If you’re considering ActiVPN as “the most secure way to access the internet,” unfortunately, it falls short.
Exploring every facet of the VPN, including speed tests, unlocking capabilities, server network, and complex manual setup guides, my experience could have improved. For a more secure VPN experience, it is recommended to try another service rather than this one.
- Consistent IP leaks. ActiVPN has shown a pattern of IP leaks, which could compromise the security of your personal data.
- Inconsistent speeds. Speed performance can be erratic, with some servers providing good speeds while others slow down significantly. Finding the right server can be a tedious and frustrating experience.
- Small, unreliable server network. ActiVPN’s server network is not only limited in size but also prone to connectivity issues. Some of the servers you may have tried couldn’t establish a connection.
- Limited unblocking capabilities. ActiVPN may be unable to unblock all the streaming services you desire, but it still works with platforms like Netflix, HBO Max, ESPN+, and Peacock TV.
- Manual setup required. The setup process can be frustrating, and the provided guides may offer little help.
- No money-back guarantee. ActiVPN is relatively expensive, and it’s worth noting that there is no money-back guarantee in place, so your purchase lacks a safety net.
2023 Update Features Of ActiVPN
Streaming — Limited Unblocking Capabilities
When you try ActiVPN, it successfully unblocks about half of the streaming platforms. You should be able to access content on Netflix, HBO Max, Peacock TV, and ESPN. However, platforms like Amazon Prime Video, Disney+, and Hulu will likely block your access.
Additionally, you may need consistent speeds. At times, streaming in HD might be possible, while on other occasions, you might need to wait a few seconds for the video to load.
Unblocked: Netflix, HBO Max, ESPN+, and Peacock
You can successfully unblock Netflix, HBO Max, Peacock TV, and ESPN using ActiVPN. However, remember that the speeds may only sometimes be consistent enough for HD streaming when you try it.
I could stream content from HBO Max with no interruptions
ESPN+ was accessible with ActiVPN
Blocked By: Amazon Prime Video, Disney+, and Hulu
When you try ActiVPN, you may encounter issues accessing Amazon Prime Video, Hulu, and Disney+. Each platform is likely to detect the VPN and block your access immediately.
I couldn’t unblock Amazon Prime Video with ActiVPN
Hulu detected and blocked ActiVPN
Considering these limitations, ActiVPN may not be a reliable choice for streaming. You should explore other VPN options for streaming that are more likely to bypass geo-blocks successfully.
Speeds — Inconsistent Connections
When you try ActiVPN, you might experience significant variations in connection speeds across servers. While a few servers offer decent speeds, most could slow down your connection considerably.
ActiVPN’s website provides information about server usage, offering a slightly better idea about potentially congested or slow servers. However, determining the best server for your specific needs might still be a challenge.
Starting from your base speed in New Orleans, if you had 591 Mbps download, 10 Mbps upload, and an 11 ms ping, you might notice different impacts on various servers. For instance, the Canadian server might only cause a 7% drop in speed. In comparison, the San Jose location could result in a 50% decrease, and the Romanian server might slow you down by 71%.
If your base speed were slower, these speed reductions could seriously hinder your ability to stream or browse effectively.
I noticed a significant drop in speed when I connected to both local and distant servers
Due to its inconsistent speeds, ActiVPN might not be recommended as a fast service. If you’re seeking faster speeds, consider trying these established VPNs that have been proven to deliver high speeds consistently.
Is ActiVPN Fast Enough for Gaming? Not Really
When you try ActiVPN for gaming, you might encounter a slightly high ping, which can be disappointing considering the VPN’s marketing as a “low ping” service ideal for gaming.
Additionally, you may experience varying speeds between servers, and finding a server that provides a reliable connection can be a challenge. These fluctuations in latency could make it difficult to keep up in multiplayer matches.
ActiVPN claims to offer DDoS protection on all its servers to enhance its suitability for gamers. However, it’s important to note that it leaked your IP address and DNS requests in every test, so it may not effectively protect you from hackers and malicious opponents.
Given these limitations, there might be better choices than ActiVPN for gaming. Instead, consider exploring other gaming VPNs for a more reliable and secure gaming experience.
Server Network — Sparse and Unreliable
When you try ActiVPN and explore its claimed 66 servers across 32 countries, you might notice that the actual number could be much higher.
As you check 20 servers across various countries, you may find that around half of them fail to connect entirely, displaying an error message stating “Host does not exist” upon connection attempts.
Additionally, about a quarter of the servers in the catalog might not accept your user credentials, requiring you to log in every time you want to switch servers. This limitation might leave you with only a few functional servers to connect to.
While ActiVPN includes servers in rare locations like Russia and Cuba, they will only be useful to you if they work. The process of checking each server individually might be frustrating, especially when finding that only a few of them function properly. Even if all servers worked perfectly, the server list might still seem limited compared to other VPNs in the same price range.
Security — Multiple IP Leaks
When you try ActiVPN, you may experience a concerning issue – your real IP address could be leaked on every test you perform. Regardless of the server you choose, a simple check may reveal that your information isn’t entirely encrypted, despite ActiVPN’s claims of using AES-CBC 256 + PKI RSA 2048 bit encryption, along with OpenVPN, L2TP/IPSec, and PPTP protocols.
I wasn’t protected at all with ActiVPN
You might notice the absence of other essential security features as well, such as a kill switch. A kill switch is a critical safety feature that automatically cuts off your traffic if your VPN connection goes down. Without it, your data could be at an increased risk of potential leaks to the websites you visit or interception by hackers, particularly on public networks.
