IPVanish unabashedly claims to be 'The World's Best VPN. 'It is based in the US in Orlando, Florida, and its origins go back to 2012 when it was started by Mudhook Media. In 2017, the parent company of Mudhook Media, known as the Highwinds Network Group, got taken over by StackPath, that is based in Dallas, Texas. This VPN is notable as they own a large majority of their data center hardware allowing them more control of their network.
While IPVanish maintains a “Strict zero-logs policy,” there was an incident dating back to 2016 (prior to the acquisition) where IPVanish provided login information to the Department of Homeland Security.
IPVanish does not offer a free trial, and neither is there an option for a lifetime subscription. Unlike some other VPN’s, there is a simple offer of just three different plans, that vary on length and pricing, all with the identical set of features.
The shortest plan is month-to-month, which currently costs $10.00 (about £8) for the 30 days of service due to a sale, as the regular price is $11.99 (about £9) monthly. Moving to the 3 month plan comes to $26.99 (about £21) due every three months, which comes out to a monthly cost of $6.49 (about £5) per month, a savings of 25% off the full price.
Check out the annual plan for IPVanish’s best deal, which for a single payment of $77.49 (about £60) annually, represents a savings of 46% off the regular price, and comes to their best cost of $6.49 (about £5) per month.
While the pricing for IPVanish puts it to the premium end of VPN providers, be on the lookout for coupons that can bring the price down. For example, we were able to find coupons that brought the cost down by up to 57%, depending on the length of service chosen.
Payment options for the IPVanish service are quite basic, being limited to just the major credit cards, and PayPal. Disappointingly, there are no options to pay via gift cards, nor cryptocurrency.
This VPN service does have some impressive stats: 40,000+ shared IPs, 1,100+ VPN servers in 60+ countries, unlimited P2P traffic, up to ten simultaneous connections, 24/7 customer support via email and live chat, and a 7-day money-back guarantee.
The apps are a powerful highlight. For starters, there are loads of them including Windows, Mac, Linux, Android, iOS, even less common platforms like Amazon’s Fire TV, Windows Phone, Chromebook and support for routers. Furthermore, they're absolutely stuffed with unusual features, options and settings, trampling all over the horribly basic "list of flags and a Connect button"-type apps you'll usually get elsewhere.
For example, the Windows app features a kill switch to avoid leaking data, IPv6 Leak Protection that forces data to go through the less leaky IPv4, and OpenVPN Scramble, which is designed to bypass firewalls that detect and block OpenVPN traffic.
There are some issues, too. The apps are powerful, but that means there's a lot to learn, and we noticed a few small usability issues. There are no kill switches on the mobile apps, and the price is very much at the premium end of the VPN range.
Overall, though, if you need its ten simultaneous connections, or the power and configurability of its apps, take the plunge with this VPN service, and if somehow you end up unhappy you're protected by a 7-day money-back guarantee.
The good news continued when we tried some real-world tests. Servers were always up, and connected quickly; download speeds were above average; torrents are supported on every server, and we were able to unblock BBC iPlayer and US Netflix. However, a small number of servers didn't appear to be in their advertised locations.
Verdict and conclusion
IPVanish is a VPN with a bit of a dichotomy. This full featured service has a number of strong points, such as the wide platform support, the fast download speeds, robust apps, the support for torrents, and the 24/7 support, making this easily worthy of consideration.
However, there are a number of misses, including the lack of a free trial, and the incident from a few years ago that calls into question their zero logs policy, made even more concerning that IPVanish is US-based, and lacks anonymous payment options. Ultimately, the user needs to decide if IPVanish suits their needs, taking into careful consideration of the pros and cons.
Client software platforms: Win, Mac, Android, iOS, Amazon Fire TV, Windows Phone
Native support platforms: Win, Mac, Android, iOS, Linux, Chrome OS, open-source routers
Supported protocols: L2TP/IPSec, OpenVPN, PPTP, IKEv2
No. of servers: 1100+
No. of countries: 60+
Country of registration: United States of America
Payment options: Credit card, PayPal
Real name necessary? No
Encryption protocol: AES-256
Data usage: Unlimited
Bandwidth usage: Unlimited
Max. no, of simultaneously connected devices: 10
Customer support: Email, live chat