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Hide.me Review 2021 - Keep This in Mind Before Buying

Author Image Ben Lawson
Ben Lawson | Cybersecurity Researcher
Updated on 24th September 2021

Hide.me is a well-rounded VPN offering top-notch privacy, high speeds, and bullet-proof security features. It exceeded my expectations in most areas, and offers a user-friendly interface on all its apps.

I lined up a series of tests for the VPN to see how it fares on speeds, security, privacy, streaming, and more. There’s a free Hide.me plan available, but with limited features. I’ll be testing the full premium version.

The privacy policy is watertight and gives confidence that no significant logs are taken, and it has involvement with the i2Coalition, an organization dedicated to online security. I’d recommend Hide.me even for VPN beginners due to its sheer simplicity.

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Short on Time? Here Are My Key Findings

Hide.me Features — Updated in September 2021

Price $5.33/month
Money Back Guarantee 30
Does VPN keep logs? No
Number of servers 1900
Number of devices per license 10
Kill switch Yes
Based in country Malaysia
Support 24/7 Live Chat Support
Supports torrenting Yes

Streaming — Premium Version Unblocked Major Platforms

Provided you select the streaming optimized servers, you’ll be able to unblock just about everything. Every platform it promised to unblock worked very easily, with a few extra ones too.

Unblocked: Netflix, Hulu, HBO Max, HBO Now, Disney+, ESPN, DAZN, RAI, BBC iPlayer, ITV, and more

Hide.me lists its optimized servers separately and they all bypassed geoblocks on the stated platforms. Make sure you select the servers from the optimized list or you won’t be able to unblock anything. I was able to access the US, UK, Italian, French, Turkish, and German versions of Netflix without any problems. It displayed the “most popular in” reel along with the country I had chosen, indicating a success.

Image showing RAI unblocked after connecting to a Hide.me server in Italy

Italian-based RAI worked within seconds when I connected to the optimized server

It had no issues unblocking all the US sites I tried, even notoriously tricky platforms like HBO Max and Amazon Prime Video. ITV Hub worked when I used the UK server optimized for BBC iPlayer. In addition, I could access other Turkish streaming sites, such as BeinConnect, BluTV, Puhu TV, and Sport Plus.

Image showing Netflix unblocked after connecting to a Hide.me server in the US

I could bypass the geoblocks and access Netflix US without any difficulty

Blocked By: 10Play

I really struggled to find platforms that Hide.me couldn’t unblock, but you might find a few minor ones not on the optimized list. Using an Australian server, I wasn’t able to access 10Play as it failed to bypass the blocks. You may find a few lesser-known streaming sites that currently don’t work.

Image showing Play10 blocked after connecting to a Hide.me server in Australia

There may be a few minor platforms that Hide.me can’t unblock

I was hugely impressed with the breadth of platforms Hide.me was able to unblock. You do need to ensure you have the right servers selected — I tried the regular servers out of curiosity and unsurprisingly they didn’t unblock any streaming platforms. The optimized servers are fantastic and I’d certainly recommend Hide.me for streaming.

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Speeds — Always Provided a Fast Connection

I got consistent speeds without any major drop-off, even at longer distances. Despite small reductions when connecting to faraway servers in Australia and Japan, the speeds were still good enough for HD streaming and more.

The measurements of speed are:

  • Download speed. This determines the quality you can stream in and how quickly you can download data, measured in Mbps.
  • Upload speed. How fast you can send data online, also measured in Mbps.
  • Ping/Latency. The lower the ping the better, especially for gaming. Ping is the unit in which we measure latency, in ms, and shows the server response time.

Local Speeds

I captured my base speed first without the VPN, so I had something to compare against. The nearest server to me was in London, England, so I connected to that one and ran my speed test. Usually, there’s a slight slowdown as a VPN encrypts your traffic, and the results were pretty much in line with what I expected.

VPN Disconnected (UK) VPN Connected
(UK)
Speed Percentage Change
Download 45.91 Mbps 32.22 Mbps 30% decrease
Upload 6.51 Mbps 6.74 3.5% increase
Ping 12 19 58% increase

The 30% decrease still gave me a respectable speed, high enough even for 4k streaming. Upload speed actually went up slightly, and ping remained reasonably low.

