NordVPN has a few features that make it a popular choice among VPN users, but there are also a few flaws that VPN users should be aware of. Specifically, this VPN does not block some types of ad trackers which can affect your overall level of security. Nevertheless, NordVPN has been given an Editor’s Choice Award from PC Mag and recognized by some other industry publications as a reliable and safe way to shore up your Internet privacy.
NordVPN is based in Panama where the logging regulations for VPN providers are virtually non-existent. This is beneficial in terms of the anonymity the provider can offer. They also have over 5,000+ servers in 60+ countries, a huge amount of coverage that will appeal to expats and those who do a lot of traveling. When it comes to using a VPN to access geographically-restricted websites, this one will be more than enough.
This VPN provider will work seamlessly with the VPN client of your device, but NordVPN also makes a download of their own proprietary client available. The standalone application from the provider features a simple and elegant interface that is easy to navigate. You can also run the software on your network router, and doing that gives you protection for every device that is on your network. This earns NordVPN a few points because some VPN providers will limit the number of devices that you can protect. If you choose to use the built-in VPN client of your device, only six devices are permitted simultaneous usage of the VPN.
The company’s pricing is straightforward and reasonably competitive when compared with similar providers. Customer service issues are typically handled quickly with a minimum of fuss, and a routine test of the company’s servers demonstrates a high percentage of uptime. They have also been around for a while which gives them an added measure of credibility in the industry.
Just like all VPN providers, NordVPN makes some bold claims about speed. Speed is the number one concern of individuals that purchase VPN service. They want to know how streaming media and downloading is going to affect their experience. It is normal for a VPN to be a tad slower than your unsecured Internet connection, but the difference in speed is something you will barely notice.
Tests of NordVPN that are meant to measure the speed of data transfers have been done with a wired DSL line. On average, uploads were slowed by about 15 percent and downloads were slowed by 17 percent. That is a an acceptable drop in speed and comparable to other VPN providers. It should be noted that speed varied from server to server, with the Australian servers coming in significantly below the others. It also depends on your location in relation to the VPN servers.
Most users will not observe a significant difference in their regular Internet browsing speed. If we’re being honest, speed is a relative consideration that evolves as those who use the Internet evolve. As speeds get faster we tend to get more impatient. That can account for a little frustration when using NordVPN because you will become aware of the reduction in speed as compared to your regular speed. Example, if you have a 100mbps connection normally you will see a difference.
It will be more than enough to stream while abroad.
NordVPN Features and Price
NordVPN does offer competitive pricing which is below that of many VPN providers. There are three subscription options available, just like with many VPN providers, and all of them are defaulted to renew on expiration. A month-to-month subscription, a 12-month recurring subscription and a 24 month subscription on auto renew.
Something that many users will appreciate are the variety of payment methods available for customers. You can purchase with a debit or credit card, PayPal, Paysera, or Webmoney. A great aspect of this provider is that they also accept Bitcoin as a means of payment!
You can even get a three-day free trial if you ask for it, but it would be nice if NordVPN stated this clearly before you decide to buy. If you encounter a problem with the VPN within the first 30 days of use, NordVPN will offer a full refund. This money-back guarantee is only given, however, in the event that the software provided by NordVPN fails.
As stated above, you can connect up to six devices simultaneously with NordVPN if you are using the VPN client on your device. If you use the software provided by the company to protect a router there is no limit on the devices you can connect as they all connect via the same router as one connection. In most cases, you’re going to be using the VPN client on your device. We live in a mobile society and the greater number of people are now using mobile devices to connect to the Internet.
NordVPN users are permitted a choice of several different protocols. These are PPTP, L2TP/IPSec, NordLynx based on wiregauard, ikeV2 and OpenVPN TCP/UDP. It is recommended to use the Nordlynx and or OpenVPN protocol whenever possible because it offers the highest Encryption. This protocol will give you the greatest level of security when browsing the Web. These protocols will also work with Android and iOS devices.
NordVPN server locations are vast, affording users the opportunity to skirt almost any geographical restrictions. It is critical, however, that you check with any VPN provider before you purchase service to make sure that it will work in the area you will be in. Don’t wait until you arrive in a foreign country to purchase your VPN service because you may not be able to access it. The UAE has recently imposed strict sanctions on the use of VPNs, and some countries such as Russia do not allow zero-logging by the VPN provider. Is VPN legal?
They also offer double encryption servers for extra privacy and security, dedicated p2p servers, a customizable kill switch, cybersec to bock dangerous sites and ads, and all this works in restrictive countries in China and the middle east.
Connecting to NordVPN
If you want to use the built-in VPN client of your device, connecting to NordVPN is very simple. Just configure the client with the credentials supplied by the provider and you can be using the VPN in minutes. If you choose to install NordVPN software, there are a few benefits beyond being able to secure your router. The biggest of these is a nice interface that is elegant and easy to navigate. A great feature about this interface is that it gives you a snapshot of the performance of each server. That way, you’ll be able to see at a glance which server locations are going to offer the best download speeds and connectivity.
There is even a Tor-over-VPN option for those that want an even greater level of security. Selecting this option allows you to combine the use of Tor and your VPN for what is essentially a double whammy when it comes to anonymity. Nord VPN also has a Kill Switch feature. You can configure it to monitor specific application and automatically close them if your VPN connection drops. That is very useful because many times one can be browsing and not realize that they are no longer under the protection of the VPN.
Here are the positives about NordVPN:
- Decent pricing when compared to other providers offering similar features.
- Double Encryption VPN server option for double-barreled security.
- The ability to connect unlimited devices when used to secure a router.
- Cybersec to block dangerous sites and ads.
- 5000 + servers to connect to.
There are a few negatives to be aware of:
- The speed is not the fastest and if you have a fast connection this might be frustrating.