In summary, using ActiVPN may not provide you with a strong sense of security, as you could be vulnerable to IP, DNS, IPv6, and WebRTC leaks that might expose your identity. For enhanced security features, consider exploring our list of VPNs with robust security protections.
Privacy — Non-Existent Policy
Moreover, a seemingly random link labeled “Legals” reveals that ActiVPN is based in France. This, unfortunately, raises concerns about your privacy. France is a significant member of the 5/9/14 Eyes Alliance, an international intelligence-sharing pact. This implies that the VPN could share your information with government authorities.
Given the lack of security and privacy assurances you might have identified, it is strongly recommended you avoid taking unnecessary risks with ActiVPN.
Torrenting — No Dedicated P2P Servers
ActiVPN doesn’t offer dedicated torrenting servers, but it also doesn’t explicitly state that it’s against torrenting. The VPN doesn’t provide any information regarding torrenting at all.
Despite this, it strongly advises against torrenting while using ActiVPN due to the IP leaks you may have observed. There’s a risk that your Internet Service Provider (ISP) might detect your torrenting activity even with the VPN enabled, and it’s also possible for hackers to track your online actions.
Even if torrenting were a secure option with ActiVPN, the inconsistent server network and fluctuating speeds would likely make the experience frustrating. If you’re searching for a VPN service that enables secure P2P transfers, explore these VPNs that are more suitable for torrenting.
Does ActiVPN Work in China? Not Recommended
If you’re considering using ActiVPN in China, then it suggests refraining from it. There needs to be more response from the support team, and even if you could manage to make ActiVPN function in China, it’s not a safe choice.
Consistent IP leaks and unstable connections make it risky to use behind the Great Firewall. For a VPN in China, I’d recommend exploring much better options.
Simultaneous Device Connections — 5 Supported
Interfacing up to 5 devices is conceivable, yet remember that setting up ActiVPN on every gadget can be a challenge. It’s anything but a clear cycle like downloading the VPN application and signing into your record.
The establishment can be tedious and complex for every gadget, and the interaction changes starting with one gadget and then onto the next. You would have to spend hours setting up each of the 5 devices.
Device Compatibility — Compatible with Most Devices
ActiVPN has no local applications, so it may very well be installed on any gadget that upholds the utilization of OpenVPN. This incorporates macOS, Android, Windows, Linux, iOS, switches, and gaming consoles (Xbox and PlayStation).
However, you most certainly don’t prescribe it on the off chance that you’re new to VPNs. The arrangement is precarious and requires some specialized information, particularly since the site’s aides are befuddling and — in certain spots — totally erroneous.
Installation & Apps
Setup & Installation — Difficult and Frustrating
Setting up ActiVPN and getting it installed takes a lot of work. Since it doesn’t offer native apps, you must install it manually.
Right from the beginning, you may encounter issues with ActiVPN’s website. It tends to be sluggish, pages might not load on the first click, and the purchasing process can be problematic. Even after completing the purchase, you might still need to receive the necessary files or download instructions despite being charged.
Upon reaching out to the support team, obtaining the files needed for the OpenVPN configuration might require a bit of clarification and a lengthy process. The guide provided for setting up the VPN might require more work to follow and use. The file locations are illustrated with images, so you must input these locations manually. Moreover, the guide might contain labeling errors, leading to confusion while setting up the VPN.
This VPN needs a clearer user interface and traditional application. Making connections involves selecting servers from a dropdown list, which might need to be more intuitive. You might also need help in identifying server locations and understanding the terms associated with each server.
Additionally, having to input credentials every time you switch servers can be quite tedious and time-consuming.
2023 Updated Prices Of ActiVPN
ActiVPN comes with a higher price tag than most other VPNs, and this cost aligns differently with the features it offers or, rather, the lack of them. Many VPNs in this price range provide dedicated apps, better customer support, and more dependable security.
What’s even more frustrating is that ActiVPN doesn’t offer any trial period or money-back guarantee. Dropping your membership isn’t direct either, as it requires contacting their help group to end your record. Discounts appear to be taken care of depending upon the situation, with no plainly characterized measures or conditions for acquiring one accessible on the site.
This is a very uncommon practice and quite deceiving
Another concerning aspect is that long-term plans are described as “limited quantity,” which is unusual compared to more established VPN services. Consider exploring one of the more affordable VPN options that provide many security features and user-friendly applications.
Reliability & Support
When you try to contact the support team, expect a varied experience. Despite the contact page stating a 30-minute turnaround time, it might take nearly a day before customer support responds to your messages. With no phone or chat support available, submitting a ticket is your primary option, and you’ll need to await an email response.
Upon receiving the response, it might help resolve your issues. However, the team did something rather unusual. Apart from answering my questions, they extended my single-month membership for over 700 days.
While you might not be charged for this extension, you will not receive a clear explanation from the support team when you inquire about the reason for the extension.
The Bottom Line
ActiVPN proves to be less reliable, secure, and feature-rich compared to most VPNs within the same price range. It needs to safeguard your data and ensure your privacy adequately.
The limited server options provided are insufficient to justify its price point, particularly given the numerous connectivity issues experienced with many of the servers. The absence of native apps and the presence of a cumbersome website with unclear menus and confusing installation guides result in a frustrating VPN experience from beginning to end.
Frequently Asked Questions (ActiVPN)-
Is ActiVPN secure?
Does ActiVPN have the ability to unblock Netflix?
Yes, ActiVPN can unblock Netflix, but it may struggle with many other streaming platforms. For a more versatile streaming VPN, consider other options.
Does ActiVPN slow down speeds while using?
Yes, ActiVPN can lead to speed reductions, although the extent varies by server. While some servers maintain decent speeds, others may reduce your connection speed by about half. Choose a VPN with better performance if you prioritize speed.