IPVanish claims to be fast, dependable, and secure, but it’s impossible to know if that’s true when so many VPNs fail to live up to similar marketing claims. I wanted to find out for myself if this VPN is worth it.
After running extensive tests, I found that IPVanish had reliably secure connections and impressive speeds. I was also impressed that it instantly unblocks many streaming sites, including Netflix and Disney+ (my 2 favorite streaming services).
Its solid features and affordable price make IPVanish one of the best VPN providers I’ve found. With its 30-day money-back guarantee, you don’t need to just take my word for it — you can try IPVanish for yourself risk-free. You can always get a refund before 30 days are up if you decide you don’t like it.
I had great results testing IPVanish with streaming sites — it works with Netflix US, Disney+ US, HBO Max, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, BBC iPlayer, Sling TV, fuboTV, ESPN, Spotify, Vudu, Kodi, and more. You’ll have the freedom to access your accounts even when you’re abroad or on a restricted network (like at the office).
I also wanted to try a different way of accessing these sites, so I decided to test IPVanish’s SOCKS5 proxy. While SOCKS5 accessed a few more Netflix libraries, it didn’t unblock any other streaming services. This was a little disappointing because SOCKS5 can sometimes get past blocks that a normal VPN can’t. I also asked my colleagues to try the proxy with their streaming accounts and their results were the same.
IPVanish’s US servers could consistently access Netflix US with no problems at all. These servers were consistently fast enough that my streams never reduced in quality or stopped to buffer. In fact, I was able to watch an entire Stranger Things episode with no buffering.
I had some colleagues in the UAE, Germany, Scandinavia, and Canada test IPVanish with their Netflix accounts — only my Canadian co-worker could access the site. If you live in any of those other areas, IPVanish won’t be able to help you access your paid content while you’re on holiday.
I was able to unblock my US Disney+ account instantly using servers in New York, Los Angeles, Miami, and Ashburn. My episodes of The Mandalorian played all the way through with just 3-5 seconds of buffering at the beginning. IPVanish’s fast speeds gave me perfect streams even in HD.
IPVanish has less success with other Disney+ regions. The rest of my team located in the UK, Australia, Canada, Austria, and Germany were unable to get past the login screen.
IPVanish made it easy to connect to my HBO Max account and access its vast content library. I tested numerous servers in the US and all provided similar speeds and video quality. I was able to re-watch the Game of Thrones finale in 4k resolution without any stuttering or lags.
IPVanish let me easily access my Hulu account with its US servers and watch Palm Springs without any buffering or delay.
My co-worker in Manchester got similarly good results with BBC iPlayer. When she tried all 3 of IPVanish’s locations in the UK, she got connected to the service promptly and could watch her favorite shows without lags.
I had no issues connecting to my Amazon Prime Video account to watch my favorite movies and shows. All streams loaded within a few seconds and played throughout without any buffering.
I’ve tested over 50 VPNs, and IPVanish is one of the fastest VPNs I’ve used (even compared to top providers). I never encountered significant speed drops — even during peak hours. That means no sudden buffering during my favorite shows, no lag during shootouts when I gamed online, and super-speedy downloads.
IPVanish’s servers in the US, Germany and the UK only slowed down my traffic by about 12%. That’s an incredible result — other VPNs slow down my speed by 30%-50%. Its server in Australia had a larger drop, but I expected this as Australia is over 15,000km away. The drop was around 50%, which was still way better than many other VPNs can manage.
This was even true when I tested speeds at different times of the day, even during peak hours when it would usually be slower due to user congestion. Regardless of whether I connected to a local or distant server, my speeds were lightning fast. This is perfect if you want to use IPVanish while you travel abroad.
I was also impressed at the small drops in ping. Ping is the amount of time it takes your device to talk to the server it’s contacting, so low ping is critical for smooth online gaming and streaming.
