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IPVanish vs. NordVPN - Comparison & Test Results 2019

Loser
4.3/5

vs

Winner
4.8/5

Choosing a VPN doesn’t have to be a tedious process.

I understand that sometimes it’s difficult and frustrating to decide on one solution that fits all of your needs, considering just how many different VPN options there are on the market.

But with the right approach, it’s not impossible.

When I initially started my VPN search, I focused more on privacy and security, but then I realized I can get a lot more than that for an affordable price.

Now, I want to help you do the same.

To get to the providers I use to this day, I went over a lot of potential solutions on the market.

Also, I did extensive research, as well as comparisons between several principal aspects of a VPN.

Below you will see how that process went and why I chose the two providers I am about to compare – IPVanish vs. NordVPN.

CriteriaIPVanishNordVPN
Rating4.3 of 5
4.3/5
4.8 of 5
4.8/5
PriceView Best PriceView Best Price
JurisdictionUSAPanama
Logging PolicyNo Logging PolicyNo Logging Policy
Servers & Countries1,300+ Servers in 75 Locations5110+ Servers in 58+ Countries
Torrenting / P2P
YesYes
EncryptionAES-256-bitAES-256-bit
Customer SupportLive Chat, Phone and Email Support24/7 Live Chat + Email
Simultaneous Connections10 Devices6 Devices
Supported PlatformsWindows, MacOS, Android, iOS, Amazon Fire TV / Firestick, Linux, Chrome, RouterWindows, iOS, macOS, Android, Linux, Chrome, Firefox, Amazon Fire TV / Firestick, Router
Refund Policy
7 Days30 Days
Visit:Go with IPVanishGo with NordVPN

Why I Chose NordVPN and IPVanish?

You can find just about anything on the VPN market, but when you want to get the whole set of features and benefits for a cheaper price, that’s when things get more complicated.

The good news is that I will share my experience with you so that you won’t have to go through that. However, you’ll have to go through this comparison carefully and decide which provider you find more fitting.

In the text below, I focused on several things that are crucial and can make or break a VPN, including:

  • The VPN’s overall security and how well it protects you online;
  • The company’s policies on privacy;
  • The number of servers and server locations;
  • Whether the servers unblock geo-restricted and censored content;
  • Whether the servers are optimized for streaming and torrenting;
  • The overall VPN speed and performance.

You will see that I also included some other criteria, but it was very important for me to know how NordVPN and IPVanish rank on the details I mentioned above, and whether they check out all of them.

Overall, the reason I chose these two VPNs is that they showed promising results.

However, NordVPN and IPVanish are quite different and they target different types of users based on their differentiation. So let’s see which one is a better solution for you.

NordVPN vs. IPVanish: Features and Comparison

Privacy & Jurisdiction

Every VPN service provider should respect your privacy.

The range of the VPN’s privacy protection can be measured through several things:

  • Zero logs privacy policy;
  • Jurisdiction;
  • Secure payment methods;
  • Company’s transparency.

NordVPN checks out all the criteria.

The company does not store any logs on you, which means you can browse anonymously.

Guaranteed NordVPN's no-logging policy

Further confirmation for your privacy is NordVPN’s excellent location.

The service provider is based in Panama, a country regarded as privacy heaven with no strict data retention laws.

In other words, by law, NordVPN is not obliged to keep any data that might be used to identify you.

IPVanish, on the other hand, is based in the USA.

That’s a red flag right there.

The U.S. is part of the Five Eyes countries which, if you haven’t heard of before, is an alliance between the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, and Canada that serves as a mass surveillance system.

However, it’s interesting that although IPVanish falls under U.S. jurisdiction, the provider still has a zero logs policy. If you go through their privacy policy, you will see that they only keep website cookies and the information you’ll provide to them when you are creating your account.

This came as a surprise to me, but after a brief research, I found out that IPVanish has been a part of a logging scandal, where the service provider allegedly collaborated with the authorities on a case back in 2016, by providing the logs on one of its users.

However, after the scandal broke out, StackPath, as the new operator of IPVanish, refused to talk on these events, claiming that this happened under the wing of the old team behind IPVanish.

