Total VPN Review

TotalAV’s low-cost antivirus software has gained popularity. Still, the effectiveness of its VPN for ensuring your safety has been a subject of debate. Numerous complaints online suggest that TotalAV’s VPN, known as Safe Browsing, may not live up to its claims and could potentially log user data. In order to put these claims to the test, you can decide to thoroughly evaluate all its features to determine if this VPN is reliable.

After completing the assessment, you may find that TotalAV’s Safe Browsing VPN is worth considering. But there are more dependable alternatives available. At the same time, it offers reasonable security features and can unblock content. It needs to improve in terms of server network size and overall speed. It suggests exploring other top VPN options that provide extensive server networks and superior speeds to address your streaming and gaming needs.

Suppose you prioritize your online security and performance. In that case, exploring other VPN services from reputable providers that offer better overall experiences might be wise.

Short on Time? Here Are My Key Findings

Pros

  • TotalAV’s Safe Browsing VPN proves to be excellent for streaming, successfully unblocking several major platforms.
  • It also boasts commendable security features, including military-grade encryption and a kill switch, ensuring a robust and secure online experience.
  • The VPN’s commitment to privacy is evident through its no-logs policy, guaranteeing that no metadata from your sessions is recorded, safeguarding your data.
  • Should you encounter any issues or have inquiries, the VPN provides reliable 24/7 customer support with responsive and knowledgeable agents accessible through live chat.

Cons

  • TotalAV’s Safe Browsing VPN suffers from slow speeds when connected to long-distance servers, with significant drops in performance.
  • This VPN falls short for users seeking a wide variety of server locations, as it has a small server network limited to only a few countries worldwide.
  • Additionally, its compatibility is restricted to only a select number of devices and operating systems, which could be a drawback for users with diverse device preferences. To ensure a smoother experience, it’s essential to consider other VPN options that offer better speed and broader device compatibility.

2023 Update Features of Total VPN

💸 Price1.59 USD/month
📆 Money Back Guarantee30 Days
📝 Does VPN keep logs?No
🖥 Number of servers50+
💻 Number of devices per license6
🛡 Kill switchYes
🗺 Based in countryUnited Kingdom
🛠 Support24/7 live chat

Streaming — Unblocks Tons of Platforms With Decent Video Quality

TotalAV’s Safe Browsing VPN proved to be highly effective in unblocking most streaming services while testing. Most servers delivered impressive results, ensuring a smooth streaming experience.

You may encounter minimal issues with image quality, load times, or buffering, indicating the VPN’s reliability and performance. Even if you try it on your Windows laptop, you may find difficulty accessing the platforms on your iOS and Android phones. It’s worth noting that you may only find one platform that the VPN couldn’t access, which is quite an impressive feat overall.

Unblocked: Netflix US, UK, Italy, and Norway

While testing TotalAV’s Safe Browsing VPN, your first streaming platform attempt should be with Netflix. Consequently, you may be pleasantly surprised after effortlessly unblocking several libraries. And these include Netflix US on all three US servers (New York, Miami, and Dallas). Moreover, it’s worth noting that even some top VPNs struggle with accessing certain Netflix libraries. But Total VPN performed remarkably well in this regard.

I watched a full episode of Que Viva Mexico with zero quality drops

Beyond Netflix US, you should access various libraries from countries like the UK, Italy, Israel, Mexico, Norway, and more. Despite being connected to servers thousands of miles away, you will experience smooth streaming in HD quality. The load times for videos were impressively quick, taking only about 5 seconds to start playing. And throughout the entire streaming sessions, you may encounter buffering issues. This performance further reinforced your positive impression of TotalAV’s Safe Browsing VPN.

Unblocked: Hulu, Disney +, HBO Max, Peacock, and ESPN

TotalAV’s Safe Browsing VPN proved to be exceptionally effective in unblocking various streaming platforms. Accessing Hulu on all US servers was particularly impressive, considering its tough geo-blocking measures. Load times it has consistently remained under 15 seconds, providing a seamless streaming experience. You can successfully access Disney+, HBO Max, and Peacock without encountering any difficulties. Even after initially testing its server to unblock Disney+, the load time will be around 15 seconds, which was slightly slower.