Next, I tested speeds on the other protocols IPVanish provides — IKEv2, L2TP, and PPTP. I found that the speeds were the best when I used the default OpenVPN protocol. PPTP was even faster than my 89Mbps baseline speed but has very weak encryption. L2TP was the slowest, with a 60% speed reduction from my baseline. Bear in mind that some slowdown is expected when using a VPN:
I rage-quit instantly when lag causes me to get fragged in my games. I was prepared to log off again when I tested IPVanish with my favorite game (Dota 2). It turned out my fears were unfounded — while my ping was higher than some VPNs, I got zero lag during my match. I was able to use Drow Ranger’s ultimate to seal victory for my Radiant team with no speed issues at all.
If your internet speeds are being throttled or you’re concerned about DDoS attacks, you might look into an alternative VPN. ExpressVPN’s servers are great for online gaming thanks to their high speeds and safety.
Speed tip: To find IPVanish servers with the lowest ping and user load, go to the “Quick Connect” tab. Then use the dropdowns to select your home country and choose “Best Available Server.” The client will then find the fastest server in your area for you!
Speed determines how fast content uploads, so if you're torrenting or streaming, you want the speed to be somewhat identical to your regular internet speed. Since a VPN encrypts your data, it usually takes a bit longer to send your data back and forth, which can slow down your connection. However, if your ISP deliberately slows down your connection (also known as throttling) a VPN might increase your internet speed. Testing a VPN is somewhat pointless because new servers pop up and affect speed. Your speed can also differ according to your location, so your speed test might not match ours. Having said that, we tested the speed in numerous locations to provide you with the average.
Considering its low price, I was blown away by IPVanish’s server network, with 2000+ servers in 75+ locations spread out over 40,000+ IP addresses. You’ll find the most server locations in the US, UK, and Australia. Plus, it has options in Africa, the Middle East, and South America, which is rare even among the best VPNs. With so many options, I never encountered slowdowns due to overcrowded servers.
IPVanish’s auto-connect feature quickly finds the best server — I was always able to connect in just 2-4 seconds without any issues. You can also find a specific IPVanish server to use with the intuitive drop-down menus. The server menu lets you sort by ping, country, or load. You can also sort by favorites (to favorite a server, just click the star next to it).
Another big bonus is that IPVanish owns its servers rather than renting them, so your data is more secure. This is because IPVanish has much more control over how its servers are run and accessed.
Unfortunately, IPVanish doesn’t have any optimized servers for gaming, streaming, or torrenting. If this is something you look for in a VPN, I suggest you try CyberGhost. I’ve tested CyberGhost’s optimized servers and they work perfectly every time.
You won’t find any torrent-optimized servers in IPVanish’s menu, but that’s because all of IPVanish’s servers support unlimited torrenting. Even without optimized P2P servers, my torrent speeds were still super-fast when I downloaded a 2-hour documentary in the public domain. Despite the file only having 5 peers total (fewer peers typically means longer download times), it still finished in less than 15 minutes.
There are no server or data restrictions. You just have to make sure DNS and IPv6 Leak Protection are both turned on to ensure your downloads and uploads stay anonymous.
There is a DMCA notice on IPVanish’s website saying the service will comply with copyright requests, but their zero-logs policy means no one would be able to see what you were downloading to begin with. Of course, you should still never use a VPN to violate copyright or any other laws.
Although IPVanish has a “Scramble IP” feature that is supposed to hide the fact that you’re using a VPN, IPVanish doesn’t work in China. To bypass firewalls, VPNs need advanced obfuscation that makes the traffic look like typical web traffic. For some of the strongest obfuscation technology, I suggest you try ExpressVPN for China instead. It’s one of the only providers that work there.
VPN usage is frowned upon by Chinese authorities, but the common practice is that China fights VPNs by technologically blocking them, and not by chasing after the people who use them. Still just check the rules before you go, as I don’t condone using VPNs to break the law.
I was really impressed with IPVanish’s security offerings. It’s got super powerful encryption and a ton of bonuses that many top-tier VPNs don’t offer.
IPVanish uses the strong AES 256-bit encryption standard, which is the same level of data security used by US government agencies.
Although some of IPVanish’s protocols (like PPTP) support weak encryption protocols, IPVanish defaults to top-level encryption with OpenVPN or IKEv2, both of which are known for their powerful security.
