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PureVPN Review

An outstanding VPN service to choose

5 stars

Excellent VPN

PureVPN is one of the best overall VPN services around, and should definitely be a contender if you’re looking for a secure VPN to protect your online privacy. It bills itself as the world’s fastest VPN service (though we wouldn’t entirely agree), and it offers a great mix of cyber-security features, internet privacy and good value. Whether you’re a power-user keen to delve into more complex settings, or a VPN first-timer, PureVPN has something for everyone, and it’s an excellent service to choose.

5 stars

Excellent VPN

Ease of Use

5 stars

Features

5 stars

Privacy

5 stars

Speed

3 stars

Help & Support

4 stars
Check out PureVPN today

Pros

  • Effective privacy and security features
  • Smart Mode-based approach
  • Clear notifications
  • Excellent value

Cons

  • Not as fast as billed
  • Doesn’t unblock Netflix unless you use the browser extension

Availability

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows
  • Safari
  • Chrome
  • Firefox
  • Opera
  • Edge

In this review:

PureVPN logoScore

Overall Test Score5 starsA marriage of rich features and a simple-to-use interface make this one of the best VPNs we've tested
Features5 starsThere are plenty of features to play with, such as a Kill Switch, and the dedicated hot spot function, which turns your device into a secure internet point
Ease of Use5 starsA beginner-friendly layout makes PureVPN one of the easiest VPN services to get to grips with.
Privacy5 starsPureVPN's security features, Ozone and Gravity, mean that your browsing can't be snooped on by anyone else. It also won't log your data
Help and Support3 starsPureVPN offers plenty of assistance, with live chat and email support on call if you get stuck
Speed3 starsWhile not the fastest out there, PureVPN still offers fast enough transfers that won't leave you wanting
Paid plan Available for $2.95 per monthSee PureVPN Plans and Deals

PureVPN Review Summary – Why We Think PureVPN is Excellent

PureVPN iPhone app

PureVPN is one of the best names in the business. It goes beyond normal VPN capabilities with its added security tools, dubbed Ozone and Gravity. Plus, it has generous features that make it a more compelling package than many rivals. And yet, despite its rich feature set, it's a breeze to use.

Though it isn’t the cheapest VPN if you opt to pay monthly, the costs work out a lot lower if you go for one-year or two-year license. A single PureVPN account lets you install the apps or clients on as many devices as you want, though only five can be connected at any one time.

And yes, you can access Netflix with it (with some caveats, that we go into later).

PureVPN impressed in our thorough testing so much that it's our highest-rated VPN. It sits just ahead of NordVPN and IPVanish in our test results, and we'd recommend PureVPN above plenty of competitors. See our table, below, for more:


PureVPN Features and Security

Generous Features

or instance, you can turn your PC into a VPN hotspot and connect other devices to the internet (privately) through it. Or, you can configure the VPN so that only specific apps can use it, while others use your regular Internet connection.

There’s also an Internet Kill Switch, which stops all your internet connections if the VPN connection fails, potentially giving away your identity and location.

Extra Security

PureVPN’s “Ozone” and “Gravity” features further boost your security.

Ozone gives you antivirus blocks, content-filtering tools to block offensive material or certain apps or websites, plus intrusion-detection features that warn you when somebody is trying to hack your PC.

Gravity then adds an ad-blocker to stop ads appearing while your browsing, plus a safe search feature that hides specified search results. All seemed to work effectively during testing.

PureVPN also throws up nice, clear notifications to let you know when you’re connected or disconnected.

Zero Log Policy

Reassuringly, PureVPN insists it has a zero-logging policy. This means that the company maintains no records of your online activities conducted while the VPN is enabled.

“We practice Zero Log policy that means we do not record your activities or what you do online. Our commitment to preserve your online privacy is second to none.” – PureVPN official statement.


All-in-all, we’re fans of PureVPN, but the suite isn’t entirely flawless.

Does PureVPN Work with Netflix?

If you want to connect to a regional version of Netflix over a VPN, then PureVPN appears ready-to-go. There’s a Netflix option in the Stream mode. However, when we tested this, we found that this failed to get past Netflix’s (increasingly savvy) VPN-detection.

We took our findings to PureVPN directly – the company recommends using the browser extension for PureVPN in order to access Netflix. You'll need to run Netflix in a browser for this to work, rather than via an app.

PureVPN's solution might not be the most convenient, and it means you'll need to fire up a browser each time you want to binge on hours of TV or movies, but it's a small price to pay. In our testing, we found that very few VPNs could make it through the Fort Knox that is Netflix's regional protection, even if they advertised that they did. PureVPN might not have the simplest solution, but it does at least have one.

