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PureVPN Review

Simon Migliano
By Simon MiglianoUpdated
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PureVPN screenshot

PureVPN: Ranked #35 out of 99 VPNs that we tested

  1. Reliably fast speeds: 34Mbps (global average)
  2. VPN kill switch & no DNS/IP/WebRTC leaks
  3. Optimized VPN servers work with Netflix, iPlayer & more
  4. P2P & torrenting allowed on most VPN servers
  5. 2,000+ VPN servers in over 140 countries worldwide
  6. User-friendly VPN apps for popular platforms, simple setup
  1. Previous logging policy controversies
  2. Desktop VPN app can be clunky and unresponsive
  3. Customer support agents lack technical knowledge
  4. Fiddly setup for China, and unreliable at times

Works with

Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Hulu, BBC iPlayer, Sky, Now TV, HBO, SlingTV, Torrenting, Kodi

Available on

  1. Windows
  2. Mac
  3. Ios
  4. Android
  5. Linux

Price from

$2.88/mo

Speed & Reliability

Fast local download speeds, but not so good internationally

PureVPN isn’t the fastest VPN we’ve tested, but it’s still pretty quick.

Download and upload speeds on nearby servers are more than fast enough for buffer-free streaming and smooth torrenting, and our proprietary speed testing tool showed impressive consistency across the whole of PureVPN’s server network.

Use the table below to see how PureVPN speeds fare against its top-scoring rivals in 11 locations around the world.

PureVPNSaferVPNHide.me
Download Average33.93 Mbps17.97 Mbps80.65 Mbps
Upload Average8.78 Mbps6.60 Mbps30.38 Mbps
Ping Average142 ms137 ms137 ms

Here are the average speeds you can expect from PureVPN from a handful popular regions.

Europe Server locations include Amsterdam, Paris, Frankfurt and London.Asia Server locations include Singapore and Tokyo.USA Server locations include San Francisco and New York.Australia
Download Average212 Mbps216 Mbps209 Mbps54 Mbps
Upload Average51 Mbps59 Mbps53 Mbps15 Mbps
Ping Average3 ms3 ms6 ms57 ms

Averages are calculated from our test results over the last 4 weeks. To read about our speed testing methodologies, please read How We Test VPN Speed.

Speed results from our physical location in London (100Mbps fibre optic connection) to a London test server.

Before using PureVPN:

  1. DownloadMbps

    92.56

  2. UploadMbps

    95.98

  3. Pingms

    3

When connected to PureVPN:

  1. DownloadMbps

    77.04

  2. UploadMbps

    61.98

  3. Pingms

    9

Download speed without PureVPN: 93Mbps

Download speed with PureVPN: 77Mbps

Our download speed loss when PureVPN is running: 17%

PureVPN doesn’t perform very well over international connections, though, like the UK to the US, and is worse further afield.

Ping times are pretty low, though, making PureVPN a decent choice for gamers.

Looking for a super-fast VPN? Then check out Private Internet Access.

 

Server Locations

2,000 VPN servers spread across 140 countries

Globe with a blue flag140Countries
Image of a city landscape180Cities
Image of a pink marker300,000+IP Addresses

PureVPN has VPN servers in 140 countries across six continents, catering to the more than just the popular destinations like North America and Western Europe (although it still has VPN servers in the UK, the US, Canada, and Australia for those who need them).

PureVPN operates an excellent number of VPN servers – there’s just over 2,000 in total. Some of these are virtual servers, which are marked with a ‘V’ on PureVPN’s server locations list. All of the other physical servers are owned by PureVPN.

What’s most impressive is the 300,000+ IP addresses – that’s one of the highest numbers we’ve ever seen and massively reduces the risk of server congestion, guaranteeing high VPN speeds.

A choice of 13 different US city-level servers and four different Australia city-level servers means that PureVPN provides coast-to-coast coverage. You can drill down to multiple cities in a number of countries:

  • Australia (4)
  • Canada (3)
  • China (2)
  • Czech Republic (2)
  • France (2)
  • Germany (5)
  • Malaysia (2)
  • South Africa (2)
  • UK (4)
  • US (13)

Streaming & Torrenting

Optimized VPN servers work with Netflix & torrenting

PureVPN is a fantastic VPN if you’re looking for fast, hassle-free access to all major streaming services.

PureVPN Stream Mode unlocks over 20 listed TV streaming services and channels using optimized VPN servers, including:

Throughout our regular tests, we have had no issues accessing Netflix through PureVPN’s dedicated server, but watching BBC iPlayer has been a bit hit-and-miss – you may have to try a few different servers before you get BBC iPlayer to work.

Torrenting

PureVPN is also a good choice for keen Kodi fans and torrenters, as P2P is permitted on the majority of its VPN servers and speeds are quick.

Unfortunately, torrenting is excluded on PureVPN’s UK, US, Canada, and Australia servers for legal reasons. With plenty of servers nearby in Western Europe and Central America, though, that won’t be too much of an inconvenience.

PureVPN also has a kill switch and IP leak protection to ensure that you won’t have your identity exposed while torrenting, although its less-than-perfect logging policy may not be enough for dedicated torrenters.

