When it comes to choosing a VPN, there are so many options available it can be tricky to decide which is the best one for you. Ultimately, which VPN you choose depends on what you’ll use it for and what features you’re looking for. That’s why we’ve put together this head-to-head comparison of two of the most popular choices: PureVPN and IPVanish, so you can make an informed decision.
In this article, we’ll compare these two VPNs across all the important categories in order to determine a winner. These categories include features, pricing, streaming capabilities, servers and performance, security and privacy protection, customer service, and more.
Ready to find out which one comes out on top? Pure VPN vs IPVanish, Let’s go!
PureVPN vs IPVanish: Highlights
So, let’s kick things off with pricing. PureVPN is slightly cheaper than IPVanish, with its two-year plan + three months free costing $2.08 per month compared to $2.92 per month for IPVanish’s two-year plan. If you don’t feel like committing to 24 months, each provider offers one-year options, with PureVPN coming in at $3.32 per month when billed annually and IPVanish costing $3.99 monthly.
If you’re only looking for a single-month subscription, which is great when traveling abroad for a short trip, IPVanish will set you back $11.99, whereas PureVPN comes at a similar $10.95 for its basic package.
Both providers offer money-back guarantees, so you can try them out risk-free before committing to a longer-term plan. PureVPN gives you 31 days to change your mind, and IPVanish offers 30 days.
Both providers offer the ability to pay by credit, debit card, or via PayPal. However, PureVPN also offers the ability to remain completely anonymous with payments via cryptocurrency.
Which platforms do these VPNs support? And more importantly, what can they do?
Apps and connections
While IPVanish offers unlimited device connections, PureVPN is limited to 10 simultaneous connections. However, IPVanish supports fewer platforms with its app – alongside Windows, macOS, iOS, and Android, PureVPN also offers a dedicated Linux app. Though you can install IPVanish manually on Linux, this might be a bit more effort for some.
Both VPNs offer router support, allowing you to protect all your devices with just one connection. This is great for people with multiple devices who want to protect their smart home from spying eyes.
PureVPN offers comparable features to IPVanish, including unlimited bandwidth, unlimited server switching, split tunneling for improved speed and security when using multiple devices simultaneously, an ad blocker for added privacy protection, and a kill switch. IPVanish also offers unlimited bandwidth split tunneling but doesn’t offer an ad blocker – though it does include automatic wifi protection.
PureVPN vs IPVanish: Streaming capabilities
Using a VPN for streaming has become increasingly popular in recent years, and it’s no surprise why. A VPN can help you access more content from streaming services like Netflix and BBC iPlayer and keep your data secure when using public wifi networks.
Both PureVPN and IPVanish have good streaming capabilities, enabling both to access Netflix US and Netflix UK. They also worked to watch Hulu, HBO Max, Sky Go, CBS, NBC, ITV, Peacock, Disney+, and Channel 4. Unfortunately, IPVanish struggles with consistently unblocking BBC iPlayer and ABC.
IPVanish is one of the fastest VPNs available on the market, with average download speeds of 488 Mbps. Therefore, it is better if you are looking for a fast VPN primarily for streaming purposes.
Which of these VPNs works in China?
Due to political censorship, China blocks many Western services and websites, including some VPNs. Aside from blocking popular social media apps like Facebook and Instagram, the Chinese government restricts access to news websites, streaming services, and search engines.
Unfortunately, neither of these VPNs works in China. IPVanish has said that it does not provide service in China due to the level of censorship in the country. PureVPN also does not work in China and has been known to be blocked by the Great Firewall.
If you need a reliable VPN for use in China, you should look into other providers, such as NordVPN or Surfshark, which have proven track records of working in the country even during times of heightened censorship activity.
See also: Best VPNs for China
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Setup and interface
How user-friendly are these VPN services? Well, regarding setup and interface, both providers offer easy-to-use apps that make connecting to their networks quick and simple. In addition, the apps are well-designed with intuitive user interfaces that make them suitable even for beginners who may not know how VPNs work.
Once you’ve paid and signed up for each service, you can head to your account area to download the dedicated app for Windows or macOS. If you’re looking for an app for Android or iOS, you can find this in the Play Store or Apple App Store.
Installation and ease of use
Installing either of these VPN apps is super easy and a breeze to do! All the necessary components and drivers are automatically installed on your hard drive with a wizard that takes up little space. Then, just log in using your credentials and see how quickly they connect – they even remember it for next time, so no more tedious login is required. With these lightweight, install-friendly VPNs, you’ll surf securely in minutes!
PureVPN’s desktop app makes finding the server of your dreams a breeze. You can search for a particular country or city on the home screen, as well as stream-friendly servers that have been verified to work with popular streaming services like ABC and BBC iPlayer. In addition, the settings menu is filled with tons of customizable options that give users added flexibility – most people won’t need to spend any time there, but advanced users will appreciate the level of customization available.
On mobile, PureVPN offers an easy-to-use app with a large connect button at its center and tabs along the top to choose your desired location quickly. While the number of changeable settings has been reduced slightly compared to the desktop version, there’s still plenty of flexibility here for more experienced users.
IPVanish has a lot of bells and whistles, which can be intimidating for new users, but after a glance at its menus, you’ll find that they are clearly laid out and easy to use. For example, split tunneling makes it simple to choose which apps will be routed through the VPN, and auto-connect or obfuscation features can be turned on with just a few clicks in the settings. The app also allows you to switch between different protocols depending on your preferences. Nifty advanced features, like XOR obfuscation, block LAN access, and split tunneling, are available in desktop and mobile versions.