I only waited for approximately 10 seconds for my video to load

You may love it more if you are a devoted baseball fan, as it enables the discovery that Total VPN could unblock ESPN. However, you might face some initial buffering issues. Still, the connection quickly stabilizes, allowing you to enjoy the game without further interruptions.

Overall, TotalAV’s Safe Browsing VPN might impress you with its ability to unblock various streaming platforms. And deliver a smooth streaming experience, making it a strong contender for users looking to access geo-restricted content.

Blocked By: Amazon Prime Video

As per the testing results, TotalAV’s Safe Browsing VPN cannot unblock any Amazon Prime Video library.

Support confirmed that it works with Prime VIdeo sometimes, so you might get lucky

To address this issue, you can reach out to their customer support for clarification. The agent informed you that the VPN indeed faces challenges in accessing Amazon Prime Video due to the platform’s stringent blocking of VPN usage.

Speed — Good on Nearby Servers, but Unreliable on Long Distance Servers

While evaluating TotalAV’s Safe Browsing VPN, you may find satisfactory performance on local servers. But encounter notable speed reductions on long-distance servers. As expected, long-distance servers tend to slow down connection speeds due to the longer data travel distance, which may not be surprising.

There are three essential factors you need to focus on:

  • Download Speed: The downloading speed is meant to be measured in megabits per second (Mbps). This shows how quickly data can be received in a very quick manner. And it simply affects tasks like loading web pages and content.
  • Upload Speed: The uploading speed is also measured in Mbps; this reflects the speed at which data can be sent. Which plays a crucial role in particular tasks like video uploads, email sending, and file sharing. However, upload speeds are slower than download speeds.
  • Ping: Measured in milliseconds (ms), this metric gauges the time it takes for data to travel. It provides insights into the connection’s latency and responsiveness. Lower ping rates are preferable for activities like gaming.

Even after using TotalAV’s VPN servers from a centralized location in the UK, the resulting chart might surprise you. Because it displays the average speeds per location based on these comprehensive test results.

My speeds lowered by 27% on average with nearby servers, and 45% with distant ones

Moreover, if your server is close to your location, then it might show a speed loss of no more than 15%. Which falls within the expected range of a 10-20% decrease in speed for short-distance servers.

My speed dropped by approximately 16% on servers nearby

However, you might experience less impressive results after using it with long-distance servers. Specifically, servers in Miami, which are situated 12,000 km away, resulted in a disappointing 74.19% speed loss. This is notably below the performance of top VPNs, which typically reduce speeds by around 40-50% at that range.

Despite the slow speeds on long-distance servers, you can still stream in HD due to the fast base connection rate. However, users with base speeds of 20 Mbps or lower might encounter significant lag and slowdowns. While TotalAV’s Safe Browsing VPN speeds are adequate, there is certainly room for improvement. For users seeking faster performance even on faraway servers, consider exploring other VPN options from the recommended list.

Gaming — Can Be Hard to Find Nearby Servers

TotalAV’s VPN performs well in terms of ping when connected to servers close to your location. But finding such servers can be challenging. As expected, long-distance servers typically have higher ping rates, a common occurrence among VPNs. Moreover, TotalAV’s VPN had impressive ping results on nearby servers, but gaming on distant servers proved less satisfactory.

For instance, while playing Minecraft on the server located in Switzerland, which had a ping of 177 ms. Your character responded almost instantly to your button presses despite the higher ping. Normally, a ping rate between 50-85 ms is considered ideal for instantaneous character responsiveness.

I was able to start the game after 10 seconds of loading

However, your experience might change if you tested a faraway server in Miami, where your ping soared to 250 ms. As a result, the game might take approximately 10 seconds to load. And also, don’t get surprised by the noticeable delay of at least half a second for your character to respond to your commands in a faraway server. This significantly affects your enjoyment of the game.

Furthermore, TotalAV’s VPN needs more convenient ways to connect gaming consoles like PlayStation, Xbox, or Nintendo. At the same time, it may work acceptably for gaming on mobile, Mac, or PC with nearby servers. The limited gaming support makes it less suitable for console gaming. You can explore other VPN options from the recommended list for a more comprehensive gaming experience with a wide selection of worldwide servers.

