VPN (Virtual Private Network – learn more about what is VPN here) services are great options for people who are concerned about their online privacy and security. These days, it’s not uncommon for VPNs to be used by even regular individuals, as internet activity is constantly being monitored by ISPs (Internet Service Providers).
On top of this, it’s quite easy for hackers to track your online activity using the IP address your ISP assigns you. This is an easy way for these cybercriminals to steal and use your personal data against you. Since VPN services assign you to dynamic IPs that change constantly, you are able to browse the web and download content without the worry of being tracked.
Apart from privacy and security concerns, VPNs can be used to bypass geo-blocked websites and content. After you download and install the free VPN software offered by IPvanish or HideMyAss, all you have to do is connect to a different server to freely and securely access any website.
Anonymity and encrypted security are the top reasons why VPN services are so widely used all over the world these days. Any frequent online user would benefit a great deal by subscribing to a VPN to protect themselves.
The only question left is, which VPN is right for you?
Ipvanish (EST 1998) and HideMyAss (EST 2002) are top-notch VPN services based in the U.S. and UK respectively, and are offered at competitive prices. Both utilize shared dynamic IP addresses with secured encryptions, offering amazing security and privacy to any online user or small business. Though both are great, you might be inclined to choose one or the other based on your personal needs.
The following article discusses these two VPN options so that you can determine which one might benefit you more.
Both IPvanish and HideMyAss boast a high number of servers. IPvanish offers 180+ servers in 60+ countries, with 25,000+ IP addresses. On the other hand, HideMyAss offers a vast difference of 855 servers in 182 countries, with 115,244+ IP addresses.
At first glance, anyone would think the larger number of servers and IPs would be better, but keep in mind that IPvanish does offer unlimited server switching, while HideMyAss does not.
The software for both services are absolutely free; all you pay for is the VPN service itself. There are, however, noticeable differences in the physical appearance of the two.
IPvanish’s VPN software is very simple, with all options featured on one page. All available IP addresses are labeled with their respective locations (city/country), response times (speed/ms), and servers. You also have the option to auto-reconnect and three different protocols.
HideMyAss’ VPN software looks, at first glance, much more modern than IPvanish’s. With multiple tabs and a bonus “map view,” it looks far more aesthetically-pleasing than IPvanish. HideMyAss even offers live support directly through the software, speed tests for each IP address, automated server switching, and third party IP verification.
All in all, HideMyAss’ software seems to be much more intricate than IPvanish’s.
Both IPvanish and HideMyAss offer the highest VPN speeds on the market. However, IPvanish might have the upper hand in this area, seeing as its parent company owns one of the nation’s fastest fiber optic data backbones.
While HideMyAss is definitely fast, IPvanish does seem to generally exceed in the speed category.
Privacy & security
With a 256-Bit AES Encryption, IPvanish might look like the clear winner in comparison to HideMyAss’ 128-Bit Blowfish Encryption. However, both encryptions are virtually impenetrable, and a 128-Bit encryption is still considered today to be of top-notch security.
You might want to keep in mind that HideMyAss does save temporary connection logs for about six months, while IPvanish does not. This might be due to HideMyAss’ distaste for torrenting, as they seem to practice DMCA notice forwarding. On the other hand, IPvanish does not care whether you torrent or not, as it protects itself by not keeping any single log. However, you should also note that after 6 months, HideMyAss permanently destroys its logs, and probably only keeps them in the first place because of its host country’s regulation laws.
IPvanish’s VPN also includes free NAT firewall but no IP-bind technology, while HideMyAss’ does not offer NAT firewall but has protected IP-bind technology.
The basic costs aren’t that different between the two services, but IPvanish is slightly cheaper when purchasing one month or annual subscriptions. IPvanish costs $10/month or $6.49/month with an annual subscription, while HideMyAss costs $11.52/month or $6.55/month with an annual subscription. However, IPvanish does charge slightly more when purchasing a 3-month subscription at $8.99/month, and HideMyAss offers $8.33/month for a 6-month subscription.
Both services offer numerous payment methods, including bitcoin, PayPal, popular credit cards, bank transfer, JCB, etc. As both cover various options, it’s unlikely that you’d come across any issues paying for the service you prefer.
The only notable difference between HideMyAss and IPvanish is its money-back guarantee. IPvanish does offer a 100% money-back guarantee, but this only lasts for 7 days of your purchase. Alternatively, HideMyAss offers a 30-day guarantee, which you can use as a “free trial” feature.
As previously mentioned, both services offer absolutely free software when you purchase a subscription. However, HideMyAss does offer a free web proxy option on its website, which you can use to access blocked websites. Of course, this wouldn’t offer the same security or privacy as the actual VPN software.
All in all, neither offers blatantly free VPN services. However, you can use the money-back guarantees to your advantage and try out the VPNs within their respective guarantee dates.
Support & language options
IPvanish boasts a 24/7 customer support system, but does not offer live support. However, you are free to submit support tickets at any time, and you will receive a response via email. On the other hand, HideMyAss offers both email support and live chat directly through its software. The website also provides a phone number and time schedule for anyone wishing to contact the customer support team directly.
As for language diversity, HideMyAss offers its entire website in nine languages – English, German, French, Italian, Spanish, Turkish, Russian, Portuguese, and Indonesian. Additionally, the support and contact page is available in English, German, Spanish, French, Russian, and Turkish.
IPvanish’s VPN website isn’t offered in alternative languages, but the support and contact page does offer English, French, Dutch, and Turkish.
Though you have access to direct support tickets and live contact, you could refer to other modes of information offered by both websites.
Both HideMyAss and IPvanish offers Facebook, Google+, and Twitter profiles for up-to-date news and contact. Each website also have blogs that you can read for more information and news, as well as community forums where you can ask fellow VPN users for help or VPN-related communication.
Apart from the more popular aspects of these VPN services, each offer extra features that you might benefit from. They are listed below.
- Multi-device usage and support – PC, MAC, iOS, Android, Windows, Linux, PlayStation, Xbox, etc.
- VPN router tutorials and support.
- Unlimited bandwidth.
- Malware protection.
- Business VPN package and support.
So, which one should you choose?
Choosing between these two great services is difficult, to say the least, as they offer similar services and costs. However, there are definitely small differences that might benefit individuals of varying needs.
IPvanish is perfect for frequent downloaders, as it offers slightly faster speeds and torrent freedom. It also does offer double the encryption that HideMyAss offers. The fact that this VPN does not record any connection logs would work in your favor.
Users who wish to pay slightly less will probably also prefer IPvanish, that is, as long as you plan on purchasing one month or an annual subscription.
HideMyAss is more suitable for individuals who want more diversity in their server and IP address choices, as well as those who do more frequent web browsing rather than downloading. Its vast country list offers more opportunities for bypassing specific location-based restrictions, so virtually any website and online content will be accessible.
If software quality and support is highly important to you, HideMyAss is most likely the better option as well, since the inclusive program and live support options would be advantageous.
Overall, neither option would do you any harm. Whether you choose IPvanish or HideMyAss, you still receive the same privacy and security protection and high-speed connection. The great thing about them is their money-back guarantees, so if you’re not entirely sure whether you prefer one or the other, try them both out and determine which best suits your particular needs!