Hide.me VPN Review – Multi-Featured VPN for Customers
|Number of servers||1400+|
|Maximum devices supported||10|
|Support||24/7 Live Chat|
|Supported Client Software||Windows, macOS, Android, iOS, Linux, Amazon Fire TV, Routers, Chrome, Firefox|
Just like a couple of VPNs we reviewed before, this newcomer offers freemium services. So, we advise that you thoroughly study this well-researched review before deciding whether to go for this service or not. Based in Malaysia, Hide.me offers you one of the free VPN plans you can actually make a selection from. You may also opt for the paid plan.
After reading this review, you can then decide between the free or paid plan. Hide.me is a VPN provider owned by eVenture, a Malaysian company that was founded in 2012. But then, Hide.me became a dream come true when the founder launched it in 2013. According to eVenture’s policy, Hide.me cannot transfer its information outside its home country. However, there is a clause explaining that the government of Malaysia may issue such an instruction for data transfer, which will be honored.
One of the interesting features of this service is that you will enjoy 10GB of data per month when you settle on the free plan. How amazing! On the other hand, you will be offered a plethora of perks if you opt for the subscription package. In this guide, you will learn the good, the bad, and the ugly of this VPN. In the end, we will help you make an informed decision. It sounds fascinating already, doesn’t it? If we are on the same page, relax as we walk you through this engaging expedition.
Key Features of the Hide.me VPN
Just before we fully discuss the finer points of Hide.me VPN, we will summarily discuss its key features. By and large, when you settle on this service, you are going to enjoy a zero-logs policy, global network of servers, 30-day money-back guarantee, the simultaneous connection of up to 10 devices.
Also a decent app for a number of operating systems, torrenting support, a kill switch, split tunneling, stealth guard, unlimited data (for the paid plan), easy-to-use native apps, a good number of VPN protocols, support for a wide spectrum of payment options (including cryptos), etc. Indeed, all these breathtaking features await you when you subscribe to this Malaysia-based service. Moving on, we will dissect these features in detail.
Hide.me has 1500+ servers hosted in more than 70 different locations with thousands of IP addresses. Still, its server distribution cuts across major cities around the world. Generally, the footprint covers Europe, the Americas, the Asia-Pacific region, and others. Coming to the Americas, this company is present in the United States, spreading across New York City, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Washington, Phoenix, Las Vegas, Miami, and a host of other locations.
It is also present in Montreal (Canada), Sao Paulo (Brazil), and Queretaro (Mexico). With regard to Europe, Hide.me servers are hosted in the United Kingdom, Spain, the Netherlands, Germany, France, Switzerland, and other strategic locations across the continent. In the Asia-Pacific region, it is physically present in Australia, Hong Kong, India, South Korea, etc. Lastly, Hide.me has servers in Africa, chiefly in South Africa and Egypt.
This company has 1500+ servers hosted in 70 different locations worldwide. Nonetheless, that is not as many as most premium providers, which typically have 3,000 to 5,000 servers the world over. Similarly, you may just be wondering why it is critical for VPN companies to have a vast network coverage.
Well, there are 2 cogent reasons why they make efforts to expand their networks. Firstly, such firms with vast coverage offer better services than those that do not because their subscribers do not experience congestion. You see, having a vast server distribution means that their customers will not have to struggle to connect to the internet at the same time.
Conversely, a firm with a few servers may have to throttle the speed of some subscribers just to accommodate everyone trying to access the network. Secondly, your geographic location will always affect your speed. That is, the closer your physical location is to a server, the better your speed. So, it makes perfect sense when these companies continuously expand their coverage in order to improve user experience regardless of their geographic location.
Privacy and Security
With many VPN providers putting measures in place to protect their customers, it will be interesting to find out what Hide.me has in store for its subscribers.
- Kill switch
One of the features you will certainly enjoy when you subscribe to this service is access to a kill switch. Indeed, a kill switch is a built-in security feature that ensures your data does not leak to prying eyes. Well, it detects when the network has dropped and ensures that your online activities are restricted.
It makes certain that your IP address and other personal information are not exposed to your ISP or the government as it automatically terminates your traffic when something goes wrong with your VPN connection.
This is possible because your connection is routed through an encrypted tunnel. Upon suspending it, your traffic will stop, thus preventing your data and IP address from being exposed to eavesdroppers. With the feature, which comes with Hide.me, you will not have to worry about your information getting leaked as you will be securely reconnected once your VPN is back up.