Server Network — Reliable Connections With a Limited Number of Servers

TotalAV’s Safe Browsing VPN features a relatively small network of only 100 servers spread across 36 countries. Despite its limited size, the selection offers a decent mix of locations worldwide. You may find the connections a little reliable, establishing connections to each server in less than 5 seconds.

While the server network is intuitive, I hope Total VPN adds servers from Africa

However, you may be disappointed to find that the TotalAV website needs comprehensive information about its servers. Details such as whether they use virtual servers, own them, or implement RAM-only servers for enhanced privacy remain unclear.

Furthermore, the VPN only offers a few city-level servers, except for US and UK locations. For servers in other countries, you only know the country without specific city information.

Another drawback is the absence of dedicated IPs, which can provide a consistent and unique internet identity, reducing the risk of being blocked and improving reliability for specific services like running a website. While some VPNs offer dedicated IPs for an additional fee. The ones listed in this recommended list provide more than just dedicated IPs. But also boast larger server networks for a more comprehensive VPN experience.

Security — Robust Features but Limited Customization

TotalAV’s VPN provides a secure internet browsing experience, passing over ten leak tests on servers worldwide. However, it lacks customization options as everything comes pre-configured. Except for the kill switch, which can be toggled on and off. If you prefer a simple and hassle-free VPN, opting for this might be fine for you.

Nevertheless, Total VPN needs to catch up compared to its competitors, as it misses out on additional special features. Many other VPNs offer features like split tunneling, which allows you to exclude certain traffic from the VPN tunnel. This can be useful when streaming geo-blocked content while accessing your banking app simultaneously.

Furthermore, TotalAV lacks features like multi-hop, private DNS servers, and more, which its competitors offer. If you seek a VPN with an array of advanced security features? Then, it would help if you considered exploring options from the list provided for a more comprehensive and versatile VPN experience.

Encryption

TotalAV’s VPN boasts US military-grade AES 256-bit encryption. A level of encryption is employed by top VPNs, making it extremely difficult to breach.

Security Protocols

In terms of security protocols, Total VPN utilizes two highly regarded ones: OpenVPN and IKEv2. OpenVPN, being open-source and continuously updated by contributors worldwide, is considered the safest protocol. Meanwhile, IKEv2, though an older protocol, is lightweight and compatible with various mobile devices. However, the absence of WireGuard support is a drawback. It is known for its speed and is widely used by modern VPNs for faster speeds on distant servers.

Kill Switch

The VPN offers a Windows kill switch feature, which blocks internet access in case of a VPN connection failure, providing an added layer of data protection.

My IP address never leaked when I tested the kill switch

Although useful, it is essential to remember to activate it. However, it is important to note that the kill switch feature is unavailable on Total VPN’s mobile or Mac apps.

Privacy — Based Within the 5-Eyes Alliance, but Doesn’t Store Logs

Regarding privacy, Total VPN follows a strict no-logging policy, ensuring that user data remains private. While it logs essential information during sign-up for account management and support purposes, it does not store any user activity logs. Nevertheless, it is worth mentioning that TotalAV’s VPN is based in the UK. Which is part of the 5-Eyes Alliance, an intelligence-sharing pact among certain countries.

Does TotalAV's VPN Keep Logs? No

TotalAV strictly adheres to a no-logs policy, only retaining user account creation and device identification information. Additionally, basic information may be collected through cookies when visiting their website. While using the VPN, no tracking or storage of user information occurs, ensuring a privacy-focused experience.

Was TotalAV's VPN Audited? No

Regarding independent audits, TotalAV’s VPN apps and privacy policy have not undergone such scrutiny. There is no evidence of any third-party verification or testing of their privacy claims. While their assertion is to be trusted, there are no independent validations to confirm it.

Based in the United Kingdom

Based in the UK within the 5 Eyes Alliance, TotalAV operates in a network of countries sharing data through global surveillance. Despite its location, the VPN’s strict no-logs policy ensures that no user data would be available for sharing even if requested.

Does Total VPN Work in China? Yes

Total VPN works in China, a country known for its stringent VPN restrictions. It’s recommended to download the app before traveling to China to ensure seamless usage. While tourists using VPNs haven’t faced repercussions, it’s advised to research and understand local laws to avoid any inadvertent violations.

