How to Choose a VPN: A Simple Guide for Beginners
There are a lot of VPN providers out there that offer a great choice, but it makes it challenging to decide. This article aims to help you choose a VPN provider from a wide range and navigate the services.
Many VPN providers advertise on their websites that their VPN is the fastest. However, VPNs generally slow down internet connections because all the data transmitted is encrypted and passes through the VPN servers.
For most users, the download speed is vital with VPNs, which is the speed that the average user uses most often. Upload speed is essential if you frequently upload large files, for example, to the cloud or the internet . The responsiveness of the connection is also important. This is a major factor for online gamers.
All paid providers offer a VPN with no data transfer limit. Free VPNs usually offer either a limited amount of data transferred or a lower speed.
Speed is an important factor when choosing a VPN provider. So, check out the speed comparisons of the VPNs we tested.
Price of VPN
Another important and often deciding factor is price. If you do not want to pay any money but still want a VPN’s security, choose from the quality free VPNs.
Free VPNs are especially good for casual connections on publicly available Wi-Fi. For permanent or more frequent use, choose a paid VPN. Be sure to avoid unproven free VPNs and VPNs with lifetime licenses. These dubious providers can abuse your data, putting you at even greater risk instead of protecting you.
VPNs come in a variety of price ranges. To help you navigate through the VPN offerings, where a higher price does not necessarily mean better service and where even cheap VPNs can offer quality service, we have compared budget VPNs. These offer good value for money.
VPN providers often offer discounts. If you are a student, then you can get an even bigger discount.
VPN Device Support
Equally important when getting a VPN is that it supports all your devices. All VPN solutions offer apps for the most widely used operating systems. For example, Windows VPN and Mac VPN apps, as well as iPhone and Android VPN apps, can be found at each provider. Only select providers offer VPN apps for Linux, Android TV, Apple TV, Firestick, ChromeOS, and other operating systems. So check that VPN provides apps for your device before you opt for a given solution.
Secure your home network with a VPN by using it on your router. However, this solution will slow your internet connection and only offers some of the benefits of a full-fledged app. In addition, the VPN provider must also provide support for connecting through the router.
Many VPN providers also offer their apps as browser extensions. This is especially useful for devices with no app. The downside is that you only protect the internet connection within the browser, not the entire device.
Not all providers offer a free version to try, but most offer a money-back guarantee. So if you find out after you purchased a license that one of your devices is not supported, you can usually get a refund within 30 days.
Required VPN Features
A adequately chosen VPN should offer all the features you need or want. All VPNs will free you from internet restrictions, but with the small number of servers on offer, even this may not be the rule. The encryption and security of a VPN connection protect you from man-in-the-middle hacking attacks, where an attacker could read the data you are transmitting.
A VPN can also block ads, internet trackers and can also protect you from some malware and phishing. A good VPN should also protect your DNS and not store any sensitive data about your connection, even temporarily.
Other useful features a VPN can offer are multiple connections through VPN servers, a kill switch (which prevents insecure data transfer), a password manager, a check against compromising your account, and a whitelist. The latter is an easy way to disable VPN connections for certain sites only. Another useful feature is, for example, a dedicated VPN IP address.
Number of VPN Devices
Each VPN offers protection for a different number of devices; this is especially important if you have multiple devices or want to protect all of your family and loved ones’ devices. Most VPNs offer the option of 5 to 6 connected devices simultaneously . However, you can also find subscriptions that allow you to connect up to 10 devices simultaneously or even VPNs with no limit on connected devices.
If you want to use the VPN on more devices than the provider’s limit, then we recommend setting up a VPN on your router at home. This will cover your home network with one VPN connection and protect all devices.
Most VPN apps and communication with your provider are in English only. Some VPNs offer a multi-language environment and support. Everyone can choose a VPN subscription without language difficulties. A large number of VPN apps are intuitive and easy to use. Most of the time, once you set up a VPN, you control it with a single button or do not even turn it off.
VPN Servers and Country Menu
More important than the number of VPN servers is the network in different countries worldwide. A larger number of servers is also an advantage because, with more servers, the user has more computing capacity. This can theoretically lead to faster connection speeds. However, there may be other rules as it depends on the number of users. Thus, a smaller number of servers is not a strict reason not to choose a given provider.
The country menu is important because it allows you to bypass location restrictions for services and sites. It is also crucial that the VPN offers a server in your country.
A VPN server in your country of residence is especially important for everyday use. With a VPN connection through a local server, you will browse the site in the usual way without any difficulties, but if you connect through a server in another country, you will also be shown content for another location. This also applies to language and search results.
Antivirus and VPN
A large number of antivirus providers also offer VPNs. You can thus have complete protection for your device conveniently within one subscription.
With a VPN, it is advisable to use antivirus protection for maximum protection of your devices. However, a VPN will only protect you from some pitfalls and is not enough for most hacker attempts to steal data or damage your devices. Simply put, antivirus is for securing your device, and a VPN is for getting privacy on the internet.