- Split tunneling
By definition, split tunneling is a feature that allows you to decide how to route your traffic. With this feature, you can determine which traffic routes through your VPN tunnel and which goes through your ISP by selecting the appropriate apps or websites. As you know, your VPN should not allow traffic intended for the VPN to go through any other server aside from its server as a way of keeping your identity masked.
But then, if it offers this split tunneling feature, the rules change. When you activate your split tunneling feature, you get to choose what to secure. Also, you will maintain low latency and consume less internet bandwidth. It works on the Hide.me clients for Windows, Android, and macOS.
- Encryption standard
The standard encryption technology in the VPN industry is AES 256-bit encryption. Essentially, the AES 256-GCM cipher works with RSA-8192 handshake encryption to keep your control channel intact. For the data channel, this service has an AES-256-CBC cipher with HMA SHA-256 hash authentication implemented.
This encryption extends to your web browser, passwords, personal files, and other information that could be potentially compromised. Keep in mind that 8192-bit RSA keys are extremely rare on the VPN market. With respect to protocols, this service works with a number of them.
The union of the encryption and VPN protocols ensures that your traffic remains difficult to crack. The protocols that work with this VPN include PPTP, SSTP, L2TP/IPSec, IKEv2, OpenVPN, and SoftEther. With respect to SoftEther, it is an open-source platform that is also often referred to as an SSL VPN.
- DNS leak protection
Does Hide.me offer DNS protection? Yes, it does. You see, DNS requests run in the background and do not need to interact with you once the requests have been initiated. However, DNS leaks occur when DNS requests are passed through your ISP server instead of your VPN server. Put simply, your personal information is exposed to your ISP and the world when you browse the internet directly from your ISP. But you can set up a public DNS with the Hide.me network interface.
So, when you introduce a VPN, it provides an encrypted tunnel for routing your requests. Just to ensure that no one is able to stumble into your personal information, the Hide.me app deletes all the default gateways to your internet connection.
Plus, it ensures that IPv6 connections are blocked. When these requests are routed through the VPN, you can be sure that your data is not leaking. Indeed, that was what we found out after testing this VPN. We had to perform the test to be sure that this service lives up to expectations. And yes, we did not notice any signs of leaks.
- TOR compatibility
Even though they both offer a similar service, you can integrate TOR and the Hide.me network to take your internet experience to the next level. You can take it to the bank; the two networks work seamlessly. Just before we dive into what this integration means, we will break down what The Onion Router (TOR) is.
Written in Python, TOR is free and open-source software that is administered by a community. Over the network, internet traffic is free, and it is transmitted over an overlay network of about 7,000 relays. This is a measure used to conceal the location of the user as well as network usage. As a result, if a VPN is connected to TOR, the user is getting an extra layer of encryption.
The security features incorporated into TOR make it impossible for surveillance or traffic analysis to be carried out on it. Because it is relatively secure, the dark web uses the TOR browser. This is known as the Tor dark web. Nevertheless, many authoritarian regimes have publicly outlawed its use in their domains.
Despite several claims that US spying agencies have compromised TOR, many VPN subscribers love to see the TOR over VPN feature. Well, you can establish such a connection on Hide.me in order to improve your privacy. However, you can only connect these two networks when you subscribe to the paid plan because this feature is not available on the free version. With the dual connection, you have automatically added a layer of security to your network.
- Ad blocker
Another perk you get to enjoy from Hide.me is an ad-blocking feature. You may be wondering why this is important for a web browser. You see, if you surf the internet all the time, you will always notice some unusual ads popping up every now and then. Just to get you to click on the ads, they always make juicy promises about suspicious deals.
Nonetheless, there is always an intent behind such juicy ads. These intents could be scams, malware, spyware, etc. The good thing is that it does not matter what it really is if you are using the Hide.me VPN. The reasoning behind this is that the VPN ensures that you do not see those annoying ads when you access the internet through its servers. Sure, this is one of the steps this Malaysia-based VPN has taken to keep you safe.
- Wi-Fi protection
At this point, you probably know that public Wi-Fi facilities are very unsafe. Yes, they really are! This is because you can be easily eavesdropped upon. In fact, just anyone can connect to the network. Free Wi-Fi hotspots are readily available at public places. More importantly, users usually do not have to pay to connect to them.
