AirVPN was designed in Italy back in 2010 by “hacktivists” who wanted to protect basic rights to privacy, defeat censorship and fight for net neutrality. This group of digital freedom enthusiasts created this VPN tool to protect their users’ privacy and anonymity which is, according to them, necessary for freedom of speech.
The company was then officially founded in 2012. It all started with only two servers, but now, AirVPN operates on 200 servers located in 19 countries on three continents.
AirVPN allows its users to surf the web anonymously by encrypting their data and hiding their IP address.
AirVPN runs on 200 servers located in 35 data centers in countries across three continents. Some of the servers are stationed in Canada, the United States, Germany, Luxembourg, Portugal, Romania, Sweden, Hong Kong and the United Kingdom.
While 200 servers is not a bad number, when compared to competitors like IPVanish, for example, it is not quite as impressive as 1,000+. However, AirVPN servers are strategically spread across the globe so you can access websites no matter where you are. Well, almost… Africa is still an unexplored area for AirVPN.
If you want to access your favorite Netflix show, you will be able to do so by connecting to the U.S. server. Connecting to more populated servers will slightly slow down your internet speed, but you will still be able to watch the series or download movies via torrent.
AirVPN is using the best encryption protocol on the market, which is OpenVPN. Given the fact that the same protocol is used by government agencies, it is clear that the company takes its clients’ security very seriously.
The great thing about OpenVPN is that it is an open source protocol, which means that it is not a property of one person or company, but the entire community is working on improving it together.
Additionally, AirVPN is using 256-bit encryption. Therefore, when it comes to AirVPN and the security of your data, they’ve got you covered. The encrypted impenetrable tunnel is created from the user’s computer to the server.
Kill switch is an extremely important feature regarding security. It is integrated into AirVPN’s Windows client called Eddie. If you enable this option, it will disconnect you from the web if for some reason your connection with the server gets lost. That way, you will be protected even if some glitch in the app occurs.
Given the fact that AirVPN is created to support net neutrality, it is understandable that it allows unlimited torrenting. And not only that; every protocol is allowed while using AirVPN. To make sure that BitTorrent will work on an optimum level, the company utilizes Port Forwarding/DDNS, which allows you to seed a torrent without any issues.
No matter what you read online, there is no VPN service that will not leave an impact on your internet speed. However, with AirVPN you will still be able to enjoy unlimited bandwidth and share large files.
If you want to reduce the loss of internet speed, opt for E.U. servers rather than U.S. servers. But, some problems may occur if you use the port forwarding option or use AirVPN with Tor. This combo can significantly slow down your internet connection.
If you take some time to experiment and find the right server, AirVPN should meet your requirements.
When it comes to customer support, AirVPN has a simple contact form on the company’s website. Unfortunately, there is no live chat, which can be an inconvenience when you need to resolve an issue within minutes. Luckily, when you fill out the form, you will probably get an email with an answer in a couple of hours.
Before contacting the support desk, check the FAQs and forum on the website because most likely you will find an answer there. Another major plus is that customer support is not outsourced, which means high-quality service but only during European working hours.
AirVPN is compatible with the following operating systems, browsers and routers:
- OS X
- Chrome OS
- SSH Tunnel
- SSV Tunnel
AirVPN can be used on up to five different devices simultaneously with one subscription plan.
VPN through Tor
If you want to fully protect your online security and anonymity, there is no better way than combining the Tor browser with AirVPN. With VPN through Tor, you will be able to connect to websites with Tor, even if those websites do not allow Tor connections.
Also, a VPN will be an additional protection layer if you run into a malicious Tor exit node.
But one major disadvantage of VPN through Tor is a slow connection.
To install the AirVPN client, you will have to go to the company’s website first, create an account, choose a plan and select the setup.
When creating your account, you will have to enter your credentials and agree to the terms and conditions.
The next step is to choose a subscription plan and a payment method.
As you can see, AirVPN accepts Bitcoins as one of the payment options, which is a big plus security-wise.
Once you finish the steps mentioned above, you will be able to download and use your AirVPN package.
Click on the preferred option and choose the version you would like to download.
Once the download is completed, run the installation wizard.
Agree to the Terms and Conditions…
…and choose the location of the file.
When you click Next, the installation will be completed. All you need to do now is to hit Finish.
Your AirVPN client, called Eddie, is now ready for use.
Once the download and installation are completed, you will be able to log into the app and select your server.
The first tab is called Overview, and this is where you enter your credentials.
In the second tab, you can find all the information regarding the servers.
In the third tab, you can see the countries where AirVPN has servers,
In the fourth tab, you can find the information regarding speed.
In the fifth tab, you will be able to find all the relevant statistical information about download and upload speed, IP entry and IP exit, as well as protocols that are used.
The last section is reserved for the information about the logs.
In the bottom left corner, you can see the Settings area.
In the General section, you can choose to connect to the service at Windows startup, to reconnect to the last server, or to activate a network lock at startup.
In the UI tab, you can adjust the app according to your preferences.
In the Protocols section, you can see every protocol that is used.
You can also use a Proxy or Tor.
…or find information about the Routes.
In the DNS tab, you can change DNS switch mode, ensure DNS lock or force all network interfaces for DNS.
The Networking section contains information about protocols used for connection.
While in the Network lock you can enable lan, ping or detected DNS.
The Advanced tab is reserved for servers list update, testing the tunnel, latency tests, etc.
Right below the advanced tab, you can see the Logging segment…
…As well as OVPN directives.
The overall impression is that the user interface is simple and easy to use, at least when it comes to the Windows client.
Security and Privacy
AirVPN has strict no logs policy, which means even if the government come knocking on their door, they will have no information to give them regarding your online activities. The only time you will have to enter your email address is to create an account.
AirVPN passed every single test on IP, DNS and WebRTC leak. The software is also virus- and malware-proof.
To assure its clients’ anonymity, every user on the server shares the same IP address.
As for the price, you can choose from five different subscription options:
- Three-day plan for 1€ ($1.15 USD)
- One month plan for 7€ ($8.08 USD)
- Three-month plan for 15€ ($17.31 USD)
- Six- month plan for 30€ ($34.63 USD)
- One year plan for 54€ ($62.33 USD)
Whatever plan you choose, you will be able to enjoy all AirVPN features. The company also offers a free trial period.
Some of the most frequent issues regarding AirVPN, according to clients’ reviews, are speed and customer support. The service can severely slow down internet connection, especially if you are using the Tor browser and port forwarding option.
When it comes to customer support, some clients claim that it took ages for the support desk to respond to their request. In some cases, the answers were completely useless because the support team only referred a client to look for an answer on the company’s website.
Other than listed complaints, other reviews were mostly positive, pointing out the strong encryption protocol and user-friendly interface.
AirVPN might not be the best or most popular VPN service on the market, but if you need software for amateur everyday use, it will do a decent job at a fair price.
However, if you want more professional product with better performance that will allow you to browse the web without impacting the internet speed, you should consider some of the alternatives:
Pros and Cons
|AirVPN does not keep any logs||The number of servers is not quite impressive|
|Strong encryption||Speed may be an issue especially when using the port forwarding option and the Tor browser|
|Allows Netflix||No live chat on the company’s website|
|Allows P2P sharing|
|Easy to use|
|Free trial period|
AirVPN was initially designed by a group of activists dedicated to continuing the existence of the free and open internet. Today, the company offers its clients VPN service for Windows, OS X, Android, iOS, Chrome, Tor and routers. The software is equipped with strong encryption protocols and a kill switch. It is cheap and easy to use, which makes it perfect for average everyday users who just want to stream their favorite TV shows on Netflix or download movies via torrent.