Betternet is very easy to use and you don’t need to register to use its free version. If you are using the desktop version you just need to download the app, install it, and that’s it. When it comes to mobile it’s a little trickier, as you need to make sure not to accidentally sign up for the seven-day free trial of the premium account. Betternet’s free version is sufficient for many, although it offers you almost no customization. If you are looking for a hassle-free, easy-to-use VPN where you just need to click ‘Connect’ then this version is for you.
However, having something so easy to use comes with some downsides such as the inability to choose your server’s location (unless you have a premium account). With the free version, you can only access American servers.
Support for Streaming Services and Torrenting
Although Betternet states that it will unblock all websites and streaming services for you, the truth is, the majority of the time it doesn’t work – at least for Netflix, more times than not, Betternet’s servers are blocked. So, if you are looking to log in to American Netflix, Betternet probably won’t work.
Betternet supports P2P activity on all of its servers, for both free and premium accounts. However, at least for the free version, the loss of speed is too significant. Through our tests, the download speed went from 2MB/s (without Betternet) to roughly 500KB/s, representing a decrease of around 75%.
Even though Betternet is completely free, you have the option to go for a premium, paid version. With the premium account, you will have access to all servers spread across 73 countries as well as the possibility to select which country you want to use. You will also get a faster connection, no ads, and better customer support. This premium account can be linked to up to five devices.
When compared to other paid services, we have to agree that the amount of features coming with Betternet’s paid account is not great. In fact, as a paid VPN service, Betternet gives one of the smallest arrays of features and this could be justified by low prices, but that is unfortunately not the case here.
While using the free version you will only be able to use servers from the U.S., whereas if you pay for the premium version, you will be able to choose between 73 countries throughout the world. Unfortunately, this VPN service does not disclose how many servers it has. Nonetheless, when it comes to the U.S., you can choose between 27 cities – an option that isn’t available for the remaining countries.
Moreover, Betternet is designed to automatically jump to a new server if the one you are using goes down. This means that you won’t experience offline times or the need to manually change the server when that happens.
We were surprised when we did speed tests through Ookla. As stated above, we faced a massive slow speed while torrenting. However, the speed tests themselves had positive results. Although we saw a small decrease in both download and upload speeds, it was not significant and was just something that occurred while we were browsing the internet. HD streaming was still possible without any problems.
Speed Test While Disconnected
Speed Test While Connected
Betternet states that it never stores or logs the IP address beyond the duration of the app usage, deleting such information the moment the VPN is disconnected. It also does not keep logs of online activities and doesn’t associate domains or applications to the device or email.
Betternet keeps your traffic safe with a reliable AES 256-bit encryption. On top of that, it also includes perfect forward secrecy, giving you an extra security layer. This means that, even if there was to be an encryption breach, the majority of your data would still be completely secure. However, Betternet does not offer an automatic kill switch, which means that your data could be leaked if your VPN connection suddenly drops.
To sum it up, it’s a decent and reliable VPN that you can feel secure using, but just remember that you don’t have that safety net if the VPN connection drops.
OS, Device Support
Betternet supports both Windows and macOS on desktop and iOS and Android on mobile. Moreover, it also has a Google Chrome extension. It’s very easy to use, with the layout being basically the same on all devices. You just need to open the application, click ‘Connect’ and you’re done.
However, you need to take into account that, on mobile, you are presented with a pop-up to buy the app right away. Or, at least, to try a seven-day free trial of Betternet’s premium version. To use the free version, you need to close this pop-up, which is not exactly straightforward and leads many people to believe that the app is, in fact, paid and not free.
Since Betternet is completely free and there is no need to create an account, you are free to download and use it on any devices you want. However, when it comes to the paid version, each premium account works only on up to five devices simultaneously.
We want to stress that Betternet is completely free. You have the possibility to purchase a premium account, but you are able to use the free version for however long you want, although the free mobile version does have in-app ads.
The premium version only has one tier which has different prices depending on your preferred level of time commitment and a free, seven-day trial. The lowest price you can get is $2.99 per month for a yearly subscription. However, you can also pay $11.99 monthly, $23.94 every six months (which comes out to $3.99 per month and a savings of 67%). With the annual fee you will be able to save 75%. For the number of features Betternet offers with the premium service, it’s a little overpriced.
Betternet only accepts credit card as a payment method, which is something that should be improved by adding PayPal, for example
On the website, the only support you can get is through email or in the FAQ. It would be nice to have something like a live chat, but, at the moment, if you come across a problem that you can’t solve through the FAQ, you will have to email support and wait for their answer.
However, Betternet has a great presence on social media, both on Facebook and Twitter. Here, you’ll find the team answering questions and helping consumers on a daily basis which is a great option for getting problems solved.
If you are looking for a completely free, easy to use VPN service, then Betternet may be the right software for you. It takes just five minutes to start using it and provides solid and reliable security.
However, if you want a VPN service to watch American Netflix or to do some torrenting, you will be better off with other services on the market. Moreover, the premium version does not give enough features to justify the price. If you’re willing to invest in a VPN service, the money you’d pay for this premium version is enough to get a software which will provide you with more features, such as American Netflix, and a lot more customization.
Nevertheless, if you are looking for a quick and easy app to use to browse the internet in a secure way without losing much speed, Betternet is a solid choice.
- Completely free
- Good speed
- No need to create an account
- Good protection
- Premium version is overpriced
- P2P slowdown
- No support for streaming services