How To Choose The Right VPN Provider For You

Lots of people are waking up to the benefits of a VPN, but there with so many to choose from, it’s hard to know which provider to go with. Here’s what you need to consider when choosing the right VPN provider for your individual needs.

How To Choose The Right VPN Provider For You
How To Choose The Right VPN Provider For You. Photo by NordWood Themes on Unsplash

Table of contents

Decide What You Will Use Your VPN For
Look For VPN Providers Whose Priorities Align With Yours
Check Online Reviews
Make Sure All Your Devices Are Compatible
Check Out The User Interface
Check Where The Servers Are Located

Decide What You Will Use Your VPN For

Perhaps the most important factor to consider when you are choosing a VPN provider is exactly what you will be using the VPN for. For example, some people want a VPN to improve their online security and ensure that their data is encrypted. However, some people are more concerned with accessing region-locked content, in which case you will want to choose a provider with servers located in the same country as the content you wish to access.

Before you can settle on the best VPN provider for you, you need to understand exactly what you are going to be using it for.

Look For VPN Providers Whose Priorities Align With Yours

Once you have worked out what you are going to use your VPN for, you can then start looking for providers that offer the kind of features that align with your needs. For example, if security is your primary concern, then you will want to choose a provider that operates a no-logs policy. This means that the VPN provider doesn’t store any data about you and can’t compromise your privacy in the future.

Different VPN providers will have different priorities and will cater to different audiences. Finding the best VPN provider is, therefore, going to depend on whether they are offering the right features for you. Find out what the key features are for users like you and check that your provider offers them.

Check Online Reviews

Looking at user reviews online will give you your best indication of what to expect from a VPN provider. There are plenty of guides online that will talk you through the specific providers that are available and what the advantages are of each one. For example, this list of the top VPN providers from Anonymania is a great place to start.

Make Sure All Your Devices Are Compatible

Most VPN providers today offer a multiplatform service, but many will require you to buy an upgraded subscription package in order to use the service on more than one device. It is vital that you find out beforehand which devices are supported by your provider and how you access the service.

Many VPNs today will offer a smartphone app to enable mobile users to utilise the service. However, some are still taking the more traditional route of providing users with the login details needing to access the service and then having them input these on their devices. The second method involves more work on the part of the user but is also a more versatile and reliable option than using an app. With an app, you don’t have to worry about entering any settings or configuring things for yourself.

Before you commit to any VPN provider, make sure that you check exactly how you will access their service on each of your main devices. You don’t want to end up committed to a subscription that doesn’t cover your main devices.

Check Out The User Interface

Another important consideration is the user interface of a VPN. Most modern VPNs will offer you slick interfaces that make it easy to adjust settings as you need to, but there are still some that come with more bare bone interfaces. VPNs that are aimed at a mass-market audience that isn’t necessarily tech-savvy are more likely to feature simplified interfaces that prioritise user convenience over customization and other features that a power user might want.

By contrast, VPNs that are aimed at much more technologically-literate audiences are likely to feature minimal interfaces and rely more on the user’s knowledge to enable them to configure and adjust the VPN themselves, without the need for a GUI.

Check Where The Servers Are Located

This is especially important if you want to use your VPN to access content that is region-locked. Your VPN will only be effective at accessing content if the VPN provider has physical servers located in the target country. There are ways of making it appear as if a server is located in a different country than it really is, but these are not fool-proof and aren’t as reliable as servers that are actually running in the target country.

Many VPN providers will make a big show about the fact that they support hundreds of servers located around the world. However, in practice, as long as the most important countries for your needs are covered, the total number of servers isn’t that important.

The right VPN can make all the difference to your online browsing. Not only can a VPN improve your security and privacy, but the right provider also won’t cost you any speed.

Published by Thomas Apel

, a dynamic and self-motivated information technology architect, with a thorough knowledge of all facets pertaining to system and network infrastructure design, implementation and administration. I enjoy the technical writing process and answering readers' comments included.