Long Distance Speeds

Speeds remained consistently high until I connected to the farther servers. Even these gave usable speeds though, with Japan, Singapore, and Australia averaging above 10Mbps. This is still more than enough for streaming in HD and fast browsing. European servers like France and Germany actually gave me faster connections than my base speed, which was a pleasant surprise. Sometimes VPNs evade any ISP throttling that might slow you down, and it looks like this happened here.

 Image showing speed vs distance when connected to Hide.me servers

I didn’t experience any drastically low speeds on any servers

Some of the more distant servers had lower upload speeds. The US server in Las Vegas produced no upload speed at all, and Australia was extremely low although this isn’t unexpected. Ping went up depending on the distance too, but this isn’t too surprising either.

 Image showing speed comparison between France, the US, Japan, and Australia Hide.me servers

Ping and upload speed were affected when I connected to the farthest servers

In conclusion, Hide.me exceeded my expectations on speed. Most of the time I averaged above the minimum for HD streaming and fast downloads. However, I’d like to see higher upload speeds on the US servers, especially where it was non-existent.

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Are Hide.me’s Speeds Fast Enough for Gaming? Yes

Provided you connect to nearby servers, Hide.me’s speeds are high enough for gaming. For super competitive players, ping is a very important factor. It’s all relative, so if another player has a ping 50ms lower than you, they’ll have an advantage. On the more distant Hide.me servers ping time rose above 200ms — which elite players may find unacceptable. There are some top premium VPNs for gaming that you might want to consider for lag-free gaming.

For the casual player though, Hide.me will be more than capable for gaming, especially on those closer servers.

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Server Network — Useful Locations

Hide.me has 1,900 servers in 75 countries, providing useful worldwide coverage. As with other VPNs, server networks are always subject to expansion or reduction. It seems to go one step further for customers and allows you to request additional servers as part of a feedback process. It’s uncertain how likely they are to add server locations depending on demand, but I thought this feature adds value to the service.

Image showing option to request additional servers in Windows app

You can request additional server locations in the app

I found all the servers to be dependable, connecting within about 20 seconds. It’s nice to see there are servers in the Africa region (Egypt, Morocco, South Africa, UAE), South America (only Brazil), and also some notable locations like India and Turkey. There aren’t any servers in Malaysia, despite the VPN being based there, and none in Russia or China.

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Security — Wide Range of Protocols

You’ve got watertight protection with a variety of protocols and security features. I can commend Hide.me for its long list of measures to keep you safe online.

Encryption and Protocols

Hide.me employs many protocols and you can manually switch between them.

  • OpenVPN. This is a classic VPN protocol providing AES 256-bit military-grade encryption.
  • WireGuard. A newer protocol that provides strong encryption over UDP and aims to be faster than OpenVPN.
  • IKEv2/IPSec. This is an older type of protocol but still works well. Hide.me recommends this option, but I’d go with WireGuard.
  • SoftEtherVPN. Combines multiple protocols, and is recommended for bypassing firewalls.
  • SSTP. Another older protocol, with less security than its newer counterparts.

There’s an automatic option if you’re loathed to make a choice, but personally, I’d go with WireGuard for most situations.

Image showing protocol options in Windows app

You can select your own protocol, or set it to automatic

There’s a nice extra feature here called “Fallback Configuration” — should your chosen protocol fail, it will automatically use your backup choices.

 Image showing fallback configuration in Windows app

This feature keeps your connection secure if the main protocol fails

Split Tunneling

Hide.me enables split tunneling, to add an extra layer of encryption. This works rather like shredding a document and splitting what’s left between 2 trash cans — it would be near impossible to put it back together again. Your data is sent through 2 VPN tunnels, making it incredibly difficult to intercept or track.

IP, DNS, IPv6, and WebRTC Leaks

On each server I tested, the VPN protected me from any privacy leaks. I would recommend Hide.me to keep you safe from online threats.

You want to avoid the following leaks:

  • IP — your real IP can expose your location and make you vulnerable to online threats.
  • DNS — your private internet traffic can be intercepted.
  • WebRTC — peer-to-peer communication between your browser and the webpages you visit that can mistakenly reveal your IP.
  • IPv6 — a type of data that sometimes misses the VPN “tunnel”. Most VPNs disable it entirely.
Image showing leak test with no leaks

Hide.me passed all my leak tests

 Image showing additional leak test with no DNS, IP, WebRTC, or IPv6 leaks

Even the most distant servers gave me watertight security

I was very happy with the results, as even the most distant servers successfully stopped any leaks. My IP address changed to the expected location every time, and my DNS, WebRTC, and IPv6 were secure.