There is an ongoing battle between the streaming giant and the VPN providers, and we expect to see further work from PureVPN to counter Netflix’s measures.

We'd still rank PureVPN among the Best VPNs for Netflix – see our guide for more VPN providers.

How Fast is PureVPN?

For all its claims about speed, PureVPN isn’t always that fast. It takes a while to connect, apparently while verifying the username and password.

Though VPN connections within the same region proved very fast in our tests, transatlantic connection speeds were worse than average. If you want the fastest VPN, then NordVPN proved to be a safer pair of hands in our tests. PureVPN is at its best if you stick to servers that are in your own region.

In real terms, how much of a problem is this? Well, the average user will get along fine with PureVPN, and you won't notice any real lag when it comes to web browsing everyday internet activities. It only becomes a problem if you want optimum download speeds, or want to stream in 4K, which will require a fast connection. Again, NordVPN is the solution if you're a data hungry user.

If you're more of a sharer than a downloader, then you'll want to know about upload speeds. PureVPN does pretty well here, and your usual upload speed won't take too much of a dip. In fact, it's on a par with NordVPN in this category, and much faster than competitors such as ExpressVPN and CyberGhost VPN.

Does PureVPN Share your Data?

One of the main concerns from VPN users, is whether or not their data, and activities, are really safe. After all, if you're using a VPN, you could be accessing content that's not available in your region, or bypassing a work firewall. Even if you're not up to anything illegal, there aren't many of us who would want their browsing history readily available to all.

Opinion on PureVPN is slightly divisive in this area, and it stems back to one instance. In 2017, PureVPN aided the FBI in tracking down a cyberstalker who had been carrying out an harassment campaign on a 24 year old Massachusetts woman, as well as her friends, colleagues and family. The crimes involved hacking into online accounts, sending child pornography, and making over 120 hoax bomb threats. The perpetrator was sentenced to 17 years in prison.

PureVPN received criticism for sharing user data with the FBI, with online commentators complaining that the VPN states it doesn't collect logs of internet activity. It's true that VPN doesn't do this, but the data it did have on the perpetrator were network logs, mainly used for troubleshooting and maintenance. While these don't identify online activities, the FBI were able to cross-reference this with their own information to pinpoint the cyberstalker's activities.

If you're using a VPN to access Netflix in another country, you don't need to worry about the Feds kicking down your door. You're only in danger if you're engaged in some shady, high end illegal activities, in which case, we can't help you.

To answer the question then, does PureVPN share your data? Well, only once, and that was for a criminal who was sentenced to 17 years in prison.

PureVPN doesn't keep logs of your data, and can't see what you're doing online

How we Tested PureVPN

As VPN users ourselves, we want to know that the service we're paying our dollars to each month is the very best we can get, for the price. The best way to know this is to test them ourselves. We don't rely on marketing materials or claims on the VPNs website – we get our hands dirty and actually use each one. That's how you know that a Tech.co rating can be trusted.

Lets take speed as an example. You want a VPN that won't let you down when it comes to how fast it can send data back to you. This is vitally important when you're downloading files or streaming video. While its true that no VPN will ever reach the same speeds as your connection when you're not using one, some come pretty close (including PureVPN), and others fall miserably short, making a simple task as browsing a website a turgid experience.

Then there's security – after all, one of the main reasons to use a VPN is to protect your online identity, and you computer, from any nefarious people out there who might be trying to spy on your activities. There isn't a VPN that will tell you it isn't secure, which is why we have to do it. During testing, we actually try to break the VPN's own security, and look at how much data it is sending out to the internet about our session.

Of course, features are one thing, but if a VPN is overly complicated, with hundreds of poorly explained options and an interface that requires a degree in computer science to decipher, it can be intimidating. That's why we also make sure that VPN company's have actually applied some common sense to their design, and have ensured that their apps are easy to navigate and use. That's not to say you have to compromise on features – the very best get the balance of usability and options just right.

PureVPN Pricing

At $10.95 if you opt for monthly billing, PureVPN isn’t the cheapest VPN around. However, we think it's worth the price, and you can make substanstial savings if you can commit to a long period. For example, opt for a years subscription, and you'll pay $69, making it just $5.81 per month. 

Sign up for two years at $79, and you'll find it works out to just $3.33 a month. It's excellent value for such a feature-laden VPN.

Want the best deal though? You can get PureVPN for as little as $2.95 a month with our exclusive offer.

If you're tempted to pick up a free VPN, and you're an avid internet user, we'd recommend against it. We've tested some of the more popular free offerings on the market, and we're not impressed. With poor speeds, data constraints and potential security risks, it's worth spending a few dollars a month for a premium service such as PureVPN.

