ZenMate Review - UPDATED Apr. 2017
Despite the fact that ZenMate is based in Germany, which can raise some privacy concerns among VPN users, the overall service the company offers is well above average. They are professional and reliable, providing their customers top-notch encryption, transparency, and software functionality for a more than decent price. To find out more about this VPN service provider, read the rest of our honest ZenMate review.
The registration process is pretty straightforward. You can use ZenMate’s limited services for free, in which case all you have to do is download the extension. On the other hand, premium users have to provide their email and choose a payment method (the company supports Bitcoin, so you don’t have to worry about privacy).
Downloading and installing the client is quite simple. Just follow the guidelines and you’ll get the client running in no time. Regardless of which device you choose to use ZenMate on, you are sure to enjoy its pleasant design, large font, clear notifications, and easily accessible features. With the ZenMate browser extension, you can access ZenMate directly from your browser by clicking the ZenMate icon next to the address bar. You can turn your VPN on and off and choose the server you wish to connect to in a single click.
Performance and Reliability
Performance tests have yielded good results. We encountered no issues and the processes ran smoothly, even with high traffic. What is most important, there were absolutely no DNS leaks, which is quite impressive.
As for the servers, you can either access 4 or 29 of them, depending on whether you’re a free or paid user. All customers can access servers in Germany, Romania, Hong Kong, and the United States whereas premium users have additional access to servers in Austria, Australia, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Czech Republic, Finland, France, Israel, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Luxembourg, Moldova, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Russia, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Ukraine, the United Kingdom, and United States West.
Regarding the speeds, ZenMate exceeds all expectations. When tested, the speeds were definitely above average. They were incredibly stable and reliable. We achieved the best results through the U.K. server, which is not that uncommon among VPN providers. Keep in mind, though, that the speeds tend to deteriorate as you connect to more distant servers, so you should always connect to the server nearest to your location.
You’ll be happy to know that ZenMate is compatible with all major platform and operation systems. This means that you can use the client on Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS, and Android.
The best part is that customers can make use of more than one connection. To be precise, premium users can enjoy a reliable and secure connection on all their private devices, which means you’ll always be protected.
As we have mentioned previously in this ZenMate review, you can install ZenMate on all of your devices, as it works on all major platforms and you can use it on up to 5 devices simultaneously with a single account. ZenMate also brings you EverSecure, whose role is to keep you safe at all times, regardless of the native settings of your device. It establishes a secure VPN connection every time your device accesses the Internet.
Speaking of useful features, ZenMate also lets you configure the software so it autostarts with Windows and features tracking protection, which automatically blocks sites that are known for tracking user behavior. The software also comes equipped with malware block, as an additional security feature. This feature does not normally interfere with the operation of previously installed antivirus software.
ZenMate helps you easily connect to the most suitable server every time using Smart Locations feature. Namely, with Smart Locations, you can customize your settings for specific pages and specify which server you want to connect to when you access this page. Once you state your preferences, your VPN will automatically access the page or site from the server of your choice.
The number of servers ZenMate operates keeps on growing at an impressive rate. Until recently, they only offered 16 servers in different locations, but now premium users get to enjoy the benefits of having 29 servers at their disposal. Unfortunately, ZenMate’s website does not state whether your subscription comes with unlimited bandwidth, but only assures you that all of your traffic is encrypted. We haven’t encountered any limitations during the testing of the software.
This company protects your anonymity in more than one way and does an excellent job in that department. Apart from advanced encryption and a strict no-logs policy, it also allows you to pay for your subscription using BitCoin. On top of that, its method of preventing DNS leaks is one of the most advanced we have encountered so far.
Security and Privacy
ZenMate uses TLS 1.2 (RFC 5246) protocol with 128-bit AES-GCM encryption, RSA handshaking, and robust SHA 384 for authentication purposes.
According to the company’s FAQ, they keep some connection logs, but only if you have provided the data or if they need information to perform their services. This means that they will use your personal information only when you contact customer support or want to subscribe to their newsletter. However, due to the strict privacy laws in Germany, ZenMate does not store or log your personal data and does not monitor your activity, so there is no risk of your data getting into the hands of the government or anyone else.
P2P is a shady area, which is neither forbidden nor encouraged, so you should definitely contact support before you start downloading torrents. As mentioned above in this ZenMate review, you don’t need to provide personal information when registering to the website and you can pay for their services via Bitcoin, which guarantees almost full anonymity.
ZenMate only offers support through email, which is probably their main downside. Though representatives are quick to respond, the absence of a 24/7 live chat is pretty noticeable and may irritate some users. However, the website features great setup guides, as well as an excellent FAQ section, which addresses the most common issues and answers potential questions.
Though you can choose to be a free user, upgrading to the company’s premium account will give you access to all their functions and features. Similar to most VPN providers, ZenMate offers one paid package, with the price depending on the subscription period. The monthly plan costs $8.99, the semi-annual costs $7.49 per month, and the annual $4.99 per month.
- Fast and reliable connection
- Excellent encryption
- No DNS leaks
- Easy to use
- Useful Smart Locations feature
- Supports all platforms and operation systems
- No 24/7 live chat
- Based in Germany