AirVPN Vs PIA Comparison: Do I Highly Recommend Them?

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Do you wish to remain anonymous while surfing the web? AirVPN might be the perfect option for you if yes.

While anybody can declare to be special nowadays, when it comes to VPN providers, AirVPN shows that it really is.

AirVPN stands apart from other VPN services because of its dedication 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 anybody can declare to be special these days, when it pertains to VPN service providers, AirVPN reveals that it really is.

AirVPN Home Page

They’ve been around a long time, since 2010, when it was begun with the help of two lawyers and a small group of hackers and activists. The satellite communications provider Iridium formerly ran it, however AirVPN took control of in November 2012. According to the owner’s listing, AirVPN, based in Perugia, is currently owned by Paolo Brini (Italy).

During the last years, it hasn’t been dogged by security scandals like some VPNs have. Nor has it been acquired by a bigger company either.

Throughout their About Us and Mission pages, the business’s history is discussed and details the privacy projects that AirVPN has actually established or supported. These include an online encryption tool, a net neutrality monitor, and other projects such as Tor, the Electronic Frontier Foundation, and WikiLeaks.

AirVPN takes the non-traditional route and breaks the mold by offering a VPN created by enthusiasts for enthusiasts.

So how does AirVPN stack up against its rivals with such strong privacy qualifications?

AirVPN’s Key Features

Servers

AirVPN’s network is much smaller sized than most, with just 246 servers spread out throughout 23 nations.

Many servers are in Europe (aside from those in the US, Canada, and Hong Kong). A minor problem here is that the absence of diversity of servers reduces the number of worldwide AirVPN users who might access geo-restricted services in their home nation while keeping their privacy.

AirVPN Servers

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

They use transparent bandwidth allocation strategies to offer a precise evaluation of performance, with no overbooking or overselling. Plus, they are totally unlimited, with no speed restrictions or time limits.

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

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

When it comes down to it, no choice is given to any service, application, or protocol. Net Neutrality is upheld. Significantly, you can overcome web restrictions such as avoiding censorship, geographic restrictions, and traffic shaping.

The usage is OpenVPN is a big plus as it immediately enhances users’ personal privacy and security and is extremely trustworthy. The lack of WireGuard as standard may show Air isn’t quite keeping up with its rivals. That stated, AirVPN says it is testing WireGuard, however it won’t put the newer protocol fully in place till some of its technical and privacy concerns are attended to.

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

Switching is limitless, so if you don’t like one server, you can easily switch servers as frequently as you like.

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

There is an in-depth specs page for AirVPN’s servers, with details like the offered 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, but considering that there is no third-party audit, you need 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 feature of this is that you can see what other people say about the service before registering. 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?

The company is very clear when it comes to AirVPN’s no-logging policy. Online personal privacy and security are the outright top priority, with protection from snoopers, data miners, and other entities that attack personal privacy. There is no personal info 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 just collects non-identifiable “technical data” to keep the server running and enhance services, however you can ask for this info to be erased at any time. This makes it one of the most privacy-friendly VPN services.

As a result, nobody can identify you online; not even your ISP can figure out what sort of traffic or protocol you’re utilizing.

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 data.

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

They also say they follow EU privacy regulations and that any servers outside the EU will be treated with the same or higher levels of personal privacy and information protection as those in the EU.

You can get a new IP address to hide your IP so that no one can utilize it to discover who you are. You’ll remain 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 online forum allow you to get a sense of what existing users are saying about the service before signing up.

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

Concerning security, AirVPN’s cryptography is arguably the very best offered. It resembles that of some other companies, but still worth mentioning. The first exchange uses 4096-bit RSA to attain Perfect Forward Secrecy (PFS) via Diffie-Hellman key exchange. Following the first key negotiation, re-keying occurs every 60 minutes, and the user can reduce this value. The primary information channel uses AES-256-CBC encryption.

