VPNs are becoming a must-have for users looking to browse the web safely and protect their identities, but the sheer number of available options makes it difficult to find the right one. See how NordVPN and ZenMate stack up in this heated VPN comparison!
- Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, Chrome, Linux
- 2,600 servers
- Unlimited bandwidth
- 6 Connections
- Fast connection speed
Netflix, BBC, Amazon, Hulu, NBC, ESPN
Android & iPhone apps
256-bit AES, PPTP, L2TP/IPSec, SSTP, IKEv2, OpenVPN
Chrome and Firefox extensions
- 0-log policy
- Money back: 30 days
- Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, Chrome, Firefox, Opera
- 30 servers in 30+ countries
- Unlimited Bandwidth
- 5 Connections
- Low and unreliable connection speed
Netflix, BBC, Amazon, Hulu streaming
Android & iPhone apps
AES-128 AES, TLS 1.2, IPSec/L2TP
- 0-log policy
- Money back: 30 days
As Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) gain popularity among users all over the world, new options are emerging faster than users can compare them. VPNs are essential to get around pesky and limiting geo-restrictions while offering a safe and anonymous way to browse the web.
Our team of tech experts has decided to find the best provider, and in this VPN service comparison, are looking at NordVPN and ZenMate. These two services are well-known and highly rated, so let’s see what our team uncovered!
How We Compare VPN Services
Finding the right provider requires an in-depth look at several different characteristics. Our experts compare VPNs across features that include performance, streaming capability, pricing, and security options to paint the clearest picture possible of each competitor.
VPNs with more servers offer users a better way to protect their identity and mask their IP address from prying eyes and geo-restrictions. ZenMate has servers in more than 30 countries though they don’t disclose how many exactly. In addition, the company has apps available for Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS, as well as several browsers, and accepts 5 simultaneous connections.
NordVPN easily wins this category with over 2,600 servers around the world, and 6 simultaneous connections. The VPN company also adds service for Linux operating systems which helps it stand out from the pack.
Available Streaming Services. Streaming services on a VPN network grants customers access to geo-restricted content such as movies, TV shows, and music video clips. ZenMate offers access to some services, such as BBC’s iPlayer and Channel 4, and Netflix (though they did have some trouble accessing Netflix at times). NordVPN, on the other hand, can give you access to several channels, including uninterrupted Netflix streaming, providing a better alternative for streaming-oriented users.
Mobile Apps. Both NordVPN and ZenMate provide apps for Android and iOS devices, so you can enjoy the benefits of a secure connection on every device, especially on unsecured public networks.
Protocols. The protocols a company utilizes ultimately determines the speed and security of their connections. ZenMate opts for speed over encryption with an AES-128 bit encryption, using a TLS 1.2 protocol that is optimized for security. NordVPN, on the other hand, uses IPsec and IKEv2, and offers several protocols for user customization.
Money-Back Guarantee. Sometimes a VPN service isn’t a great fit and having a risk-free way to test a provider is important. Both companies offer 30-day money-back guarantees for all their subscriptions, helping users feel more comfortable knowing they can try the services before committing to a long-term subscription.
Kill Switch. Kill switches allow users to instantly shut down their connections if the VPN fails or the connection becomes unsecured, an important feature for individuals deploying VPN’s to combat privacy concerns. We were pleased to see both companies host this feature. But it is important to note that the ZenMate kill switch is only available on their Windows Desktop Client.
Speed. Unlimited bandwidth is important for users who like to stream or download content. Moreover, being able to browse without lag is a vital attribute of a good VPN. Both companies offer unlimited bandwidth, but NordVPN takes an edge thanks to faster browsing speeds across servers, while ZenMate has been known to periodically experience speed issues.
Zero-Log Policy. ZenMate and NordVPN ensure that they will not log your activities while you browse over their secure connections.
Security and Privacy
Security is essential to a VPN, and there are several aspects to consider. Both companies offer robust encryption though ZenMate prefers a slight emphasis on speed. The companies each offer a no-logs policy, so they cannot be forced to share user data with governments. One small concern, however, is that ZenMate is based in Germany, which is subject to EU data laws, while NordVPN is based in user-friendly Panama. Nonetheless, both companies deliver great security features including a kill switch, multiple protocols, and IP masking.
If you ever find yourself in trouble, having an expert available to guide you is crucial. ZenMate does not feature a live support option, though they are prompt to respond to e-forms and offer an extensive FAQ. NordVPN’s staff, on the other hand, can be reached via mail, email, live chat, or an e-form, providing timely and effective support through each channel.
ZenMate offers three payment plans, including $8.99 for 1 month, a 6-month plan for $7.49 a month, or $4.99 a month if you choose a full year subscription. This company has a 30-day money-back guarantee, and a 7-day free trial to test some of their features. ZenMate does offer a free version, but keep in mind that there are limitations in regards to platforms, speed, and server locations.
NordVPN costs $11.95 for a single month, and they offer a 1-year subscription at $5.75 a month, a 2-year plan at $3.29 a month, or a 3-year subscription at $2.75 a month. The company also includes a free 3-day trial and 30-day money-back guarantee.
Sharing the Crown
Even though both brands stood out in some areas, the end result was too close to call. Users who prefer security and customizability, as well as better access to online servers will find NordVPN an excellent alternative. Comparatively, users who place greater emphasis on speed alongside a great way to unlock video and game streaming services, as well as a slightly more affordable price, will enjoy ZenMate’s easy-to-use interface. Check out all our VPNs on our list and let us know if you want to request another VPN comparison!