We’re big fans of IPVanish’s smart connect feature, too – it’ll automatically connect you to the fastest available server, so you don’t have to worry about finding the best connection! Plus, users have an unprecedented amount of choice regarding servers – the app shows ping and server load times for easy server selection.
Both VPNs have intuitive software that makes finding and connecting to a server simple. However, when it comes down to it, IPVanish takes the win for ease of use.
Servers and performance
PureVPN has over 6500 servers in over 71 countries, while IPVanish has over 2000 servers in 75 countries, so both providers have good coverage worldwide. In terms of performance, however, IPVanish is slightly faster than PureVPN, although both provide good speeds overall. This difference is unlikely to be noticeable unless you download large files where every bit of speed counts.
While PureVPN beats IPVanish in its network size, many virtual servers are marked with a faint “V” on their location page. Generally, virtual servers are used in places that are hard to maintain, too expensive, and often slower than physical ones. As a result, IPVanish takes the top spot here.
PureVPN vs IPVanish: Security
VPNs are your first line of defense when protecting your data from prying eyes. From hackers, eavesdroppers, and websites tracking your activities to ISPs or even government agencies – these VPNs utilize top-of-the-line encryption and other security measures so you can rest assured that your data is safe and secure.
IPVanish offers five tunneling protocols to keep your data safe, including OpenVPN secured with AES-256 encryption, an RSA-2048 handshake, and Perfect Forward Secrecy. You can also benefit from XOR Obfuscation, a stealth protocol that disguises OpenVPN traffic as regular HTTPS – allowing you to bypass government firewalls that attempt to block VPNs in certain countries. IPVanish also offers a kill switch function, an auto-connect feature for optimal security when joining unknown wifi networks, and full protection against IP/DNS/WebRTC leaks. These features ensure that everything sent over the internet stays within the encrypted tunnel and offer total online privacy and protection when doing sensitive tasks.
Aside from using the same encryption level and DNS/WebRTC leak protection as IPVanish, PureVPN also includes two protocols – SSTP and PPTP. However, the value of these inclusions is questionable due to PPTP’s age (and various security vulnerabilities) and SSTP’s limited platform support without offering any real advantage over OpenVPN. Both services use 256-bit encryption, which generally provides uncrackable protection at present; however, IPVanish still manages to outshine PureVPN in terms of security features.
It is important to consider the local regulations and warrants that a VPN may have to abide by in its region – as more restrictive countries could potentially impact a user’s privacy. This makes choosing a VPN provider based in a country without heavy surveillance or data retention policies especially advantageous.
IPVanish is headquartered in the United States, an option with notable disadvantages. The US holds some of the most powerful intelligence agencies on the planet and can use warrants and gag orders to acquire information about a company’s users without their knowledge.
IPVanish goes to great lengths to ensure that data collection is never a risk, with a very stringent no-logging policy. It stores absolutely no usage or connection logs and does not keep any records of what is done while on the VPN – not even storing source IP addresses or servers used. This makes it impossible for authorities to acquire valuable historical data (even if they served a warrant).
PureVPN originates from Hong Kong, and though this location is technically part of China (which has some of the toughest online censorship laws), allowing anonymity through sign-up should mitigate this issue to some degree.
PureVPN’s logging policy needs to be clearer. Despite claiming users were anonymous, the company was able to provide user timestamps and source IP addresses in a 2017 FBI investigation – though it has since updated its policy, so this should no longer be an issue. Potential customers have good reason to consider this when selecting their VPN provider.
Both providers offer plenty of configuration options allowing users to customize their connections according to their needs, such as selecting specific ports or protocols for increased security or enabling certain features like kill switches that automatically disconnect your device from the internet if the connection drops unexpectedly, thus preventing any sensitive data from being exposed outside the encrypted tunnel created by the VPN connection itself.
IPVanish and PureVPN operate similarly. For example, they use shared address allocation, making it difficult to identify each user who accesses a particular website. However, PureVPN offers dedicated IP addresses that can help log into services without worrying about triggering fraud prevention systems, even though these make it easier to trace activities.
All VPNs provide some level of DDoS protection, with most major ones capable of spreading the load. However, if a larger-scale attack is expected, PureVPN has a premium anti-DDoS server option at an additional cost. Otherwise, its 3TB limit should be sufficient for most users. In addition, IPVanish implements a NAT firewall on all servers for added security against hackers and malware.
PureVPN vs IPVanish: Customer service
Regarding customer service, IPVanish offers 24/7 support via live chat on its website, so you can get help quickly if you ever run into any issues while using either service. PureVPN has a chat function, but it was only a chatbot when we tested it. Additionally, both companies have extensive knowledge bases filled with helpful articles about setting up, troubleshooting, etc., so these resources should be beneficial if you prefer self-help.
IPVanish has an impressive website with lots of information on VPN use and privacy, all easy to find and perfectly clear. It also provides live chat assistance with highly knowledgeable agents – though note that you must ask your question twice to be connected to them.
On top of this, email, ticket-based support, and a sizable searchable knowledge base are provided by both services. In addition, screenshots extensively support tutorials for common issues such as app configuration or router installation.
IPVanish even offers phone support, which PureVPN does not.
PureVPN does better when it comes to response times, responding within 45 minutes compared to IPVanish’s 4 hours on average. Its YouTube channel mainly contains promotional material however is also home to short instructional videos that can come in handy.
As we can see, both providers offer excellent features, good performance, robust security & privacy protection, plenty of configuration options & excellent customer service, making them suitable choices regardless of whether you’re looking for a basic VPN solution or something more advanced. However, IPVanish is our chosen winner due to its ultrafast streaming speeds, unlimited simultaneous connections, real live chat, and it doesn’t have any past privacy controversies.
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