The VPN industry is a very competitive one, but ExpressVPN knows how to stand out from the rest. It has many professional features that make it more than any other competitor. Some of the high-end features that make among the best VPNs include support for applications for Windows, Linux, iOS, Android, and Mac, just to mention a few. Detailed setup guides for Apple TV, PlayStation, Kindle Fire, Fire TV, Chromebooks, and more.
ExpressVPN’s browser extensions cannot be left behind also. They are not weak offerings you will get. Some other extras include location spoofing, WebRTC leak blocks, and HTTPS Everywhere support and are all available for Firefox and Chrome.
ExpressVPN Review: Latest Upgrades
A couple of months ago, ExpressVPN saw some excellent infrastructure and security improvements. The most significant update has been the launch of Lightway, a brand new VPN protocol that guarantees customers upgraded encryption and faster speeds. However, this VPN protocol comes with a couple of setbacks.
In this ExpressVPN review, we focus on answering the questions below:
- What is ExpressVPN speed, and does it beat other top VPNs in the market?
- How best do its features leak-blocking settings function?
- Are the VPN applications user-friendly and secure?
- Can ExpressVPN unblock anti-VPN streaming sites like Netflix?
- Is ExpressVPN worth your money?
Additional ExpressVPN Findings
- Advantages and disadvantages of the Lightway protocol.
- Can ExpressVPN be used for torrenting? (Yes)
- Can ExpressVPN be used in China? (Yes)
- What are the numbers of connections you can get with Express?
Here is a Brief Overview of the ExpressVPN Review:
- Its apps are secure for almost all devices.
- No leaks, perfect encryption, and excellent security features.
- No-logs policy in a safe jurisdiction.
- Secure and extensive server network.
- Unblocks challenging streaming services like Netflix.
- Its browser extensions are very secure.
- Features split tunneling.
- Reliable and secure phone applications.
- For unlimited connections, it has a dedicated VPN router application.
- Refund policy and a friendly customer support system.
- Its prices are a bit high.
- Open speeds are sometimes sluggish.
- When compared to other leading VPNs, it has fewer features.
Now let us go deeper into the ExpressVPN findings starting with the pros.
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ExpressVPN Features in Detail. ( Why ExpressVPN is Best)
Some of the reasons that make ExpressVPN among the best include:
ExpressVPN apps are secure for almost all devices and OS
ExpressVPN is one of the best options available when it comes to reliable, user-friendly, and secure VPN applications that just work as expected.
Its VPN provides its clients with dedicated applications for almost all primary devices and operating systems, including; iOS, Android, Windows, Linux, Mac, Routers, Nook, Chromebook, and Kindle Fire.
ExpressVPN’s applications have always had a simple layout and intuitive design. Some VPN apps are clunky and buggy, but with ExpressVPN, this is not the case.
Useful security features, no leaks, and strong encryption
ExpressVPN does not give a second thought when it comes to the implementation of security and strong encryption. This section will look at VPN protocols, encryption, security features, and leak-testing findings in detail.
ExpressVPN utilizes AES-256 cipher with an RSA-4096 key and SHA-512 HMAC authentication for IKEv2 and OpenVPN protocols. Lightway protocol utilizes ChaCha20/Poly1305 and AES-256-GCM ciphers to encrypt traffic. For server authentication, it uses D/TLS 1.2.
The ChaCha20 and AES-256 ciphers provide a very high encryption level that is of late considered unbreakable, even if you use modern quantum computers. These ExpressVPN ciphers also offer amazing performances, particularly the Lightway protocol. Furthermore, Express supports Perfect Forward Secrecy, which is negotiated via a Diffie-Hellman key exchange.
ExpressVPN gives its clients an option to choose which VPN protocols they want to use directly in the applications.
When the Automatic is set, the VPN will choose for you the suitable VPN protocol depending on your network setting.
