It’s interesting whenever you come across a VPN service that seems like it might work for you at first. Then, when you download and install it, it quickly becomes clear that this isn’t what you were looking for.
Hopefully, our SkyVPN review will help you avoid a situation like that.
This SkyVPN 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. It wasn’t successful at masking our IP information, it leaked DNS data, it significantly slowed down our connection, and it was just generally a bad experience.
We’ll go over the details in a second, so hopefully our SkyVPN review helps you understand why this VPN probably isn’t right for you, or anybody else.
One of the biggest issues we encountered while connecting with SkyVPN was the impact that it had on connection speed. There were significant slowdowns across the board no matter where we connected from. It’s a shame to have a VPN perform so poorly in this regard, but your results may be more positive, if you give the free trial a shot.
One interesting thing is that the company handles pricing a little differently. They have a couple of paid plans for premium access, but they also allow users to watch videos and perform other activities in exchange for premium traffic. Along with the wide range of payment options, this is almost a silver lining.
SkyVPN has average app coverage, supporting clients for Windows, iOS, Android, and MacOS. It would be nice to see the platform expand into some more devices, but we wouldn’t hold our breath if we were you.
Another unfortunate thing we noticed while researching for our SkyVPN review, is that the app isn’t particularly versatile, being unable to unblock Netflix content or access content from China. The features of the VPN are severely limited, and there aren’t many good points to make up for the bad ones.
Customer support is another area where we found our SkyVPN review could use improvement. There is a FAQ and blog on the website, but they are largely unhelpful and not very comprehensive. The only form of direct support that they offer seems to be through social media such as Facebook and Twitter.
All things aside, one last thing we can note positively for our SkyVPN review is that the client itself was very straightforward and easy to use, even if the functionality ended up being a little bit unimpressive.
Is SkyVPN safe to use?
Since SkyVPN doesn’t feel the need to publish any details about their encryption standards or the protocols they use, it’s impossible to judge off-the-cuff just how secure this VPN actually is.
For the sake of our SkyVPN review, we’ll assume that the lack of details indicates a low standard of encryption. If you’re primarily concerned with safety and security in a VPN, there are a lot of red flags that will keep popping up throughout this review.
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.
Of course, our SkyVPN review wouldn’t be complete without going over some of the legal details involved with this VPN. SkyVPN is based in the US, which is part of the Five Eyes alliance. This means that the US government and law enforcement agencies will potentially share data that they collect with other members of the alliance (such as the UK). There are also a lot of different laws about stuff like torrenting and such in the US, so this jurisdiction is less than optimal.
- 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.
So it would seem that in addition to the extensive security concerns associated with using this service, the company also extensively stores and analyzes your data and access information. While all of this data collection is supposedly necessary to perform regular maintenance and quality assurance, it’s a definite bummer to see such a long list of data entries associated with what the company logs.
Speed and Performance
Speed is a largely subjective number that will change drastically based on your internet service and location. That being said, we can still get a rough idea by judging relative speeds from behind a VPN, as well as examining certain pieces of information such as how many servers a company has in their VPN network, etc.
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:
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:
Unfortunately, there seems to be a huge slowdown here. Even from a nearby server, this shows a huge effect on our connection speed, which isn’t a good sign.
Next up, we tested from a server in the UK:
At least this one showed a slight improvement in download speed. The last one we performed was from Japan:
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.
How to download and install SkyVPN
When you visit SkyVPN’s website, you’ll find a typical website layout with links to pages about pricing, general VPN info, and download links. Click on the download button in the top right corner to open a dialogue box asking you to select your preferred platform.
After making your selection, you will be brought to the download page, where you can download the installer and get started using your piece of software.
The installation is fairly straightforward, and there isn’t any suspicious bundleware or unnecessary elements that you have to be aware of while installing.
After running the client, it will open in a small blue window, pictured above. As you can see, the interface is very simple, with a drop-down menu for controlling your connection location, as well as a big “Connect” button for getting everything started. There are also links to the VIP acquisition screen and some settings available as well.
Apps and Extensions
As we mentioned earlier on in our SkyVPN review, the company has app support for Windows, MacOS, Android, and iOS. This is a fairly standard setup leaning on the limited side of things. It would be nice to see the company expand in the future to encompass a wider range of devices.
It is good for torrenting, Netflix, and China?
For this section of our SkyVPN review, we’re going to go over a few things like whether or not the VPN is useful for unblocking Netflix, torrenting, or accessing content from 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 abovementioned activities.
This is one area where a lot of companies tend to fall short, but that doesn’t make it a good excuse for SkyVPN to do the same.
Unfortunately, this company falls into the common trap of not having a reliable avenue of direct support for its customers. There is a small FAQ and a blog talking about VPN services available through the website, but without a direct line of support, this is kind of a moot point.
SkyVPN is a free VPN solution that offers a variety of ways to earn premium traffic. The easiest and most familiar way, of course, is to simply pay for a subscription, which you can see the details for above.
There is also the option for one-time in-app purchases from the Google or Apple stores, as well as a myriad of ways to earn free traffic by watching advertisements or recommending the app to friends.
The company supports payment through credit card or PayPal, with no anonymous payment options available.
Over the course of our SkyVPN review, we have seen that this client underperforms 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.