The listings featured on this site are from companies from which this site receives compensation. Read the Advertising Disclosure for more information
Professional Reviews

vpnMentor contains reviews that are written by our community reviewers, and are based on the reviewers' independent and professional examination of the products/services.


vpnMentor is owned by Kape Technologies PLC, which owns the following products: ExpressVPN, CyberGhost, ZenMate, Private Internet Access, and Intego, which may be reviewed on this website.

Affiliate Commissions Advertising

vpnMentor contains reviews that were written by our experts and follow the strict reviewing standards, including ethical standards, that we have adopted. Such standards require that each review will be based on an independent, honest and professional examination of the reviewer. That being said, we may earn a commission when a user completes an action using our links, which will however not affect the review but might affect the rankings. The latter are determined on the basis of customer satisfaction of previous sales and compensation received.

Reviews Guidelines

The reviews published on vpnMentor are written by experts that examine the products according to our strict reviewing standards. Such standards ensure that each review is based on the independent, professional and honest examination of the reviewer, and takes into account the technical capabilities and qualities of the product together with its commercial value for users. The rankings we publish may take into consideration the affiliate commissions we earn for purchases through links on our website.

HMA VPN vs Hotspot Shield 2023

Table of Contents

    Which VPN is better?

    Author Image Kristina Perunicic
    Kristina Perunicic

    Managing Editor

    HMA is a highly reputable service provider known for offering one of the largest VPN networks, with 900+ servers in 190 countries. Hotspot Shield is also highly rated, but although it offers 2,500+ servers, it is only present in around 25 countries. While Hotspot Shield provides a free limited version alongside its premium plan, HMA only offers a paid service. HMA, however, offers a 7-day free trial for all new subscribers. Hotspot Shield has a 45-day money-back guarantee, whereas HMA offers a 30-day refund policy. Both providers capably unlock Netflix and similar US websites with tough geoblocks, and both provide unlimited bandwidth with any paid plan. If you use an Android, iOS, Windows, or MacOS device, you can expect dedicated apps from either of these providers. Keep on reading to find out which VPN emerges as the winner in this closely contested comparison. NOTE: This comparison focuses on the paid Hotspot Shield plan, Hotspot Shield Elite.


    Features 8.2/10
    Pricing 8.8/10
    Ease of Use 9.4/10
    Reliability & Support 8.0/10
    Features 9.1/10
    Pricing 9.0/10
    Ease of Use 9.0/10
    Reliability & Support 8.6/10


    Review by our expert
    Author Image Kristina Joshevska
    Kristina Joshevska

    Managing Editor


    Being on the market for more than 15 years, the UK-based HMA has established an excellent name for itself (literally). But, is HMA really worth a shot when there are so many other high quality VPNs out there? To find out, I performed extensive tests on its speeds, security, unblocking abilities, and more. I also explored its no-logs policy and money-back guarantee to see how trustworthy it is....

    Read all
    Latest positive user review
    Excellent value for money!

    First, it's a full VPN. Very intuitive and easy app. Lots of connection options and without much loss ... of speed. The official website has the payment method in my local currency, with a localized value and thus leaving a fair value through the VPN. Thank VPNMentor for the product recommendation and targeted discount.More

    Latest negative user review
    Terrible Support

    I had a return request. because my ISP blocked their servers and I contacted their support team. My ti... ckets have not been answered for 14 days. I do not recommend them with this terrible support and no wireguard support. 1/10More

    Review by our expert
    Author Image Kennedy Otieno
    Kennedy Otieno

    Cybersecurity Researcher


    Hotspot Shield claims its proprietary Hydra protocol makes it faster than most VPNs — but is that true? I tested HSS on my fast internet connection (it allows up to 1Gbps speeds) to discover how it does with streaming, gaming, and torrenting. Mostly, I had a seamless internet experience — watching shows on Netflix and Amazon Prime Video without buffering. Its 1,800 servers in 80 countries ...

    Read all
    Latest positive user review
    Great Interface, easy to use and smooth/zippy.

