Finding out the best VPN for streaming is a difficult task as there are a lot of VPN providers competing with each other to be on top. The competition has given users a lot of choices to opt from.
More often than not, even if you do settle upon a VPN, you are likely to face at least one of the following problems:
- The VPN becomes slow and starts lagging.
- The VPN won’t support cross-functional devices or allow multi-logins.
- The VPN offers poor customer service.
We know how frustrating that can be. Therefore, we have gone through the rigorous VPN testing process so you won’t have to. So, take a look at our list of the 3 best streaming VPNs before you invest in one.
Features to Consider When Choosing a VPN
|Download Speed||5+ Mbps|
|Max Connections||5 to 10 devices|
|Server Reliability||Always up and active|
|Server Locations||Spread Worldwide|
|Streaming Apps Access||Netflix, Hulu, BBC iPlayer|
|Torrenting Support||P2P Protocol|
A Detailed Look at the Best Streaming VPNs
Before we delve into a more elaborated description of the VPNs that offer the best performance for streaming geo-blocked websites such as Netflix, let’s get the most basic thing straight: They all have excellent unblocking abilities, no matter where in the world you are.
1. ExpressVPN – Recommended VPN for Streaming
ExpressVPN tops our list of recommended VPNs due to numerous reasons, but especially because it is the fastest. It has been in the business since 2009 and has an extensive network of VPN servers in over 94 countries worldwide with more than 3000 servers on 160+ server locations.
In the speed tests we conducted with US servers, it managed to offer a download speed of 91.04 Mbps and an upload speed of 54.46 Mbps on a 100 Mbps connection.
ExpressVPN has a built-in useful Kill Switch feature, which avoids system statistics from dripping external VPN tunnels if the VPN connection flops. It also offers some great security features like 256-bit encryption, DNS leak protection and also guarantees a no-log policy.
Its cheapest plan is just $6.67/mo that comprises 12+3 free months and also offers a money-back guarantee as well.
|Finest performance on multiple OS (Android, iOS, Microsoft Windows)||A bit slow with MAC OS|
|Flawless accessibility||No instant customer service|
|Excellent data retrieval policy||Not supporting Internet Explorer|
|5 parallel connections for each subscription|
|Server Functional Details|
|Initial Speed in US||20 Ms||20.29 Mbps||1.81 Mbps|
|US Server – Quick Connect||120 Ms||16.17 Mbps||1.51 Mbps|
|Connect US server – Manual||85 Ms||16.19 Mbps||1.57 Mbps|
|UK Server- Quick connect||240 Ms||17.75 Mbps||1.43 Mbps|
|Connect UK Server – Manual||206 Ms||17.95 Mbps||1.45 Mbps|
|AU Server – Quick Connect||323 Ms||13.62 Mbps||1.47 Mbps|
|FR Server – Quick Connect||306 Ms||15.97 Mbps||1.41 Mbps|
|BR Server – Quick Connect||307 Ms||15.62 Mbps||1.46 Mbps|
2. Surfshark – Budget-friendly VPN for Streaming
Despite being a small network, Surfshark is giving the ultimate tough time to its competitor with excellent features like unlimited device support through which you can support your entire office or home in just $2.49/mo.
It also provides you with features like ad-blocking, anti-tracker, and anti-malware tools and has 3,200 servers in 65 locations.
The loss of speed was just 17% on average during the speed test we conducted, which pushes it ahead of many competitors.
This VPN managed to offer a download speed of 75.42 Mbps and an upload speed of 38.01 Mbps when tested on a 100 Mbps connection.
Surfshark’s extension support for top browsers like Chrome and Firefox has ranked It up among its competitors as it is strongly recommended by the German Cyber Security Firm Cure 53.
They have excellent apps compatible with Windows, iOS, Mac OS, iOS, Fire TV, and routing devices. Game console configuration is also supported by DNS.
Surfshark provides three special modes to facilitate its users:
- The Camouflage Mode hides your activity
- The Multihop Mode hops your data through various countries to hide you
- The No Borders Mode enables you to use Surfshark in restraining areas
|Unlimited Connections||Unsatisfactory Customer Services|
|Affordable Packages||Kill Switch has to be operated manually|
|Money-Back Guarantee||Static IP Address|
|Server Functional Details|
|Starting speed in the US||21 Ms||20.61 Mbps||1.47 Mbps|
|US Server – Quick Connect||40 Ms||18.46 Mbps||1.36 Mbps|
|US server – Manual||44 Ms||17.49 Mbps||1.30 Mbps|
|US Server for Netflix US||41 Ms||16.29 Mbps||1.46 Mbps|
|UK Server – Quick Connect||140 Ms||17.15 Mbps||1.33 Mbps|
|UK server – Manual||139 Ms||15.28 Mbps||1.36 Mbps|
|UK Server for BBC iPlayer||150 Ms||14.55 Mbps||1.57 Mbps|
|FR Server – Quick Connect||230 Ms||13.89 Mbps||1.29 Mbps|
|BR Server – Quick Connect||211||13.77 Mbps||1.22 Mbps|
|AU Server – Quick Connect||215||13.56 Mbps||1.39 Mbps|
3. NordVPN – VPN with the Largest Server Network
NordVPN is one of the most popular VPN providers in the industry, owing to its vast number of servers. While most of its competitors offer 5 connections, it offers 06 with its servers. It is operating in 62 countries with more than 5300 servers on more than 80 server locations.
