Atlas VPN Review – Pros & Cons in 2021

7.5/10
Great free version
Last updated: February 24, 2021

Atlas VPN is a fresh free service with good security credentials that has big plans for 2021. We recommend trying it out – new users receive 7 days of Premium for free.

Minimum Price:
$1.39 / month
Apps available:
windows macos android ios
Works with:
windows macos android ios

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Atlas VPN is a newcomer in the VPN industry that has been gaining a lot of positive attention for being one of the cheapest available options right now. Aiming to become the best free alternative, Atlas VPN plans to fuel those ambitions by avoiding ads and living off premium version users while still providing an appealing product to the users who can’t afford the premium version.

If all of this sounds too good to be true then join me in looking through the technology and features that Atlas VPN currently offers. I’ll be looking at connection speeds, privacy and security features, supported platforms, how it holds up against the most well-known streaming services, and much more. Let’s see if this VPN can live up to its name and carry the burden of our high expectations.

Overview

Rank #22 out of 215 providers
Company location United States
Website atlasvpn.com
Number of locations 17
Number of servers 500
Unblocks Netflix Yes
Safe for Torrenting Yes
Encryption AES-256
Protocols IKEv2
Customer Support Email, tickets, FAQ
Logging policy Minimal data collection
Price From $1.39/month
Free version or trial Yes
Smart DNS No

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Speed – Is Atlas VPN fast?

I tested Atlas VPN on my Android phone from Europe. You should expect a significant downloading speed drop-off, but having a fast connection will allow you to stream in HD and download large files anyway.

First, I checked my baseline speeds without a VPN connection.

Atlas VPN baseline speed test

  • Download: 225 Mbps
  • Upload: 151 Mbps
  • Ping: 1 ms

Later, I measured how they changed with the unpaid and premium version of this provider. I used the average from them both.

Netherlands (free)

Atlas VPN free version speed test - Netherlands

  • Download: 36 Mbps (86% drop-off)
  • Upload: 135 Mbps (11% drop-off)
  • Ping: 42 ms

Netherlands (premium)

Atlas VPN premium version speed test - Netherlands

  • Download: 31 Mbps (86% drop-off)
  • Upload: 91 Mbps (40% drop-off)
  • Ping: 39 ms

United States, East Coast (free)

AtlasVPN free version speed test - USA

  • Download: 17 Mbps (92% drop-off)
  • Upload: 105 Mbps (41% drop-off)
  • Ping: 118 ms

United States, East Coast (premium)

Atlas VPN premium version speed test - USA

  • Download: 39 Mbps (83% drop-off)
  • Upload: 89 Mbps (30% drop-off)
  • Ping: 114 ms

Australia, Sydney (premium)

Atlas VPN premium version speed test - Australia

  • Download: 28 Mbps (88% drop-off)
  • Upload: 36 Mbps (76% drop-off)
  • Ping: 340 ms

Connection times are fast, but download speeds are below average with Atlas VPN, leaving you with less than 20% of your bandwidth. Strangely, the distance to the server had almost no impact (except on ping) as I had nearly identical speeds in the Netherlands, the US, and Australia.

I wrote to Atlas VPN customer support and they’ve told me that there are no limits for the free version in terms of speed. And while Premium servers are available to everyone (that’s at least three months more), comparing them will be impossible. It would be easier, though, if Atlas VPN added server load metrics to its app – now I can only guess that the Australian speeds were nearly identical because of the low load.

Besides, it still has a small fleet of 500+ servers in 17+ countries that will definitely grow together with the userbase.

Servers List Atlas VPN

LocationCountries
EuropeNetherlands, Austria, Belgium, Switzerland, Germany, Denmark, Spain, France, Ireland, Italy, Sweden, Norway
The AmericasUSA, Canada, UK
AsiaAustralia, Singapore, India

The unpaid version of Atlas VPN will unlock only two countries for you – the Netherlands and the USA (New York and Los Angeles), while upgrading to the premium version allows you to use all 500+ servers in 18 countries.

Atlas VPN privacy and security test

Security and privacy are some of the most important aspects of a VPN. Thus they should be tested and scrutinized thoroughly before making judgments about how good or bad it is. Let’s take a closer look at how Atlas VPN fares against the competition.

Encryption and tunneling protocols

The Atlas VPN official website and Google Play Store page don’t list the level of encryption. However, after contacting customer support, I found out that it uses AES-256 – the same encryption standard we find in the military and financial institutions. This is practically unbreakable and should make Atlas VPN users feel very safe indeed.

When it comes to tunneling protocols, Atlas VPN offers IKEv2, which is both fast and secure. More options will be coming soon, so OpenVPN fans should receive them eventually.

Kill switch

Atlas VPN has a kill switch for all apps. Fortunately, it’s also available in the unpaid versions of the apps. Alternatively, Android owners can also turn on the native “Always-on VPN” feature.

No IP or DNS leaks

Atlas VPN has no IPv6, DNS, or WebRTC leaks. It’s difficult to say how sophisticated their leak protection it is, but my real location didn’t pop up during any of the tests.