    It just feels well put together. Turns on automatically, which is no bad thing (if you don't like that... , turn the damn thing off with a click). The speed is consistently above average, and on a couple of inadvertent occasions, the Kill Switch operated as it should. I especially like the GUI, which is really simple, solid, yet has a refined/slick feel - far superior to a few I've tried but won't name here. I see no issues with it, although the security issues pointed out in the article are a bit alarming. I'm using the 'Business' version. Nice VPN, IMO.More

    Latest negative user review
    Blocked by Real-Debrid on just about every us city and nearly all countries

    Easy to connect speed pretty good multiple platforms not great from streaming.. which is where you nee... d the speed. Nord vpn and Express are both cooperative providers with real-debrid meaning no connection problems. Even if you do find a server that connects frequently this is blocked during streaming.More


    Starting price $2.99/month
    Money Back Guarantee (Days) 30 Days
    Number of devices per license 5 devices
    Starting price $2.99/month
    Money Back Guarantee (Days) 45 Days
    Number of devices per license 5 devices

    Best VPN by category

    HMA has one of the biggest VPN networks on the market, with a server presence in almost every country. The service is backed up with outstanding customer support and a 30-day money-back guarantee. Hotspot Shield also offers a reliable VPN service with a focus on strong security and ease of use.

    HMA is our recommended VPN for torrents, as it offers dedicated servers across many locations that are optimized for P2P. Torrenting may work on other servers as well, but we do not recommend using them because they may not be secure enough. Hotspot Shield is not a good choice for downloading torrents, as it forbids the activity on its network.

    Features like IPv6 leak protection, 256-bit encryption, and access to 90+ servers in 190 countries are some of the reasons why millions of Windows users worldwide trust HMA’s dedicated Windows VPN client. Hotspot Shield also provides a dedicated Windows app that features a kill switch, access to fast servers, malware protection, and the provider’s Catapult Hydra technology.

    Some of the best features of HMA’s dedicated Android app are an automatic kill switch, leak protection, and access to the provider’s dedicated streaming servers. Meanwhile, Hotspot Shield’s Android app features unlimited bandwidth and server switching, a very neat user interface, and access to the provider’s free limited version.

    With HMA’s dedicated app for MacOS, you can expect to find a very user-friendly interface, strong military-grade encryption, and IPv6 leak protection. Hotspot Shield competes with its own MacOS app that features the provider’s unique Catapult Hydra technology and protection from malware.

    With access to over 900 servers, a dedicated app, wi-fi protection, and a 24/7 live chat feature from within the app, HMA provides an excellent service for iOS devices. Hotspot Shield also offers an iOS app that includes tracking protection, access to very fast servers, and military-grade encryption.

    Hotspot Shield’s fast speeds and consistency in breaking through tough geoblocks from providers like Netflix and Hulu makes it a very reliable VPN for the USA. HMA also provides many US servers that capably unlock Netflix and other geoblocked content, but it lacks the speed that top VPNs like ExpressVPN and CyberGhost possess.

    The Bottom Line

    Some comparisons are very close calls, and this is one where we found it tough to choose a winner between two top VPN providers. In the end, however, the availability of servers in 190 countries, advanced leak protection, and outstanding technical support are the key reasons why HMA narrowly wins this comparison. Its minimalist user-interface won’t dazzle you, but it is highly intuitive so even VPN newbies will have no problems whatsoever adapting to its apps on all platforms.

    Time to decide which one is best for you


    Is HMA VPN better than Hotspot Shield?

    Yes, HMA VPN is better overall than Hotspot Shield. It has 1040 servers in 210 countries, fast speeds, and impressive security features.

    Best of all, you can take advantage of its latest discount and get it for only $2.99 a month.

    What should I keep in mind when choosing between HMA VPN and Hotspot Shield?

    When choosing a VPN, you want to pay close attention to its number of servers, overall speed score, pricing, and the number of simultaneous device connections it offers. While some VPNs provide a flawless online experience, others will really slow you down.

    If you’re ready to commit, then HMA VPN may be perfect for you due to its performance during the tests .

    Is HMA VPN faster than Hotspot Shield?

    Yes, HMA VPN is faster than Hotspot Shield. Since your VPN is your computer’s main connection to the internet, you need to use a service that won’t slow you down by more than 20%.

    If speeds are important to you, then I recommend you take a look at ExpressVPN. It’s the fastest service out there, provides unlimited bandwidth, and you won’t experience any slowdowns even when you connect to the other side of the planet. You can try it out risk-free. It’s backed by a 30-day money-back guarantee, so you can get a full refund if you don’t like it.

    Do HMA VPN or Hotspot Shield offer any deals?

    Both HMA VPN and Hotspot Shield offer deals on occasion. You can check out the current coupons and discounts here. However, ExpressVPN has the best deals. Right now, you can get a 49% discount and up to 3 months for free with a new subscription.