As we’re sure you know, VPNs are a useful and essential tool in today’s internet era. More and more of the world is going online. It also means that our methods for protecting ourselves and our personal data need to be treated with the same level of care as to how we protect ourselves in the real world. One of the most powerful tools for this is, of course, a VPN.
VPNs are midway buffers between you and the place you’re trying to connect. Your internet connects you to a unique, third-party server before it takes you to the site or network you’re trying to visit, so that way, everywhere you visit only sees the VPN’s IP and details, not yours. This offers you an additional layer of security and makes it difficult for malicious sources to access your personal information.
The handiness of VPNs isn’t a secret, and providers understand that. There are now countless different VPN providers from which to choose. To help you find the right one for you, we’ll be comparing and highlighting the differences between one of the highest quality premium VPNs on the market, ExpressVPN, and a completely free-to-use service, HolaVPN.
|Lowest Pricing||$8.32/month||Free to use ($2.99/month for premium)|
|Speeds||Typically less than 10% impact on download speed.||Usually ranges anywhere between 5%-30% impact on download speed.|
|Number of Devices||5||10|
|Money-Back Guarantee||30 days||30 days|
|Live Support||Yes (24/7)||No|
|Logging||Strict no-logging||Logging allowed|
What is ExpressVPN?
Starting out in 2009, ExpressVPN is one of the biggest premium VPN services available. It’s well-known for delivering high speeds, excellent quality service, top-grade security, and a great user experience. It’s also equally famous for its hefty price tag. Of course, that level of quality doesn’t come cheap.
Coming out to an annual price plan of about $100 a year, ExpressVPN offers unmatched security, but not without delivering a swift punch to your wallet. However, despite this price, ExpressVPN is still widely used by a massive user base due to the sheer unarguable quality it delivers.
ExpressVPN puts ease of use as an absolute priority for its users. While speed, reliability, and security are all top-notch on ExpressVPN’s part, a great deal of effort went into making the process of setting up and using their service as simple as possible. The software works flawlessly and is packed with features such as a killswitch, speed test, split tunneling, etc. One of the only features that we surprisingly didn’t see was an adblocker. But, assuming you have your own to use, ExpressVPN has just about everything else you could ask for.
In testing, the software had no issues and left little to no impact on our performance. Speeds were incredible, connections were reliable, and switching servers was quicker than the large majority of other services. Overall, it ran as smoothly as you’d expect from a top premium provider.
You can download ExpressVPN here.
What is HolaVPN?
Starting in 2012, HolaVPN is a VPN service that is entirely free to use. While it has paid upgrade plans that you can choose to purchase, the core service itself is 100% free. This alone is a rarity in the VPN market, as, despite the countless VPNs available, very few offer a completely free service at all.
It’s important to note that HolaVPN is not your standard VPN service at all. It’s an entirely peer-to-peer service. This means that rather than connecting to independent servers in locations owned by the provider, you connect to other free users’ IPs when you use HolaVPN.
This can be a significant concern to some users. This immediately gets rid of any sort of function that HolaVPN would have for things like torrenting since putting other peoples’ IPs in jeopardy by torrenting on them or other similar processes is strictly forbidden. This means that this service is less of a fully-fledged VPN and more a geographical restriction unblocker.
Laws concerning the use of this software vary from country to country. We do not encourage or condone the use of this program if it is in violation of these laws. The regulation about the use of VPN services varies per country; If the Law of your country forbids or limits its usage, don’t download. Any unlawful behavior of this software is not permitted. You are solely responsible for any use of the service.
HolaVPN’s interface is relatively easier to maneuver and doesn’t have any issues like sticking or freezing. However, it does take a while to actually turn the service on and off. The speeds were surprisingly good, having a minimal impact when we chose any locations near us and even holding up well at further distances.
Its security, unfortunately, is practically nonexistent. It uses no form of encryption or scrambling to make your data unreadable. As we said, it’s not really a fully-fledged VPN in the way you’d expect. So, unfortunately, HolaVPN won’t exactly be keeping your data in an iron vault like most premium services do. That said, it does have its uses and actually offers the one feature that ExpressVPN seems to be lacking—an adblocker.
You can download HolaVPN here.
Best VPN by Category
|Best VPN for Windows||ExpressVPN offers high functionality, a great interface, and unbeatable stability and speed for Windows devices. We had absolutely no issues with testing on Windows and are confident in saying it was one of the best VPN experiences we had.|
|Best VPN for Mac||ExpressVPN’s software is highly compatible with MacOS, and all protocols are customizable so you can see which one works the best for your specific device in order to have as little impact on your Mac as possible.|
|Best VPN for Android||ExpressVPN comes loaded with full mobile device support and has little to no impact on your speed. This keeps your Android devices from sticking, stuttering, and freezing. Overall, ExpressVPN works flawlessly with Android.|
|Best VPN for iOS||Similar to Android, ExpressVPN runs beautifully on iOS devices, perhaps even slightly better. There was absolutely no impact on browsing and surfing with ExpressVPN turned on during our testing.|
|Best VPN for Torrenting||This one is no competition, really. Since HolaVPN offers no P2P protection, it doesn’t even have torrenting capabilities. ExpressVPN has full support for torrenting and airtight protection to protect your IP and details to keep you secure.|
|Best Overall VPN||Unfortunately, HolaVPN just stands no chance against the VPN titan that is ExpressVPN. Despite its price, it continues to dominate the market with a wide span of useful features and high-quality services to treat its users to.|
The winner is…
ExpressVPN. In case you haven’t guessed yet, yes, ExpressVPN’s quality will unfortunately always leave HolaVPN in the dust. There’s no surprise there, especially when you’re pinning one of the best VPN services available against a humble free provider.
HolaVPN is a helpful tool, but calling it a VPN is a bit generous. It unblocks geographical restrictions, and for the most part, it does that well. HolaVPN works relatively smoothly for a free service. Just be careful not to confuse it for a service that will protect your details and offer you that layer of security that most VPNs do. Unfortunately, security is a function it just doesn’t possess.