Bypassing Censorship

Works in China, but setup is fiddly

PureVPN is one of the few VPN services to still work in China, despite the recent government crackdowns on VPN providers, even if it’s becoming less and less reliable as time goes on.

You’ll have to contact PureVPN’s customer support in order to receive a comprehensive guide to setting up your VPN for China. It can be a fiddly process and involves a lot of manual configuration. Even then, PureVPN is not guaranteed to always work in China.

Take a look at our top VPN recommendations for China here.

While PureVPN’s server network is huge and likely to provider servers in nearby free-speech countries, there are other providers out there that have a much simpler, more comprehensive solution for other high-censorship countries like Saudi Arabia and Russia, such as ExpressVPN.

Platforms & Devices

Custom VPN apps for Windows, MacOS, Android, iOS & more

Apps

Windows LogoWindows
Mac LogoMac
iOS LogoiOS
Android LogoAndroid
Linux LogoLinux
Router LogoRouter

PureVPN has a good range of custom apps for various devices including:

PureVPN’s apps are easy to install, taking just minutes set up, and they’re pretty simple to use too. You can use PureVPN on up to five devices at any given time.

Games Consoles & Streaming Devices

AppleTV LogoAppleTV
Amazon Fire TV LogoAmazon Fire TV
Chromecast LogoChromecast
Nintendo LogoNintendo
PlayStation LogoPlayStation
Roku LogoRoku
Xbox LogoXbox

PureVPN stands out from other VPN services for providing dedicated apps for both the Amazon Fire TV Stick and Android TV, so all you have to do is download the software from the app store and you’re good to start streaming. There’s even a Kodi add-on for PureVPN too.

PureVPN can protect your other streaming devices and games consoles like Xbox and PlayStation by connecting them to a configured router, which will encrypt traffic on all internet-connected devices in your home.

You can buy pre-configured routers with PureVPN already installed, or manually configure your existing router if it’s compatible.

 

Browser Extensions

Chrome LogoChrome
Firefox LogoFirefox

PureVPN also provides proxy browser extensions for Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox.

While PureVPN’s browser extensions come with WebRTC leak protection it’s important to remember that these proxies don’t encrypt your connection so should not be used in place of the full desktop client. They are a good added bonus, nonetheless.

There are currently no extensions for Opera or Safari, but they could always be introduced in the future.

Encryption & Security

Strong VPN encryption & plenty of advanced security features

Protocol

IKEv2/IPSec

L2TP/IPSec

OpenVPN (TCP/UDP)

PPTP

SSTP

Encryption

AES-256

Security

DNS Leak Blocking

First-party DNS

IPV6 Leak Blocking

VPN Kill Switch

WebRTC Leak Blocking

Advanced features

Split Tunneling

Please see our VPN Glossary if these terms confuse you and would like to learn more.

It used to be difficult to recommend PureVPN for anyone with stringent privacy needs due to previous issues with its logging policy, but a recent revamp means that this is no longer so much of a problem.

The PureVPN app chooses the ‘best’ VPN protocol for you on startup, but we recommend using OpenVPN (UDP and TCP) as it’s the best protocol for all-round performance and privacy. Encryption is via ‘unbreakable’ cipher AES-256.

Screenshot of PureVPN Settings Menu in App

You can also connect with the following VPN protocols:

  • IKEv2 – very fast and secure, great for mobile devices
  • PPTP – very unsafe, and can be easily cracked
  • L2TP – generally secure
  • SSTP – comes with some potential security risks

The VPN kill switch is an essential feature, blocking all web traffic should the VPN connection drop for any reason, preventing your true IP address from being exposed.

PureVPN also protects you against DNS, IPv6 and WebRTC leaks – which our independent tests proved to be working effectively – giving you peace of mind that your online activity isn’t visible to anyone other than yourself.

Screenshot of browserleaks.com leak test results while connected to PureVPN

PureVPN leak test results of browserleaks.com while connected to a US VPN server. We test from the UK.

The PureVPN desktop app also includes split tunneling, allowing you to direct specific traffic through the VPN and leave the rest to go outside of the encrypted tunnel.

PureVPN used to have a malware and ad blocker (Gravity and Ozone) but these have been removed as of June 2019.

Logging Policy

Collects VPN connection data & has past logging controversies

Previous controversies surrounding PureVPN’s logging policy means we’re still a little skeptical of this VPN service – you might want to look into providers with strict no-logs policies, such as CyberGhost or PrivateVPN.

It emerged that in an online harassment case that took place in October 2017 the FBI was able to identify the accused by matching the IP address of a PureVPN server used in the crime with the true IP address that he used to connect to the server.

While we don’t condone the actions of the alleged criminal, PureVPN didn’t tell customers it logged their IP address, and claimed to only log connection times and bandwidth used. Even worse, it made the false claim that: “We do NOT keep any logs that can identify or help in monitoring a user’s activity,” which clearly isn’t the case.

