I have personally used many VPN services – be it at home or on the move as it keeps my connection safe and my personal data at bay. But no matter what, there’s always a hiccup that I run into and it gets messy – especially when I am in a country where the service I use and rely on a day-to-day basis isn’t available at all. There are more issues I have been through and it gets messy. So, I switched from my existing VPN to ExpressVPN to see how better they are and to my surprise – I enjoyed using them and here’s why.
What is VPN?
Before we jump into ExpressVPN and the service that they offer – let us give you a brief introduction on what VPN is all about. Virtual Private Network (VPN) is a network that lets users share their data across a public network but with protection and personal space so that people on the public network will not be able to keep track of your data.
ExpressVPN is one of the best, in fact the best VPN out there in the market that lets you enjoy access to the whole wideworld. They emphasize on offering the best security by masking your IP Address and encrypt your network data. That means no one will be able to see or know what you are doing. Another good thing about them is that – you can get ExpressVPN available on all devices. The beauty about ExpressVPN is that it has come to a point where all you have to do is just install the app on every device you own and get it running. In fact, personally – this is the only VPN I have personally come across that has the capability to use on platforms like Windows, Apple, Android, iOS, Linux, Chrome OS, Kindle, Nook and even on routers.
In order to check out some of the features, we used ExpressVPN – both on my personal smartphone – Samsung Galaxy Note8 and my laptop – ASUS Zenbook 13. Do take note that the experience will vary across platforms, but the features will exactly be the same. With that said – let’s dive in.
On Smartphone – Android
In order to setup ExpressVPN on your smartphone, all you must do is download it from the Play Store and as for iOS Users – you can head over to App Store to download it. Once that’s done – the setup is rather straight forward. You will have to login your username, which is your email and password and you are in. There is a pop up if you want to help improve ExpressVPN and its up to you if you want to enroll or not. Getting that aside, your phone should give you a pop up to configure the VPN. Now this will allow you to automatically setup the profile without needing it to be keyed in manually which is the best part. Every smartphone has a way to show if you’re using VPN. In my case, a Key icon will popup on top to show that I am connected. Tap the OK and you are in.
Choosing your Location
ExpressVPN gives you an option to choose various locations – there are two options: Recommended and All Locations. As we know, “Recommended” will give you the best result possible – in terms of both speed and data transfer over a secure network. It’s a lot easier to deal with. In our case, we let the location up to ExpressVPN and went for Singapore – CBD. One tap, and in a matter of seconds – you are now connected, and your VPN is activated.
Under the settings, you still get the option to control it whichever way you like. Starting off with the VPN Protocol – this follows according to the country network you are based in. The second option is Connecting to VPN the moment you start up. This is very handy, especially when you are in a country where using Facebook or other social network can be challenging and the first thing, you’d want your phone to establish is the VPN connection to bypass the restriction. If you are someone who just want to keep your connection safe, well, you can leave it on. Finally, we have the Split Tunneling option.
Sometimes, certain applications are extremely smart in finding out if you’re using a VPN to bypass and this can give you a troublesome experience – a good example will be Netflix App. The moment you try to watch something, it will give you a prompt that you are connected to a VPN and would require you to disable in. This is when Split Tunneling comes in handy. You can create a custom list and allow only selected app to use VPN or not allow selected apps to use VPN. Fantastic feature, in my opinion.
The app consists of other features – such as App and Website Shortcuts, Help Improve ExpressVPN and Language – basic features. For a VPN app this is possibly the most streamlined, cut-to-the-chase app I have ever used. More on that later.
On Laptop – Windows
In order to make VPN work on your Windows Machine, in our case – our ASUS Zenbook 13. It’s another extremely simple way of setting up. All you have to do is – head over to ExpressVPN, download the PC Client and install it. Now in this case – you will have to add a Subscription Activation Code which you can find in your account, once you have done that – you can have the option to have the VPN launch on Startup and help improve their service. That’s it. Now you can connect to the VPN: either go for their Recommended options or choose a location you prefer.
Starting off with the interface, ExpressVPN did a fantastic job in making the User Interface on both the platform identical which gives users a sense of familiarity and easier use case. Keeping it clean, clear and concise. Most of the VPNs out there tend to bombard with too many settings which can be overwhelming and as consumer look for something that’s easier to use and get things going – the ExpressVPN is a clear winner in terms of UI and UX.
As a VPN App, setting up on both the devices were straight forward and there was no hiccup at all. As for those who are using it on other platforms may require a bit of tinkering as the experience does vary but on the bright side, their site offers Video Tutorial to show you on how to setup the VPN. Neat.
Let’s talk about the VPN service itself – now on a normal without VPN connection, the speed on both my smartphone and Laptop were as expected – around 20-30Mbps. Now one of the things about VPN in general, as it does use a protected network now, there is a chance of compromising your speed. With ExpressVPN, after connecting – there was a marginal speed difference seen with Speedtest but you can never tell you are on a VPN because the experience – page load time and so on were fast afterall. There aren’t any data cap, and this give you the liberty to use it any way you want.
Field Test: Taiwan
Now to make the test interesting, to put it in a real-life situation – we took it on a spin during our trip to Taiwan for Computex 2019. A fun thing about Taiwan is that the tourist SIM card comes with unlimited data at 4G+/LTE. Another amazing thing about it is that, you get to experience true 4G+ with speeds close to 100Mbps on your mobile – which is crazy good. During our times, we had some services that we had to use – but problem was, we couldn’t as its only available in Malaysia. Thanks to ExpressVPN, we were able to get things done – with good speed and reliable connection.
In today’s world, having a VPN is becoming more and more of a need because keeping our data from prying eyes – is very important. Personally, I have used another VPN service which has a capped data and a lot of restrictions, especially with no wide support across multiple platform – which is a downer. But with ExpressVPN, you are getting a best in class service at an impressive price tag – for $99.95 for a year – with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
We, here at The Adventures of Vesper recommend ExpressVPN to our Readers. Click here to head over to ExpressVPN to get your own subscription.