TorGuard vs Private Internet Access in 2021

Ethan Payne
Ethan Payne | Writer
Last updated: April 21, 2021
TorGuard vs Private Internet Access

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Anyone who is a bit more knowledgeable about VPNs will tell you that US-based providers are probably not the best options to choose from. Yet that rarely dissuades people from using these services as long as they have all the necessary anonymity features.

Two such VPN providers are TorGuard and PIA (Private Internet Access). Although based in the USA (a member of the Five Eyes surveillance alliance), they are well known in the industry and have loyal fanbases around the world. They provide a great variety of features for security, anonymity, torrenting, or streaming.

On the surface, these two VPNs seem indistinguishable from each other. But that could not be further from the truth. As they say, the devil is in the details.

So where exactly do they diverge? Let’s have a look at all the relevant aspects of these providers to figure out what makes them so different.

Highlights

TorGuardPIA
Our rating8.1⭐8.9⭐
“Best of” nomineeN/ABest overall, Best for Netflix, Best for USA
Price starts from$4.17/month$2.69/month
ReviewTorGuard reviewPIA review
WebsiteTorGuard.netprivateinternetaccess.com

Speed

The first criteria for this comparison will be connection speed and server coverage. When we talk about speed and fastest VPN providers, first we need to have a look at the number and spread of VPN servers.

When it comes to server coverage, these two providers are in quite different situations. TorGuard boasts 3000+ servers in 50+ countries globally while PIA darts ahead by having almost 36700+ servers in 77+ countries.

This makes PIA the clear winner when it comes to server count and coverage. But what about speed? Both providers have implemented the WireGuard tunneling protocol and so their connection speeds are comparable, which is further reinforced by testing the VPN speeds manually. This makes these two VPNs tied in the speed category.

TorGuard vs Private Internet Access: 14-Day Speed Average

More live data from our VPN Speed Test tool
TorGuard Private Internet Access
USA server
Download Speed 824 Mbps 106 Mbps
Upload Speed 687 Mbps 306 Mbps
UK server
Download Speed 757 Mbps 52 Mbps
Upload Speed 653 Mbps 164 Mbps
Germany server
Download Speed 1,371 Mbps 92 Mbps
Upload Speed 1,336 Mbps 269 Mbps

However, in the table above, the comparison is between TorGuard’s WireGuard speeds and PIA’s OpenVPN speeds. That’s because we have not integrated PIA’s version of WireGuard into our speed comparison tool yet, so the results in the table should be viewed with a grain of salt.

Servers

TorGuardPIA
Servers3000+36700+
Countries50+77+
Physical serversNot allAll
Owns all serversNoNo
RAM-only serversNoNo
P2P serversAllAll

PIA has a larger fleet of servers at its disposal and a greater choice of countries. Another key difference from TorGuard is that all of their servers are physical. Both providers support p2p on all of their servers.

Pricing Comparison

TorGuardPIA
Free versionNoNo
Free trialNoNo
One month$9.99/month$9.95/month
Three months$6.66/monthN/A
Six months$4.99/monthN/A
One year$4.99/month$3.33/month
Two years$4.17/month$2.69/month
Money-back guarantee7 days30 days

Even though TorGuard has more pricing options to choose from, Private Internet Access offers fairer prices overall and a better refund policy.

Of course, if you also consider what features and what level of privacy and security you get for these prices, you may go for the somewhat more expensive choice, i.e., TorGuard.

Both of these VPN solutions offer anonymous payment options, which is vital if you take your privacy seriously.

TorGuard and Private Internet Access video review

Private Internet Access (PIA) VPN review 2021 | Finally, the TRUTH💥
2021-03-03
COMPLETE TorGuard review 2021 | How good is it really??
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Security

TorGuardPIA
EncryptionsMilitary-gradeMilitary-grade
ProtocolsOpenVPN, WireGuard, IKEv2WireGuard, OpenVPN, IKEv2
Kill switchInternet and app-level kill switchInternet kill switch
DNS and IP leaksNo leaksNo leaks
Security FeaturesSplit tunneling (Android), StealthVPN, Ad & malware blocker, SOCKS5 proxy, ShadowsocksSplit tunneling, SOCKS5 proxy, PIA MACE, Shadowsocks, HNS

These two providers are quite similar to each other in the security department. Both offer great features if your priority is torrenting (split tunneling, Shadowsocks, SOCKS5 proxies) as well as ad and malware blockers against other threats.

