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ExpressVPN review

Security and simplicity can be justly named among the best competitive advantages of ExpressVPN. This is the best provider in the market of VPN services thanks to its extensive network of servers, impressive performance and easy-to-use interfaces for all applications and SW packages.

Expressvpn_website

Packages and Prices

ExpressVPN follows the common VPN market policy and offers 3 different packages, as well as considerable discounts for long-term subscriptions and one-off payments. In terms of cost savings, annual plan shall be preferred for extended use. Thanks to money back guarantee which is offered for 1 month it is possible to test this service under non-binding terms.

To stand out from its market rivals, ExpressVPN pioneered the use of regional payment options, including, to name just few, WebMoney, Paysafecard, China UnionPay, Alipay, CashU and Giropay.

expressvpn-pricing

Functionality

Like the majority of other VPN providers, ExpressVPN maintains 3 major security protocols and an extensive infrastructure of servers in almost 80 countries. It offers superb SW which is fully streamlined and easy to operate. Clear customer focus is confirmed by the smart design of web-site and mobile applications. SW client can be seamlessly installed in multiple devices, but there is another limit: 2 concurrent connections (1 desktop PC and 1 smartphone or tablet) at most.

Privacy and Security Matters

ExpressVPN runs 256-bit security tools and operates OpenVPN as the standard protocol. Other available options also supported in mobile versions are L2TP / PPTP for those who look for higher speeds (though even the default mode is very fast).

Currently the ExpressVPN’s country of domicile is British Virgin Islands. This is a great advantage meaning that the company cannot be forced to obey the data retention or recording laws effective in Europe or in the States. ExpressVPN is highly committed to user privacy and supports the initiatives of Electronic Frontier Foundation. To ensure complete anonymity, Bitcoin payments can be used. In this case all that’s needed from the user to sign up is his/her e-mail address which can be fully depersonalized. The company maintains no traffic logs and uses universal IP sharing. This means that no users can be traced based on specific IP addresses.

Web-Site

The web-site of ExpressVPN is smart and intuitive, with easy and attractive layout. All required details are presented in a clear manner, without any redundant or irrelevant data.

Customer Care

Customer support is available round the clock; all user requests are promptly handled. Many aids are available online, including SW setup guidelines with illustrative screenshots. Mystery shopping confirms that the service team is prompt and proficient. User requests are logged to supplement the knowledgebase and facilitate future problem-solving.

expressvpn-support

Procedures

Sign Up

ExpressVPN offers a very simple signup routine. All that’s needed is to indicate your e-mail address and select a preferable payment method. After that a confirmation is e-mailed, and the user is redirected to the download page.

express-vpn-signing-up

Windows VPN Client

It is equally easy to download and install the SW. Instead of using account details to log in, it is required to copy and paste the verification code received from ExpressVPN.

On the home screen the users are prompted to select the preferred server. There is also a button to obtain the best connection and, thus, achieve optimized performance. This feature shall be avoided if access to geo-blocked web-pages is required. Connection is established flawlessly, within few seconds.

expressvpn-windows-client

Online settings can be used to change the protocol (OpenVPN is pre-selected by default) and further increase your connection speed at the cost of less secure online operation. In-built speed tests can be run to check performance, but external testing is naturally preferable to obtain unbiased uniform results. With OpenVPN it is possible to toggle between UDP and TCP for the optimized use of protocols and firewalls.

expressvpn-windows-client-2

In general, the SW fits its purpose, but obviously lacks some more advanced features which are available from other providers.

Performance Tests (Speed, DNS, IP)

All test routines run to check such metrics as DNS performance, speed or IP give very good results.

Without VPN:

expressvpn-without-VPN

With OpenVPN:

expressvpn-with-OpenVPN

With L2TP:

expressvpn-with-L2TP

Other Platforms

ExpressVPN belongs to a small group of VPN providers which offer dedicated applications for different devices. A while ago the company released its 4.0 client compatible with Windows & Mac for universal access to this service via whatever kind of connection: Wi-Fi, mobile or wired. And the last but not the least: 2 concurrent connections can be maintained: 1 with a laptop or a desktop PC and 1 with a mobile device, and extra subscriptions can be purchased to increase this number.

Android

As demonstrated by field tests, application for Android is in no way worse than Windows SW. It can be downloaded online, from the ExpressVPN’s web-site or via Play Store. As well as for the desktops, it is required to get a password from the web-site. Protocols are assigned according to the following rule: L2TP for v2.0+ and OpenVPN for 4.0+. L2TP and PTPP can be set up manually, through the native client, but in this case geographic coverage is limited to 8 countries. In the main screen the user can select connection options and access other helpful services:

expressvpn-android

It takes few seconds to establish connection; all connection details and statistics are displayed online:

expressvpn-android-2

 

Speed test of the Android application returns very good results which compare favorably to those demonstrated by the Windows client. App for Android – no VPN:

expressvpn-android-speed-openvpn

App for Android – with OpenVPN:

expressvpn-android-speed-openvpn

 

Summary of ExpressVPN Findings

ADVANTAGES

  • Easy and flawless VPN client SW
  • Dedicated applications for Android & iOS, smart setup guidelines for other devices
  • Fast and simple registration
  • Money-back guarantee for one month
  • OpenVPN as the standard option

NEUTRALS

  • Rather expensive
  • Different login codes are required for each device

DISADVANTAGES

  • Negligible

It’s just natural that ExpressVPN is one of the most reliable and popular VPN providers in the market. It cannot be called cheap, but the price/performance ratio is well-balanced, the company offers a wide range of applications and maintains perfect speeds. Money-back guarantee extended for 1 month can be used to test this service first-hand and draw personal conclusions.


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overall rating
3.9


price
features
support
speed
customer service

Features list

Windows
OS X
Linux
Android
iOS
Windows Mobile
Visa/Mastercard
Bank Transfer
Google Checkout
Bitcoin
Paypal
Dedicated IP
Shared IP (Dynamic)
Shared IP (Static)
Total IPs
IPSec
L2TP/IPSec
OpenVPN
PPTP
SmartDNS
SSL
SSTP

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