Using BullGuard VPN is quite easy and fast as setting up the program will only take a few minutes and connecting the VPN will take even less. When connecting for the first time, users will be required to enter their credentials. If they don’t yet have an account, they can register through the application itself and then select one of the three subscriptions available.
Since BullGuard VPN is clearly targeting users who aren’t quite familiar with using VPN software, the design of the interface is purposefully user-friendly. This is also the reason that the program is visually coherent across all the devices it can be used on, making for a great user experience as customers will be able to effortlessly use it across platforms with no difficulties.
When launching the program, the option to connect the VPN to a server appears immediately. All that users will have to do is select the location that they want to connect to. There is no need to do any kind of configuration at this point, but for those who already have some experience and like to optimize their connections, the settings menu is complete in this regard. It is possible for customers to set a custom DNS, choose between UDP and TCP protocols, and run diagnostics.
Additional Security Features
BullGuard adds extra security features that further improve the program’s performance and provide a safe environment for anonymous and private browsing. Customers have access to some interesting tools such as internet and app kill switches, and invisibility functions for LAN. The internet kill switch and app kill switch share similar functionalities, the only difference being that the former will stop browsing altogether if the connection fails while the latter will stop app usage if the VPN connection unexpectedly drops. The invisibility on LAN feature keeps the user’s computer invisible to others on that network.
BullGuard VPN has a network of 16 countries which, compared to other solutions available on the market, is a pretty low number for a company that has been around for years. With that said, there are servers in the U.S., the UK, Canada, Australia, and Germany, alongside less common countries such as Norway and Singapore. Like the number of locations itself, the selection of countries is rather disappointing. BullGuard’s low number of servers wouldn’t have been such an issue if only it had IP addresses in more exotic countries rather than offering the usual ones.
However, the software redeems itself by providing good connections speeds. We tested the service from our location within Europe, and so it should be predictable that the Netherlands offered up satisfactory results. Compared to the connections speed of our physical location, there were no significant drops in terms of download and upload speed in spite of an increase in the latency. As expected, Singapore showed the worst results out of those tested since it was the furthest location, but despite the VPN was capable of good connections speeds – making this easily one of BullGuard’s strongest suits.
In order to protect the customer at all times, both UDP and TCP protocols are available and the user is able to choose which to use. In spite of that, both manage to guarantee anonymity and privacy when browsing, since no DNS leaks were found during our tests.
OS, Device Support
As is common in the VPN software market, BullGuard VPN is available for Windows, Mac, iOS, and Android devices. For Windows users it is necessary to have at least Windows 8. Mac users will be required to have macOS X 10.11 or later. Android customers will need to have Android 5.0 or greater and, finally, iOS devices will have to support iOS 10 or higher in order to be able to use the app.
Though most of the functionalities are kept intact across platforms, some features that are available on the desktop client might not be available in the smartphone application. Excluded from the latter are the internet and app kill switches as well as invisibility on LAN, however it’s fair to think of these more as extra adds-on, so most customers won’t really miss them on a mobile or tablet device.
It’s important for companies that have products that can be used across multiple devices to ensure there’s coherence to the visual look and core features across the suite of software. BullGuard manages to do that gracefully by creating an interface that is instantly recognizable whether on computer, smartphone, or tablet, but also by carefully selecting which features are excluded from each version.
Despite having an interesting product, BullGuard stumbles when it comes to its pricing structure. There is no free version or trial available for users who want to get a sense of the software before making a purchase. While this is typically the rule within the VPN market nowadays, it could be enough to earn BullGuard some leverage over its competitors.
Three subscription plans are available for those interested in acquiring the software. Customers can choose from annual, biennial, and triennial licenses. The fact that there is no intermediary plan is disappointing, however, especially since all the available plans cost the same, $6.25 per month. Even though the company frequently offers discounts on its biennial and triennial licenses, a more permanent discount for its prices could help this VPN provider distinguish itself from the pack.
There is no difference between the available subscriptions and their feature sets, though, so for this price users have complete access to the VPN service. However, the $6.25 cost could be considered quite an expensive price, since there are only 16 countries in its network. Licenses can be purchased using Visa, Master Card, American Express, wire transfer, and PayPal.
Despite not having a trial or free version available, customers can still try the software risk-free with its a 30-day money-back guarantee, which will allow for safe testing without having to pay up first.
BullGuard is fairly typical when it comes to its customer service. Like many of its competitors, the company provides 24/7 customer support that can be reached through email, live chat, Twitter, and Facebook. Additionally, a community forum is available where users can ask their questions and have them answered by fellow customers, as well as give feedback and suggestions for product development.
Unfortunately there are no tutorial videos available for BullGuard, a slight disappointment since the software is pretty easy to use but the addition of tutorials could have been helpful. Despite this, BullGuard adds extra value to its service by having remote desktop support, providing more personalized help for those who don’t feel confident in performing troubleshooting actions when having some kind of issue.
Using BullGuard VPN is a very positive experience. The program has a user-friendly interface, and so customers will instantly be able to connect to a server with absolutely no problems. Additional security features also make the software more interesting for those wanting to tailor the tools to themselves.
However, the software has its shortcomings as well. With only 16 locations available, BullGuard’s network is relatively small compared to many other competitors. In addition, there are only connections to usual countries such as the U.S. and UK, which is simply not enough considering the service’s pricing and company’s long-term existence within the internet security sphere. And particularly surprising is how, with only long-term plans available, there is no discount or benefit for those who select the longest plan as all subscriptions have the same monthly cost.
Despite these drawbacks, BullGuard has good connections speeds alongside satisfactory security that doesn’t suffer from DNS leaks, and that will surely be enough to delight any customer.
- Good connection speeds
- User-friendly interface
- Extra security features
- Few country locations
- Disappointing price structure