VPN providers are a dime a dozen, but some of them offer significantly higher quality service than their competitors. And when trying to find the best VPN provider for your needs, it’s easy to induce a headache.
The last thing you want is to be locked into a subscription with a crummy provider, and there’s a lot to consider including pricing, features, security, and more. Today, we’re going to take a look at two well-known and respected names in the industry: NordVPN and Private Internet Access review for VPNs.
Each have their own respective advantages and drawbacks, but we’re going to pit them against each other to see who wins in a head to head competition. Before we dig into their respective features, let’s take a look at their networks of servers.
VPN providers adopt different strategies when fleshing out their global networks of servers. NordVPN review says that it has 621 servers in 52 countries to date, which provides a lot of flexibility when trying to find a nearby server to connect to. In addition, consider that NordVPN can unblock more geo-restricted content that is hosted in some more obscure countries.
However, note that both PIA VPN and NordVPN have servers in all the most popular geographic regions, such as the US, the UK, Europe, Hong Kong, and other standard countries. And though PIA VPN has fewer global connection locations, they have a higher concentration of servers in the countries where they operate. To date they have approximately 3,100 servers in 21 countries around the world.
Still, if you live in a country that isn’t a popular hosting location for Internet services, you may want to opt for NordVPN. Connecting to a VPN server nearest to your geographic location will introduce the smallest amount of latency overhead. Nevertheless, you’ll still need to connect to specific countries to unblock specific content and streaming services.
I was impressed with the low cost of each provider and the fact that they allow 5+ simultaneous connections per account (which is one of my biggest hang-ups with providers who only offer 1 or 2). However, if you’re concerned about using domestic US digital services – which is fair given the wiretapping scandals brought to light by Edward Snowden – then you’ll likely want to select NordVPN. As they are based in Panama, you won’t have to worry about the NSA snooping on your Internet traffic.
On the other hand, if the price is your biggest concern, you’ll want to select PIA VPN. I think these providers offer comparable pricing, favorable security, and fantastic features that aren’t always typical of their competitors. Nevertheless, one area where they varied greatly was speed. PIA VPN underperformed, while NordVPN tested above average.
PIA VPN still worked fine for browsing the web and buffering streaming content. But if speed is your primary concern, NordVPN is the clear winner. Overall, I’d say that NordVPN beat PIA VPN because they tested faster, are based out of Panama, allow up to 6 simultaneous connections, and provide more encryption options.