According to client feedback and tests that have been done, Lightway is far much faster than OpenVPN. So, Lightway is the best if you want the best performance. However, OpenVPN UDP is also pretty fast if you’re going to browse, torrent or stream.
ExpressVPN Network Lock (kill switch)
ExpressVPN’s Network Lock is what other VPNs call a kill switch. The kill switch or network lock makes sure your information is secure by obstructing any traffic in case your connection fails. This feature makes sure that every data is kept encrypted and secured, with your original IP being masked always.
The Network Lock feature is currently available in the following apps:
ExpressVPN’s kill switch or rather Network Lock is currently available in the following applications; Routers, Windows, Linux, and Mac operating system. ExpressVPN’s kill switch feature works excellently by blocking all traffic if there is any interruption in the connection.
Kill switch for mobile devices
ExpressVPN does not provide the official Network Lock option on mobile devices; however, it again has a kill switch feature that protects your traffic from leaking.
- In Android, there is a “Network Protection” option that serves as a Network Lock if your connection fails.
- In iOS, we have a feature called “Auto-Connect” that blocks traffic leaks and automatically reconnects you back when the internet connection is stable.
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No-logs VPN in a safe jurisdiction
ExpressVPN is among the few top-notch VPNs with no-logs that have been proved and verified to be true. Why does this feature matter? Trust is the main thing here because a VPN has the ability to log and store your data. There have been cases where some VPNs with a no-log policy like NordVPN have given information of their clients to investigating agencies. NordVPN in 2017 provided data of its user to the FBI. IPVanish also gave its client information to the FBI for a criminal probe.
Let us get back to ExpressVPN. We will first begin by looking at ExpressVPN’s policies, and then we will go to cases that have verified these policies.
ExpressVPN no-logs policy
On logs-policy, ExpressVPN claims that it focused on customer anonymity and privacy. It confesses that privacy is its primary or core feature in service delivery and their business to mask their customer’s private internet data.
On the side of privacy, ExpressVPN further explains that they do not collect logs of their customer activity, including DNS queries, traffic destination, no logging of browsing history, and data content. It claims that it does not keep connection logs. This means no logs for your outgoing VPNIP, IP address, session duration, and timestamp.
Having said that, there is an alternative in the VPN applications for sharing crash statistics; this only allows the VPN boost applications. Still, information is entirely anonymized; it excludes personal data and is optional—however, it can be disabled by a single click in the settings section.
ExpressVPN passed a third-party audit of logging policies
It is among the few VPNs that have undergone independent auditing.
ExpressVPN has so far gone through a third-party audit from a company called PricewaterhouseCoopers to prove and verify their no-logs policy or claims. The audit finds out that the company adheres to its privacy policies. Let us look at the audit deeper.
In the market, only a handful of VPNs have been audited by third-parties to confirm and verify their logging claims. There are further proofs that ExpressVPN adheres to its no-logs policy.
ExpressVPN servers seized: ‘no-logs’ policy tested
There was news in December 2017 that Turkey authorities had seized an EpressVPN server in an undertaking to access the VPN’s client data. Before seizing the server, the authorities had tried to threaten ExpressVPN to hand them over logs from the server in controversy. ExpressVPN came out clear that they do not have any information to give, and it is a no-logs VPN provider that is not subject to Turkish law.
After the Turkey authorities’ demands didn’t bore any fruit, the authorities went ahead and seized an ExpressVPN server, but nothing came out of their quest. No data was found.
Why is this important?
The main issue here is that the Turkish authorities didn’t access EpressVPN customer data, even after seizing the server. Their demands either didn’t help. This means that there were no logs available. This December 2017 case from Turkey and no-logs audit truly justify that ExpressVPN is committed to securing client data and their logging policies are adhered to.
Located in a safe, privacy-friendly jurisdiction (BVI)
ExpressVPN is located in the BVI (British Virgin Islands).
The British Virgin Islands is an autonomous, self-governing body with stringent policies that protect individuals and businesses’ privacy and businesses operating within its locality.
