PIA and Astrill VPN are two leading and popular VPN providers, so this competition promises to be intense. Astrill VPN starts off strong with its location in the privacy-friendly Seychelles. Meanwhile, PIA is based in the US, which is notorious for data retention laws, but still does not keep any logs. Both VPNs accept Bitcoin payments and offer a 7-day trial, unlimited bandwidth, cross-platform support, and five simultaneous connections. They also both allow torrenting on selected servers. In addition, PIA and Astrill VPN both boast 256-bit encryption and OpenVPN, L2TP, a kill switch, and dedicated IPs.
Zeroing in on the differences between these VPNs, PIA supports other average protocols like SOCKS5 and PPTP, but Astrill VPN supports stronger protocols like IKEv2, SSTP, and Cisco/IPSec, in addition to others they developed like OpenWeb and Stealth VPN. Moreover, Astrill VPN has a multi-hop option for faster speeds, in-app Smart Mode, and App Filter. PIA, however, has an effective ad-blocking feature. Even though PIA has 3,000+ servers in 30+ countries, it isn’t a great choice for streaming, as it can’t unblock services such as Netflix. On the other hand, with only 300+ servers in 60+ countries, Astrill VPN can unblock Netflix, Hulu, and the BBC iPlayer. Astrill VPN also works very well in China and has an excellent live chat team, features and capabilities that PIA can’t match.
To choose a winner, we compared these providers across multiple categories.