However, TorGuard has the added benefit of StealthVPN, which adds more versatility to the service. Meanwhile, PIA has their HNS (Handshake naming system), allowing users to use that instead of the regular DNS (Domain name system) for a more decentralized and censorship-free browsing experience.

Privacy

TorGuardPIA
JurisdictionUnited StatesUnited States
LoggingNo-logs policyCourt-proven no-logs policy
Anonymous paymentCryptocurrenciesCryptocurrencies, gift cards

Unfortunately, this is the part where both VPNs break hard as they are operated under US jurisdiction. This is one of the worst imaginable scenarios if you consider that the US is one of the most surveillance-friendly countries in the world. The Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), eager tech and telecommunication companies, the NSA, and other government agencies snooping on your internet communications is not the most ideal environment for a VPN provider.

Another vital point where the TorGuard vs PIA race can be resolved is the question of logs. Fortunately, both VPN solutions claim a strict no-logs policy meaning that they do not record either usage or connection logs. In fact, PIA has already proven their no-logging claims twice. They were asked by law enforcement agents to provide user-identifying logs, but they were unable to give them anything useful, thus solidifying their strict no-logs policy. As a result, PIA has a better track record of securing user privacy.

Compatibility

TorGuardPIA
Major dedicated appsWindows, Mac, Linux, iOS, AndroidWindows, Mac, Linux, iOS, Android
Other dedicated appsFire TV & Fire StickN/A
Browser extensionsChrome, Firefox, EdgeChrome, Firefox, Edge, Opera
Manual setupRouters, Chromebook, Raspberry Pi, NAS, Apple TVRouters
Simultaneous devices810

In the compatibility competition, these two providers are quite similar. But some key differences stand out once we zoom in on the details.

Basically, both of these VPN solutions support the major platforms, including Windows, Mac OS, iOS, Android as well as a few main browsers. Both services can also be used to configure routers and secure your entire network.

But TorGuard comes out ahead when it comes to supporting a few extra devices. For example, it has dedicated apps for Amazon Fire TV and Amazon Fire Stick, while PIA does not. PIA also does not support Chromebook, Raspberry PI, or NAS (Network Access Servers). With a single PIA subscription, you can have more devices connected simultaneously, but that seems redundant when there aren’t that many apps available in the first place.

A VPN is better when it has a lot of use cases. Support for a lot of devices can surely help with that. That’s why TorGuard wins in this category.

Streaming

TorGuardPIA
Netflix USYesYes
Other Netflix librariesNoNetherlands
Other platformsYesNo
Smart DNSNoNo

It’s almost a draw since, surprisingly, both VPNs can bypass the Netflix VPN detection. With that said, you need to keep in mind that this may not always work and not with all the servers. It’s most likely that you’ll only stream Netflix US or a European catalog.

TorGuard offers dedicated streaming IP addresses to purchase, which could provide a more sustainable solution for streaming. That makes it the winner of the Netflix round. Also, TorGuard is a good VPN for Kodi.

Torrenting and P2P

TorGuardPIA
Allowed onAll serversAll servers
Free SOCKS5 proxyYesYes
Split tunnelingAndroid onlyYes
Port forwardingYesYes

Another area where these two services are almost identical is torrenting. Both TorGuard and Private Internet Access can be used for torrenting and other P2P file-sharing. They also provide the necessary safeguards and extra features.

But TorGuard seems to be slow at implementing split tunneling for desktop users. This is a serious hindrance considering that PIA has the feature on desktop already.