Kill Switch

Hide.me has a kill switch feature that was enabled by default. This prevents your data from leaking accidentally should the VPN connection fail. It didn’t cause me any problems having it enabled, and you have the option of automatic reconnection. In addition, you can set it so it limits all your online traffic to the VPN, disabling any local traffic. You might need to turn this off for certain applications like banking.

Multihop

Multihop lets you automatically rotate between different IPs for added security. You can specify which servers to hop to in the app, defining a preferred entry and exit server. This does enhance your online privacy by making you harder to track, but bear in mind that some websites may block your access if your IP address is constantly changing.

Virus Test

VirusTotal didn’t find any suspicious content in the Hide.me installation file. In a world of malicious threats online, it’s good to always check a file no matter how much you trust the provider. The last thing you want is to inadvertently compromise your security even more by installing malware, tracking software, or viruses.

Image showing VirusTotal scan results with no malicious findings for Hide.me installation file

It’s reassuring to know that Hide.me is safe to install

Start Using Hide.me

Privacy — Some Logging, But Independently Audited

Hide.me is among one of the more trustworthy VPNs for privacy, with a watertight policy. I was impressed with the clarity of the terms of use, and it releases regular transparency reports.

Location

The VPN is based in Malaysia, outside of surveillance agreements. The 5, 9, and 14 Eyes jurisdiction means that in some locations your data can be handed over under some legal obligations. Hide.me is outside of this, and so defines its own privacy terms.

Hide.me Doesn’t Keep Logs

The privacy policy is incredibly clear in that Hide.me won’t store any of your details unnecessarily. It won’t pass on your details to 3rd parties for advertising purposes. There is a clause stating that analytics cookies may be used, but only for internal improvements. Overall, there isn’t anything concerning in the logs policy.

Image showing Hide.me's transparent privacy policy

I didn’t see anything to cause alarm in Hide.me’s privacy policy

There are also regular transparency reports which provide further reassurance of Hide.me’s practices. These detail legal requests for illegal activities like scams and DDoS attacks, DMCA copyright violations, and any law enforcement requests. As always, I don’t condone using any VPN for illegal practices or downloading copyright files, and you shouldn’t attempt to use Hide.me unlawfully.

Hide.me has involvement with the i2Coalition — an organization focused on fighting for internet freedom. This further bolsters its commitment to keeping you safe online.

Try Hide.me Risk-Free Today

Torrenting — Allowed on All Servers

Hide.me allows torrenting on all its servers. Speeds are high enough for lightning-fast downloads via P2P, and the security features make it a good choice for safe connections. The privacy policy also supports hassle-free torrenting, but you shouldn’t download any files that infringe copyright protection. In addition, you’ll need to check that torrenting is legally permitted in your location.

Does Hide.me Work in China? — Yes

I contacted customer support and was informed that Hide.me will work In China. The agent was honest in telling me that some servers and security protocols may not be available, so you should still exercise caution. Hide.me also recommended contacting customer support prior to traveling to China.

Image showing live chat advising that Hide.me will work in China

It’s good to know Hide.me will support you to use the VPN in China

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Simultaneous Device Connections — 10 Supported

You can connect up to 10 devices at the same time. This will allow you to use the VPN on multiple different platforms without needing to log out. For instance, you could have it on your Windows laptop, and then seamlessly switch to your Android smartphone if you’re on the move.

You could always share your VPN connection from your Windows or Mac computer if you wanted to increase your connections, and Hide.me encourages this.

Enjoy Hide.me on All Your Devices

Device Compatibility — Supports a Wide Range of Devices

Hide.me has native apps for popular platforms, including Windows, macOS/iOS, Android, Amazon Fire TV, and Linux.

Image showing Hide.me Android app main screen

Hide.me has dedicated apps for multiple platforms, including Android

To use the VPN on any WiFi-enabled device, you can set it up on your router. There are detailed instructions on the webpage to do this, though you should select a router with a kill switch for added security. Currently, there’s no smart DNS tool, so you’ll need to use the router option for your Playstation, Xbox, and other games consoles. This also applies to Apple TV and Roku.

