Numerous servers have up to 1000 Mb/s bandwidth, while some smaller sized ones have a 100 Mb/s connection.

A green checkmark, a red “X,” and a blank box can be discovered on the right rail of the Countries tab. Highlight a country, click the green checkmark, and the servers for that nation will appear on the Servers tab. This whitelist is basically a favorites list; you may choose as lots of nations as you like.

If you click the red “x”, that country will be eliminated, effectively making it a blocklist/denylist. To remove the green checkmark from a nation, click the empty box.

By choosing a country, you are not right away connected to a VPN server. Connect to a server by marking it and clicking on the “sign out” icon on the right-hand side (a right-facing arrow pointing into a square bracket).

The Speed tab displays an easy throughput graph with thin plot lines. Its temporal resolution can be changed, so you can see traffic from the last 10 seconds to one day.

While many apps display your current VPN server location and IP address at most. Eddie’s Stats page also reveals fine-grained details, such as the server’s location, load, present user count, protocol, port, encryption algorithm, session start time and length, IPv6 exit address, data downloaded and uploaded, and far more.

Power users, in particular, should value the capability to utilize a VPN with all the information they might ever want about the different locations, down to the number of users on a specific server. It’s an invaluable resource.

Logs is an in-depth record of connections, routes, and other data.

This allows you to fine-tune the setup, such as whether it needs to constantly connect when opened, which protocol to utilize between UDP and TCP, and which port number. Proxies, Tor support, custom DNS servers, and routes can be modified.

The truly proficient user can enter into Advanced and Expert Mode settings, which permit, to name a few things, sending orders to the OpenVPN Management Interface by means of the Logs pane.

If the huge feature list appears frightening, even if you are a VPN professional, it might be hard to find out what particular settings do and how to get the preferred outcomes. In addition, it differs from any other service in terms of personalization.

However, do not dismiss AirVPN’s Eddie just because of its intricacy. Remember that the program normally functions fine on its own, and you’ll never see the settings up until you look for them. If you occasionally crave power or configurability, the app will supply it.

AirVPN Software Configurations

Suppose you do not wish to use Eddie. In that case, you can also set up a router or firewall to send all traffic through a VPN tunnel. This works with routers running the open-source DD-WRT and Tomato firmware and the FreeBSD-based pfSense firewall.

How Good Is AirVPN’s Mobile App?

Although there isn’t any VPN software for iOS, you can use an exceptionally feature-rich Android VPN app instead. This software application offers the very same substantial configuration options as its desktop sibling and useful status details.

Separate pages for country and server lists are what the Android app does not have that the desktop versions provides. Rather, you can expand a nation and select a particular city on the exact same page. Some useful text additions make the details more reasonable, however it’s still quite difficult to comprehend in some spots.

Android does not have as lots of settings as Windows. That’s not a significant critique; there are still much more than the majority of people will ever need. The software likewise tries a little bit more to assist you, with additional text subtitles to explain what each alternative does.

Speeds/Performance

Utilizing OpenVPN, the Eddie Windows app from AirVPN usually connects rapidly and is ready to go in less than 10 seconds.

Online reviewers felt the connection monitoring was good, with the app spotting when the VPN tunnel drops, notifying us with a desktop alert, and reconnecting us in seconds.

In terms of personal privacy, leak tests showed that AirVPN’s Windows client didn’t have any DNS leaks, which shows that the Network Lock/Kill Switch works well.

Now let’s get to those speeds.

It was always going to be slower than the WireGuard-equipped competition since AirVPN only supports OpenVPN.

Reviewers have actually reported speeds to be exceptional. Indeed, one said there wasn’t a single country where they might grumble about the speed. On the contrary, it was really outstanding overall.

While it wasn’t rather at the top tier for VPNs that use WireGuard, it was still more than fast enough for most people, and situations like HD video, streaming, and video gaming conferencing certainly will not slow you down.

What AirVPN does not have is a wider number of server areas. This may restrict the availability of close-by servers for some users (which will constantly lead to better speeds). As a result, this VPN is an excellent choice for most people in the United States and Europe, however possibly less so for other regions.

Streaming

Streaming the big services such as Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Disney+, Apple Television, Hulu, HBO, BBC iPlayer, and Discovery+ has been a mixed bag for reviewers. Some report that AirVPN is effective enough to bypass the VPN blocks utilized by Netflix in the USA, whereas others do not.

Some report that Air is quite poor for streaming and does not work with any of the major streaming services. It appears to work with less-popular streaming apps like Peacock and Sony Crackle.

Another reviewer says services like BBC iPlayer and US Netflix seldom work, and when they do, discovering the ideal server requires prolonged trial and error. This is probably since, unlike other service providers, AirVPN does not use servers that are optimised for accessing streaming websites.

Thankfully, on AirVPN’s website, there is a list of ‘blocked websites’ that users can examine to see if the situation with these streaming websites ever changes.

Streaming is definitely not an area in which AirVPN stands out, just since that’s not what the service is about, as they are more focused on personal privacy and security.

Does AirVPN Allow Torrenting?

Yes, it does; every web protocol, including peer-to-peer, is welcome. Undoubtedly, Air supports P2P file-sharing on all of its servers. There’s absolutely nothing to configure, no hoops to jump through. Simply connect to the VPN server of your choice and start.

Plus, you can use port forwarding to improve your file-sharing performance. Several applications, such as BitTorrent and eMule clients, would run badly without it, and your computer system’s shares might be inaccessible from the Web.

File sharing has good speeds on regional servers, allows port forwarding for as much as 20 ports simultaneously (which lets you connect to more peers for faster speeds), and works with top torrenting clients like qBitTorrent and uTorrent.

AirVPN’s integrated kill switch, triggered by default, will obstruct all traffic from exiting your gadget if the VPN connection ever drops. That way, you will not be sending unencrypted packets to the Web. If you are file sharing, a kill switch is really convenient, specifically if you need to leave your connection unattended.

Reviewers have actually revealed torrenting to be excellent, smooth running with fast download and upload speeds, and with no problems whatsoever.

AirVPN Plans & Pricing

AirVPN offers a wider variety of plans than many VPNs. As standard, each plan lets you connect as much as five gadgets concurrently, so you can connect your PC, phone, tablet, and a couple of other devices all at the same time.

This makes it an excellent option for people who reside in a family house or wish to use a VPN on a public network. While five really should suffice for most people, other VPN service providers offer 7 or even 10 if you require more.

Prices differs based on the membership length, and each plan consists of the exact same features. Most plans provide good value; nevertheless, longer subscriptions offer the very best deal.

The standard pricing is in Euros. They utilize the European Central Bank to supply real-time exchange rates for those overseas, so it can be easily converted to and paid for in the currency of your option.

The current plans offered are:

Three days- EUR2

One month – EUR7

Three months – EUR15 – works out to EUR 5/month

Six months – EUR29 – works out to EUR 4.83/month

One year – EUR49 – works out to EUR 4.08/month

Two years – EUR79 – works out to EUR 3.29/month

Three years – EUR99 – works out to EUR 2.75/month

AirVPN accepts major credit cards, PayPal, Amazon Pay, and a whole load of cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, and Doge. Lots of international alternatives are likewise accepted, such as Alipay and Giropay.

AirVPN offers a three-day totally free trial, which can be obtained by sending out a message to the support team and utilizing the coupon code they send you.

There’s also a 30-day money-back guarantee, as long as they haven’t broken the terms of service or used more than 5 GB of data during that time.

AirVPN Customer Assistance

AirVPN has a different customer support offering than many other VPNs. While it doesn’t have live chat, it provides email support and frequently asked questions (FAQs) and has a very active assistance forum with contributors from both the service itself and the community.

Importantly, AirVPN’s email support isn’t outsourced but can be a little inconsistent with the time it requires to get an action. That stated, the e-mail assistance is high quality, and the representatives are friendly and practical, however the detailed answers can be pretty technical, which may put off those new to VPNs.

AirVPN’s site has a great deal of info, consisting of a big FAQs section that is broken up by topic.

AirVPN’s community forums cover many different topics, however novices will have the same problems comprehending a great deal of the tech jargon in the posts.

AirVPN Pros & Cons

Pros:

No logging Whatsoever.

Exceptional speeds with very little loss.

Unlimited P2P enabled with Port Forwarding.

Strong security on servers and apps alike, with advanced protocols and encryption.

Network Lock/Kill Switch.

Split tunneling.

Supports Windows, Mac, Linux, mobile, and routers.

Supports Tor over VPN.

Easy app installation and use.

Many, many advanced settings and customization options in the client app.

Strong Client Service.

Active Community Forums and Comprehensive Guides.

Excellent costs, particularly for longer-term plans.

Optional block lists protect you from advertisements, adware, trackers, and hazardous sources.

Cons:

Only fully supports OpenVPN.

Client app isn’t extremely user-friendly or attractive like other services.

Client app might overwhelm newer users.

It is very hit and miss with streaming services.

No native iOS or ChromeOS apps.

Possibly there are too many advanced options.

Located in 14-Eyes Country.

Server numbers are relatively low.

Rounding Things Up – Is AirVPN The Very Best Choice?

The bottom line is that AirVPN is a strong, trusted, and safe VPN service with good pricing. It’s clearly tailored towards more power and advanced users, so those brand-new to VPNs will be much better served by a less, shall we say, specialized VPN company. Even new users might do much, much worse.

While it could be challenging to utilize if you’re brand-new to VPNs, you’ll get much quicker speeds and better results than much of its rival VPN competitors.

This VPN service is more focused on safeguarding your personal privacy than unblocking streaming services like Netflix or Hulu when it comes down to it.

Although it may not guarantee the same level of privacy and anonymity as a service like Mullvad, which assigns you a random account number and enables you to pay in cash, AirVPN is still a great alternative for customers who value their privacy.

While it does not hit the speed heights of a WireGuard service, performance-wise, it’s definitely the very best purely OpenVPN service out there. In addition to being an excellent option for online filesharing.

Highly recommended!

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