This makes it very likely that just anyone can use public Wi-Fi. Today, most of them are known to be untrusted as sniffers usually lounge on them waiting for their would-be prey. By and large, they steal your private information, such as login details, bank information, photos and videos, home addresses, etc.
However, Hide.me helps you to channel your traffic through its encrypted tunnel, thus ensuring that your connection remains exceptionally secure. This is only possible because it has AES-256 encryption technology that ensures your data stays encrypted all the time. It means you will remain anonymous while you browse the web. This is a major plus.
Once you are connected to a Wi-Fi hotspot using this VPN, hackers will only see encrypted data when they try to tamper with your account. This is one of the unique services you get to enjoy when you subscribe to it. Also, it does not matter what device you are connected to the internet with because it works on all devices.
What logging policy has Hide.me put in place to ensure that users do not have to worry when they use this VPN? Just before we discuss this, let’s look at the key yardstick for performance measurement.
- Policy details
This is one of the yardsticks used for measuring how private the logging policy is. Here, we analyze the policies the company has formulated to protect its users from intruders. If you have not used a VPN before now, what those companies do with your personal information should matter to you because some of them get involved in shady deals. As a prospective subscriber, these unscrupulous deals are capable of undermining your personal security.
Guess what, some of them actually sell user data to the highest bidders. The bidders are always companies that consider you their potential client. When they have your data, they want to keep bombarding you with their product or service ads. The idea of selling the data is to use the proceeds of such transactions to fund the operations of the VPN company.
From our findings, these providers usually sell your name, email address, physical address, payment details, IP addresses, etc. In short, while a good number of these companies admit to logging users’ personal information, others do not do this. The industry best practice is that every good VPN firm must have a no-logs or zero-logs policy, meaning that they do not log customers’ data.
- Company location
Additionally, you must find out the physical location of your preferred VPN. It must matter to you as there are some jurisdictions that are not good for operating such firms. The reasoning behind this is that they have data retention laws. Moreover, there is a global alliance known as the 5/9/14-Eye Alliance. The 5/9/14-Eye Alliance mandates that its member nations gather intelligence on internet users in their jurisdictions and share it with the rest when the need arises.
Therefore, if a member nation is able to gather your personal information, the information will be distributed across the group. The members include the US, the UK, Australia, Norway, Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, New Zealand, Canada, Italy, Spain, Sweden, and the Netherlands. If your VPN provider is based in any of these aforementioned countries, you should be worried sick.
Just like every other business out there, the track record of VPN firms means a lot in the cybersecurity space. For example, if such a company is involved in illicit activities or working with government authorities, then it has a questionable track record. The truth is that nobody should ever consider subscribing to a service that has given government officials some information about its users.
Well, there are a couple of VPN firms that have done that in the past. While that could be a commendable move geared toward improving national security, it is an outright breach of trust. Accordingly, VPN companies now accept the idea of inviting reputable third-party companies to audit their operations. After each audit, the report is made public in order to gain confidence and build trust in its service.
- Getting Hands-On with Hide.me
Hide.me made it abundantly clear that they do not log their users’ browsing activities, IP addresses, names, connection information, or any other personal information for that matter. We probed this VPN to find out if it has any failings, but we could not find any faults.
With respect to its location, the Malaysian laws neither compel these companies to log nor to furnish the government with relevant information whenever the authorities deem it necessary. As a matter of fact, Malaysia’s Persona Data Protection Act passed in 2010 and came into force some 3 years later.
This law protects companies from external influences such as the US and EU governments. It is needless to say that Malaysia is NOT a member of any intelligence-gathering international organizations.
The fact that it is an offshore VPN (a VPN that is physically located and operated outside the United States or any member nation of the 14-Eye Alliance) is good news for all those prospective customers who want to keep their online activities private. Truly, you do not have to look over your shoulder when you use the internet from any of its servers.
More importantly, there is a static IP feature that allows you to assign IP addresses to many different connected devices. With that, bypassing NAT firewalls will be as easy as ABC. We must point out that this service uses Google Analytics for tracking. The objective of using that tracking tool is to collect a portion of users’ IP addresses in a concerted effort to scale up their anonymity.
You may be jittery that the company could use that against your interests because we stated earlier that a zero-logs policy is the best logging policy. Even though a no-logs policy is the best industry policy, you have absolutely nothing to worry about in this case.
