If you’re reading this article, you may already know what benefits a virtual private network (VPN) brings. From enhanced security and anonymity to removing geo-blocking obstacles, VPN services have become the tool to use not only in ...
Number of servers: No. of servers: 322
Price from: $8.33
#3 out of 61 VPN providersRead our Full Opinion
Military grade encryption
Wide range of protocols
Excellent & easy to use client
Good speeds for streaming & torrenting
Works in China
What others say about Astrill VPN:
“ Overall, Astrill VPN offers a great VPN service. Like our top VPNs, NordVPN and ExpressVPN, Astrill offers good protocols and encryption with various servers in tons of locations. “
“ Astrill is a reasonably priced VPN for Windows systems with strong encryption. Not so great for Android users. “
“ It has a rather large server network, offers excellent speeds and performance, boasts great compatibility, allows up to 5 concurrent connections per account, provides unlimited bandwidth and server switching, and protects you from WebRTC and DNS leaks. “
“ Astrill is a great example of a VPN that prioritizes privacy without compromising on performance. It’s not the cheapest option on the current market but offers a premium experience compared to most other providers. “
What is Astrill VPN
Started in 2009 in Seychelles, Astrill focused mostly on travelers and expats in need of a VPN service. It quickly entered the US and European markets, later establishing itself as one of the major players in China as well. Today, Astrill VPN continues to successfully compete on the global level, acknowledged and covered by well-known tech media brands, such as LifeHacker, Techradar, and C|net. The company positions itself as the number one VPN service – a shining star in VPN sky.
Where Astrill VPN really shines is the speed. It may not give you the biggest number of servers where Netflix is still unblocked, but it will make sure you have the best possible speed, which will be more than any competitor can offer and enough to stream HD or even UltraHD content.
Astrill claims their product is torrent-friendly – most of their servers allow P2P traffic while many competitors either have special servers for P2P or do not allow torrenting at all. One thing that separates Astrill from the rest is they sell pre-configured, ready-to-use routers, allowing users to share a VPN connection across all devices hassle-free.
So how come Astrill VPN gets good yet not great review scores? For starters, they have the prices of a true Number One, while in fact that’s far from true – some of the very best VPNs cost less and you will not find Astrill on the top of the list, even if you look on the same LifeHacker or Techradar. Also, Astrill VPN only has 300+ servers, while the top dogs multiply this number by ten or even more. Finally, they offer only 7-day trial.
Astrill VPN Facts
Where Astrill VPN is based and why it is important
Astrill VPN is based in Seychelles, an archipelago of islands far away from the 5, 9, and even 14-eyes countries and their invasive data regulations. Seychelles gained their independence from the UK (a 5-eyes country) in 1976, it means that Astrill VPN isn’t subject to their data retention laws or agreements to share intelligence internationally. Seychelles do not require companies to store or report any customer data or personally identifiable information, making this a logical destination for any cybersecurity business.
Of course, we must mention that overall, Seychelles is not known for a free internet, free communications, or free speech – a thing that reviews fail to mention most of the time. The media is censored to avoid government critique. Therefore, Seychelles residents themselves are in need of a VPN to use the internet without governmental restrictions. This is most important for opposition activists, who have claimed that they were unable to access their party websites. Some even reported monitored emails and chat rooms, which is hard to prove, yet sounds troubling.
What does a Astrill VPN location say?
Not a global surveillance alliance member
No data retention laws for VPN services
Freedom of speech is an issue
De jure democracy, de facto one-party state
No strict copyright infringement laws and cases against torrent users
Available plans and pricing
The best thing to do before choosing a plan is to try out the 7-day free trial to see if there are enough features for you and if the speed is good enough for streaming and/or torrenting. Buying Astrill VPN for the short-term is not worth it – so if you really like it, take the 1 year plan and save as much as you can.
Also, you should be aware that after using the trial, you will no longer be eligible for the 7-day refund window in the future. You would get a refund only if a serious malfunction prevented you from using the service for an extended period of time. As we got used to the “no questions asked” guarantees, we found this Astrill offer rather stingy.
The pricing plans of Astrill VPN haven’t changed since 2017, and while most competitors tend to price up, you would expect the prices of this VPN to go down.
