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NordVPN vs IPVanish is a fight between two of the best VPNs in the game, and we won't keep you waiting – NordVPN is the better VPN overall. It's extremely fast, has industry-leading security features, and is better for streaming. IPVanish, however, will let you connect an unlimited number of devices via one account and is slightly cheaper ($3.33 per month) – so it's a close matchup.
If pricing is your priority though, be sure to check out NordVPN's spring deal, with which you can save up to 63% on NordVPN 2-year plans. One plan includes a password manager and encrypted cloud storage for just $5.99 per month. If you just want the VPN, that's now just $3.49 per month for a 2-year subscription.
Both NordVPN and IPVanish make privacy a priority, letting you select from a wide range of servers worldwide. Both also offer must-have security tools like a kill switch, which will stop any online activity dead should the VPN lose connection. We pitch NordVPN and IPVanish against each other and tell you where each one excels.
NordVPN vs IPVanish: Head-to-Head
We independently test VPNs to make our recommendations. Our VPN assessments include in-depth analyses of how easy the product is to use and the privacy tools included in the package.
Both NordVPN and IPVanish excelled in our tests – they're two of the best VPNs around. Still, there's enough to pull the two apart:
In This Guide:
- IPVanish for Remote Work vs NordLayer
- NordVPN vs IPVanish - Which VPN is Best?
- Best Features: NordVPN
- Best for Privacy Settings: NordVPN
- Best Range of Servers: NordVPN
- Best for Speed: NordVPN
- Best for Unblocking Content: NordVPN
- NordVPN Highlights, Pros and Cons
- IPVanish Highlights, Pros and Cons
- Verdict: NordVPN is Better Than IPVanish
- Frequently Asked Questions
Our scoring is based on independent tests and assessments of features, privacy settings, ease of use and value.
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Fast, effective, low-cost and simple – the best VPN we've tested, with risk-free money-back guarantee
Powerful features and security, but a bit technical. Some massive savings currently available.
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Best Overall Features: NordVPN
Most paid-for VPNs will offer a large suite of features, which can be appealing to those who have some experience using VPNs, but rather daunting to those who don't. NordVPN's feature set is far superior to IPVanish, however. Here are all the key features you'll need in a VPN, and whether NordVPN and IPVanish include them:
No. of Devices
No. of Servers
Zero Data Logging
Malware & Ad Blocker
Help & Support
5,000+ (60+ countries)
2,200+ (55+ countries)
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Yes (only on Android and FireOS)
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Windows, macOS, iOS, Android
Phone, email, live chat
Phone, email, live chat
Why NordVPN Comes out on Top
NordVPN isn't just more feature-rich than IP Vanish, it's possibly the most feature-rich VPN on the market.
In terms of security, NordVPN has diskless servers, which means no user data is ever written to hard drives, something IPVanish is yet to implement. Its servers are obfuscated too, which essentially means the fact you're using a VPN is masked by NordVPN (IPVanish – and most other top VPNs – do this too).
NordVPN has other useful functions, such as Threat Protection, which will help you avoid malware and adverts whilst online and scan any files you download onto your computer.
NordVPN provides a “Double VPN” option for anyone seriously concerned they might be being watched. It'll reroute your connection through two servers, making it even harder to trace.
NordVPN has a variety of other settings, like split tunneling (which lets you reroute a proportion of your traffic through a VPN server whilst leaving the rest alone) that really improve the user experience. With IPVanish, this sort of feature is only available on devices running Android or FireOS.
New features are being brought out all the time too – just recently NordVPN updated their software to give users a “security score” – expressed as a percentage – to show just how many features you're taking advantage of.
Another new feature is a scanner that will crawl the dark web for mentions of the email address you used to sign up to NordVPN – so you know quickly whether you've been affected in a data breach.
For the full lowdown on one of the world's best VPNs, read our NordVPN Review
IPVanish still has great advanced features
In a direct comparison of features, IPVanish is a lot more basic than NordVPN and doesn't have a wide range of security features on offer from the latter provider. One nice feature IPVanish does have, however, is that it shows the ping time for different locations within the interface, something which gamers who need the speediest connection possible will appreciate.
The Windows app (pictured below) lets you take a deep dive into the options, including the ability to be able to change the VPN protocol or enable various levels of leak protection to really sew up your privacy. You can also obfuscate traffic as we mentioned above, tricking sites into thinking you're not using a VPN.