BVI does not have scale surveillance programs and data storage laws like the UK, which in most cases affect VPNs in the UK. The British Virgin Islands is similar to Switzerland, mostly known for stringent data secrecy and data protection, contrary to Five Eyes countries.
In the BVI, the judicial system cannot be forced to compel organizations to provide their clients’ data or records. Despite Britain’s historic connection, the BVI as a state is autonomous and is not under any country’s jurisdiction. Some VPNs like Surfshark are trying to partner with BVI for the reasons given above.
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Large and secure server network
ExpressVPN provides many servers around the globe, with a very secure network setup.
Approximately, ExpressVPN has around 160 servers located in 94 countries. In these 94 countries, there are more than 3,000 VPN servers. North America and Europe have the largest coverage, but ExpressVPN also provides an excellent selection of servers in Africa, the Middle East, South America, and the Asia Pacific area.
All servers running in RAM-disk mode (TrustedServer feature)
ExpressVPN is among the few VPN providers that operate all servers in RAM disk mode. This means that ExpressVPN uses only RAM instead of hard drives. This security feature is called TrustedServer. This feature guarantees clients a high level of privacy and security.
Does ExpressVPN offer static/dedicated IP addresses?
The answer is no; ExpressVPN does not provide IP addresses that are dedicated.
Does Express VPN work with Netflix and other streaming services?
ExpressVPN is the best deal if you want an ideal VPN that unblocks streaming services, including Netflix. ExpressVPN is among the handful of VPNs that allow you to access Netflix 24/7.
To unblock Netflix using ExpressVPN, simply open the VPN app on your desktop or laptop, then connect to the server you wish in a region where Netflix is available, from there you can enjoy Netflix services as if you are in that location. In case you encounter any proxy error, simply contact ExpressVPN support, and they will guide you on the right server to use instead.
Three main reasons make ExpressVPN the best VPN for Netflix:
- Pretty fast speeds and excellent streaming quality.
- With ExpressVPN, you can access Netflix 24/7. No network-wide blocks.
- Has the ability to unblock many Netflix locations worldwide, including Canada, Japan, Australia, Germany, the US, France, UK, and Italy.
Other streaming services that work with ExpressVPN
Apart from easy access to Netflix, ExpressVPN also allows you access to the likes of Amazon Prime, Disney Plus. And if, for instance, you want a VPN for streaming Kodi or Hulu, ExpressVPN is there for you.
ExpressVPN also works for Firestick; you can find Amazon App Store with a dedicated app.
Secure browser extensions: ExpressVPN Review
Like other top VPNs, ExpressVPN also provides browser extensions for Firefox and Chrome. The browser add-ons are for the VPN PC app. This means you will have to run the ExpressVPN Mac, Linux, or Windows PC application.
Why is it necessary to use a browser extension when you have the desktop VPN app?
The main benefit of using a browser extension app is convenience. With the browser app, you can easily switch between server locations instead of getting back to the desktop VPN client. Some of the additional benefits you get from browser extensions include:
- Even with the best VPN, WebRTC can unmask your real IP. In the browser, WebRTC leaks are effectively blocked.
- In the browser, HTML5 geolocation data is spoofed.
- HTTPS Everywhere connects automatically to more secure versions of HTTPS.
ExpressVPN Review: Split tunneling feature
With ExpressVPN, you have a split tunneling feature with its apps for Mac OS, Windows, Routers, and Android.
As the name suggests, this feature gives an option to choose the apps that will go through the VPN tunnel and go through the regular unencrypted internet. In the settings of the EpressaVPN client, there is a split tunneling feature. Usually, all apps and traffic are supposed to go through the VPN. In the client settings, you have three options;
- All applications to use VPN
- Allow selected applications to use VP
- Do not allow selected applications to go through VPN
If you click on any option above, a window will pop-up to allow you to choose the specific applications you want.