You can download browser extensions for Chrome and Firefox. I was disappointed with the extension because there didn’t appear to be a way of logging in. This meant I could only choose between 3 servers, and the “upgrade now” option just takes you to the subscription page. In the settings menu, you can disable WebRTC, enable SOCKS, and an “always enable proxy” option.

Image showing no option to log in on Hide.me extension

The extension only allowed me to select 3 servers, and I couldn’t log in to my premium account

You’ll find some more additional manual setup guides for the following devices and router types:

  • Blackberry
  • Fedora 24+
  • AsusWRT-Merlin
  • AsusWRT – stock
  • DD-WRT
  • DD-WRT Legacy
  • LibreELEC “Kodi”
  • Mikrotik
  • OpenELEC “Kodi”
  • OpenWrt
  • OpenWRT Legacy
  • pfSense
  • QNAP QTS
  • QNAP Legacy (QTS 4.3)
  • Synology DSM 6.0+
  • Tomato

You’re covered for just about any platform with OpenVPN, and you have the option for manual setup via OpenVPN and IKEv2 where available.

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Ease of Use

8.4

Set-Up & Installation — Hassle-Free and Straightforward

Windows

Installing Hide.me was a problem-free process, and didn’t take long at all. I created my account first and downloaded the Windows app. Once installed, I simply logged into my premium account. There’s a free option too, but this only gives you a 10GB per month allowance, 1 connection, and 5 server locations.

Image showing sign-in options after installing Hide.me

Once installed, you need to log into your account

The user interface is easy to navigate, and this applies to any version of the app. To switch location, click on “change” in the bottom right-hand corner. Then it’s just a case of clicking on “enable VPN”. The app connected to every server I selected within seconds.

 Image showing

The app is user-friendly and it’s simple to connect to a server

The Settings menu is equally manageable, even for beginners. You’ve got your VPN protocol options here, auto-connect, and split-tunneling. Stealth Guard lets you choose between certain apps using the VPN, or all your connections.

Image showing searchable settings menu in Windows app

Every feature is easy to find in the Hide.me settings menu

Under lab features, you’ll also find the Hide.me Bolt feature which is still in beta. This is designed to speed up your connection, described as “secure traffic acceleration technology”. I tried this but personally didn’t notice any significant difference.

The whole menu is searchable, and you won’t need to make any unnecessary clicks to locate whatever you’re looking for. There are also shortcuts to support pages, should you get stuck at any time.

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Android/iOS

The mobile versions look a bit different from the Windows app, but function just as smoothly. Once I’d downloaded the app from the Play Store, the Android version asked me to sign in to my account. This took just a few seconds, and it was ready to go. When you first connect, your device may ask you to approve the connection.

Image showing kill switch location in Hide.me Windows app

The kill switch is hidden within the “network protection” option

One thing of note is that the kill switch was a little hard to find. It’s located in the settings, but you need to go into “network protection” to find it. All the other settings are quite obviously located, and you can choose your desired protocol in the same way as the desktop app.

The iOS version is very similar, and you’ll be able to get to grips with it just as fast. The server list is easily accessible, as well as all the security features.

Mac

Echoing the Windows desktop version, installing Hide.me on a Mac is a simple affair. Once you select the macOS client, you’ll be prompted to install it from the AppStore. This is not an unusual practice, but it seems like Hide.me took an extra step to make it as easy to use by anyone.

screenshot of the AppStore showing the Hide.me client

Installing Hide.me on macOS devices is as easy as possible

The kill switch is there, along with the protocol settings, and special features. What I don’t like about Hide.me, is that the client doesn’t show up in the taskbar — instead, you need to open Mission Control and select it from there.

screenshot of Hide.me's macOS client

You’ll easily find the most important settings in the macOS client

There’s almost no difference between the macOS and Windows apps, which makes it easy for anyone to use it on multiple devices.

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Compare hide.me VPN with the top alternative VPNs

9.9
9.5
9.3
9.3

Pricing

7.6
12 Months + 3 Months FREE
$5.33 /month
1 Year
$8.32 /month
1 Month
$12.95 /month

I thought the monthly plans were reasonably priced and provide good value for money. This is especially true when you take advantage of the deal for 59% off a subscription.

Premium options are divided into 2 years, 1 year, and 1-month plans, with the longer plans being more cost-effective. There’s also a free plan, but this is highly restricted. You will only get 10GB allowance per month, 1 connection, and 5 servers to choose from. A more sensible choice would be to try Hide.me risk-free, backed by the 30-day money back policy. You’ll get the full range of premium streaming optimized servers and blazing-fast speeds.