Astrill VPN uses a pricing model similar to their competitors – the longer the contract, the less you pay. The cheapest package is $8.33/month if you pay a year. Taking a monthly option is very costly – $15.90/month. This is more expensive than ExpressVPN’s or NordVPN’s, which are considered the top products and worth every penny they charge.
You can pay even more for various extras. +$10/month gives you a VIP-server service that increases speed – something important for gamers and those connecting from distant locations with poor internet quality. What is more, it also gives you Multi-Hop VPN to take you from anonymous to uber-anonymous.
Starting from $50, you can get a pre-configured router allowing you to connect more devices. This might be interesting for less technical users, while those who already have a DD-WRT, Tomato, or ASUS Merlin device can download the Astrill app and go full DIY.
There’s also a Business plan with a yearly subscription where the price changes according to the number of accounts. For 20 accounts or less you pay $5.25 per account per month. The maximum of 200 accounts means you will be charged $4.62 per account per month.
Every Business plan comes with the aforementioned VIP-server package, offering 100 GB traffic per month for free along with that Multi-Hop VPN. You can buy an extra 100 GB for $10, up to 1000 GB. Just have in mind when taking these, that the obligation will remain until the end of your Business plan.
Private static IP’s cost $5/month. On selected servers all ports can be forwarded to your device connected to the Private IP over OpenVPN, StealthVPN, L2TP, PPTP and SSTP protocols.
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Platforms Astrill VPN supports
Astrill VPN offers apps for all main platforms, including Linux and routers. They also made sure that compatibility would not be an issue for users, therefore, they even offer pre-configured VPN routers.
An important note for Apple Store buyers: purchases made here allow you to use them only on one device, while buying from the official website will allow 5 simultaneous connections. We think this is a solid argument against buying from the Apple Store.
Devices that lack native apps, such as Amazon Kindle Fire, can be configured using the user-friendly, step-by-step guides. Astrill VPN also works with game consoles and streaming devices.
Unfortunately, there are no browser extensions while the competitors frequently offer at least one for Chrome, Firefox, or Safari.
We must warn you that the Android version lacks a DNS leak protection, meaning you should probably not be using it, especially since the OpenWeb protection level is also lower than the OpenVPN used in Windows version. If you still decide to try it, make sure that at least your Android is set to keep the VPN always on to avoid being exposed due to the lack of kill switch.
Using Astrill VPN: streaming, torrenting, and China
Astrill VPN for streaming
Netflix and streaming in general are some the major reasons people use VPNs nowadays. Astrill VPN doesn’t give you any guarantees about the streaming quality, but our tests have shown that most servers will allow you to get past the blocking. The speed was also good enough, but we emphasize the need for every user to test it for themselves.
BBC iPlayer, Hulu, and HBO also worked just fine.
Astrill VPN for torrenting
Astrill VPN didn’t let us down when we turned to the torrenting test. When selecting the server, there’s an option to choose a P2P VPN server which will deliver better speeds compared to the regular ones. Port-forwarding is also allowed, though this is ill-advised from the security perspective.
Talking about downloading speeds, Astrill offers very good connectivity, often surpassing its competitors. And with an extra $10/month, you can use a VIP server that increases the speed even more, no matter your location.
Astrill doesn’t limit your bandwidth and also makes sure you leave no digital footprints while using torrent service. Your IP will be masked completely and the kill switch will disconnect the internet in case of a potential leak.
Astrill VPN in China
AstrillVPN has a history of being one of the more popular VPNs in China and other high-censorship countries, and rightfully so. As you may know, China uses Deep Packet Inspection to block some VPN traffic. Astrill VPN has the StealthVPN protocol that allows to bypass this.
Sadly, if you’re located in China, you will not be offered a free trial, meaning you will have to buy it without first checking whether it works.
Astrill VPN history
The birth of Astrill
Astrill was founded back in 2009 as a response to the increasing demand for personal VPN services by home users and travelers. They registered in Seychelles and focused mostly towards travelers and expats, who use Astrill VPN service for encrypted and unrestricted Internet access at any time and place.
New markets in the US and Europe are added.
Astrill establishes itself in China
Astrill VPN becomes one of the most popular VPNs in China
The number of servers doubles
When compared to 2014, Astrill VPN now has twice more servers.
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