Additionally, with the DNS leak protection, which ensures that your default local gateway is deleted, your online privacy is no source of worry. When it comes to third-party audits, Hide.me has not been found wanting in that regard. Based in Labuan Island in Malaysia, Hide.me has been independently audited by Leon Juranic, a renowned cybersecurity expert and Defense Code founder. Defense Code is an Ireland-based cybersecurity company.
Juranic is popular for testing and detecting code vulnerabilities. In short, he was endorsed by NASA for spotting the vulnerability in the agency’s code. Moving on, Hide.me conducted its first audit in 2013. Ever since, it has been carrying out annual audits of its operations. The audit report is readily available in the public domain, and it shows that this company exhibits transparency. What do we think? Well, we think it is a plus!
Speed of Hide.me VPN
|Server Location||Download Speed||Upload Speed|
|New York||17.17 Mbps||10.10 Mbps|
|Amsterdam||27.60 Mbps||19.92 Mbps|
|London||28.69 Mbps||20.41 Mbps|
|Hong Kong||11.71 Mbps||3.19 Mbps|
As a newbie in the VPN space, you should know that the existing VPN users want to see a service that gives them awesome speed. This is particularly true because speed means virtually everything when you use the internet. So, you should always look out for that in your ideal service provider.
You do not want to use a VPN that will slow down your data transfer, do you? For instance, you need speed to download and upload files, make and receive calls, chat, etc. As a result, we performed a series of speed tests on Hide.me using 4 different server locations. Our findings will give you an idea of what you should expect from it. Now, we will briefly explain our findings here.
So, we began the speed test with the server in New York, one of the key locations of Hide.me. We were not impressed with its speeds in New York as the download speed sat at 17.17 Mbps while the upload speed was 10.10 Mbps. In truth, these results were unimpressive when compared to those of top-tier service providers.
However, the poor speed of the New York server did not discourage us from proceeding to perform the test on the server in Amsterdam. We measured the speed of the Amsterdam-based server, ensuring that the parameters remained constant.
Unlike those of New York, we were pleased with the performance of the Amsterdam server as its download speed increased to 27.60 Mbps. Similarly, its upload speed slightly rose to 19.92 Mbps. In fact, these results are okay as they were relatively better than what we recorded earlier.
Moving on, we connected to the London server quickly in order to run the test. As always, gauging the speed of the London server gives us an idea of what it feels like accessing the internet from Western Europe. Upon carrying out the test, we did notice a slight improvement in speed with its download speed at 28.69 Mbps and an upload speed that slightly increased to 20.41 Mbps. Unarguably, one can say from the speed results that Hide.me speed in Europe is relatively stable.
Finally, we performed a test on the server in Hong Kong. From our previous speed results, Hong Kong always has a poor speed performance. So, we were right about the Asian city as the download speed was 11.71 Mbps while the upload speed dropped to 3.19 Mbps. More often than not, this city takes the last position whenever we run a series of speed tests. This time was no different because it maintained its position as the city with the poorest speed.
- Summary of speed
In keeping with our tradition, we will draw certain conclusions here. From our speed results, we can categorically state that the speed of Hide.me is relatively poor. Most of the VPN speed tests we performed were much better. Put simply, these results should really give you a cause for concern especially when you have to download huge files with the VPN connected to the TOR network.
Keep in mind that your data transfer will be much slower when you run TOR over Hide.me. With respect to the average speed of the four cities we sampled, the average download speed was 21.29 Mbps while the average upload speed was 13.41 Mbps. From these calculations, we can deduce that the speed of Hide.me is once again relatively poor.
Well, it all goes without saying that there are certain factors that affect VPN speed. For example, speed is most likely dependent on the server a subscriber is accessing the internet from and how close the user is to the server.
But then, one cannot compare the speed we have seen thus far with those premium services as the latter is much better. We just have to leave you with this. It is very normal for a VPN to slow down the speed of your ISP (local network) the moment a connection is established.
Well, other key factors that may affect a network’s speed include source speed (speed of the ISP), user’s location, and the computer’s processing speed. This means that we cannot rule out the possibility that you can perform the speed test and obtain an entirely different result as the parameters may vary.