I was happy to see that IPVanish offers 6 different types of VPN protocols to choose from. This was a little surprising because it’s more than many of the industry giants. Not all of the protocols are available on every device, but with so many to choose from, you should be able to find one that suits your purposes.
You can select from the below VPN protocols to prioritize speed, security, or compatibility.
IPVanish also offers a SOCKS5 proxy, which gives you maximum speeds while torrenting and can be useful for getting past internet blocks. However, it isn’t powerful enough to bypass government firewalls, and SOCKS5 clients are slightly technical to use. Also, keep in mind that it doesn’t encrypt your connection at all, so I don’t recommend using it by itself.
IPVanish has a kill switch to protect your data if you lose your VPN connection. When I intentionally crashed the app by overloading my PC with background processes, my internet shut off instantly and none of my data was revealed. You’ll need to turn the kill switch on manually (it’s turned off by default).
It isn’t included in the iOS version, which is a problem if you lose your VPN connection. It would also be nice if the desktop versions had a notification when the kill switch is tripped (like ExpressVPN has), but the important thing is that it works dependably.
I ran IPv6, DNS and WebRTC leak tests and my IP address, location, and browsing activities stayed completely hidden with IPVanish.
When you connect using the OpenVPN protocol, you can turn on a feature called Scramble. According to IPVanish, Scramble can help you access the internet in high-censorship countries. This is because it helps hide the fact that you’re using a VPN.
My team and I tested it in a few different locations and found that it worked in some countries (like Turkey) but wasn’t powerful enough for China. This is not surprising as there are only a few VPNs that work reliably in China.
The IPVanish apps for Android, Amazon Fire TV, and Amazon Fire Stick include a split tunneling feature. This allows you to exempt certain apps from VPN protection and is helpful for location-sensitive programs like your banking or weather apps. For example, if I want to check my bank balance but am connected to a server in Turkey, it will look suspicious and set off a fraud alert. Adding an exemption for my online bank prevents me from getting frozen out of my accounts.
IPVanish’s iOS app offers only domain-based split tunneling, which means you can include or exempt certain website domains from the VPN connection, but not mobile apps.
I was excited to see that IPVanish offers a free subscription for VIPRE when you sign up for its yearly plan. VIPRE is mid-level antivirus software that can protect up to 10 devices from malware and ransomware. Although I wouldn’t pay for VIPRE separately, it’s a decent option for a free add-on.
For an additional couple of dollars per month, you can add SugarSync cloud storage to your yearly subscription. This gets you file storage that is secured with AES 256 encryption and it’s a lot cheaper than paying for the service separately.
Although IPVanish is a no-logs VPN, the fact that IPVanish is based in the US is troubling. I prefer a VPN that is based outside of the Fourteen Eyes Alliance, like ExpressVPN, so I never have to worry about government requests for data.
IPVanish received requests for user logs from the US government. This isn’t unusual, but despite claiming to be a no-logs VPN, it surrendered what information it had in a 2016 court case — including when the suspect had logged in to IPVanish.
Thankfully, IPVanish is now owned by a completely different company and has done a full audit of all security and privacy practices both internally and externally.
Headquartered in the US, a Fourteen Eyes Alliance country, IPVanish’s jurisdiction is less than ideal. The US collects data on web users and shares it with other countries as part of an intelligence-gathering agreement, which is terrible for your privacy. Thankfully, IPVanish is truly a zero-logs VPN, so surveilling its servers wouldn’t provide anything useful to investigators.
IPVanish’s privacy practices have been assessed by Leviathan Security Group, an independent third-party auditor. The results proved that IPVanish fully conforms to its no-logs policy, meaning that it doesn’t store any information on users’ traffic or specific usage. This provides you the comfort of a tried and tested policy which is especially important given the previous privacy incident.
IPVanish puts no limit on how many connections you can have at once. This is a rare feature among VPNs.
I tested streaming Netflix on 7 devices at once including laptops, smartphones, and tablets (both Android and iOS-based). I only noticed very slight slowdowns — I couldn’t stream in HD on 7 devices at the same time, but I never had to wait for buffering in standard definition.