Best for Privacy: NordVPN
Both IPVanish and NordVPN offer are both excellent for privacy, and there's a reason for this. Neither IPVanish nor NordVPN carry out the practice of data logging, which means that they don't collect or retain any information about you or your online session. Both providers have the basics covered:
- Stringent no logs policies (neither company records your browsing activity)
- Kill switches (makes sure your VPN doesn't drop off while you're internet connected)
- Solid ranges of VPN protocols (will ensure your traffic is properly encrypted)
- Obfuscated or “stealth” servers (hides that you're even using a VPN at all)
- DNS leak protection (mitigates for a legacy security flaw that reveals DNS requests to ISP DNS servers)
NordVPN is much better for privacy
Although IPVanish is perfectly serviceable when it comes to security, NordVPN is an industry leader when it comes to providing consumer-level security features users can access. The provider's aforementioned Double VPN function, for instance, will reroute your connection through two VPN servers instead of one, giving you an extra layer of security, but you won't be able to do this with IPVanish.
If you want even more protection, the Onion-Over-VPN feature NordVPN provides will let you combine the privacy of a VPN with the Tor Browser, which is a software that enables anonymous communication by relaying internet traffic through thousands of nodes (endpoint devices owned by volunteers) in an effort to scramble user traffic. The problem with Tor is that anyone can volunteer to become a node in the Tor network – but NordVPN's Onion-Over-VPN feature will hide your IP address to the entry node.
NordVPN has a “Dark Web Monitor”, which will regularly scan the internet to check if your personal credentials (such as the email address linked to your NordVPN account) have been leaked in a data breach.
NordVPN also has a function called Threat Protection which we discussed briefly in the previous section. Threat Protection performs functions like blocking malicious websites and intrusive adverts while you're using the VPN, and can block trackers, and can scan downloaded files when you're not.
More recently, NordVPN rolled out a feature called “Meshnet”, which allows you to create secure, private networks consisting of multiple devices you, your friends, and your family own. With Meshnet, you can share folders, create private wifi hotspots, and route traffic through other devices securely.
NordVPN vs IPVanish: network control
You may not already know this, but most VPNs don't actually own the individual servers that make up their networks. Instead, providers rent their servers, which live in server farms located in different parts of the world. This is pretty normal practice, and not necessarily a negative when it comes to choosing a VPN.
IPVanish, historically, has said that it owns and manages many of the servers in what it calls its “Tier 1” network. The provider has since walked back on the claim that they own the whole network, but the fact a large proportion is managed and owned by IPVanish certainly sets them apart from VPNs that rent their whole network.
NordVPN, on the other hand, has 580 servers within the data centers they manage – just over 10% of their total server network. The goal, the provider says, is to have a fully “colocated” network in the future – and they're a lot less vague about the numbers than IPVanish.
Usually, having control and ownership over your servers is a good thing from a privacy point of view. For one, you're not putting your trust in an ambiguous third-party company that manages a server farm or data center. VPNs that own their own networks control exactly who has access to your servers and can secure their hardware perimeter in a more meaningful way. Some VPN experts argue that it makes it a lot easier for authorities to demand data directly from VPN companies, but overall, colocation is generally considered more secure.
Best Range of Servers: NordVPN
A good VPN will offer you a wide range of servers. The more servers, the more choice – especially if they're located in a wide variety of countries, from which you can access your preferred content, and you're less likely to be slowed down by other users connecting to the same ones as you.
While both NordVPN and IPVanish have a presence in a similar number of countries (60 and 55, respectively), in terms of server numbers, NordVPN takes the crown, offering up over 5,400 servers compared to IPVanish's 2,200+ listed at the time of writing.
A significant proportion of NordVPN's servers are located in the USA -1970 to be exact – but then again, it's also the most popular country to stream content from. In real terms, the above figures suggest that NordVPN's servers are more likely to be free, meaning faster speeds and less congestion for the user – although it's worth noting that both offer a huge number of servers compared to most of their competitors.
Best for Speed: NordVPN
When using a VPN, speed is a key factor, which can depend heavily on the service being used and the location of the server. No matter which VPN you're using, your speed will always take a slight hit as your traffic is being re-routed through an additional server. The good news is that both NordVPN and IPVanish performed brilliantly in our tests, with each able to deliver decent speeds.
NordVPN came out on top, however, with speeds decreasing just 13% across the two locations we tested. Although IPVanish was very speedy when connected to the London server, overall speeds decreased 31.3% across the two tests we ran.
Best for Unblocking Content: NordVPN
One of the best things about VPNs is the range of media they'll help you to view with their location-hopping technology. NordVPN and IPVanish can both unblock a number of major streaming services and will allow you to skirt around geo-restrictions placed on content in various parts of the world.
Simply put, NordVPN is the better unblocker of streaming services. NordVPN reliably and consistently unblocks Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Amazon Prime, Hulu, Disney + as well as a host of minor streaming services. IPVanish is known for struggling to unblock Amazon Prime, however, and some of its servers don't unblock specific Netflix libraries.
NordVPN – Summary
NordVPN is one of the world's most widely used and well-respected VPNs. Just over a year ago, the company merged with another excellent VPN, Surfshark, and the pair have been sharing security resources ever since to improve both products. NordVPN is known best for:
- Its wide range of servers and excellent speeds
- Ad-blocking and malware-blocking features
- A more tolerant approach to torrenting than other VPNs
- Additional, high-quality security products like NordPass.
