One of the leading and most popular VPN services around, Private Internet Access owes its good reputation to its ease of use, remarkable speed, and more-than-decent price. While there are some things that are far from ideal, the overall service of the company is definitely one of the best on the market. Read our Private Internet Access review to determine if this VPN service provider can meet your specific needs.
Downloading, installing, and using the VPN client is as easy and straightforward as it gets. Their client is one of the best and most functional we’ve seen, enabling customers to effortlessly access encryption options, handshaking, DNS leak protection, and other features needed to enhance user experience.
We also liked the way the interface is designed. It’s one of those clients that are made with an understanding that people who will be using the VPN service may not necessarily be tech-savvy and will probably appreciate an interface with nice big fonts and clearly marked features and buttons.
Performance and Reliability
First things first, Private Internet Access has 3,000+ active servers in 25 countries. This is important because multiple server locations in places all across the globe allow users to connect to the server that fits their needs the best.
Sometimes you will want to connect to a US server and other times you will want to connect to a foreign server that is nearest to where you are located currently in order to achieve faster connections.
When it comes to speed and overall performance, Private Internet Access stands out among VPN providers. The company provides the fastest speeds available to their users, though speed largely depends on the server location and protocol used.
Expectedly, Private Internet Access is compatible with all popular operating systems, including Windows, Mac, Android, iOs, and Linux, meaning the provider supports all devices that use these systems. The best part is that you can connect up to five devices to the VPN, with customized security and performance for each device.
Private Internet Access, like most VPN services, allows you to browse the web through an encrypted connection. As we already said in this Private Internet Access review, the company uses the latest security protocols. This service allows you to encrypt your Wi-Fi connection wherever you are, which is particularly important for people using public hotspots at cafes, airports, etc.
You get to connect up to five of your devices at the same time. It can be your desktop computer, your laptop, your mobile phone, tablet, and so on. This is not a rarity among VPN providers, but not all of them offer as many as five simultaneous connections.
Private Internet Access also allows and supports P2P sharing. What does this mean? To put it simply, it means you can use your VPN connection for torrenting and other forms of peer-to-peer file sharing. Of course, this may not always be legal, so the company insists you only use their P2P feature for legal purposes and legal file sharing.
Another interesting feature is ad, malware, and tracker blocking. This provides an additional layer of security on top of what you already get with your VPN connection. Private Internet Access offers multiple VPN gateways and unlimited bandwidth. There is also SOCKS5 Proxy included – again, not something we see in all VPN services and something that most users will appreciate.
This VPN service provider has servers in 25 countries. The number of servers the company operates and maintains is equally impressive: they currently have 3,000 servers and the number keeps growing. Private Internet Access also accepts some less convenient payment methods, such as Bitcoin and OK Pay.
Security and Privacy
Despite being based in the USA, the company keeps no user logs and only shares user data under a court order. As for the protocols, Private Internet Access uses OpenVPN, L2TP/IPSec, and PPTP. Even though their main protocol is OpenVPN, the provider offers a wide range of protocols and encryption strengths to suit the needs of all their users. This means users have the option of choosing between the fastest connections available with the lowest security levels or highest security connections with somewhat decreased speed.
It’s also important to note that the company provides auto-disconnect protection, which keeps you safe even when you lose connection to the VPN. Furthermore, they encourage privacy-minded customers to make use of anonymous emails and opt for the Bitcoin payment option. They also enable users to stay anonymous by paying for their services via store gift cards. As you can see, Private Internet Access pays special attention that their users remain as anonymous and secure as possible, making identity safety their number one priority.
Customer support is available 24/7, as Private Internet Access heavily relies on their live chat when it comes to user problems. Some customers may be a bit disappointed to learn that they have to enter their name and email address in order to receive support. However, their representatives are more than happy to answer all your questions and help you solve your problems. You can also contact the company via support tickets.
In addition, Private Internet Access features an extensive support section, which can help you find solutions to some of the most common user troubles. There’s a forum linked to their website, which allows users to exchange opinions and experiences and to communicate with the company itself. Moreover, you can read Rick Falkvinge’s useful blog that deals with topics such as security and online privacy, which also attracts many users and features plenty of interaction.
Private Internet Access offers its users three packages, which differ only in terms of the monthly cost and the subscription period. The monthly package comes at $6.95 per month, the semi-annual package costs $5.99 per month, which means that the six months subscription costs $35.99, and the annual plan comes at only $3.33 per month, which equals to $39.95 per year.
These numbers are more than reasonable, especially when you compare Private Internet Access’ pricing and the pricing of other VPN providers. Keeping in mind that they really provide top-notch service, their packages are among the best and cheapest you can get from any VPN provider. Unfortunately, there is no trial period. On the other hand, they have a seven-day money back guarantee.
PIA Pros & Cons
As we wrap up this PIA review, here’s a quick overview of the features that wowed us and the aspects of the service that could use some improvement.
- 3,000+ servers in 25 countries
- Phenomenal security
- No user logs
- Nonstop customer support
- Five simultaneous connections
- Great prices and seven-day money back guarantee
- VPN Kill Switch
- DNS Leak Protection
- No free trial available