They went on by explaining that ever since StackPath bought the parent company Highwinds in 2017, IPVanish keeps no logs on their users, as it clearly says in their privacy policy.

IPVanish states that they don't store any logs
What you need to provide to IPVanish?

In terms of transparency, it’s not difficult to find information on both websites about their jurisdiction and privacy. In IPVanish’s privacy policy, you can even find a list of all third-party websites that have access to your data, with the explanation regarding why they need it.

Finally, it’s necessary to add that NordVPN enables you to pay privately through cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoin. IPVanish, on the other hand, lacks this option and has the standard means of payments where you’d have to provide a lot of personal information.

Winner: NordVPN

Market Popularity

Both NordVPN and IPVanish are big names in the VPN business, and chances are, you’ve probably heard of them by now. However, by taking a look at the Google Trends chart, you can clearly see that NordVPN is in the lead, at least in the past 12 months.

Still, keep in mind that you can’t judge a VPN based only on popularity, and it’s always important to make a thorough research.

Both NordVPN and IPVanish are big names in the VPN business, and chances are, you’ve probably heard of them by now. However, by taking a look at the Google Trends chart, you can clearly see that NordVPN is in the lead, at least in the past 12 months.

Still, keep in mind that you can’t judge a VPN based only on popularity, and it’s always important to make a thorough research.

Winner: NordVPN

Server Coverage

NordVPN and IPVanish are an excellent choice for people whose primary concerns in a VPN are the servers and their locations. If you travel a lot or you want to access diverse content from all parts of the world, you need to have a comprehensive server range.

Although I personally consider other things as a priority when it comes to VPNs, having a broad server choice is always a refreshing addition, and I appreciate that both NordVPN and IPVanish have a lot of them.

NordVPN has 5,192 servers in a total of 59 countries. A large portion of them are located in Europe and the U.S. However, NordVPN still covers a lot of countries on six continents.

One distinctive advantage over other VPNs lies in NordVPN’s obfuscated servers that can bypass even some of the strongest restrictions by transforming the encrypted VPN traffic into regular secured (HTTPS) traffic. Thanks to this feature, NordVPN works in China, something most VPNs are not able to achieve.

IPVanish has over 1,300 servers in more than 70 server locations.

Although it does have significantly fewer servers than NordVPN, IPVanish still offers a decent number of locations, more than most VPNs on the market.

Winner: NordVPN

Is Torrenting Allowed on The Servers?

Yes, torrenting is allowed by both NordVPN and IPVanish.

Torrenting is one of the things that not all VPNs dare to offer to their users.

Although torrents and torrenting are, in general, legal, as long as you don’t download copyrighted content, many countries blocked the main torrenting platforms and are against their use.

That’s why you might find it hard to obtain a VPN that allows this feature on all of its servers.

IPVanish is not very open on this matter, and it will be somewhat difficult to find information about it on their website. However, I learned that the provider enables P2P sharing on all servers, although they suggest using their SOCKS5 proxy server for doing this, as a more secure option.
NordVPN, on the other hand, does not support P2P sharing on all servers.

As a matter of fact, if you want to use NordVPN for torrenting in particular, you’ll have to choose the P2P option on their server menu.

Still, considering NordVPN’s jurisdiction, its zero logs policy, and the fact that the provider has never been a part of any logging scandal, I would advice users who want a VPN for torrenting to go with NordVPN as a more secure option.

The user interface of NordVPN app

Winner: NordVPN

Unblocking Streaming Services

Streaming Services:IPVanishNordVPN
NetflixYesYes
HuluNoYes
SpotifyYesYes
Channel 4
YesYes
Amazon PrimeYesYes
BBC iPlayer
NoYes
CBSYesYes

NordVPN is one of the few providers on the market that can unblock most geo-restricted streaming services around the world, including Netflix.

So, if you are a passionate streamer and want to watch U.S. Netflix from anywhere in the world, NordVPN is a great choice. Besides, as you can see from the list, NordVPN works with every other major streaming service provider and has excellent streaming speeds. But more on that later.

IPVanish also has strong unblocking capabilities, but it slightly falls behind NordVPN.