You get the device compatibility you’d expect from a top-tier VPN provider with IPVanish. It supports 5 different languages on a ton of devices, including many that only work with higher-end VPNs, this includes:
Even for beginners, IPVanish is easy to install with native clients for common operating systems like Windows, macOS, iOS, and Android. I got it up and running on mobile and desktop in less than 5 minutes.
In rare cases, VPNs hide malware in their installers or clients to secretly collect data on you. Just to be certain that IPVanish wasn’t one of them, I ran a malware scan on both the installer and the app itself, and am glad to say both came up completely clean.
Online setup guides are available if you have trouble with setup or uninstallation on any given platform, but you shouldn’t have any trouble if you’ve downloaded and installed programs before.
Depending on what device you’re using it on, IPVanish’s feature set will change slightly. Here’s a basic rundown of what you get from each:
|Protocols||Kill Switch||Split Tunneling||Leak Protection||Auto Connect||Scramble|
|Windows||OpenVPN, IKEv2, L2TP, PPTP||✔||✘||✔||✔||✔|
|macOS||OpenVPN, L2TP, IKEv2||✔||✘||✔||✔||✔|
|Android||OpenVPN, IKEv2 (Beta only)||✔||✔||✔||✔||✔|
|Amazon Fire OS||OpenVPN||✘||✔||✔||✔||✔|
IPVanish doesn’t have apps for game consoles like Xbox or PS4, or Smart TVs. However, you can still protect your online traffic on game systems and other devices that don’t support IPVanish directly by connecting via your router.
IPVanish’s desktop clients are easy to use. It’s simple to find the server you need. You can double-click a location on the map from the home screen, or you can sort servers by location, ping, load, and favorites.
My favorite thing about IPVanish’s interface is all of the information about your connection on the Quick Connect home screen. You’ll see all the standard data, like which server you’re connected to, your new IP, and how long you’ve been connected. You also get a detailed chart of your download and upload speeds, the total data sent and received, and your current VPN protocol.
It’s nice having so much information in one place, and it’s just another detail that helps cement IPVanish as one of the top VPNs on the market. I also really appreciate that the apps are almost identical across platforms, that way I don’t have to waste time learning where everything is when I switch devices.
IPVanish is compatible with Android mobile and tablet devices, as well as iOS devices. It also works with Android TVs, and there’s a direct download of the APK on IPvanish’s website in case the Google Play store is blocked in your area.
The apps for Android and iOS devices look a little different, especially since Android got an updated UI, but they are both easy to set up and simple to use. They are also pretty lightweight, so they won’t take up much storage on your device.
A unique selling point of IPVanish is it’s one of the only VPNs with native support for Amazon Fire Stick, Fire TV, and Roku. All you have to do is download the app, log in, and connect. I had it all set up in less than 5 minutes.
You’ll find handy guides on the IPVanish website for router setup. If you prefer manual installation over the native client, the IPVanish website has detailed how-tos for manual configuration.
If you need to contact support, you can get answers through 24/7 chat, email, phone, or the extensive online knowledge base. Support is also available directly from the mobile apps, in case you need to share diagnostic files for troubleshooting. In general, the live chat was the fastest, so that’s the option I’d recommend.
If you want to chat with a live agent, click “Live Chat” in the top-right corner of the website and you’ll be prompted to pick a department. Then input your subject line and question. I occasionally had to wait for a representative to get to my place in the queue, but it never took more than 2 minutes.
I found IPVanish’s AI chatbot surprisingly helpful on its own, providing links to knowledge base articles that answered many of my questions about setting up, servers, and features. I got answers to basic inquiries using the AI bot faster than with a live agent.
IPVanish offers phone support for 7 different countries, but it’s usually too busy to be immediately helpful. I asked a live chat rep what IPVanish’s hours were, and he said phone support is available 7am – 7pm CST (UTC -6). Unfortunately, I called the US number twice and both times I was put on hold for 5 minutes before being prompted to leave a message and hang up.
You can opt to leave a message for support to get further information emailed to you. Email support replied quickly and answered my question within an hour.
I was most impressed by IPVanish’s online knowledge base. You can find a ton of information, including general FAQ documents along with detailed setup guides and in-depth articles.