Atlas VPN ISP leak test results with Canada server

I connected to a server in Canada and saw only this country as the assigned IP location wherever I went. DNS servers are also in Canada so everything seems to be in order.

Atlas VPN IPv leak test results

Atlas VPN DNS leak test results

Where is Atlas VPN based?

Atlas VPN is located in the United States and its Terms of Service were written in accordance with the laws of the state of Delaware. The company behind this service is Peakstar Technologies Inc., and it registered the Atlas VPN trademark in October 2019.

In its press release, Atlas VPN states that it aims for “transparent ownership, a clear privacy policy, and adherence to the highest privacy standards.” It remains to be seen if these words are true, but one thing is certain – the US is not the best place for the privacy-minded.

Does Atlas VPN keep logs?

Having a true no-logs policy is not that common among VPNs and finding an unpaid service with one is a tough task. As a result, Atlas VPN stands out from the crowd by doing minimal logging, which is needed to provide the service and comply with applicable laws. The fact that there’s no account creation in the unpaid version speaks volumes.

Atlas VPN Privacy Policy states that the company doesn’t collect any information that could trace internet usage to you. Also, all information is encrypted, making it impossible to know what exactly you are doing while connected. Premium users will only have to share their email, but the payments made via Google Play or Apple Store won’t be anonymous.

Further in the Privacy Policy, it’s stated that Atlas VPN may collect application data, IP address, device data (including approximate location based on the IP), and the device ID for marketing purposes.

So is there anything you can do about the data that’s being collected? Well, California residents may ask for a copy of their data once a year. As for the others, they can write to Atlas VPN support and request an edit or full deletion of their data.

Is Atlas VPN safe?

This provider has a solid foundation for becoming a truly safe to use VPN. It all starts with military-grade encryption, a kill switch, safe protocols, and a strict no-logs policy. However, at this stage of development, Atlas VPN still lacks other security features, such as an ad/scam blocker, a stealth protocol, or multi-hop.

Does Atlas VPN support my device?

Currently, Atlas VPN supports Windows, macOS, Android, and iOS. Also, a browser extension for Chrome is currently under development. I would also expect some more apps in 2021 or at least another extension for Firefox.

Atlas VPN for Android

This provider markets itself as a “free and simple VPN for everyone.” While I’m not sure about the “everyone” part, it cannot be more easy-to-use than it is now. That stems largely from the awesome interface, as well as the low number of features, which is common among the industry’s freshmen and shouldn’t be frowned upon (at least not yet).

atlas vpn server list on android app screenshot

The main menu has four clickable areas – a huge Off & On button, Server list, premium features section indicated with diamond, and settings dashboard. Free version users gain access to servers in the US and the Netherlands, while the Premium version unlocks all countries. It doesn’t take long for Atlas VPN to connect to your desired server.

Atlas VPN Dashboard on Android app screenshot

Clicking on the diamond icon lets you enter your email and check if it’s been hacked. If it was  – you’ll be informed that your password was leaked and how many times. It’s best to change the compromised passwords as soon as possible. It’s a good practice to check your and your family’s emails on a regular basis with this tool. However, this service is reserved for Premium clients only.

The Settings dashboard is where support, FAQ, payment, and security options are located. There’s however only one option to tweak it  – SafeBrowse. Turned off by default, this still-in-development feature protects you from entering malicious websites by using special DNS servers that don’t resolve malware-containing addresses. In the future, the Atlas VPN team plans to add a blocker for trackers and ads.

Atlas VPN for iOS

The recently released iOS version has few differences from the Android one. The apps are virtually the same, but on the iOS version’s icons are somewhat slicker.

atlas vpn iOS app screenshot

All the clickable areas are identical to the Android version but have more rounded icons. Plus, the diamond marking premium feature on the iOS version is called Assistant. This too works the same way and lets you check if your accounts were hacked.

The only thing that’s exclusive to iOS is under the settings dashboard. Once you click security options you’re able to toggle Improve me.

Atlas VPN improve me security option

Since the iOS version was released recently, the developers are still gathering data on what works and what doesn’t with this app.

Atlas VPN for Desktop: Windows and Mac

The most recent addition to the Atlas suite of apps visually is very similar to the Android and iOS interfaces.

Atlas VPN Free Desktop Version

Feature-wise, Atlas on the desktop feels like an Android app adaptation. It delivers only if you’re fine with the bare minimum of what an on the house VPN service can provide. This isn’t that evident on mobile, but on desktop, it pales in comparison to the market leaders. Mind you, some of them have superb unpaid versions.

I’m aware that this is a fresh release, and the development team is working hard to port the apps to make them available on desktop platforms as well. At least they finally added the kill-switch feature on desktop. There is also no difference between the Windows and Mac versions.

Atlas VPN for Netflix

Glancing at the non-premium versions of the app I couldn’t help but notice that under the three available servers there is no “Optimized for streaming” caption, while all the premium servers have it. This leads me to conclude that we shouldn’t expect the unpaid version of the app to unlock geo-restrictions of Netflix and other streaming services. I tested the theory and it was correct.