VPN customers can make considerable saving by signing up for an annual subscription

Save On PureVPN With This Exclusive Tech.co Offer For 77% Off RRP

PureVPN vs Competitors

PureVPN isn't the only VPN in town, far from it. The market is crowded with dozens of company's all after your montly subscription. We know they're not all deserving of it, because we've tested a whole bunch (see our detailed table below).

PureVPN is one of the best, but its up against some pretty stiff competition, including big names such as NordVPN, ExpressVPN and Torguard.

So, what gives PureVPN the edge? One of the stand outs of the service is how simple it is to use. Five minutes with the app, and you'll be switching regions like a pro. There's still a lot of depth to the features for those who want them, but it's beginner-friendly, pipping Torguard on this score.

We've noted that PureVPN isn't the fastest VPN out there, but it's still notably faster than ExpressVPN, which we found could be somewhat sluggish at  times.

While we're comparing it to the competition, when it comes to features, PureVPN is far more versatile than NordVPN. Although it's a great VPN in its own right, it can't match the sheer suite of options offered by PureVPN.

PureVPN is one of the best VPNs we've ever tested

Scroll horizontally to view full table on mobile devices

PureVPNNordVPNIPVanish VPNTorGuardPrivate Internet AccessWindscribeProton VPNHide Me VPNAirVPNExpress VPN
PureVPN logoNordVPN logoAirVPN logoExpress VPN logo
Tech.co Rating★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★☆★★★★☆★★★★☆★★★★☆★★★★☆★★★★☆★★★★☆
No. of devices555551010553
No. of servers7503605100030003035480112150601500
Data logging
Killswitch
Email Support
Live Chat
Ease of use★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★☆★★★★☆★★★★★★★★★★★★★★☆★★★☆☆★★★★★
Features★★★★★★★★☆☆★★★★★★★★☆☆★★★☆☆★★★☆☆★★★★★★★★☆☆★★★★★★★★★★
Privacy★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★
Speed★★★☆☆★★★★☆★★★★☆★★★☆☆★★★★☆★★★☆☆★★★☆☆★★★☆☆★★★★☆★★☆☆☆
Help & Support★★★★☆★★★★☆★★★★★★★★☆☆★★★★☆★★★☆☆★★★★☆★★★☆☆★★★☆☆★★★★☆
Value for Money★★★★★★★★★☆★★★★☆★★★★★★★★★☆★★★★☆★★★★☆★★★★★★★★★☆★★★☆☆
Free trial
Price per month$2.95 (1-year plan)$2.99 (3-year plan)$6.49 (1-year plan)$4.12 (2-year plan)$2.91 (2-year plan)$4.08 (1-year plan)$4 (1-year plan)$4.99 (1-year plan)$2.78 (2-year plan)$8.32 (1-year plan)
DiscountsSee offersSee offersSee offersSee offersSee offersSee offersSee offersSee offersSee offersSee offers

PureVPN Download Steps

It’s simplicity itself to get up and running with PureVPN. Simply create a new amount with a username and email address, then choose your payment method. Your username and password are emailed to you, and the payment confirmation page has a big green button to download the PureVPN app for a desktop or laptop.

Android and iOS users can simply install the app from the relevant app stores, then type in the email address and system-generated password. Once up and running, the VPN is extremely intuitive to use.

Pure VPN UI“Modes” for Using PureVPN

People use VPNs for different reasons, which is why PureVPN works through a series of “modes”, each optimised for certain scenarios.

Internet Freedom” mode is designed to work in countries where certain websites or services are usually censored. You can link to a country beyond the government firewall and use these sites and services as normal.

Security/Privacy” mode gives you the best balance of anonymity, security, privacy and speed, while “File Sharing” is aimed at users sharing files across a peer to peer network (you can probably guess why some users want to protect their identities while sharing, say, the latest episodes of hit TV shows).

The “Stream” mode is for accessing streaming services, such as Netflix or Hulu, that are normally locked to a specific region. With this engaged, you're supposed to be able to use them even when you’re not physically in that country. A catch, however – even with this mode enabled, we found we weren’t able to get past Netflix’s ever-evolving VPN detection, and the service was blocked.

Finally, the “Dedicated IP” mode, which costs extra, gives your VPN its own dedicated IP address, which you might need for some applications like online gaming.

While you're asked to pick a mode when you first launch the app, it's easy to switch modes later. The advantage of this approach is that PureVPN can ask you what you want to do, then connect you to the best server to do it. If you want to go more in-depth, the site has some excellent guides and walkthroughs.

The Verdict

PureVPN may not live up to its speed boasts, but this is still an outstanding choice for a VPN. It’s easy to use and has an impressive set of features. Go for a one-year or two-year deal, and it’s great value, too.

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You've read our review, now its time to check out PureVPN for yourself