ExpressVPN in the year 2020 has been deemed by most critics as the best all purpose VPN solution on the market. However, it does cost more than most other VPN products, but is it actually worth the extra charge?
In this review I will test ExpressVPN for streaming, gaming, security features, and consistency. Priced higher than it’s competitors, ExpressVPN must offer something special!
With ExpressVPN you can unblock all streaming services in Ultra HD quality including Netflix, HBO Max, Hulu, and BBC iPlayer.
Streaming with ExpressVPN
Perhaps the most common use of VPNs these days is for streaming, wherein ExpressVPN became masters. It works with Netflix (US and other regions), Hulu, Amazon Prime, HBO, BBC iPlayer, ITV, and many others.
It is also effective in unblocking YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, and Google in restricted countries. Furthermore if you have a specific channel in mind and they do not support it, you can send a request to add support for that channel and they will get right on it.
Torrenting With ExpressVPN
ExpressVPN servers are optimized for Peer to Peer connection, which will allow you to download any torrent file, while keeping your identity hidden and not affecting your download speed. Their strategic headquarters location in a privacy friendly country ensures that your torrenting activities are safe and anonymous.
It is surely the biggest concern when purchasing a VPN product, will my connection speed be throttled by the VPN server?
ExpressVPN has managed to provide their user base with a reliable network delivering high speed connections on a consistent basis. consistency in quality of service is a very important distinction to make when comparing VPNs.
My speed test while connected to a ExpressVPN did not show any significant slowing down or throttling of my connection, you can just connect and forget it’s there.
How Many Servers Does ExpressVPN Have?
With 3000+ servers in 160 locations, ExpressVPN is the clear cut leader in the industry in terms of location diversity, with servers are spread across the Americas, Europe, Pacific Asia, Middle East, and Africa.
If you intend to use ExpressVPN for streaming, security, privacy, gaming, torrenting, or any other reason, you will most probably find a location that works best for you. It is particularly advantageous for business users who often require connections in uncommon regions of the world.
What Devices are Compatible with ExpressVPN?
ExpressVPN has a very simple and easy to use app that is available on just about any device. iOS, Android, Mac OS, Windows, Linux, Amazon e-readers, BlackBerrys, Smart TVs, Chromebooks, and any router with a built in VPN client.
You can use the app on 5 devices simultaneously per account. Although that may sound as a restriction, but you can easily work around that and set up ExpressVPN on your router, then all your devices will be go through the VPN tunnel.
Ease of Use
The ExpressVPN app is easy to use on all devices. First you need to install the app. After that just sign in with your account, choose the location you wish to connect to, click the connect button and you are done.
24/7 live chat support is also available to help you out if you face any issues setting up your devices, connecting, or any other issue related to the service. Very helpful and responsive support team, you wont wait long before getting your issue fixed.
ExpressVPN is one of the very few providers that offer an app for routers as well. If you opt for the router app option, you automatically secure all devices connected to that router circumventing the limit on number of devices. Moreover you can secure devices that do not traditionally support VPNs like Smart TVs, and Apple TVs.
ExpressVPN has browser extensions for both Chrome and Firefox browsers. But keep in mind when using a browser extension you are only securing your browser traffic. Any additional activity you are doing will be compromised.
ExpressVPN Security Features
ExpressVPN uses the strongest encryption algorithm available today, as well as DNS and IP leak protection. Additionally they offer split tunneling for added security.
What Type of Encryption Does ExpressVPN Use?
ExpressVPN uses military-grade encryption to protect your data. The 256-bit AES encryption algorithm uses a 256 bit key to encrypt your data packet, where that is the only key that is able to decrypt the data as well. Which makes it extremely hard to crack if the attacker doesn’t have the decryption key. Additionally the DNS and IPv6 leak protection modes, as well as the kill switch feature ensure your anonymity at all times.
Available VPN protocols:
- OpenVPN (UDP & TCP)
Does ExpressVPN Maintain a No-Logs Policy?
ExpressVPN operates from the British Virgin Islands which means that they are not bound by any US or EU regulations. Which is significant because under those data retention regulations companies are legally required to provide their user data to governments when asked to. Fortunately ExpressVPN has circumvented this issue. Therefore allowing them to maintain a strict no-logs policy.
Can ExpressVPN Bypass China, Iran, and Saudi Arabia Firewalls?
Yes it can unblock services like Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Skype, Whatsapp, and many more apps that these countries and others block. Bypassing these firewalls is not a feature you will find in all VPNs.
Does ExpressVPN Provide a Kill Switch?
The kill switch is an additional security measure that is meant to secure your IP when connections drop. It is available on Windows, Mac, Linux, Android, and routers. However, it is not available on iOS. Unfortunately, there is nothing ExpressVPN or any other VPN provider can do when it comes to iOS and the kill switch until the OS starts permitting apps to change connection settings. Currently iOS does not allow that and therefore VPNs cannot develop a kill switch for iOS.
Does ExpressVPN Offer Split Tunneling?
Yes, they offer the ability to pick and choose which apps you want to use the VPN for. That is while still allowing to use the rest of your apps or browsing locally. With the split tunneling feature, it is very easy to add and remove apps, giving you even more flexibility in choosing where your traffic goes.
Does ExpressVPN Offer DNS & IP Leak Protection?
The basic mechanism of a VPN is to deploy an encrypted tunnel for your data to pass through. However, leaks in the secured tunnel are common occurrence. A leak would compromise your online data to your ISP, they would be able to see everything your doing. Furthermore your traffic would be vulnerable to third-party attacks. In addition to protecting you from leaks, they also offer a leak test so you can see for your self if your traffic is compromised.
The company offers 24/7 live chat support as well as a ticketing system with fast respond times. The support team is very friendly and helpful, do not hesitate to contact them about any issue you are facing with the product. On the other hand if you do not wish to use the live support feature, you can check their extensive FAQs and guides section.
They offer three subscription packages:
- Monthly subscription for $12.95 per month.
- 6-month subscription for $9.99 per month.
- 12-month subscription for $8.32 per month.
Which package you choose will depend on your specific needs. However, If you intend to keep your VPN subscription for an extended period of time, definitely go with the yearly plan as you would save 35% as apposed to the monthly plan.
You can sign up with a wide variety of payment gateways. Mastercard, Visa, American Express, Discover, PayPal, Bitcoin, they all work.
ExpressVPN Review – Bottom Line
Even though it’s pricier than it’s competitors, they do make up for it with their excellent service. They provide fast connections for streaming, gaming, and torrenting. Furthermore you can basically unblock anything you want with their vast server network. All the while protecting your identity and keeping you hidden online.
ExpressVPN does not offer a free trial. However, there is a 30-day money-back guarantee. If you purchase the product and for some reason dislike it, you can contact the support team and ask for a full refund if you are still within the 30-day window.