The provider can’t unlock all streaming service providers, although it seems to be working with the U.S. Netflix for the time being.

Winner: NordVPN

What’s The Speed Rate?

One of my main fears, whenever I start using a new VPN, is that it will downgrade my internet speed. Some providers did this up to the point where I couldn’t normally use the internet while connected to more distant servers.

But I never had this difficulty with NordVPN. Although it’s possible to run into a server that might be slower than others, more often than not, NordVPN has speeds that allowed me to watch videos without buffering, play games without lags, and stream my favorite movies and TV shows in Ultra HD.

PingDownload
Speed before using NordVPN8 ms47.58 Mbps
Connected to a nearby server
21 ms47.55 Mbps (-0.06%)
Connected to a UK server
58 ms41.26 Mbps (-13.28%)
Connected to a US server
127 ms43.97 Mbps (-7.59%)

Test results before connecting to NordVPN:

Speed results before using NordVPN

Test results after connecting to NordVPN’s servers:

NordVPN's speed results connected to London
NordVPN's speed results connected to the US server

IPVanish speed test results were not that great. Although IPVanish is a relatively fast VPN, when I tested for more distant servers, I was kind of disappointed by the speed downgrade.

However, despite this, IPVanish is still a relevant choice.

Even with lower speed rates, your internet experience will remain overall good.

You can still stream, but only in HD. With these rates, you would probably want to avoid streaming with Ultra HD because it will buffer or not work at all.

I want to clarify that different servers showed inconsistent results, and the speed depends on several factors, including the server’s availability, distance, and so on.

Usually, when I connect to the closest location, I get similar speed rates to the ones I have without a VPN. As you can see, this time, the nearby server showed worse results than the UK, even though it was a more distant location.

Finally, there was also a significant difference in the upload speed, especially with the U.K. server, when it dropped to under 0.09 Mbps. IPVanish could definitely do better.

PingDownload
Speed before using IPVanish2 ms40.40 Mbps
Connected to a nearby server
78 ms23.96 Mbps (-40.7%)
Connected to a UK server
56 ms33.87 Mbps (-16.16%)
Connected to a US server
152 ms18.25 Mbps (-54.8%)

Before using IPVanish:

The resuls of speed test before using IPVanish

After connecting to IPVanish’s servers:

IPVanish speed results connected to the server in London
IPVanish speed results connected to the server in NY.

Winner: NordVPN

Security Features

FeatureIPVanishNordVPN
Security Protocols
  • IKEv2
  • OpenVPN
  • L2TP/IPsec
  • PPTP
  • OpenVPN UDP
  • OpenVPN TCP
  • IKEv2/IPsec
EncryptionAES-256-bitAES-256-bit
Kill SwitchYesYes
Leak Test
SecureSecure

NordVPN and IPVanish both support OpenVPN with AES-256-bit encryption, as the market’s best security solution. If you want maximum protection, I recommend using this option.

IPVanish offers other security protocol including the outdated, yet faster, PPTP VPN protocol that only works with lower AES-128-bit encryption.

Both providers have leak protection and won’t expose your IP address, once you connect to a server, and they offer the kill switch feature as an integral part of using a VPN securely.

The kill switch serves to protect you in case of an unexpected network failure, and when it’s on, it disconnects everything once the server is down.

However, apart from these features, NordVPN additionally offers advanced security solutions, including double encryptionOnion over VPN, CyberSec, etc. These can all come in handy if you want to get maximum protection from a VPN, which gives NordVPN an advantage over IPVanish.

Winner: NordVPN

Device Compatibility and Connections

Features:IPVanishNordVPN
Supported Platforms
Windows, MacOS, Android, iOS, Amazon Fire TV / Firestick, Linux, Chrome OS, RouterWindows, iOS, macOS, Android, Amazon Fire TV / Firestick, Linux, Chrome, Firefox
Simultaneous Connections10 Devices6 Devices

What I really like about IPVanish is that it supports up to 10 simultaneous connections.

I think you will find this very useful, especially if you are not the only one using this VPN.

For example, with 10 devices, IPVanish can be an excellent family solution, and it’s even compatible with small businesses.

