Promising blazing internet speeds but a low 29 server count, HideIPVPN, a young but growing service provider, has been on my radar for a while now. With so many good deals out there, I just had to see how HideIPVPN differs from the competition. Especially with its unusual price.
And so I did just that. I took the time and tested the VPN’s speed, streaming performance, security features, device compatibility, network options, and even tried the SmartDNS system. I also dabbled into some P2P downloads and even took a look at the included OpenVPN, L2TP, PPTP, IKEv2, SSTP, and SoftEther protocols.
Short on Time? Here Are My Key Findings
- HideIPVPN unblocks most streaming except for one. See the full results of all the sites I tested.
- The provider cut the connection speed, but it was still impressive. I managed to stream, torrent, and even game without stutter or hitches. Find out the rest of the results here.
- The server network size is small. The number of available servers is too tiny for the asking price. Learn what countries are supported here.
- HideIPVPN’s security suite is excellent. The provider gives you access to a kill switch, 128-bit AES and 256-bit AES encryptions, leak protection, and multiple protocols to pick. You can even pay anonymously with BitCoin. Overall, I couldn’t find a technical loophole.
- Torrent speeds are superb. I managed to download large files quickly and without downtime but only on specific P2P servers. Not all servers support torrenting.
- It works on everything. Every modern platform, both mobile and desktop, is compatible with the VPN. See whether your device will work here.
- The VPN comes with a robust app. It has a lot to offer in terms of customization and makes SmartDNS management a breeze. If only I could add more simultaneous connections to it. There’s more you can configure here.
- The refund policy is stringent. Despite having a 24-hour trial, the refund policy is very limiting and anti-consumer. Learn whether you are eligible for a refund here.
- Support is slow. Despite having an around-the-clock live chat system, the support is unresponsive. I’m still waiting for a response.
- Not a bad deal. HIdeIPVPN is a good offer for the money, especially if you are looking for incredible download speeds.
HideIPVPN Features — Updated in 2021
|Money Back Guarantee||30|
|Does VPN keep logs?||No|
|Number of servers||29|
|Number of devices per license||3|
|Based in country||United States|
With HideIPVPN, I managed to unblock Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Hulu, HBO MAX, BBC Player, and YouTube but failed with Disney+ and iTV. The VPN provider streaming speeds are incredible, and it even offers a dedicated SmartDNS feature that allows you to unlock more than 200 websites. In my testing, I got suboptimal results.
Using the VPN feature and connecting to the specialized servers US2 and US4, I could unblock geo-blocked Netflix content. Yet, I wasn’t so lucky with the SmartDNS function. It didn’t unlock anything on Netflix, but I managed to access restricted YouTube content and even view geo-blocked social media content. Still, you can’t use the DNS feature and VPN simultaneously, which is bad since the DNS system is not as protective as a VPN.
Unblocked: Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Hulu, HBO Max, BBC iPlayer, YouTube.
In my tests, I managed to unblock most streaming platforms. I could easily unblock Twin Peaks on Netflix US. And the best part, I didn’t get any buffering when viewing the content in HD, which is excellent news.
Blocked By: Disney+ and iTV
No matter what server connection I used, I couldn’t unlock Disney+ and iTV. Perhaps if there were more server connections to pick, I would eventually stumble on a working one, but none of the 29 servers worked so far.
The VPN speeds are fast, and I didn’t have any latency on streaming platforms. No matter what server you pick, it is expected that the average download/upload speed drops due to the distance between your physical location and that of the server being large.
My 100Mbps connection took a noticeable hit in speeds only on the Australian server, where it reached just 79Mbps download and 66Mbps upload speeds. Even with this reduction, I say these are phenomenal results and not the norm. If all you want is anonymity and good speeds, HideIPVPN is excellent.
Are HideIPVPN’s Speeds Fast Enough for Gaming? Yes, the Speed is Great
The speeds are suitable for both console and PC gaming but not game streaming. If you are talking about gaming on a console such as the Nintendo Switch, you won’t have any trouble. If you primarily game using streaming services such as Microsoft’s xCloud or Nvidia’s GeForce Now, they will not work well.
When testing GeForce Now, I had several disconnects using the US server. I couldn’t even manage to finish a match of Rocket League without a single stutter. I wouldn’t recommend HideIPVPN for game streaming.
HideIPVPN has only 29 servers, but some are designed for P2P connections, which means you’ll get better torrent speeds. Now I didn’t expect plenty of servers from this particular vendor. However, I didn’t think the selection would be that limited, especially if you consider the somewhat above-average pricing.
Now the reason this is bad is the more servers you have access to, the better the connection you’ll get since the server isn’t packed with subscribers. The more people start to use the server, the more severe speed cuts you can expect, and as you already know, they aren’t that fast. And it isn’t just about speeds either, as features such as location spoofing directly rely on the number of individual servers available to it. HideIPVPN desperately needs more servers.
I took a look at the proxy feature too. It’s not available in the app and requires manual setup. Thankfully, the provider offers an in-depth, step-by-step tutorial for various platforms. On my Windows 10 machine, I had zero issues configuring, and the proxy worked as intended with no perceptible speed loss.
HideIPVPN doesn’t have servers in China, Middle East, and Russia. It’s not the end of the day, but if you were hoping to use this particular provider to browse Chinese stuff, tough luck. The VPN provider guarantees undisrupted access to the service, so that’s a plus.
