In your quest to provide better security for your internet connection, picking the right and fastest VPN service can be the most difficult process. There are so many VPN service providers that it can become confusing quite quickly. How to pick a VPN service that suits best to your needs? While the basic function of a VPN is to be able to provide ample security and ensure absolute privacy online, one does not desire to compromise on speed. Choosing the fastest VPN is the top priority for most users.
The dilemma is that in order to determine the speed of a VPN server, there are many factors involved to reach a conclusive result. The truth of the matter is that the fastest VPN in my part of the world might not end up being the fastest in yours. But, the tests we conducted for this article will cater to the needs of the general masses. Whether you need the best VPN service for your video streaming needs, gaming, or other purposes – this article will provide you with the best information.
What’s the Fastest VPN?
According to our speed tests, below are the top 3 fastest VPNs of 2018 as of now. These stats will show you results that present a current, quick, and updated article on the fastest VPN services of 2018 that perform on upload, download, and even an amazing Ping rate.
Why Do I Need a VPN?
A solid VPN service enables the users to do the following:
- Use international services like Netflix USA and Hulu, from a country of no access.
- Download safety as well as secure file sharing.
- Make safe use of public WiFi.
- Hide your internet activities.
- Sneak through online censorships.
How to Choose the Fastest VPN Server
Despite the provider you choose, listed below are the primary factors that you need to consider in order to choose the best suited VPN service for your needs.
- Proximity: Your location has a huge impact on how well the VPN service works for you. For instance, if you reside in the Europe, then an East Coast server might work best for you. If you are in Asia and your target content is American then a West Coast (USA) server will be a suitable choice. In case you are aware of the location of a VPN server that happens to be near the hosting of the content you wish to access then you must choose that VPN server.
- Latency: While it’s related to proximity, latency refers to the time taken between sending and receiving a server request (ping time). There are many apps that enable users to view the VPN server latencies (milliseconds). The latency is affected by the level of traffic that is being carried between you and the VPN server you’re connected to.
- Server Load: There are a few popular VON service providers that allow their users to keep track of the load on their server in ratio with the total capacity. The higher the traffic and load, the slower the connection.
- VPN protocol: One of our most recommended is OpenVPN, being open-source and safe, you must avail it whenever you can. There is a faster VPN protocol available, though. IKEv2 is not only safe, but also performs very well with cellular connection. It all depends on your hardware usage – whether you will be able to see a difference with the use of L2TP/IPSec or SSTP. Whereas PPTP has proven to be the fastest, it is not rendered as suitable due to its infamous security flaws. Later discussed in the article.
How we Tested Each VPN
Before listing here the list of fastest VPN services, we have intensely tested each VPN speed. Here are the few factors.
This concludes the pace at which the data is transferring from the server to your system. Whether you are visiting a website or watching a video, the data is being downloaded. This speed is calculated is MBps.
The result depends on the pace at which your system is sending the data to the VPN server. For activities like sending an e-mail with attachments or using a call service like Skype, upload speed is crucial. It is also calculated in MBps.
This measures the pace at which your system receives a response once the request has been sent to the VPN server. The faster the ping is, the more responsive the connection is as well. It is calculated in ms (milliseconds).
Difference of Speed between VPN & without VPN connection
However internet speed has much to do with many factors such as how sturdy your hardware is (performance wise), which operating system you are using the VPN on, as well as the strength of your internet connection, using even the fastest VPN does affect your internet speed.
The better the quality of your VPN server, the lesser effect it will have on the performance of your internet connection – but most VPN services do cause an average drop of around 30% in your internet speed.
Fastest VPN Protocol
As briefly discussed earlier in the article, the speed of your VPN service depends on the tier of security that the tunneling protocol offers – hence, it is the most crucial contributor to a service being the fastest VPN.
Popular for its spectacular speed, PPTP is known to be the fastest VPN protocol. But, it is not one of the most safe and secure protocols. Its encrypted traffic can be hacked into within a couple of hours. If you decide to choose speed over security, then you can opt for the PPTP protocol.
However it’s known to be better in terms of being secure and having better online security, L2TP/IPSec does slow your internet speed down.
This protocol is basically designed for usage on Windows operating system, but can be used on other systems as well. Its online security is better than L2TP/IPSec due to its ability to be configured with AES encryption. However SSTP will slow your internet down as well.
This protocol is your safest bet when it comes to having your back on both ends; a well rounded online security as well as a fast performance. It makes use of AES encryption, open source technology, and it iis impossible to distinguish its traffic from HTTPS traffic.
Security or Speed?
It is evident from our research that the more secure a VPN protocol is, the slower it will be. PPTP is the fastest protocol out there, and also the least secure. Even though a VPN is not required to have the highest levels of security, there is a limit that needs to be set (on how much you are willing to put at risk in terms of privacy). We strongly advise against using PPTP and to go for more secure protocols that use SSL such as OpenVPN, or the ones with IPSec encryption such as L2TP and IKEv2.
Tip: Despite the protocol you are using, never disable encryption completely.
Factors that Affect VPN Speed
There are few factors that affects the internet speed
As discussed earlier, your VPN server’s location has a big impact on your connection speed. Generally, VPN service providers automatically suggest a server location, depending on your location, the data you are trying to access, as well as speed. In most cases, you might need to connect to a server that is closer to the hosting country of the content you need to access.
The speed of connection that your Internet Service Provider offers contributes to your VPN server connection as well. Whereas most connections as able to handle 10 Mbps to 1 Gbps, it does not have a big impact on the performance of the VPN – as long as it is not a dial-up or 3G connection, you’re good to go.
Interconnection Between ISP and VPN
Generally, if your standard internet connection is quite fast, you will lose speed in percentage. Regardless of how fast your internet performs, if the interconnection between your ISP and the VPN is not strong, your VPN will not perform well.
Protection From the Moment You Connect
In a world where we fear being constantly spied on, a good and reliable VPN service must enable its users to hide IP address and location – as soon as you connect. This means that your online data is encrypted and your privacy, intact. Third parties that wish to spy on your activities, even your ISP cannot track your internet usage – you control the information you share with the world.
We have concluded that the performance of any VPN service completely depends on your specific requirements. We conducted tests on the top 5 VPN service providers and the results were quite remarkable. Even though our article is quite extensive, the performance of even the fastest VPN will somewhat differ depending on your specific ISP, location, and internet connection.
When choosing the fastest VPN for your needs, be sure to tally the download and upload speeds of the VPN service providers (our test results above), with the nature of your internet usage.