China

TorGuardPIA
Works in ChinaYesYes
Stealth VPNYesNo
Tor over VPNNoNo

As for China, both providers have features for dealing with the Great Firewall of China. Private Internet Access has Shadowsocks, a proxy that is commonly used to circumvent Chinese censorship. TorGuard has Stealth VPN, which is meant to mask VPN traffic and make it look like regular HTTPS traffic.

Neither of these VPNs really excel at circumventing such heavy censorship, but they won’t leave you completely in the dark either. As such, they are tied in this category.

Customer Support

TorGuardPIA
24/7NoNo
Live chatYesYes
Phone lineNoNo
EmailYesYes

Another avenue with a lot of similarities is customer support. Both provide live-chat features, neither of which are 24/7 though. They also have extensive knowledge bases with various guides to help you out. Naturally, you can simply use email to inquire about whatever issues might be troubling you.

The key difference might be how helpful the support agents will be once you get in contact. In my experience, both services provided adequate assistance.

TorGuard vs Private Internet Access: Best VPN by category

TorGuardPIA
Speed and serversTieTie
Pricing Loses❌Wins✔️
SecurityLoses❌Wins✔️
PrivacyLoses❌Wins✔️
CompatibilityWins✔️Loses❌
StreamingWins✔️Loses❌
Torrenting Loses❌Wins✔️
ChinaTieTie
Customer supportTieTie
Total wins2 out of 94 out of 9

TorGuard vs PIA – which is better?

When we look at the overall results, it is clear that PIA performs better and provides a higher level of privacy and security. And it’s even a lot more affordable than TorGuard.

However, this doesn’t mean that TorGuard doesn’t have its use cases. Even though it’s more expensive, it has more dedicated apps for other devices and has a better track record of unblocking geo-restricted streaming content. So if your main reason for getting a VPN is streaming, TorGuard is not a bad option. Still, it’s not the best service either.

Which provider is better suited for your needs? Let us know by leaving a comment!

Hopefully, this TorGuard vs Private Internet Access comparison can help you with your decision. However, if you need further information and want to know what else we have uncovered about these VPN services, please check out their full reviews for more details.

Recommended reads:
Torguard vs NordVPN
PIA vs NordVPN

Top VPN providers
NordVPN
9.6 / 10
30-day money-back guarantee
Military grade encryption
Friendly support
Surfshark VPN
9.4 / 10
Strong encryption
Excellent performance
Unlimited simultaneous connections

Disclaimer: Affiliate links help us produce good content. Learn more.

6 comments
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  1. rapunzelhair

    Well, I think to me the clear winner in this case in so clear. I think I would go for TorGuard, although I am not sure if it matches ExpressVPN that I am using. I will definitely keep the points from this article as a reference in future.


  2. Beau Gray

    Security is of the upmost importance for any VPN I use but speed is right up there. After all, if I’m downloading something and my VPN is as slow as dial-up, it’s no good. Thanks for giving people a good idea of both vpn companies’ privacy capabilities and their speed.


  3. Tim Nisham

    After a few hours looking at which one is better between PIA VS Torguard on Reddit and google, my choice will be Torguard because they have a lot of features compared to PIA and since the price is cheaper on %or after 50% off (code: Lifetime50TG). The good thing I like about Tor is their software, extension, and the app is lightweight.

    I never do a review on things like this unless I really like it. I was using other highly rated VPN and compared the speed with Tor, Tor won. Again this can just be my experience and speed may vary depending on your location.


  4. Allen Blair

    The search for the best of these VPN is always very challenging. I will advice that you keep a clear view of what you want in mind. The basics should include security, speed and user friendly


  5. avatar
    Ethan Payne Author

    Well, it all depends on your VPN needs: if absolute privacy and safety are your primary requirements, then using a US-based VPN like TorGuard or PIA can be out of the question. If you’re a casual VPN user though, both will serve you just fine, with TorGuard coming slightly ahead of Private Internet Access.


  6. Thor Magnuson

    To everyone reading this just get a VPN that isn’t under US jurisdiction!! It’s the safest option, a must tbh. But if you have to choose between this two, I would go with Tour Guard all the way. It’s a lot better than PIA.

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