Surely that means that at least the premium version works with Netflix, right? I tested that theory once again and it was also true – I was able to unblock geo-restrictions of Netflix, including Netflix US, UK, and CA (in the screenshot below I’m connected to a Canadian server through Atlas VPN and watching Doctor Strange – a Canada exclusive at the time of writing this review).

Atlas VPN unblocks Netflix with Canada server

To sum up, using Atlas VPN for streaming is not a bad idea, especially if you’re on a budget.

Does Atlas VPN support torrenting?

Yes, you can download torrents using Atlas VPN. At the moment, there aren’t many countries and servers to connect to, so you shouldn’t expect fast speeds. Also, Atlas VPN doesn’t offer a SOCKS5 proxy or port forwarding, so it’s probably not the best for your P2P activities. With that said, for a complimentary service, Atlas VPN is a great proposition if you want to torrent anonymously.

Support: Atlas VPN’s FAQ and ticketing system

At the moment, Atlas VPN has only a few customer support options:

  • FAQ
  • 24/7 Email
  • Submitting a ticket

The FAQ can be found on the Atlas VPN website and also in your app. It covers some basics but is far from being named helpful. In fact, it acts more like an introduction to the new provider that still holds the majority of its tricks in its proverbial sleeve.

It should be noted that the FAQ page is still pretty barren and doesn’t even provide an easy way back to the home page. And on mobile, the “support” option doesn’t really do much, merely tells you your device and app information, but finding the necessary email address for submitting your issue is up to you.

Regardless, I submitted an email to test the support. Although it took some time to receive a response, the agents were clear and informative. Still, Atlas VPN has been in the market for a while now and I’m expecting to see better customer support options like 24/7 live chat sooner rather than later.

Pricing: Premium and free plans

Atlas Premium has three subscription options:

  • Monthly plan for $9.99
  • 1-year plan for $2.49/month
  • 3-year plan for $1.39/month

 

Atlas VPN plans and prices

All plans come with a 30-day money-back guarantee and unlimited simultaneous connections.

With Premium, you also gain more locations, better connection speeds, 24/7 customer support, UHD streaming, and no ads.

Keep in mind that you can also try out Atlas Premium without spending any money. Your trial period may vary between 3 to 7 days – depending on what promotion you come across. You can extend your trial even further with the new referral program – convince your friends to register using your link and you will receive 7 extra days of premium for your account.

Finally, you can simply download the app for free by going to their website and choosing your prefered platform. You don’t even need an account to try it out. However, you will be limited in terms of servers to choose from.

Should you get Atlas VPN?

Atlas VPN is definitely worth a shot if you are looking for a new and fresh VPN to try out. First off, the unpaid version allows you to try out the speed of Atlas servers without any commitments and the premium version has a decent price too. Secondly, it has the basic features to be considered secure enough, yet there is definitely room for improvement in terms of server coverage, extra features, and customer support.

The best is yet to come for this provider if you’re an Android or iOS user. If you’re not, at this point in time, their desktop version is something that you should skip.

Is there something that you feel is missing from Atlas VPN? Share your opinion by leaving a comment.

FAQ

Is Atlas VPN safe?

Yes, Atlas VPN is safe because they have a strict no-logs policy and military-grade encryption.

Does Atlas VPN work with Netflix?

The unpaid version of Atlas VPN does not work with Netflix while the premium version does work.

Is Atlas VPN free?

Atlas VPN can be used without a subscription for an unlimited time. However, they do have a paid version as well.

How do I use/install Atlas VPN?

First, you have to sign up for an account. Then you have to download and install the VPN on your device. Once installed, simply log in and connect to any of the available countries.

Good

  • Free
  • Good security
  • 24/7 email support
  • Unblocks Netflix US
  • Allows torrenting

Bad

  • Few countries
  • Apps lack features
 7.5 / 10
Total score
$1.39 / month
Minimum Price
6 comments
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  1. Manny

    i don’t see where the free download is


    1. Karol Wojcik

      Hey, Manny. Simply look for “VPN apps” in the navigation menu on AtlasVPN to see the available options.


  2. Ronan

    It does not say where to download it for the free trial, I want to try this out and see if its fit for me


    1. Karol Wojcik

      Hey Ronan, after pressing this link: AtlastVPN you will be able to find download options for different devices.


  3. Armando

    thanks for the review, Karol, I’ve been searching for a free VPN service since I use it occasionally and don’t see a point in paying for a subscription. So far Atlas VPN has been working great, it’s fast and there were no data leakage. But, it doesn’t seem to have a killswitch, is it really safe for torrenting?


    1. Karol Wojcik

      Hey Armando, thanks for stopping by! You are right – torrenting without a kill switch is not safe. However, Android has its native Always-on VPN switch that you can use. Of course, it would be great if Atlas VPN added a kill switch of its own.

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Atlas VPN review
Atlas VPN
7.5 / 10
Apps available:
windows macos android ios
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