VPN software is typically used to create a secure channel between two points. Anyone who’s worked remotely (which is pretty much everyone in the last couple of years) will be familiar with them because your IT team won’t let you connect to your work network without one.
For those not in the remote office environment they offer an invaluable layer of protection when working on a public WiFi network. Most commonly in my current day-today though, they’re used by my English-speaking clients who are looking to watch TV in their native language.
For the latter purpose all VPNs are not equal. You can find a perfectly good VPN for security-only bundled with your internet security package. Kaspersky, Avast, etc. all have a VPN on their list of features. For the latter category of user though you need a paid-for VPN – and again, not all of these are set up to access the sites you are most likely interested in.
Because I am often asked by clients to recommend a VPN, I decided to try about a few of the paid ones. I tried Clear VPN first on the basis of having bought other software from them but I’m not even going to bother with a review: it didn’t do what it said on the tin and was incredibly annoying to use. I wrote to them about it it was so bad!
The next one I tried is this one: Proton VPN. Six months later I still have it installed and am using it in place of the free one. No reason particularly (I don’t watch TV!) but just because it’s a great piece of software and I like it.
When asssessing a VPN here are the four criteria I’m interested in:
- Trust – who makes it and can I trust them?
- Ease of use – does it annoy me or just work in an intuitive way?
- Performance – does it do what I need it to do?
- Price – how does it compare with others and what do I get for the money?
Why Trust Proton?
Of all the questions this one is easy to answer when it comes to Proton and the answer is definitively “yes”. Proton may not be know to the general population but it has a solid reputation for security, being one of the first (possible, only) provider to offer secure email messaging services with their flagship product ProtonMail. I have personally had an account with them for many years and cannot fault them at all. When I saw they had just launched a VPN for me there were no questions about their integrity and their ability to deliver on the security side.
Ease of Use
Having tested various other free and paid-for VPNs I can say that Proton VPN is one of the most intuitive I have used. It’s easy to install on any platform with an interface that works nicely on any platform (not one of those where the desktop version is good but the Android version is broken, or vice versa.) I really can’t see how they could make it any simpler to use.
Essentially, once you have installed it from their site or from the relevant mobile app store (Google Play on Android or the App Store on Apple) you have to create an account. Once you have an account you fire up the app, select a country or a Profile that you’ve created to reuse in future, and that’s it. Really really simple. Then you just use your device as usual.
For regular usage (creating a secure tunnel on a public network) it’s great. For my clients with their particular needs, it also works. That means access to iPlayer and ITV. I’ve also tried it with some of the online channels (Netflix, etc.) from the iPad and yes, they work too. It’s good. You can visually see the load on the servers so, if you do run into speed issues (sometimes an issue at peak times) you can switch to one that has more resources available. Choosing one is simple: red = at capacity, orange = high traffic, and green = resources available. Not rocket science and it’s visual, which is nice.
Their prices are a little lower than some of the more commonly used VPN services. Current prices (as of 28/01/2022) are below. You can save by paying up front for the year but – while you’re trying it out – you can pay a small amount more for a PAYG month-by-month subscription.
I am more than happy to heartily recommend this product to my clients and to you!
If you’re interested in trying or buying, click on the link below, which will take you to the Proton VPN page.
Still not sure? Watch my Video Review
Question or Comments?
You can comment by using your FB profile or message me directly via my own FB page or Instagram.