Wrapping up, we can say that this encrypted service has a relatively disappointing speed. In spite of that, users can still enjoy lots of online activities with it, so you really do not have much to worry about.
|Type of support||Live chat|
|Free trial period||No|
You are definitely going to enjoy your VPN if the company’s helpdesk team meets certain criteria. So, what is the criteria for grading the effectiveness of customer care reps? Well, we assess them using 4 key performance indicators. Let’s discuss them briefly.
- Speedy responses to messages
A good cybersecurity firm must respond to its messages as fast as possible. Truly, speedy responses to messages are very crucial to VPN users especially in times of emergency. Apart from emergencies, some agents provide remote configuration services. So, it is perfectly fine for newbies to contact them and receive responses in a flash.
A good cybersecurity company must have a helpdesk that is capable of offering solutions the moment complaints come as it goes to show that they are knowledgeable, helpful, and capable.
- 24/7 availability
24-hour support ensures that these companies respond to messages all the time, regardless of the time and day. Notice that VPN users are scattered around the world, meaning that the agents must be working all the time to attend to these users. Because the users have different time zones, the provider must be readily available to support them whenever the users need help. So, it should offer real-time interaction via its live chat support.
- Many communication mediums
A good service provider must be accessible via multiple communication mediums. These channels include email, live chat, a contact form, social media, etc. Lately, some providers are increasingly incorporating telephone calls. We must emphasize that having multiple communication channels is important to the industry.
- Rich knowledge base
Lastly, its knowledge base should be rich in order to answer a good number of questions that the prospective subscribers are likely to ask. When that is achieved, it reduces the chances of people always contacting the helpdesk. So, yes, it is a must-have in the VPN space. When customer reps have less work to do, they will be able to answer customers’ questions and help them with technical hitches.
- Getting hands-on with Hide.me customer service
At this point, we would sound like a broken record by repeating what you ought to expect from your ideal VPN’s helpdesk. So, we will go straight to discussing what we found out after putting this Malaysia-based company to the test.
Starting with “speedy responses to messages,” we contacted Hide.me via its live chat at 6 PM Malaysian local time to make some inquiries about its services. Well, we got a response from their agent in less than a minute later with more information about their services. It was obvious that the agent was friendly and inquisitive.
One of the questions he answered was about their 30-day refund policy. He explained that the company provides a refund within the stipulated period. Truly, it is encouraging to see the agent respond to our chats without wasting time, and the conversation was engaging as well.
To be objective here, this customer service is not all good as the seemingly jovial agent directed us to contact their technical support for our technical questions. Did we do that? Of course, we did. But the part we did not find interesting was that the technical support was only available via the ticketing system, which required us to join a queue of requests.
Eventually, it got to our turn, and we got a response to our question about one hour later. Sincerely, we did not like that we had to wait for that long to get an answer to our question about Netflix. We eventually did get a rational response though.
Having confirmed that the team responds swiftly to messages, we proceeded to assess other communication channels. To run a test on the other communication channels, we contacted the team via email. In the email, we made some other inquiries about the company including how its plans work.
Some 7 hours later, we got a response to our email detailing how it works. Basically, the email broke down the various plans. Aside from informing us that they do not have a trial period, the email has more information as summarized in the table below.
|Plans||№ of Devicess||Bandwidth||Number os Servers||Other Perks|
|Free||1||10 GB per month||5 server locations (Canada, Germany, the Netherlands, and eastern and western US)||No sign-up required|
|Premium||10||Unlimited||1500+ servers in 70 locations||P2P, fixed IP address, and port forwarding|
Note that the premium plan has all the benefits of the free plan and even more. The company explained that it does not make money from its free plan, hence the idea of a premium plan. Surprisingly, it claims not to have a problem with the fact that it does not make money from the free plan because it serves to attract customers to its premium plan.
Furthermore, we have to mention that this service has a FAQ page. Upon visiting the page, you will find out that it answers lots of interesting questions about the service. The page contains a field where you can use relevant keywords to generate all the articles related to them.
For instance, you can simply type “free plan” into the field, and lots of articles that discuss the subject will pop up. As always, we strongly advise you to read relevant articles on this page before contacting their helpdesk. By and large, this company has very good customer reps.
Supported Client Software
With most VPN subscribers hoping to see many companies support their devices, the companies are increasingly developing native apps for the leading operating systems. Let’s find out the platforms Hide.me supports.
