Private WiFi has a very small number of servers, but it’s one of the cheapest VPN services out there, with pay-as-you-go payment plans that you don’t usually find – and still, it’ll automatically connect you to the best possible server for you, so that’s a lot of hassle saved.
While it can theoretically unblock Netflix and other streaming sites, it’ll put a huge dent in your connection speeds, which is not great for Netflix or torrenting for that matter.
With apps available on the latest versions of Windows, macOS, iOS and Android, and an easy-to-use interface as well as efficient customer support, could this be an ideal VPN for users looking to protect their everyday data? This is what this Private WiFi review will aim to illustrate.
Is Private WiFi safe to use?
While Private WiFi does encrypt all outgoing and incoming data, the level of protection provided is 128-bit. This is lower than the more common AES-256-bit encryption offered by most top VPNs.
This doesn’t make it unsafe, though, to use Private WiFi, and 128-bit is still the standard protection in major banks and considered unbreakable for the most part. Additionally, the protocol used is OpenVPN, considered a safe and reliable tunneling protocol.
VPNs also often protect the threat of accidental data leaks, the two most notorious being DNS leaks and WebRTC leaks. For the purpose of this Private WiFi review, we ran tests to detect the presence of either and came back with zero threats.
With that said, there’s nothing within the software that seems to indicate protection against these leaks as a feature, which may cause issues in more rigorous tests.
The absence of a kill switch is a big concern. A kill switch is a contingency plan for VPNs, used in case of your connection dropping. The kill switch, in such a situation, immediately makes it such that all sending and receiving of data ceases, thus leaving your “true” identity still obfuscated.
Finally, there’s the issue of Private WiFi coming under US jurisdiction, a place notorious for its data surveillance and other privacy concerns. There are also some reports of connection logs being stored, which presents a potential invasion of privacy.
All-in-all, it isn’t unsafe, but it isn’t much of an elite bodyguard, either.
Speed & performance
In our tests, we found significant drops in speed in most locations, with the exception of the nearest ones to our location.
Arguably, and taking into consideration independent user reviews from gaming forums, it seems that Private WiFi might not be ideal for anything heavy such as downloading or online games, due to the speed.
How to download and install it?
This part is completely straightforward. The software installs in a couple of minutes, activates in a matter of seconds, and can connect automatically on every subsequent startup.
One part to note, however, is that there is no direct download without signing up.
The official website is a fairly minimalistic approach. Some would say too minimalistic, however, as it seems there’s a dearth of technical information and some links are down at the time of writing. However, it’s not distasteful to look at, and the landing page itself summarizes almost all the salient points of the service.
Apps and extensions
Private WiFi is compatible with Windows, macOS, iOS, and Android. Nothing noteworthy there but it covers the essentials.
At the same time, however, there are many other services that provide much more (support for Linux, routers, Amazon Fire TV, et cetera) and this is a negative. There’s also no browser extensions or add-ons.
The user interface is largely the same across these three platforms, which is a plus, as it shows uniformity in thought and design.
Private WiFi for Netflix
Luckily, of the limited range of Private WiFi servers, you get some pretty decent ones in American cities such as Los Angeles, Missouri, New York, and Virginia. If it’s Netflix US you’re hoping to unblock, this is likely.
However, we urge you to try for yourself with the 7-day free trial just to be sure.
There are also just generally more reliable VPNs for Netflix out there, since Netflix is proactive when it comes to banning VPNs and only services that focus on unblocking Netflix put in the effort to get around it.
Private WiFi for torrenting
Private WiFi doesn’t mention torrenting on the site, which is a bad sign. Additionally, we would say the security features and particularly the lack of a kill switch disqualify this VPN from being one of the best torrenting VPNs.
If you are searching for a VPN for torrenting, check out our Best VPN for torrentingg list.
Is it good for use in China?
No, Private WiFi VPN is not good for China.
Firstly, it doesn’t have the necessary features for bypassing the Great Firewall. Secondly, it doesn’t offer the level of security a user in China needs.
Check out our Best VPN for China list
The customer support options offered by Private WiFi are limited. They include:
- A support ticket system
- A Quick Start Guide
With an inbuilt support section on the software, there’s definitely an eye being kept out towards beginner-level users. However, the company is forgoing important things.
For the purpose of this Private WiFi review, we tried to reach out anonymously via email and got a response back in one working day. Not bad, considering that some VPNs take days to respond to a simple query, but the lack of live support is still a thorny problem.
Pricing is the one thing where Privacy WiFi seems to really innovate. With pay-as-you-go plans and a variety of options depending on your data usage, there’s something for everyone’s needs – or so it seems.
The pricing plans are as follows:
- Pay-As-You-Go: 1GB data on any number of devices: $1.99
- Pay-As-You-Go: 10GB data on any number of devices: $7.99
- 1-month plan for 1 device: $2.99
- 1-month plan for multiple devices (up to 3): $9.99
- 1-month plan for multiple devices (up to 5): $12.99
- 1-year plan for 1 device: $29.99 ($2.49/month)
- 1-year plan for multiple devices (up to 3): $79.99 ($6.66/month)
- 1-year plan for multiple devices (up to 5): $99.99 ($8.33/month)
That, dear friends, is a shameless robbery.
Another area where Private WiFi seems to have cut corners is the payment options, with only major credit cards (VISA, MasterCard, Discover, AMEX) and PayPal being accepted.
There’s a free 7-day trial as well, and thankfully, we didn’t need to enter our payment details to get to it, but that’s little consolation.
To end our Private WiFi review, this is a fairly basic VPN with no real extra-special features, except for the pricing. At these prices you could get literally the best VPN service on the market today – so do that instead!