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The IPVanish vs Windscribe match is not exactly the most balanced fight you’ll ever see. Sure, both VPN services come with attractive security features and many “best of” nominations, but the real situation becomes apparent after digging a bit deeper.
The first thing you will notice about Windscribe is blazing-fast speeds. Does IPVanish have any means to offer anything similar? That will be the first thing you’ll find out.
Additionally, I’ll evaluate the privacy, compatibility, torrenting, streaming, customer service, and prices. At the end of the article, I’ll list the winners in each category, unless there’s a tie.
With a balance so heavily tilted in favor of Windscribe, can IPVanish offer anything significant to stay in the race? Let’s find out by making an in-depth comparison below.
|“Best for” nominee||Best overall, Best for Kodi, Best for Amazon Fire Stick, Best for Mac, Best for Linux, Best for the USA||Fastest VPN, Best free VPN, Best VPN for Mac, Best for the UK|
|Price starts from||$4.04/month||$1.00/month|
|Review||IPVanish review||Windscribe review|
Speed and servers
While having a large server fleet is usually an advantage, that doesn’t automatically translate to blazing-fast speeds. In fact, some VPNs with a few hundreds of servers are successfully competing with the “big boys” that manage a list ten times the size. To put it short, quality (almost) always wins over quantity.
IPVanish vs Windscribe VPN: 14-Day Speed Average
|Download Speed||57 Mbps||731 Mbps|
|Upload Speed||96 Mbps||246 Mbps|
|Download Speed||126 Mbps||671 Mbps|
|Upload Speed||360 Mbps||336 Mbps|
|Download Speed||69 Mbps||919 Mbps|
|Upload Speed||115 Mbps||423 Mbps|
You can see Windscribe winning in the performance category big time. In fact, it’s one of the fastest VPN services currently on the market. So why is its opponent so slow?
The answer is very simple – IPVanish doesn’t have WireGuard protocol. As our speed test clearly shows, all VPNs with this next-gen protocol are way above the rest that still sticks to OpenVPN or IKEv2.
|Owns all servers||Yes||No|
|P2P servers||All||Not all|
IPVanish manages to score some points in the server department. To start with, its fleet is three times bigger and is spread in more countries. What’s more, IPVanish owns all of its servers, which means there’s less of a chance that someone tampers with them.
Finally, Windscribe doesn’t allow torrenting on servers in South Africa, Russia, India, and Lithuania. However, this shouldn’t cause much concern because the speeds should be good enough even when connecting to a country on another continent.
|Money-back guarantee||30 days||30 days|
Windscribe is cheaper than IPVanish. Besides, it also has a great free version – the only that can unblock Netflix. There’s also a one-day free trial to see its full capabilities.
IPVanish has an iOS-only 7-day free trial, but this means a “no” for the majority of users, especially those who want to test torrenting and streaming properly before entering payment details. Well, at least the money-back guarantee is long enough.
There’s also an option to buy IPVanish together with 500 GB of cloud storage. However, this can be tricky should you decide to switch to another provider.
|Protocols||OpenVPN, IKEv2, L2TP/IPSec, SSTP, PPTP||WireGuard, OpenVPN, IKEv2|
|IP and DNS leaks||No||No|
|Security features||Split tunneling, Stealth VPN, SOCKS5 proxy||Ad & malware blocker, split tunneling, Stealth VPN, SOCKS5 proxy, Shadowsocks, HNS, port forwarding, Double Hop|
Once again, the table shows who’s the winner of this battle. Windscribe has more security features and also boasts the next-gen WireGuard tunneling protocol. In the meantime, IPVanish still offers outdated L2TP/IPSec and PPTP options.
A few words need to be said about the split tunneling feature. Both services allow it on Android only, which is not that much of a feature in the end. In the case of IPVanish, this leaves it with two security features instead of three.
|Logging||No-logs policy||No identifying logs|
|Anonymous payment||No||Cryptocurrencies, gift cards|
Lastly, Windscribe scores some points for offering a bunch of anonymous payment options. This (and a throwaway email for account creation) is probably your best bet to stay private online.