- Risk-free money-back guarantee
- Excellent mobile app for iOS
- Lightning-quick connection speeds
- Packed with useful security features
- Excellent value for money
- Couldn't unblock some streaming services
- Roughly half of the server network is located in US
Overall, NordVPN is very easy to get to grips with. The map-based user interface is quite unique in the VPN space and often it's easier to select a server this way, particularly if geography is not your strong suit and you're looking to find a server close to home for activities like gaming. Best of all, an excellent risk-free money-back guarantee for NordVPN lets you try before you buy.
NordVPN is pleasingly fast – whether you're uploading or downloading – and although all VPNs take a speed hit compared to the pace of your standard ISP, with NordVPN, it's minimal. When accessing a transatlantic server, you can expect a connection at around 50-80% of your normal speed. That might not sound great, but it's actually far more impressive than most other VPNs.
NordVPN is also one of the few VPNs that takes a permissive view on peer-to-peer filesharing and will allow you to use its service to protect yourself when torrenting. It's an unusual feature, although it will only allow you to connect to specific servers.
IPVanish – Summary
IPVanish is one of the largest commercial VPNs. It owns most of its 2,200+ servers in 55+ countries, rather than simply leasing them from third-party data centers, as some of its rivals do.
- Owns a lot of its servers
- One of the fastest VPNs tested
- Feature-packed Windows app
- Split tunneling capabilities on Android
- Controls a proportion of its server network
- Solid privacy and security features
- Decent speeds
- Slightly intimidating user interface
- Hasn't made the switch to RAM servers
- Priced above some rivals
While NordVPN may have some of the fastest upload and download speeds in the business, IPVanish can keep pace, really going all out to ensure that your connection doesn't take too much of a hit when you connect to a server. This is especially true when connecting to transatlantic servers, where we found that it was one of our fastest VPNs during testing.
NordLayer vs IPVanish for Business
In 2023, when data breaches and remote work have become mainstays of the business world, it's hard to argue about the value of a good VPN. While personal usage is certainly up, the reality is that VPNs are more geared toward professional use in hopes of adding an added layer of security and peace of mind to your company's security protocol.
Fortunately, IPVanish is a good option for freelancers, and NordVPN actually has a business-facing product, called Nordlayer, that can help you take your security to the next level. Here's how they match up against each other:
- Nordlayer has more business features than IPVanish
- IPVanish allows for unlimited devices, NordLayer does not
- NordLayer is more affordable for businesses than IPVanish
In so many words, NordLayer is a clear choice for businesses, as it offers business-specific features and offers some very competitive pricing.
IPVanish is one of the largest commercial VPNs. It owns all of its 2,200+ servers it operates, spread out across 55+ countries, rather than simply leasing them from third-party data centers, as some of its rivals do.
While NordVPN may have some of the fastest upload and download speeds in the business, IPVanish has it licked, really going all out to ensure that your connection doesn't take too much of a hit when you connect to a server. This is especially true when connecting to transatlantic servers, where we found that it was one of our fastest VPNs during testing.
NordVPN Team offers three different pricing plans. The first is the Basic plan, which cost $7 per user per month and adds all the business features you'd expect, like a control panel, centralized billing, and advanced security features like kill switches and two-factor authentication. You'll also get access to 24/7 support, which is also a perk.
Next up, we've got the Advanced plan, which in earnest doesn't add too much. It costs $9 per user per month, and you'll get a few more server locations and priority support. You'll also be allowed to add dedicated IP addresses for an additional $40 per month.
Finally, NordLayer has an Enterprise plan as well, although publicly available pricing is not available. It adds a lot though, including API access, active directory functionality, customer features, and branding opportunities throughout the platform. With all that though, it's safe to assume it's going to cost you quite a bit.
IPVanish for remote work pricing
IPVanish does not actually have specific pricing for businesses. Instead, they encourage users to simply utilize its standard IPVanish VPN for remote work, allowing for employees to access company data without fear of compromising it.
For standard IPVanish pricing, the VPN will cost you $10.99 per month if you opt for the monthly plan, or only $4.50 per month if you opt for the yearly plan, and $3.33 per month for the two year plan. However, that discount only lasts for a year, in which cause you'll be paying $10.99 per month after that.
Verdict: NordVPN is Better Than IPVanish
As NordVPN has a larger selection of options, plus slightly faster speeds, we declare it to be the victor. Although it's marginally pricier than IPVanish at $3.49 per month for the Standard VPN plan, NordVPN has offers on for spring at the moment that can save you up to 63% on plans that include password managers as well as a VPN.
When it comes to VPNs, you're spoilt for choice, but few are as comprehensive and efficient as these two – but NordVPN is the one we'd choose.
Frequently Asked Questions
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