The agent assured me that Total VPN works in other heavily censored countries too

Torrenting — Great Speeds For Large Files

TTotalAV’s VPN fully supports P2P across all non-US servers. Which provides seamless compatibility with popular torrent clients like qBittorrent. As per its torrenting capabilities, you can successfully download copyright-free files. Such as “The Amazing Mr. X,” without any issues. The speeds remained consistent, even with fairly large downloads. For instance, a 1.14 GB file finished in about 20 minutes, comparable to the download time without a VPN. With solid security and privacy features, TotalAV’s VPN is a reliable torrenting choice.

However, it’s crucial to note that you need to avoid downloading copyrighted files. It suggests accessing only torrents within the public domain to comply with legal regulations.

Installation & Apps

You may find Total VPN’s software compatible with different operating systems. And these can be Windows, iOS 9.3 and above, macOS 10.9+, and Android 5+. You can easily download the app onto your devices after signing up. Hence, it allows you to start using the VPN immediately.

Setup & Installation

The setup and installation process was hassle-free, with highly intuitive and user-friendly apps. Within minutes of making your payment, you will be able to download the app onto your Windows laptop and seamlessly unblock Netflix US.

One aspect to consider is that Total VPN apps feature a dark mode only, with no option to activate a light mode. While this wasn’t an issue for me, it might be a consideration if you prefer customizing your apps’ appearance.

Device Compatibility

Device compatibility is a factor to keep in mind. In contrast, Total VPN offers apps for popular operating systems. There may be better choices if you want to connect all your WiFi-enabled devices. It needs an easy connection to routers, smart TVs, or gaming consoles. Additionally, there are no apps for Linux, and it doesn’t provide smart DNS support. If you require compatibility with Linux, smart TVs, routers, and more, consider exploring other VPN options from the recommended list.

Desktop — Apps for Windows and Mac

TotalAV’s VPN apps for Windows and Mac may have different appearances. Still, they share similar features and user-friendly interfaces, making them easy to navigate.

The user interface is quite simple and user-friendly without any unnecessary menus

For Windows users, the installation process involves clicking on “Internet Security” (indicated by a fingerprint sign) and selecting VPN. From there, you can effortlessly choose and connect to your preferred server.

Android and iPhone (iOS)

The apps on Android and iOS devices have a similar layout, allowing users to log in, click the VPN button, choose a server, and connect. The app automatically scans upon installation, notifying you of any potential malicious apps or online threats.

Browser Extensions for Chrome, Firefox, Edge

While TotalAV’s Safe Browsing VPN lacks browser extensions, its app compensates by providing many of the same protections typically offered by browser extensions. And these include blocking malicious sites & preventing automatic downloads.

Apps for Amazon Fire TV, Smart TV, Nvidia Shield, etc

However, there is no support for installing the VPN on Amazon Fire TV, Smart TVs, Nvidia Shield, or other similar devices. It may be disappointing for users who enjoy streaming on their smart TVs. Additionally, there are no instructions on how to install Total VPN on these platforms. Unlike some VPNs that offer Smart DNS, TotalAV’s VPN does not include this feature. Which makes it less suitable for easy connection to various smart TVs.

Apps for PlayStation, Xbox, Nintendo, etc

TotalAV’s VPN needs to provide information on installing the service on gaming consoles like PlayStation, Xbox, and Nintendo. This could not be very pleasant for gamers seeking a VPN to enhance their online gaming security. For gamers looking for VPNs that are compatible and easy to use with gaming consoles. It recommends checking out our list of the best VPNs for gaming.

Router Compatibility

Regarding router compatibility, TotalAV’s Safe Browsing VPN does not support routers. After contacting customer support through the 24/7 chat, it was confirmed that the VPN offers only apps for Windows, Android, Mac, and iOS. This limitation can be unfortunate, as connecting to a router provides an easy way to encrypt all devices in your household, even if the VPN is not directly compatible with the router.