We personally test the customer support team of every VPN we review. This means asking technical question through the live chat feature (where applicable) and measuring the response time for email questions. Whether you need to connect to a specific server, change your security protocol, or configure a VPN on your router, finding a VPN with quality customer support should be important to you.
IPVanish gives you the same security features whether you sign up for 1 month, 3 months, or a year, making it one of the best choices for a monthly VPN. The 2-year plan is the best deal — you get the lowest price with a longer commitment. Just be aware that auto-renewal is turned on by default. Be sure to turn it off before the end of your plan if you don’t like the service, or you’ll continue to be charged.
Although I wouldn’t say that IPVanish is expensive, there are better deals out there. For example, CyberGhost’s 2-year + 2 months plan gets you optimized servers for streaming and gaming for just $2.19 per month. You can even try CyberGhost’s features without restrictions for 45 days.
You can pay with major credit and debit cards or PayPal. Unfortunately, there aren’t any anonymous payment options, so you need to give IPVanish your billing information to subscribe. However, this data is only used for payment processing and won’t be shared.
With a 2-year plan, you have up to 30 days to try IPVanish’s speeds and security and still get a refund. Since the 30-day guarantee isn’t valid with monthly subscriptions, I recommend going for the longer plans just in case you don’t like the service and want a refund.
The cancellation and refund process was super easy — I just logged into my account on the IPVanish website and clicked the “Subscription” tab on my dashboard. Then I clicked the “Cancel Now” button and confirmed the request. I love that I got my money back automatically on the website. It’s refreshing to find a provider with automatic refunds that you can process by yourself.
After I confirmed my request, my refund was processed immediately — the money appeared back in my PayPal account within an hour.
Remember that the money-back guarantee isn’t available if you buy an IPVanish subscription through the Apple or Google Play Store due to how those stores process refunds. I recommend you sign up for IPVanish directly on the website so you can get a refund if the service isn’t for you.
With impressive speeds for streaming, gaming, torrenting, and more, IPVanish’s fast servers made me forget that I was using a VPN at all. A secure and expansive server network, quality customer support, and a low price make IPVanish excellent value for your money and one of the best VPN providers available.
IPVanish’s impressive features across its platforms make it a good deal for the price. You don’t need to take my word for it, sign up for IPVanish today and try all its features out for free. If the service doesn’t work for you, you can get a refund within 30 days with its money-back guarantee.
Yes, IPVanish works great and is super fast — I hardly noticed any difference in my connection speeds. It secures your data with military-grade encryption and with a strict no-logs policy, you don’t have to worry about your online activities being revealed.
As a bonus, it comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee, so you can test IPVanish out for yourself.
No, IPVanish doesn’t have a free version, but you can use the money-back guarantee when you sign up for the yearly subscription. If you only need a VPN for a short period, you can take advantage and easily get your money back before the 30 days are up. This is more than enough time to try all of IPVanish’s features in full.
Before your cancellation request is confirmed, you may get an offer for 2 months for free. If you need a VPN for an even longer time, there are some high-quality free VPNs available — but they come with some limitations like ads, data caps, and throttled servers.
Yes, IPVanish is safe. It has a no-logs policy, as well as several in-depth security features — such as an automatic kill switch and leak protection — that will keep you safe online. While IPVanish has suffered a data scandal in the past, the VPN is now under new, more trustworthy ownership.
IPVanish is the perfect VPN for Amazon Fire Stick as it comes with its own native app. Just download the app from the Amazon App Store. Note that while you might be able to find and install IPVanish on first-generation Fire Sticks, using it may damage the device. You’ll need a second-generation model or later for IPVanish to work.
You can try IPVanish out risk-free with your Fire Stick as it comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee. If it doesn’t work on your device, you can always get a refund before the time is up.
Yes, you can easily unblock Netflix US with IPVanish. I used servers all around the country to watch episodes of Stranger Things and movies like Murder Mystery in HD. Better yet, I never had a big reveal ruined by annoying lag — my worst nemesis when it comes to streaming.
Try IPVanish with Netflix and your other streaming accounts risk-free. If you cancel within the 30-day time frame, for any reason at all, you’ll get a full refund.
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