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Windscribe Free Review

Callum Tennent
By Callum TennentUpdated
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Windscribe Free screenshot
Our Score6.9
User Rating
 100% 
(2 User Reviews)

Windscribe Free: Ranked #51 out of 99 VPNs that we tested

  1. Reliable local download speeds
  2. Good selection of servers
  3. Strong logging policy
  4. Extremely easy to use
  5. Available on lots of devices
  1. Data usage is capped
  2. Could be better for streaming

Works with

Torrenting

Available on

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

Speed & Reliability

Local speeds approaching 30Mbps

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

Before using Windscribe Free:

  1. DownloadMbps

    98

  2. UploadMbps

    86

  3. Pingms

    10

When connected to Windscribe Free:

  1. DownloadMbps

    28

  2. UploadMbps

    29

  3. Pingms

    17

Download speed without Windscribe Free: 98Mbps

Download speed with Windscribe Free: 28Mbps

Our download speed loss when Windscribe Free is running: 71%

Despite the high percentage speed loss, for a free VPN service, Windscribe’s speeds are still very promising – even if they don’t quite match up to the premium version of Windscribe.

Windscribe Free’s performance is less consistent when connecting out (from London, UK) to the US and Canada, though.

Overall the speeds we recorded with Windscribe Free were good, although if minimal speed loss is fundamental to your needs then you may want to consider Hotspot Shield VPN instead.

Server Locations

Servers in 22 cities spread over 10 countries

Globe with a blue flag10Countries
Image of a city landscape22Cities
Image of a pink marker5,000IP Addresses

Considering that this is a free version of the premium Windscribe VPN service, the 10 server countries provided is a very good start, but it’s Windscribe’s city-specific server choice that really impressed us.

The ‘US East’ location, for example, allows you to pick between Windscribe’s VPN servers in Chicago, New York and Washington DC, plus two in Miami.

There are two city-level options each in the US Central, US West and UK locations, too.

Windscribe Free connection settings

Sadly, Windscribe doesn’t have any server options available in South America, Africa or Australia, and the entirety of Asia is funneled through one VPN server in Hong Kong.

If you want access to servers in those locations, plus dozens more, you’ll need to upgrade to the premium version of Windscribe VPN.

Streaming & Torrenting

Won’t work with streaming but torrenting is allowed

A mixture of good and bad, this is where Windscribe Free VPN most shows its deficiencies compared to the paid version.

Windscribe’s streaming servers (known as ‘Windflix’) are reserved for paid users, so it’s hardly a surprise that we haven’t been able to watch Netflix for over a month now. BBC iPlayer is also difficult to stream, and has been inaccessible to Windscribe Free users for some time.

If streaming is very important to you then you should really think about using a paid VPN service. Check out our best VPNs for streaming, or alternatively take a closer look at our overall best VPN, ExpressVPN.

Torrenting

Torrenting worked well for us in testing, and appears to be permitted on the majority of Windscribe Free’s VPN servers, which is great. Windscribe is our current favorite free VPN for torrenting.

The 10GB monthly data cap will always be a limiting factor here, though.

Bypassing Censorship

Reliable option on desktop but less so on mobile

With the sheer number of VPN protocols available, at least on desktop, Windscribe Free should be a reliable option for bypassing censorship in places like China.

When we asked Windscribe how effectively it believes its VPN apps can bypass censorship blocks, Windscribe told us that it can be ‘hit-and-miss’ on mobile, but should operate trouble-free on desktop.

Platforms & Devices

Compatible with all major platforms

Apps

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

We tested Windscribe’s free VPN apps on our full suite of operating systems and devices, including Windows, MacOS, iOS, Android and Linux, and were consistently impressed throughout.

You can also install Windscribe at router level, and there’s no limit on the number of simultaneous connections you can have, although a router install on your home network would drain your data cap far too quickly.

Games Consoles & Streaming Devices

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

Windscribe Free is even available on a whole host of extra devices, like the Amazon Fire TV Stick and Apple TV, which is rare for a free VPN service.

Be warned though – those devices will still eat data from the same allowance as all the other devices you have Windscribe installed on.

Browser Extensions

Chrome LogoChrome
Firefox LogoFirefox

Windscribe also has browser extensions for Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome and Opera Browser which work extremely well and offer a vast array of options and features.

Windscribe Free browser extension

That said, it’s important to remember that these aren’t the same as Windscribe’s full VPNs, and will only encrypt your browser traffic.

Encryption & Security

Just as secure as the paid version

Protocol

IKEv2/IPSec

OpenVPN (TCP/UDP)

Proprietary

Encryption

AES-256

Security

DNS Leak Blocking

IPV6 Leak Blocking

Supports TCP Port 443

VPN Kill Switch

Advanced features

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

Windscribe Free allows you to access exactly the same array of privacy settings granted in the full version of the app, meaning you can choose from five different VPN protocols.

Windscribe Free comes with a VPN kill switch feature, a huge bonus, and you can even choose to set an IP address manually.

There are also some advanced VPN settings on Windscribe’s desktop app, from proxy configuration to how you’d like your servers sorted. It’s just a shame that almost all of these features are unavailable on the mobile app.

We also tested Windscribe Free VPN for IP and DNS leaks and it passed both with flying colors, proving it will keep you safe online.

Logging Policy

One of the most private free VPNs out there

Windscribe’s VPN logging policy is good, as it outlines in no uncertain terms just how little is truly collected. It only collects:

  • The amount of data transferred in a 30-day period
  • Timestamp of your last VPN connection

These figures are reset at the start of every month.

When you’re actively connected to one of Windscribe’s VPN servers, the server temporarily stores:

  • Your OpenVPN/IKEv2 username
  • Time of connection
  • Amount of data transferred

Once you end your Windscribe session, the VPN connection information is deleted.

Jurisdiction

Windscribe is based in Canada. Canada is part of a data-sharing agreement with several other major Western nations, which is less than ideal for a VPN service.

In this instance, though, we’re not too concerned: there’s so little data retained by Windscribe that even if it were forced to turning over its logs by the government there would be nothing to see.

Ease of Use

Modern and easy to use

How to Install & Set Up Windscribe Free

Regardless of platform, the Windscribe free VPN app looks exactly the same as the premium version. That means you get a simple, intuitive and slick user experience.

There’s no ads, either, which is a welcome breath of fresh air in the world of free VPNs.

Windscribe presents you with a VPN server network and a power button: simply choose your location, switch it on and you’re up and running in seconds.

Customer Support

Handy online resources but no live chat

Email support via an online form
Online Resources

Windscribe has no live chat support, which is disappointing for a VPN provider of its size. The closest thing you get to live chat support is an automatic chat bot – which proved utterly useless whenever we asked it a question.

Fortunately there’s an array of handy help guides and FAQs online, plus you can always submit a support ticket if you still can’t find what you need.

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User Reviews

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  1.  100% 

    Best Free VPn ever

    Its really fast and premium options are so cheap toooo , and every month you can get 15 gb free thats so huge for me thank you so much

  2.  100% 

    Happy bunny.

    Easy to install, start/stop and operate. For intermittent use, monthly data cap is no problem. DNS Leak tests have always been successful.

See all 2 Windscribe Free user reviews