Simultaneous Device Connections

The Total Security subscription allows users to connect up to 5 devices simultaneously. This is ample, considering that some premium VPNs restrict simultaneous connections to a maximum of 5. Moreover, it is easy to connect Total VPN on your partner’s Windows laptop, iPhone, iPad, and 2 Android devices. All devices could stream simultaneously without any issues, confirming that the VPN works as advertised.

2023 Updated Prices of Total VPN

TotalAV’s VPN is an add-on available exclusively with the TotalAV antivirus suite. They offer three annual subscription options: Antivirus Pro, Internet Security, and Total Security. The Antivirus Pro plan is the most affordable but does not include the VPN. Opt for the Internet Security plan, which comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee for those interested in the VPN.

Although the initial subscription prices may seem attractive, the auto-renewal prices can be considerably higher. The discounted price usually applies only for the first year, making Total VPN less cost-effective for long-term use. If you only require a standalone VPN, there are better and more affordable options available with long-term commitments.

TotalAV accepts payments through debit/credit cards, PayPal, and GPay. If you don’t wish to be automatically resubscribed at the full price, using PayPal for your purchase provides an easy way to cancel recurring payments.

A positive aspect is the option to receive a prorated refund if you decide to cancel your subscription within the first year. Even better, canceling within 30 days of the subscription grants a full refund.

Reliability & Support

TotalAV’s 24/7 live chat support is reliable, but other support options left much to be desired. Initially, finding a way to access the live chat was difficult. Hence, every attempt redirects you to the FAQ section. And let you only reach the chat when you log out of your account. Even after connecting to an agent (following a 3-question checklist). The assistance provided was professional but not always helpful.

When seeking information about virtual servers, the agent directs to a page. The knowledge base needs significant improvement. On the positive side, requesting a refund was straightforward. The agent asked about your experience with the service and promptly approved your request.

Customer support was friendly, and they could usually answer my questions

However, if your emails to customer support still need to be answered & pending, and you still need to cancel them. Then, you can call their international number from Kenya to get a successful connection.

TotalAV claims to offer phone support in various countries, but a response to your call is not guaranteed. Overall, there is room for improvement in their support options and responsiveness to customer inquiries.

The Bottom Line

Final Verdict — Worth a Try, but Not a Long-Term Commitment

TotalAV’s Safe Browsing VPN is a solid choice, especially if you already use its antivirus suite. It provides robust security and privacy features, effective unblocking capabilities, and user-friendly apps.

However, in terms of value, Total VPN falls short compared to the top VPNs. Other VPN services offer more competitive pricing, wider device compatibility, and more extensive server networks. For a comprehensive VPN experience with additional security features and faster speeds, consider exploring our list of the best VPNs available.

Frequently Asked Questions(TotalAV VPN)-

Is TotalAV’s Total VPN worth it from the perspective of safety?

Yes, TotalAV’s Total VPN is safe. It utilizes robust encryption, successfully passing all leak tests. Additionally, it strictly adheres to a no-logs policy, ensuring your data remains private. Moreover, the VPN is integrated into TotalAV’s comprehensive security suite, offering real-time antivirus protection, safeguarding you from potential malware and threats while browsing the internet.

Why does TotalAV's Safe Browsing VPN not work?

There could be various reasons why TotalTV’s Safe Browsing VPN is not working:

  • Server issues: The problem might occur here due to the VPN server you are trying to connect to. However, switching to a different server could help resolve the issue.
  • Internet connection: To get a stable internet connection, ensure to check it first. Try reconnecting to your WiFi or data network.
  • Software updates: Ensure that your TotalAV software is up to date. Using an updated version may prevent the VPN from malfunctioning.
  • Firewalls or security software: Sometimes, firewalls or other security software on your device can interfere with the VPN’s functionality. Temporarily disabling these (if safe to do so) might help identify the cause of the problem.

By troubleshooting these potential issues, you can determine the underlying cause and find a solution to get TotalAV’s Safe Browsing VPN to work properly.

Is TotalAV’s Safe Browsing VPN considerably good anymore?

TotalAV’s Safe Browsing VPN is decent but doesn’t rank among the best. It provides a solid level of security and strictly adheres to a no-logging policy. The VPN can successfully unblock most streaming services and offers satisfactory speeds for seamless playback. However, other VPNs outperform it with faster speeds, larger server networks, and broader security features.

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