NordVPN offers six simultaneous connections, a number that is still above the market’s average, but compared to IPVanish is a lot less.

In terms of supported devices, it’s hard to say which provider stands out. NordVPN supports Windows, iOS, macOS, Android, Linux, as well as browser extensions for Chrome and Firefox.

You can also install the VPN on a router and use it with any devices connected to the internet.

IPVanish supports more or less the same devices, including Windows, iOS, macOS, Android, Linux and Amazon Fire TV and Firestick. However, the service provider also supports Chrome OS but does not have browser extensions. For more devices, you can install IPVanish on your router.

Winner: IPVanish

Customer Support

Although customer support might not be something that usually comes to mind when you consider purchasing a VPN, you shouldn’t overlook it.

Imagine how frustrating it will be not to be able to get a hold of customer support when you encounter a more severe problem. It’s even worse when you are talking to someone who is not qualified enough to help you. 

NordVPN has 24/7 available live chat and email-based support. I find the live chat to be the most valuable part of their customer service. I usually get very fast responses on the live chat and moderately slower answers through their email. I do, however, think that some of their representatives lack experience, which leads to slower or automated responses until I get connected to someone who can actually help me.

IPVanish also has the live chat feature, as well as email support. But what I like most is that IPVanish offers phone-based assistance, which can be much more effective than communicating through chat or email. 

IPVanish has a live-chat feature

It’s challenging to determine which one has better support, although I would go with IPVanish on this one because the company has phone-based support, something you don’t see very often, although it’s more than necessary for VPN service providers.

One thing that they can improve regarding this issue is to make the phone support available 24/7.

Winner: IPVanish

Price Comparison

OptionsIPVanishNordVPN
Price Plans
  • $5 per month, billed every month;
  • $13.50 per three months;
  • $39 per 12 months.
  • $11.95 per month, billed every month;
  • $83.88 per 12 months;
  • $119.76 per 24 months;
  • $125.64 per 36 months.
Free Trial
NoNo
Free Plan
NoNo
Return Policy7 Days30 Days

NordVPN is not the cheapest provider you can find on the market, but its prices are very affordable in the long run. If you get a lengthier subscription, you will be saving a lot of money.

For example, their 3-year price plan costs a total of $125.64 or $3.49 per month.

That’s a fair price.

However, IPVanish goes even further and offers much more affordable price plans, starting from only $5 per month. The numbers vary, and it’s easy to run into an excellent discount.

What I didn’t like is that they lack a lengthier subscription, one that lasts more than a year.

IPVanish pricing

Neither NordVPN nor IPVanish offer a free trial or a free plan, but they have a money return policy. NordVPN has one that lasts for 30 days, while IPVanish offers only a one-week refund policy.

Comparing these two and saying which one is better is not easy, because they have different pros and cons when it comes to prices, but if you want to get the cheaper one, then IPVanish is certainly a better offer.

Winner: IPVanish

User-Friendliness and Overall User Experience

The installation process of these two providers is fairly easy, and once you connect to NordVPN and IPVanish, you will see that they have a different interface.

NordVPN is more simplistic, and you will find it easy to get used to it.

You can see the servers on the server list to the left, but you can also choose one from the map, which I think is very helpful.

Every other feature can be found in the Settings button in the upper right corner, including the security protocols, the kill switch, and NordVPN’s obfuscated servers.

Go to Advanced Settings and select TCP protocol

IPVanish has a different interface with many options, but they are nicely arranged, and you can find everything you need.

Overall, they are both user-friendly, and their interfaces are easy to navigate, making them excellent for all types of users. I can’t decide which one is better, because this could really be a matter of preference.

UI of IPVanish
The settings window

Winner: TIE

Conclusion

As you could see through the comparisons, NordVPN stands out between the two.

However, IPVanish is still an excellent choice and, in some aspects, it ranks better than NordVPN.

I am not biased when I say this but I’d still go with NordVPN in the long term.

Then again, IPVanish could be an excellent choice for the whole family because it allows for more simultaneous connections.

At the end of the day, it’s up to you to decide which one fits your needs the most.

However, no matter what you choose, take online safety seriously and make it your priority to always use a VPN for your protection and convenience.

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