When creating an account, you are not required to input any personal details, not even your real e-mail address. That’s terrific considering that it lets you prevent leaving any sort of digital footprint. Be mindful that you won’t be able to change your account’s password if you do not utilize one.

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

Who Or What Is Eddie??

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

AirVPN Eddie Overview

Setting up the app is easy, and it has all the information you require to connect to a VPN.

There are no maps or clearly indicated buttons to guide you. While it’s not hard to get things working, it does not have the most user-friendly interface, so it might be a more challenging learning curve for inexperienced users.

With Windows, there are a lot of download alternatives. There are builds for numerous 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 existing does not work on your setup.

After launching it, choose ‘Connect to a recommended server,’ and the app will connect to your closest area. You simply click Disconnect when you’re ended up. Simple enough for anyone, but Eddie can do a lot more given that AirVPN offers more fine-tuned complete control over operations than any other VPN app we have actually seen.

AirVPN Eddie Servers List

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

Even though it specifies “kill switch” throughout the settings, AirVPN has actually a tab called “network lock” that does the very same thing. The distinction is that AirVPN’s “network lock” stops all traffic that isn’t going through its protected tunnel. The majority of standard kill switches only do this when the VPN is on, but you can set up the “network lock” to filter your traffic at all times.

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

The Overview merely shows 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 available servers in the network, in addition to in-depth info about every one, such as the server’s nickname, area, latency in milliseconds from your area, and current users and server load. Outstanding stuff!

This tab also has an amber/green signal that lets you know whether a server is suggested for you.

The Countries page shows the variety of servers available in each nation at a glimpse, together with a sign of server load and user numbers. Similar to the Servers page, the amber/green sign is also shown. Many servers have up to 1000 Mb/s bandwidth, while some smaller ones have a 100 Mb/s connection.

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

If you click the red “x”, that country will be eliminated, effectively making it a blocklist/denylist. To eliminate 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 a simple throughput graph with thin plot lines. Its temporal resolution can be altered, so you can see traffic from the last 10 seconds to one day.

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

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

Logs is a comprehensive record of connections, routes, and other information.

A million and one other settings are hidden in the app’s Settings menu. This enables you to fine-tune the setup, such as whether it should always connect when opened, which protocol to utilize between UDP and TCP, and which port number. Or whether to attempt an SSH tunnel via more flexible ports such as 22, 80, and 443. Proxies, Tor support, custom DNS servers, and routes can be modified.

The truly experienced user can go into Advanced and Expert Mode settings, which allow, to name a few things, sending orders to the OpenVPN Management Interface through the Logs pane.

If the large function list appears scary, even if you are a VPN professional, it might be hard to figure out what particular settings do and how to get the wanted outcomes. In addition, it differs from any other service in terms of customization.

Don’t dismiss AirVPN’s Eddie simply since of its intricacy. Bear in mind that the program normally functions fine by itself, and you’ll never see the settings till you search for them. However, if you periodically crave power or configurability, the app will offer it.

AirVPN Software Configurations

Suppose you do not want to use Eddie. In that case, you can also set up a router or firewall to send out 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 incredibly feature-rich Android VPN app rather. This software supplies the very same comprehensive setup choices as its desktop sibling and useful status info.

Separate pages for nation and server lists are what the Android app lacks that the desktop versions provides. Rather, you can expand a country and select a particular city on the exact same page. Some useful text additions make the information more understandable, however it’s still rather tough to comprehend in some spots.

Android does not have as numerous settings as Windows. That’s not a significant critique; there are still a lot more than many people will ever need. The software application also attempts a little bit more to assist you, with extra text subtitles to explain what each choice does.

Speeds/Performance

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

Online reviewers felt the connection monitoring was excellent, with the app finding when the VPN tunnel drops, informing us with a desktop notification, and reconnecting us in seconds.

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

Now let’s get to those speeds.

Due to the fact that AirVPN only supports OpenVPN, it was always going to be slower than the WireGuard-equipped competitors.