If you have a Windows OS computer, you are definitely going to enjoy lots of perks from the Hide.me VPN. But then, the only condition is that your computer must be running on Windows 7 or later. So, we went ahead to download this client to see what it has to offer.
Well, you will be amazed at what we found out. Long story short, you will enjoy the Windows-friendly client with a kill switch, split tunneling, OpenVPN encryption, no leaks, and Chrome and Firefox browser extensions (to be discussed later).
If you love to use BitTorrent clients all the time, Hide.me Stealth Guard was perfectly built for you. On the other hand, the split tunneling feature ensures that you do not have to keep turning on and off your apps all the time. With it, you choose which apps and websites you wish to route through the ISP or Hide.me, thus improving speed and stepping up your online security.
You can join the growing network of users who depend on Hide.me to keep their online activities masked. To do that, you have to download, install, and configure this command-line app on your Linux systems. First of all, you will have to make a pick from a list of protocols such as OpenVPN, PPTP, and IKEv2.
But if your system uses Ubuntu, we strongly advise that you go for PPTP. There is a caveat here though. You will need to switch to the paid plan to be able to use this app on your Linux machine. When you have done that, you can then download the OpenVPN config files. If you are not sure how to install this CLI app, the detailed installation guide is available on its website.
Well, the macOS family is not left out as Hide.me is readily available to them. Do you use a macOS computer? If yes, you can get started by visiting the Apple App Store from your computer to download and install this client. This client is easy to use and looks pretty attractive too. On a macOS computer, you can choose between OpenVPN and SofthEther encryption.
When we tried SoftEther encryption, we enjoyed it because it conceals the fact that you use a VPN and makes it look like HTTPS. We checked out OpenVPN too, and it was also appealing. Other benefits you will have access to include P2P file sharing, Chrome and Firefox add-ons that halt WebRTC leaks, etc. But then, your computer must be running macOS 10.12 or later to be compatible with this client. MacOS is compatible with IKEv1 and IKEv2.
To get started with the Hide.me client for Android OS, you will have to visit the Google Play Store from your device to download and install the app. When you have done that, you will launch the app on your mobile device. This app only works with Android 5.0 or later.
You can choose OpenVPN or IKEv2 to build the encryption around your network. Upon installing and trying this client, we noticed that the speed was surprisingly fast, and gaming was fun too. The built-in kill switch and lots of server options were available. Lest we forget, you can automatically connect to your server of choice. All you need is to follow 3 easy setup processes.
Well, you can visit the Apple App Store from your device to download and install the Hide.me client on iPhone or iPad. You must have a smart device that runs iOS 9.0 or later for the app to run seamlessly on it. Just like the Android app, the iOS app has lots of exciting features. But then, we did not like that it has no kill switch.
From February 2020, Hide.me incorporated the OpenVPN protocol into this client. This addition improved the encryption of this app. We downloaded this app just to understand how it works. Guess what, it is fun to navigate and use.
You may be wondering why you need a router running on Hide.me. Well, the reason is that there are certain devices that are not compatible with a VPN. To secure such devices, you need to connect them to the router. Some of the devices include your game consoles (Xbox and PlayStation). In addition to that, you get to add lots of devices. Notice that you can connect up to 10 devices simultaneously; this is one of the perks you enjoy when you get the paid plan.
Hide.me offers preconfigured VPN routers, meaning that you will not have to configure it yourself. On the other hand, you can use and configure certain other routers yourself. Before this VPN runs on them, they must have firmware that is compatible with Hide.me.
These VPN-compatible routers include DD-WRT, OpenWRT, AsusWRT, and Tomato. Additionally, you will have to do the configuration using OpenVPN. You have absolutely nothing to worry about because the installation and activation processes are straightforward.
- Other devices
Hide.me also works well with a number of other devices without necessarily going through the router. These devices include BlackBerry, Amazon Fire TV, and Kodi. With BlackBerry OS, users get IKEv2 and IPsec. With Hide.me, you get to enjoy lots of benefits from the Amazon Fire TV and Amazon Fire Tablet. This VPN also works with Kodi, which is an open-source media player.
Hide.me has browser extensions for Chrome and Firefox, thus offering users a unique way to keep their online activities anonymous and secure. We downloaded and installed the plugins for the browsers to be sure that this VPN lives up to expectations.