Apps and ease of use
|Other apps||Fire TV & Fire Stick, Android TV||Amazon Fire TV, Kodi, Nvidia Shield|
|Browser extensions||N/A||Chrome, Firefox, Opera, Edge|
|Manual setup||Routers, firewalls, NAS||Routers, NAS|
IPVanish and Windscribe offer great compatibility and ease of use. Each has apps for major platforms and then some. For some users, an Android TV client might be important, while others would be happy taking the Kodi app instead.
One disadvantage of IPVanish is the lack of browser extensions. This especially becomes visible because Windscribe offers add-ons even for Opera and Edge. On the other hand, many VPN users are perfectly fine with just desktop and mobile apps.
Windscribe allows unlimited devices, which is a great advantage. But come to think of it, would you need more than ten connections at once? After all, many household devices can be protected by configuring a VPN on a router.
Netflix and other streaming platforms
|Other Netflix libraries||No||Yes|
IPVanish will get you Netflix US, and that’s about it. Even then, you’d have to turn on traffic scrambling. Therefore, even having Smart DNS wouldn’t do much.
In the meantime, Windscribe is a pretty good option for streaming. Multiple Netflix libraries will let you choose virtually any movie or TV show that you like. And because Windscribe doesn’t encrypt streaming traffic, the speeds should be more than enough, even for 4K quality.
Torrenting and P2P
|Allowed on||All servers||Not all servers|
|Free SOCKS5 proxy||Yes||Yes|
|Split tunneling||Yes (Android)||Yes (Android)|
Windscribe is a much better option for torrenting because of its speed. The difference between WireGuard and any other protocol is simply too great to ignore. And IPVanish doesn’t have anything that would make it worth considering.
For the sake of clarity, I must point out that Windscribe doesn’t offer port forwarding by default. Unfortunately, you will need to get a static IP first. Therefore if being able to seed is important to you, you may want to check our best VPNs for torrenting – there are more than a few that include this feature in the main package.
Customer support and pricing
IPVanish holds the edge over Windscribe because of its 24/7 live chat. No matter how fast you reply to emails or how extensive is your knowledgebase – there’s simply no way to beat a live chat, especially if it’s available round the clock.
At least Windscribe tries its best to offer some alternatives like Garry the chatbot or its own subreddit. The latter might be even faster than submitting a ticket.
When it comes to knowledgebases, both providers would benefit from hiring an experienced UI/UX designer. Having said that, there are many VPNs with far worse support pages. After a bit of digging, you should be able to find answers to most of your inquiries.
Winners by category
|Speed and servers||Loses❌||Wins✔️|
|Apps and ease of use||Loses❌||Wins✔️|
|Total wins||1 out of 8||6 out of 8|
Our verdict: IPVanish or Windscribe?
Windscribe easily wins this comparison. IPVanish thought there was nothing to lose and lost almost everything while also breaking even in one category.
The biggest advantage that Windscribe has is speed. When it’s multiple times better, you almost automatically win the contest, unless there are some glaring privacy or security issues. However, IPVanish loses these two categories as well.
Choosing Windscribe over IPVanish for P2P is also a good idea. If only the latter offered split tunneling on all devices or port forwarding, the loss wouldn’t be as debilitating as it is now.
Streaming is another category where IPVanish lags behind, offering Netflix US only. In the meantime, Windscribe will give you multiple libraries. Heck, you might get lucky with other streaming platforms as well.
The biggest win for IPVanish is customer support. It has friendly and responsive 24/7 live chat. In the meantime, Windscribe has no live chat at all, and this might be a deal-breaker for some of you.
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Jan is a cybersecurity and consumer protection specialist focused on investigations that help readers navigate the complex infosecurity sphere. His research and commentary has been featured in Forbes, ComputerWeekly, PC Mag, TechRadar, ZDNet, The Mirror, Entrepreneur, and many other leading publications around the world.