However, reviewers have reported speeds to be exceptional. Indeed, one stated there wasn’t a single country where they might complain about the speed. On the contrary, it was really excellent 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 scenarios like HD gaming, streaming, and video conferencing certainly won’t slow you down.

What AirVPN lacks is a more comprehensive variety of server locations. This may limit the availability of neighboring servers for some users (which will constantly result in better speeds). As a result, this VPN is an outstanding choice for most people in the United States and Europe, but possibly less so for other areas.

Streaming

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

Some report that Air is pretty bad for streaming and doesn’t work with any of the major streaming services. Nevertheless, it appears to deal with less-popular streaming apps like Peacock and Sony Crackle.

Another reviewer says services like BBC iPlayer and United States Netflix hardly ever work, and when they do, finding the best server needs prolonged experimentation. This is probably since, unlike other companies, AirVPN doesn’t provide servers that are optimised for accessing streaming sites.

Fortunately, 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 excels, merely since that’s not what the service is about, as they are more focused on privacy and security.

Does AirVPN Allow Torrenting?

Yes, it does; every internet protocol, including peer-to-peer, is welcome. Undoubtedly, Air supports P2P file-sharing on all of its servers. There’s nothing to configure, no hoops to leap through. Just connect to the VPN server of your option 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 decent speeds on local 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, activated by default, will obstruct all traffic from leaving your gadget if the VPN connection ever drops. That way, you won’t be sending unencrypted packets to the Internet. If you are file sharing, a kill switch is extremely practical, specifically if you need to leave your connection unattended.

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

AirVPN Plans & Prices

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

This makes it an exceptional choice for people who live in a family home or wish to utilize a VPN on a public network. While 5 really should be enough for the majority of people, other VPN companies offer 7 or even 10 if you require more.

Prices varies based on the membership length, and each plan consists of the exact same features. A lot of plans use good value; however, longer memberships use the very best offer.

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

The existing plans available 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 global options are likewise accepted, such as Alipay and Giropay.

AirVPN offers a three-day complimentary trial, which can be obtained by sending a message to the support team and using the voucher code they send you.

There’s likewise a 30-day money-back guarantee, as long as they have not broken the terms of service or utilized more than 5 GB of data throughout that time.

AirVPN Customer Support

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

Significantly, AirVPN’s e-mail assistance isn’t outsourced but can be a little irregular with the time it takes to get a reaction. That stated, the e-mail support is high quality, and the agents are valuable and friendly, but the extensive answers can be quite technical, which may put off those new to VPNs.

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

AirVPN’s community forums cover various subjects, but newbies will have the exact same difficulties comprehending a great deal of the tech lingo in the posts.

AirVPN Pros & Cons

Pros:

No logging Whatsoever.

Exceptional speeds with very little loss.

Unlimited P2P permitted 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 usage.

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

Strong Customer Care.

Active Community Forums and Comprehensive Guides.

Good rates, especially for longer-term plans.

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

Cons:

Only fully supports OpenVPN.

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

Client app may overwhelm newer users.

It is very hit and miss with streaming services.

No native iOS or ChromeOS apps.

Maybe there are too many advanced choices.

Found in 14-Eyes Country.

Server numbers are relatively low.

Rounding Things Up – Is AirVPN The Very Best Option?

The bottom line is that AirVPN is a strong, reputable, and safe VPN service with excellent rates. It’s plainly geared 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 brand-new users might do much, much worse.

While it could be challenging to utilize if you’re new to VPNs, you’ll receive much quicker speeds and better results than a number of its rival VPN rivals.

When it boils down to it, this VPN service is more concentrated on safeguarding your privacy than unblocking streaming services like Netflix or Hulu.

It may not ensure the same level of privacy and privacy as a service like Mullvad, which assigns you a random account number and allows you to pay in cash, AirVPN is still a good option for customers who value their personal privacy.

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

Highly recommended!

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