Subscribers also get access to a smart location feature that’ll pick the most optimal location for you. Kind of redundant considering how small the server list is, but perhaps this is the provider trying to future proof its service. As for the type of servers the company uses, I can’t state anything definitively, but it does look like the VPN provider is not using virtual servers.
|United States||Canada||United Kingdom||Poland|
HideIPVPN has an excellent security system. For starters, the VPN offers 5 VPN protocols: SSTP, OpenVPN, SoftEther, PPTP, and L2TP/IPSec, with 128-bit AES and 256-bit AES encryptions, respectively.
I’d opt to use OpenVPN if I were you. It is an open-source protocol implementation that many people already inspected. It is proven, it is secure, and this is what you should select when prompted to pick. Another critical security aspect I need to mention is that HideIPVPN doesn’t leak your data through IP, DNS, and WebRTC.
I even went as far as using a DNS Leak Test, and HideIPVPN passed the test effortlessly. Notice, all servers point to Google’s public DNS address and not a single one to my ISP and country (I live in Europe), which means no private info is leaking.
In other words, there’s proper DNS-leak protection in place. It’s a security system that prevents your personal information from accidentally leaking outside of your VPN network. This feature helps ensure continuous anonymity.
You also get access to the App Killer feature, which is essentially a kill switch that’ll close any software as soon as the VPN connection drops. It works well, but there’s a requirement, you need to manually add apps that should be “killed” once the connection drops. It is not optimal, especially if you are using a ton of software simultaneously, but it’s there.
Before I jump to the next section, I’d like to mention that HideIPVPN supports IKEv2 on Android, iOS, and Windows 10. If for some reason, you don’t want to use OpenVPN, you have options, and that’s always a plus in my books.
The company has nothing on its hand to prove its pro-privacy claims. HideIPVPN doesn’t participate in third-party audits, which are slowly becoming the norm. Most top-tier VPN providers have published the audit results on their websites, and even smaller ones too. In the case of HideIPVPN, no security professional can testify whether the company cares about your privacy or not.
The company also didn’t respond to the CDT questionnaire. It asks VPN providers corporate accountability and business models, privacy practices, and security protocols and protections. All these “tests” would have alleviated some of my security concerns, but alas.
The final nail in the coffin is HideIPVPN jurisdiction. It wouldn’t be such an issue if the company weren’t so silent and unreasonably secretive about its jurisdiction. I had a tough time figuring out where they legally operate using their website, but Apple App Store revealed Server Management LLC’s publishing name. A single Google search revealed that the company is registered in the US, Delaware, in an anti-privacy country.
All this means that the VPN provider is legally required to provide personal information such as log files and account data. And to make things even more troubling, they will not ask your permission or even give a heads up if a gag order is issued.
When I dug further into their ToS, I also found that if you refuse to cooperate and provide your identity, HideIPVPN will terminate your account without a refund. Your privacy is not safe, even though their ToS states otherwise.
HideIPVPN’s torrenting capabilities are superb. The company offers several dedicated servers designed to work with P2P connections. These servers are faster and usually operate in safe jurisdictions meaning there are fewer hoops and hops the server has to jump through. Therefore, fewer Mbps are lost. HideIPVPN even provides a torrent-only plan.
On a 100Mbps connection, I got 64Mbps download and 59,2Mbps upload, which resulted in a 2.9Mb/sec using the German server. As evident in the screen up above, a 1.7 GB file will be ready in less than 10 mins. The rest of the P2P-supported countries are Lithuania, Luxembourg, and the Netherlands. If you are using a different server to torrent, the provider will issue a warning, or at least they will. I’ve used the US server to download a large torrent file and didn’t get a single message from HideIPVPN, but I also wasn’t getting any download speeds, as if the connection was blocked. But other than that, the results are satisfactory.
My team and I do not condone the illegal torrenting of copyrighted files. It always pays to check if the file you’re downloading is copyrighted first.
Does HideIPVPN Work in China? No
It is a shame that HideIPVPN doesn’t work in China. I would have loved to test the performance and geo-unblocking capabilities of the platform. Perhaps in the future, we’ll be able to do so, but I am left to wait as things stand.
Simultaneous Device Connections — Limited
HideIPVPN can be used on up to 3 devices on the same account simultaneously. A small number, no matter how you look at it. Even if you live alone, you are more than likely to have more than 3 devices you can pair with a VPN.
I used the VPN on two of my phones and my PC. The connection remained reliable, and all my devices were able to browse and view geo-blocked content. Video streaming didn’t take a hit, and I did not experience any buffering. As for the SmartDNS feature, there are no device limitations here. For convenience purposes, you can pair the DNS feature with a router and share it with as many people as you like or set up each device manually; the call is yours.
HideIPVPN works on several versions of Windows (including Windows 10), Mac X OS, iOS, Android, Linux, and more. You can use the VPN on desktop and laptop computers, and most tablets, smartphones, and even on D-Link, TP-Link, and DD-WRT routers. The VPN can also use it on Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, smart TVs, and Roku devices. Oh, I should also mention that there’s a browser extension for Chrome.
Personally, I used an Android-based phone, my PC, and a PS4. I even went as far as hooking a 2005-era device, a PSP, and, well, all devices worked great. The company covers everything that has a network module in it, and that’s excellent news.