However, PureVPN has recently gone some way to redeeming itself with the introduction of a completely revamped logging policy, where the only information collected is:

  • The day you connect to a specific VPN server location
  • Your Internet Service Provider
  • Total bandwidth used by each user

It does not log:

  • Your originating IP address
  • Connection timestamps
  • DNS requests
  • The IP address of your chosen VPN server

This means that nothing you do online can be traced back to you as an individual, restoring a little bit of our confidence in the service.

Jurisdiction

PureVPN was founded in 2007 by GZ Systems Ltd, which operates under the jurisdiction of Hong Kong, putting it beyond the reach of the privacy-unfriendly US and EU.

PureVPN says it specifically chose Hong Kong for its headquarters because there are no mandatory data retention laws, therefore it isn’t a legal requirement to store user data or share it with any third parties.

PureVPN clearly states that “if and when [it] receive[s] subpoenas that are legally upheld in the court of law in Hong Kong, [it] won’t be of much help since [it has] almost nothing of value to share”, which is reassuring.

Ease of Use

Custom VPN apps are quick to set up but a little clunky

How to Install & Set Up PureVPN

Installing PureVPN is super easy and won’t trouble even the most inexperienced of VPN users. Simply download the software, follow the installation prompts, then enter your login credentials.

The PureVPN apps show promise and there’s a clear focus on user experience, but we found the execution to be inconsistent.

The main dashboard is easy enough to use and can be customized by purpose (streaming, internet freedom, file sharing, security, dedicated IP), but PureVPN’s desktop apps still feel a little clunky and old-fashioned.

Well-organized configurable options can be found in PureVPN’s settings menu, and we love the helpful explanations that go alongside some of the more advanced options, such as IPv6 leak protection.

PureVPN’s mobile apps are a little more streamlined than their desktop counterparts without compromising on advanced features.

Browser Extensions

Screenshot of PureVPN Chrome Extension

It won’t take long to set up PureVPN’s proxy browser extensions for Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox. Just click ‘Download Extension’ on PureVPN’s website, add the extension to your browser, log in, and connect.

Customer Support

Helpful live chat support and comprehensive online resources

24/7 Live chat support
Online Resources

PureVPN’s customer support is pretty good, but it could still do with some improvements.

PureVPN has a 24/7 live chat feature, which is very handy for quick, simple questions. The support agents respond promptly and courteously but their knowledge doesn’t extend to more complicated queries – it was much the same story for email support.

The Support Center on the website is certainly comprehensive with lots of FAQs, troubleshooting advice and manual setup guides for loads of devices.

If you have a simple question, you’ll be able to find answers in minutes, but if it’s anything technically complicated you’ll have to be a little more persistent.

Pricing & Deals

Reasonably priced on annual plan

PureVPN Coupon

PureVPN

Get 82% off PureVPN's 3-year plan

  • Tested

PureVPN Pricing Plan

The longer you commit to PureVPN the less you’ll pay on a monthly basis – as is the case with most VPNs.

A single month is the most expensive option at $10.95, but this is reduced by a massive 74% to just $2.88 per month if you opt for the two-year plan. There’s also an annual plan for a reasonable $3.33 a month.

Both of those longer term plans are extremely cheap – if you’re looking to save money then PureVPN is a very strong contender.

PureVPN accepts a wide range of payment methods, including some more private options:

  • Credit and debit cards
  • PayPal
  • AliPay
  • Loads of cryptocurrencies through CoinPayments, including BitCoin
  • Loads of international methods through PaymentWall and BlueSnap

You can’t use PureVPN for free, but you can test out the PureVPN software for 31 days risk-free with its money-back guarantee. This is genuinely no questions asked, with no hidden data caps or restrictions. If it is due to a technical issue customer support will try and fix it first.

After your PureVPN refund request is processed and your account canceled, it can take up to 30 days for the refund payment to appear in your account.

PureVPN also offers a three-day trial account with no data cap or usage restrictions for $2.50. This is not refundable under any circumstances, including technical problems, but is a very good way to test out all of the services without worrying about going over a data allowance.

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User Reviews

 80% 
4 out of 5 stars

Based on 8 reviews

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Best Positive Review
 100% 

Excellent customer support.

Verified Purchase

Providing fast solution has always been their top priority. Downtime is almost nil and seamless integration across various platforms.

Best Critical Review
 20% 

Beijing, China

Just been to Beijing for 14 days. PureVPN did not work any of the days. Contacting support did not help either. Their only reply was “it will work within 48 hours”. It never did.

Showing 1-3 of 8 Reviews
  1.  100% 

    support

    Verified Purchase

    Angelo was very helpful and fully solved my problem, i now have a connection that gives me exactly what I need.

  2.  20% 

    Beware

    Pure VPN was ok but at the end of my agreed term they used my Credit card to renew at a higher rate without my expressed consent. Going on CHAT I was given links for cancelling future automatic renewals and on insisting I get a refund I was given a link for that too. I'm concerned that they still have my credit card information and black listed them with my bank. Pure VPN would not confirm that my credit card info was removed from their system. I received an email that my credit card was credited but so far it's not showing up.

  3.  100% 

    Amazing Customer service

    Verified Purchase

    Vladimir Nobov was really helpful and a pleasure to talk to. He helped me claim my refund whilst leaving an amazing impression for me to come back.

See all 8 PureVPN user reviews