When you connect to it, it automatically links you to the fastest server available in the location. NordVPN users can also reach them to provide a Private IP option to run the dedicated VPN service. Its Kill Switch feature turns the VPN into TOR in a single click.
When we tested, the VPN managed to give a download speed of 88.45 Mbps and an upload speed of 46.42 Mbps on a 100 Mbps connection.
NordVPN will cost you $3.30/mo (VPN Awareness Month - 2 year plan at 72% off + 3 months FREE) and includes a full 30-day refund policy.
|Brilliant App options||Uses Static IP|
|Flawless accessibility||Inefficient Customer Support|
|Strict no-log policy||Kill switch does not work properly with iOS|
|Server Functional Details|
|US Server- Quick connect||42 Ms||18.61 Mbps||1.47 Mbps|
|US Server – Manual||46 Ms||18.46 Mbps||1.36 Mbps|
|US Server – Quick Connect to Netflix||43 Ms||16.49 Mbps||1.30 Mbps|
|UK server – Quick Connect||123 Ms||17.29 Mbps||1.46 Mbps|
|UK Server – Manual Connect||141 Ms||13.15 Mbps||1.33 Mbps|
|UK Server – BBC iPlayer||142 Ms||15.28 Mbps||1.36 Mbps|
|Quick connect – FR Server||155 Ms||14.55 Mbps||1.57 Mbps|
|Quick connect – BR Server||240 Ms||13.89 Mbps||1.29 Mbps|
Why Choosing the Right VPN is Important for Streaming
Geo-blocks ensure that you are allowed to watch only that content which airs in your country. Needless to say, they annoy the hell out of streaming enthusiasts who are interested in a variety of content from all around the globe.
Thankfully, there is a workaround for this frustrating restriction: you can sign up for a premium VPN.
However, you must keep in mind that many popular streaming sites have begun to employ anti-VPN technology to identify connection attempts from outside of the regions they are restricted to. This often means that when users connect to these platforms through a VPN, their IP address gets logged and checked against an internal list of known VPN IPs. If the user’s real IP matches one on the list, they are blocked from access for a set amount of time before being able to log back in.
Therefore, you must remember that only a premium VPN is able to successfully evade the identification mechanisms these streaming platforms employ.
Worst VPNs For Streaming
There are many great VPNs, but not all of them work for streaming movies.
1 – TunnelBear – Free Version
The free version of TunnelBear is only compatible with Hulu, and it provides 500 MB per month. This means you can unblock Hulu but not use any other streaming services. The paid version of VPN may give you more options to get a better streaming service.
2 – CactusVPN
CactusVPN will not unblock popular streaming services like Netflix unless you switch from the encrypted to a more insecure, non-encrypted service type. I attempted to use both with Netflix US and found that to be a major issue with CactusVPN.
3 – Hotspot Shield – Free Version
Hotspot Shield’s free VPN version is one of the best, but it’s not ideal if you want to stream movies. The 500 MB data cap only gave us about 30 minutes of streaming in HD each day for a month with no throttling. Thankfully, there are paid versions that offer more and don’t throttle you.
What can I do if my VPN has been blocked for streaming?
If your VPN cannot unblock a particular streaming service, we would advise contacting the VPN provider’s customer support to determine the cause. However, usually, these services can detect a VPN through anti VPN tools and will block your IP address.
Which are the best TV streaming services?
Video services today offer a wider and much more convenient selection than in the nineties when all you could choose from was a video chain. According to subscriber count (last checked on July 31, 2021), the 5 most popular streaming services are as follows:
Netflix – 209 Million subscribers
Amazon Prime Video – 175 Million subscribers
Disney+ – 103.6 Million subscribers
HBO Max – 67.5 Million subscribers
Peacock – 42 Million subscribers
Which VPN Is Good For Streaming?
Is a VPN worth it for streaming?
Yes, Using a VPN is worth the effort because it will allow you to access content that has been blocked by streaming services like Netflix, Amazon Prime, or HBO Max. It also has other benefits such as offering anonymity, resolving any buffering problems from throttling and encryption of your data.
Should I go for a free streaming VPN?
A free VPN provider is hardly going to meet your streaming needs if you are seeking better protection online. While saving a few bucks per month might be tempting, the risks of data and privacy loss outweigh those meager savings. So, don’t be pennywise pound foolish and invest in a premium VPN.
Which VPN is best for streaming?
Watching a two-hour movie at 1080p quality would use about 7 or 8 Gbps. If you were to watch a movie at 720p, you could expect to download around 0.9GB per hour. 2K and 4K video files using about 3 GB and 7.2 GB an hour respectively; this doesn’t include other factors.
Only high-quality VPNs can bypass geo-restrictions and let you stream content from platforms such as Netflix US from any location. However, it can be difficult to choose the best VPN for streaming, but it won’t be with the help of the above guide.
Finally, you can stop worrying about finding the best streaming VPN and start enjoying your streaming experience!
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