This review is gearing up to be quite eventful, as we found over the course of our research that the VPN wasn’t useful for very much. And we certainly can’t recommend it for anyone at all.
Is SkyVPN safe to use?
SkyVPN is based in the US, which is part of the Five Eyes alliance. This VPN doesn’t offer a lot of details about what features it has. The only thing we know is that it uses “bank-grade encryption,” which is normally 256-bit AES. But here, who knows.
In fact, a lot of the important details one should know about a VPN are unknown here: encryption level, location of company, privacy and security features, etc.
The app itself also does not have any kill switch capability, meaning your connection may reveal your identity and traffic in case of VPN failure. To top it all off, when we tested for leaks, the client proved to be leaking DNS info, and leaving our IP address and such completely visible.
Does SkyVPN keep logs?
This is one area where SkyVPN is pretty clear: no, they do not keep logs:
No, we do not keep any logs of any kind. You’re absolutely private and anonymous while using SkyVPN’s service. We would never collect any details regarding the resources you connect or the data send and/or received over our network.
- Aggregate bandwidth usage
- Temporary usage data for debugging
- Traffic management
- Cookies and related logs involved with the website
- Google analytics information
- Email address and other information if and when you contact customer support.
That’s reassuring. But we couldn’t recommend such a VPN – with no security information available – to even our worst enemy.
Speed and performance
Since SkyVPN has unlimited free usage, we were able to test some of the speeds from a few different locales we were able to connect from. First up for our SkyVPN review is our baseline test:
- Download speed: 26 Mbps
- Upload speed: 3 Mbps
As you can see, it’s nothing special. After booting up SkyVPN, we can see how the client affected our speed when connecting through a nearby server:
- Download speed: 6 Mbps
- Upload speed: 5 Mbps
- Dropoff: 77% (although upload increased by 67%)
- Download speed: 9 Mbps
- Upload speed: 4% Mbps
- Dropoff: 65% (although upload increased by 18%)
- Download speed: 9 Mbps
- Upload speed: 3% Mbps
- Dropoff: 65%
As you can see, even though the local server performed the poorest, the servers in Japan and the UK performed almost the same. Nevertheless, this is an honest-to-goodness slowdown across the board, which doesn’t look good for our SkyVPN review.
Ease of use and multiplatform support
SkyVPN supports the following platforms:
The app is pretty easy to use. There aren’t a lot of options or features to speak of. But all you do is click the big middle Connect button.
You can also choose the country you want to connect to.
It is good for torrenting, Netflix, and China?
Unfortunately, as you can probably imagine, this VPN is not particularly useful for any of these things.
For starters, even though the service has a decent amount of countries to connect from, the client was unable to unblock region-locked content on Netflix. The speeds, as well, were quite unsuitable for streaming.
Torrenting is a possibility, as the company does not explicitly ban torrenting traffic over their services. However, the poor speeds and bad jurisdiction are huge red flags for people who intend to use their VPN services for torrenting content.
The last factor is China, and, as you can imagine, SkyVPN wasn’t able to perform well enough in any category in order to provide reliable privacy for users in China. Especially with the lack of transparency about their encryption standards, it’s difficult to recommend this VPN for any of the above mentioned activities.
SkyVPN has the following support features:
- Live chat (in name only)
- Ticketing system
Unfortunately, the live chat is in name only, and you’ll end up filling out a standard support ticket. The FAQ is as useful as the website in general, giving about the same information, just in different words.
We contacted support when we first encountered a serious problem of the VPN not connecting at all. That was three days ago, and we’re still waiting for an answer.
The pricing structure for the paid version of SkyVPN is pretty straightforward:
- 1 month: $10.99
- 12 months: $4.99/month
- Lifetime: $199.99
It’s pretty expensive for an app that doesn’t really seem to work on desktop. Also, you probably should stay away from lifetime deals.
The interesting part about SkyVPN’s plan is actually the free version. There’s a basic free version that allows you to connect (theoretically) only to US servers. But you can “upgrade” to the Premium free plan and get access to 12 servers by watching video ads…or something.
Over the course of our SkyVPN review, we have seen that this client underperforms in almost every other client on the market by a wide margin. There isn’t really anything they do better than the competition, and there are a lot of red flags vis a vis privacy, logging, connectivity, jurisdiction, etc.
It’s simply too hard to recommend this service to anybody who is serious about privacy or security.