Upon testing the plugins, most of the features worked well. We must point out that the plugins offer WebRTC protection. With these add-ons, you do not have to worry about eavesdroppers when you use Wi-Fi hotspots. Additionally, you can be sure of your security when you use YouTube, Twitter, Skype, or any other popular sites.
More importantly, the app is free of charge as you do not have to be on the premium plan to enjoy it. You can browse the web anonymously, select any server of your choice, and keep ads at bay using the browser extensions for Chrome and Firefox.
Because these plugins merely protect your web browser’s online activities, you can combine them with your device client to safeguard your applications. If you do not extend the protection to the apps, you are practically exposing to hackers the apps that do not go through the web browsers to connect to the internet. Apparently, hackers will have a field day.
Torrenting with Hide.me
Hide.me is one of the few VPNs that offers peer-to-peer file transfer via the BitTorrent protocol. It has a special proxy that enables users to do that. This is the unencrypted SOCKS5 proxy. It is noteworthy that the same proxy can also act as a secure kill switch for securing torrenting. With the VPN and proxy set up, you can be sure of enjoying P2P file transfer at a breakneck speed.
Keep in mind that you get dynamic port forwarding when you upgrade to the premium plan. Once you are using dynamic port forwarding, you can then have P2P software making direct connections as opposed to going through a centralized server connection. With the SOCKS5 proxy, you do not have to look over your shoulder when you are torrenting with Hide.me.
If you encounter any challenges while trying to establish this connection, you should check out the guide on their website. Just before that, we strongly advise that you find out your local laws on torrenting because some governments frown on it.
The reason is that most torrenters share copyrighted materials without the consent of their rightful owners. Given the stringent legislation against torrenting in Australia, Mexico, the USA, and the UK, you should not use Hide.me servers in those locations for torrenting.
Netflix Access with Hide.me
Netflix is the world’s leading streaming company. It allows millions of subscribers to access its paywalled service in the comfort of their homes and offices. While the content of the streaming giant varies from one country to another, you will need a VPN to unblock its firewall if you wish to access the US Netflix library outside the country. You may be wondering, “Can you use Hide.me to unblock the streaming site?” Well, the answer is simply NO. How sad!
So, if you wish to access US Netflix from outside of the United States, you had better check out other VPNs we have previously reviewed. We found out that Hide.me does not unblock US Netflix firewalls after unsuccessfully trying to access Netflix from all VPN servers including those in the United States.
When we tried to find out from a Hide.me customer care rep why the VPN does not unblock Netflix, the agent informed us that the VPN was circumventing the streaming site until it was blocked. With that information, it was crystal clear why the Malaysia-based VPN does not bypass the Netflix firewall.
You would be wrong if you think that this VPN does not have any flaws. Now, let’s dissect them all.
- Small server network
Most premium services have between 3,000 and 5,000 servers around the world, but this service has just over 1,500 servers. A need exists for Hide.me to rise to the occasion as we earlier established that servers have a way of affecting a VPN’s overall performance.
- Inability to unblock Netflix
Let’s face it. Many subscribers go for a VPN specifically because they want to access the US Netflix library outside the US. It is a big blow to this company that it is unable to unblock the streaming platform.
- Poor speed
When we performed our series of speed tests, we found out that the average speed of the four different servers was as follows. The download speed was 21.29 Mbps, and the upload speed was 13.41 Mbps. Without a doubt, this company has to give its subscribers the real value for their money by revving up its speed.
Admittedly, this Hide.me VPN review was a long read. However, the idea is to give you everything you need to know about this service so that you do not have to look elsewhere. So, did we achieve that? Yes, we did! With that being said, we have to recap some of the benefits that make this VPN worthwhile.
These perks include excellent security, torrenting support, good customer service, multiplatform support for the paid plan, and TOR support, and the list goes on. On the flipside, we must point out that having few servers, poor speed, and an inability to circumvent Netflix firewalls can raise serious concerns among prospective users.
So, do we recommend it? Yes, we do! You see, a lot of tech wizardry has gone into this service for us to discourage you from giving it a shot! The good thing is that the company has a cashback guarantee policy in place. Sure, you should go ahead and give it a try for 30 days.
Afterward, you be the judge. This guide has given you the power to make an informed decision. If it falls below your expectations, do not think twice before asking for a refund. On the other hand, you should keep enjoying it if you think it is a great buy! Give it a try right away!