Product Reviews

VyprVPN


VyprVPN is a popular VPN which is based in Switzerland, and comes from the same stable of companies as US ISP Texas.net,  Data Foundry, and top Usenet provider Giganews.

The service grabbed our attention with some impressive specs: 73 server locations, unlimited data usage, secure DNS servers, a kill switch, along with various auto-connect options (on application launch, when connecting to untrusted Wi-Fi). Also, there are apps and setup instructions to run the service almost anywhere: Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Linux, smart TVs and multiple router types.

A free 500MB/month plan gives a basic sampling of the service, or you can opt for one of the three commercial plans.

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VyprVPN Basic costs $9.99 (around £8, AU$14) a month – or $6.67 (around £5.50, AU$10) monthly if you sign up for a whole year – but limits you to a miserly two simultaneous connections. 

VyprVPN Pro allows three connections, adds a NAT Firewall and supports VyprVPN’s Chameleon protocol (which may help bypass VPN blocking) for $14.99 (around £12, AU$21) a month, $8.33 (around £7, AU$12) billed annually. While VyprVPN Premier ups the limit to five connections for an eye-wateringly expensive $19.99 (around £16, AU$28) per month, or $10 (around £8, AU$14) per month billed annually.

This isn’t going to appeal if you’re on a strict budget, but the company does at least offer a three-day trial, so you can check the service quality for yourself.

Privacy

VyprVPN’s privacy policy is clear, straightforward and extremely short, far better than the lengthy legalese you’ll often be bombarded with elsewhere.

The document heads each section with simple text explaining exactly what it’s aiming to answer: “What data Golden Frog retains from VyprVPN sessions”, or “How Golden Frog responds to criminal investigations”, and so on.

Each section provides only brief details, but they still manage to cover what you need to know. In particular, the service doesn’t log your traffic, perform any packet inspection on it, discriminate against devices or protocols, and it doesn’t throttle or limit your internet connection.

The Terms of Service page is a little lengthier, but follows the same basic rules, and it’s easy to locate the section you need.

VyprVPN’s core clauses are very familiar: don’t use the service to do illegal stuff, you bear the responsibility for your actions, services will automatically be renewed unless you cancel your account, and so on.

The key point is that – like most other services – VyprVPN is for single user, individual use only. It doesn’t support simultaneous logins from multiple IP addresses, so if you connect via an iPhone when you’re out and about, you can’t have someone else connecting via your home router. Simultaneous logins from multiple IP addresses are specifically disallowed, and could get your account cancelled.

Performance

VyprVPN has clients for almost every device (except Windows Mobile), and detailed manual setup instructions for 60+ separate device and OS configurations.

The Windows client installed easily enough on our test PC. The bulky interface didn’t appeal, but it’s simple to use – connect with a click, your new IP address and connection status are clearly displayed, and a settings dialog gives speedy access to the tweaks you need.

We found the app wouldn’t connect using 256-bit encryption on our test system, but it worked on a nearby PC, so probably wasn’t VyprVPN’s fault. We took the opportunity to test the company’s support, without telling them who we were, and were happy to get a first reply within an hour, and very detailed troubleshooting advice 12 hours later.

One fixed system later, VyprVPN was connecting as normal. The connection process took a few seconds longer than usual, but after that performance was generally very good in our testing*. Our London-California tests showed a not-too-bad 96% increase in latency and a 68% drop in upload speeds, but download speeds were 2.48x faster than with the VPN turned off.

Final verdict

That’s a seriously impressive boost in download speeds on the performance front, but is it enough to justify the premium price? Maybe not, but VyprVPN is a quality service, and we’d say there’s enough power here to justify taking the three-day trial.

*Our testing included evaluating general performance (browsing, streaming video). We also used speedtest.net to measure latency, upload and download speeds, and then tested immediately again with the VPN turned off, to check for any difference (over several rounds of testing). We then compared these results to other VPN services we’ve reviewed. Of course, do note that VPN performance is difficult to measure as there are so many variables.


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