Accepted forms of payment include credit cards, PayPal, Sepa transfers, and Bitcoin. This gives you lots of flexible options to pay for your subscription however you like, and it’s nice to see cryptocurrency included.

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Reliability & Support

8.4

  • 24/7 support
  • Ticket system
  • Live chat
  • Email
  • Knowledge Base with FAQs
  • Online community

Hide.me provides 24/7 support and I found the service to be very responsive. The live chat feature always worked, and I got a reply within seconds. The answers were helpful, though a little bit blunt at times — on one occasion I wasn’t asked if I had any more queries, just “bye”, and the chat ended before I could ask another question.

Image showing responsive Hide.me live chat

Live chats were brief, but very responsive

I have faith that if you ran into any technical problems, Hide.me would be there to help you sort it out quickly. It also has a presence on social media: Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.

Start Using Hide.me Today

The Bottom Line

A popular, easy-to-install VPN that offers speed, security, and simplicity

Final Verdict

If you’re after a reliable VPN with good overall performance, Hide.me is a good choice. It has a variety of accessible security features, a solid privacy policy, and impressive speeds.

I was hard-pressed to find any streaming platforms it couldn’t unblock, and could watch in HD on every server I tried. Although the download speeds were consistently good, I encountered some distant servers where upload speed was slow or non-existent. There’s a good range of dedicated apps that are nicely laid out, so even a beginner can get started.

I think the tight security and privacy policy combined make Hide.me a highly trustworthy choice. You can even try it risk-free, backed by a 30-day money-back policy.

Try Hide.me Risk-Free

  • Unblocks streaming platforms like Netlfix, Disney+, and many more.
  • Impressive speeds for HD streaming, gaming, and quick downloads.
  • No-logs policy is watertight for top privacy.
  • Reliable security features like a kill switch and AES 256-bit encryption to keep you safe.
  • Extensive server network for excellent unblocking capability.
  • Torrenting is allowed on all Hide.me servers.
  • Free plan available.
  • 30-day money-back policy.
  • Get started with hide.me VPN now

FAQs on Hide.me

Is Hide.me safe?

Yes. Hide.me easily passed my leak tests, guaranteeing that your IP, DNS, WebRTC, and IPv6 data is secure. You can browse, download, and stream without worrying your online privacy could be compromised.

Can Hide.me unblock Netflix?

Yes, using the optimized servers. Hide.me features a list of servers that specialize in bypassing streaming platform geoblock. I was able to unblock Netflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime Video and more without any issues.

Will Hide.me slow my speeds down?

Not significantly. I experienced a 30% slowdown in my speed tests when connected to a local server, but this was still in excess of 30Mbps. This is more than enough to stream in HD, and even 4k without any buffering. Even distant servers like Australia still gave me respectable speeds good enough for smooth streaming and fast downloads.

Money Back Guarantee (Days) : 30
Mobile app :
Number of devices per license : 10
VPN Plans: www.hide.me

Watch the short video review and tutorial below of hide.me VPN

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hide.me VPN User Reviews

6.4
Based on 46 reviews in 7 languages
Anonymous Reviewer
Best VPN for free - 10
Anonymous Reviewer

It works perfectly fine, the speeds are good, and there are a lot of different locations. I have had no problems with this VPN, and I like that it has a 10GB data limit monthly (more than most competitors). I tried every other free VPN, but all of them are slow and aren't as fast as this one. In my opinion, download this VPN and you will be happy.

Sufhix Cipher
Recommended VPN - 8
Sufhix Cipher

Good VPN so easy to use and good for beginners its so convenient with so many servers to choose from and it now has UNLIMITED FREE the problem is it cannot bypass Netflix in a Free plan but it's still good with its AES-256 Encryption and it keeps STRICT NO-LOGGING POLICY the Jurisdiction is based in Malaysia which is good I rate this VPN 9/10

Tribal
Smooth experience - 10
Tribal

Works pretty fast on my macOS Big Sur, previously had it on my Windows laptop, and was blazing fast tbh. I never had any problems, except one time the connection was getting way too slow on an EU server, but after quickly switching to another server, it worked very well. I do not see any reason to switch to another provider, hide.me is as good as a top provider.

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