Dedicated VPN router app (for unlimited connections)
ExpressVPN is in the list of the handful of VPNs that provide a VPN router app that is dedicated. However, the router app does not work on all router models; it only works on models with supported firmware.
If you want to enjoy unlimited connections with your ExpressVPN, then use your VPN on your router. The router counts typically as a single connection, but every device connected to it will enjoy the VPN’s full benefits. Starting from location anonymity, new internet protocol address, and encrypted traffic.
ExpressVPN has the following options on your router:
- Use the ExpressVPN router app on the recommended or firmware supported router models.
- Setup ExpressVPN manually on your router. This needs more work, but not that hard with some router models.
Using ExpressVPN router app option 1 is the most ideal because it provides the following features:
- Switching between VPN servers is very simple.
- Offers you the option of choosing which websites or apps bypass the VPN. (split tunneling)
- Kill switch (Network Lock) blocks all traffic in case the connection fails.
Excellent customer support and refund policy
While support services may be congested as always, ExpressVPN seems to be doing well with its live chat.
Their live chat can be accessed 24/7 directly through the ExpressVPN website option, which is at the bottom-right corner. You will be connected to a representative in less than a minute. Don’t expect longer delays if it’s live chat.
Live chat support will also lend you a hand if you need help regarding installing your VPN on your operating systems or devices or if you need answers to specific questions that are not answered on their site.
30-day money-back guarantee
ExpressVPN is among the VPNs that offer the most extended refund windows in the VPN industry. This is another amazing benefit. With this VPN, you are guaranteed a full 30-day money-back. This applies to all plans, including a one-month plan. In case the VPN does not meet your expectations, you can claim your full money back on the 30 days minus being questioned.
Generally, ExpressVPN offers one of the best customer support.
Can you use ExpressVPN for torrenting? (Yes)
Some VPNs limit or restrict torrenting on their network. This is not the case with ExpressVPN. This VPN allows you to torrent minus any restriction or limitation.
ExpressVPN is the best alternative for torrenting because of the following four factors.
- High-premium performance server network with outstanding reliability and fast speeds.
- The overseas authority that is not answerable to the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) copyright violation demands or requests.
- High-end apps that always keep your information secure while protecting you against any vulnerabilities and leaks. This again masks you from DMCA notices and copyright trolls.
- No traffic restrictions and bandwidth limitations at all.
Does ExpressVPN work in China? (Yes)
ExpressVPN continues to offer its support in China despite the current censorship efforts and VPN blocks.
To enjoy the services of ExpressVPN in China, you only need to connect one of the servers designed for China. These China-designated servers will spontaneously use an obfuscation protocol with the ExpressVPN app, hence masking the VPN traffic as standard encryption of HTTPS. This, without effort, breaks through the censorship efforts and the country’s Firewall.
How many connections do you get with ExpressVPN?
You will be allowed to have five simultaneous connections after you have subscribed to ExpressVPN. You can enjoy ExpressVPN services on as many devices as possible, but you will be limited to five connections at a time.
There is an easy solution in case you want to connect to many devices at a time. For unlimited connections, simply use the ExpressVPN on your router. The router works as a single connection, but all devices connected to it will enjoy the VPN’s full services.
Conclusion: Is ExpressVPN worth it?
Overall, ExpressVPN is among the best VPNs in the market. To crown up our ExpressVPN review, below are some of the features that make it worth:
- The overseas authority that is not answerable to the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) copyright violation demands or requests.
- ExpressVPN is among the handful of VPNs that allow you to access Netflix 24/7.
- ExpressVPN is among the few VPN providers that operate all servers in RAM disk mode.
- Live chat support replies within a couple of minutes. Their support is also knowledgeable, prompt, and polite.
While it has a couple of setbacks like any other service provider, ExpressVPN is definitely among the top-notch VPN providers in the market. So far, it has kept its no-logs policy, and no claims have been presented so far.