IPVanish and Private Internet Access are both Top 10 VPNs with valid arguments for and against them. We see them as fairly equal overall, but by no means similar. Here’s how they stack up.
Security & Anonymity
On the face of it, the security credentials of IPVanish and PIA are comparable. Both have strong encryption and offer the OpenVPN security protocol, both are registered in the United States of America, which is not the biggest friend of privacy on the world stage. IPVanish and PIA both claim to keep no logs and both have been tested in court. This is where we see the main difference between these two VPNs. Information from IPVanish was instrumental in convicting a person in the US, whereas information from PIA was useless to law enforcement.
Trust is an important factor when evaluating security. There’s no way of knowing what goes on in these VPN datacenters, therefore, situations like these are extremely important. Private Internet Access is the more secure product.
Speed & Performance
IPVanish is better positioned for speed than PIA. Even though they have fewer servers (1,000+ compared to 3,000+), they are spread out over more of the globe (60+ countries compared to 30+ countries). This means IPVanish is more likely to offer a similar level of performance in various locations. Additionally, IPVanish own and manage all of their servers, allowing them to optimize and achieve more with less. As a result, IPVanish is one of the fastest VPNs on the market and PIA is average at best.
Ease of Use
The apps of these two VPNs are very different. Both are simple to use, although IPVanish does a better job of explaining their Settings. There’s also more to choose from, thus we can say that IPVanish gives the user more power.
In terms of support, the winner is a lot more clear-cut. IPVanish has a live chat function, while PIA does not. There’s also a lot of anecdotal evidence suggesting PIA support is unresponsive and prone to giving standardized answers.
It’s 1-1 in the IPVanish vs PIA fight.
Torrenting and P2P
IPVanish and Private Internet Access are both fine choices for torrenting. You’ll get more speed with the former, but we would feel more secure with the latter.
As such, we favor PIA for torrenting.
Netflix and China
These are areas where neither tool is any good. Netflix has blocked all their US servers, so you’ll have to keep on looking.
As for China, again, both VPNs are more or less equal and neither is great. It’s a race against the government for VPN providers in China. There are many different methods the Chinese government uses to make life difficult. They block server IPs, they DNS block keywords, they use DPI to kill certain types of encrypted traffic, and so on. Both IPVanish and Private Internet Access have had problems and both will work sporadically. No one wins this IPVanish vs PIA round!
IPVanish and PIA have custom apps for all the main platforms (Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, Linux), but IPVanish additionally has a Router client, as well as a Windows Phone app, a Chromebook app, and a Fire TV app. That gives it the edge in this area.
Private Internet Access is one of the cheapest VPNs on the market – there’s no competition here. You can get PIA for 1 month ($6.95), 12 months ($3.33 a month billed every 12 months), or 24 months ($2.91 billed every 24 months). IPVanish is a lot more expensive: 1 month ($10.00), 3 months ($8.99 a month billed every 3 months), or 12 months ($6.49 billed every 12 months).
IPVanish vs PIA – which is better?
The IPVanish VS Private Internet Access battle comes to an end and we are ready to declare the winner.
Both are valid choices, but here’s our take:
It’s clear that IPVanish is the more polished product. However, we’re more inclined to trust in PIA’s respect for privacy. Also, it’s two times cheaper. If you’re looking for the fastest, safest VPN – there are better choices out there. Finding another decent VPN at PIA’s price may be a lot tougher.
Read our full reviews: