Everywhere you look these days, you’ll see advertisements for different VPN providers, today, I’m here to answer a few simple questions in regards to one provider in particular. I’ll be taking a look at the service offered by NordVPN, but first, we’ll talk over what a VPN is and why you may want or need one. Of course, VPNs aren’t a new service, however, they are FAR more accessible now than they ever were in the past, so, let’s get straight into it!
What IS a VPN and WHY would I want one?
Right then, lesson time! A VPN or Virtual Private Network is a form of software that will help to secure your connection between your phone or pc and the internet. They do this by encrypting your traffic, they will hide your IP address and work to protect your privacy and security when browsing the web.
They do this by creating a ‘Tunnel Protocol’ which acts as a, well, tunnel for your data to pass through, this is done to create a layer of security that will detect any intrusions and then immediately disconnect you, before reconnecting you to a secure server. This isn’t the only security feature however, your data while passing through this tunnel will also be encrypted to help make sure your details don’t become public. Another awesome way they can help to make your data secure is to use multiple routes for the data to travel, which is a great way of helping throw off would-be data thieves.
That’s the basics of WHAT a VPN is and how it helps keep your data secure, but WHY would you want one? Well, there are a few reasons, most of which are security reasons. Of course, encrypting your data is one reason, keeping all your personal information secure is important for obvious reasons, you can hide your IP address from websites you visit which is a surefire way to prevent data tracking. Using a VPN will also make it so when you’re connected to public WiFi, at a Starbucks for example, your data is about as secure as you’re going to get it, keeping those prying fingers off your valuable information.
If you’re not worried about security, however, is there any reason to ACTUALLY buy a VPN? Well, yeah, there are a few pretty good reasons. If you, uh, stream or download things through, you know, questionably legal sources, using a VPN will hide your information the same way I mentioned above, protecting you from potentially getting a slap on the wrist, or worse, from the powers that be, of course we don’t condone these actions but we know people still do this.
Not only that if you use LEGIT streaming services such as Netflix, but you can also use a VPN to access geographically restricted content. Have you completed Netflix in your local region during the pandemic? Understandably so! For a small fee, you can use a VPN and connect yourself to a different region and work your way through THAT catalogue too!
How is NordVPN and is it worth it?
So, when all that is said and done, a few questions remain, is NordVPN any good, would I recommend it? Is it good value for money? We’ll get to the money part later, first, we’ll break down their service.
NordVPN has an app for your every need, pretty much. You can get NordVPN for Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, iOS, AndroidTV (also Fire TV), Google Chrome/Firefox via browser extension, and breath. So they have all bases covered, using the service is incredibly simple, you download the app for your selected platform, you log in, and then you… Click on a server. Um, yeah, that’s it. It’s seriously that simple, within a matter of seconds I can trick Netflix into thinking I’m residing on US soil, or I can hide my data while I’m piling on the pounds in McDonald’s car park. Yes, I’m an animal, yes I need to exercise, but at least I’m safe while browsing the net okay?
The apps are all very user friendly, it saves your recent servers for ease of access, they’re all very clean to look at and they’re super low on resource usage. I have Nord installed on my PC, Google Chrome for when I’m on my Chromebook via my accounts browser extensions, I have it installed on BOTH my FireTV devices and my Google Pixel 4XL and every single device is super easy to use.
If I had ANY issues it would be with the FireTV app, it can be a little slow to navigate the app itself but, I’d put that down to the nature of the device more than the app, however, maybe they could put a little bit more work into making it a little more intuitive for these devices.
Now, even if it was a clean app that was super easy to use, it would all be for nothing if the service didn’t work right? Well that isn’t a problem, rest assured, the service works perfectly. Well that wraps that question up.
Would I recommend this service and is it good value for money? I’m going to answer both of these together. As personally, I can’t recommend something unless it’s of good value, especially in this day and age, as my parents constantly reminded me and, I um, remind my own kids (what have I become?!) money doesn’t grow on trees, you know?
So, price first. I’m gonna begin this by saying if you plan on doing this, PLEASE don’t subscribe on a month by month basis, yes it may be cheaper initially but as with all these VPN services, you save much more by purchasing a year at a time or even longer packages, which, if you’re planning on using it a lot is a no brainer.
IF you sign up for the 1-month plan, NordVPN is going to set you back £8.84 a month, they state you save 0% by signing up for this plan. On the surface, it doesn’t really look that bad and yeah the service will probably pay for itself if it helps you avoid your data being breached or if it helps you binge-watch a load more Netflix shows, but, here’s the kicker.
IF you sign up for a 1 year plan, right now on their website (February 11th, 2021) you can sign up for a year for £43.66 *for the first year, £106.08 a year after that* meaning you’re only paying £3.64 a month for that period, saving 58%.
BETTER YET, if you plan on using it for this long at least, you can sign up for a 2-year plan right now on their website for £65.86 *for the first 2 years £212.16 every 2 years after that* which works out at £2.74 a month saving 69% (nice).
So, for 2 years at £65.86 or £2.74 a month, I honestly think this is a no brainer, you’re going to protect your data and also open up the world wide web (been a while since you heard it called that huh?) for yourself. You know when you scroll down Twitter and see a football highlight or a video from the UFC Twitter account but you can’t watch that video in your region? Yeah, this fixes that.
It is GREAT. So back to the question, do I recommend it and is it a good value for money? YES and YES. This is a solid service that is super easy to use, especially if you’ve never ventured into this sort of thing before that is honestly priced really well. Also, if you think those prices above were already pretty good, you can actually get a little more value out of it, they offer a 30-day risk-free trial AND if you watch any content creators who are sponsored by them, you can also get a month, sometimes 2, free through their sponsor links, you’re also helping out the content creators that way too!
NordVPN overall thoughts
There you have it, my review and run down of NordVPN as a service, honestly I think I’d give this service a solid 10/10, it does exactly what it says on the tin, it is very straightforward to the point where I’d even trust my dad to figure it out and honestly, I found no faults with it. Great service. As always if you want to reach out and get involved we’d love to hear your thoughts, you can leave comments below or you can reach out to me directly on Twitter @Stubat_ where you can see my senile ramblings about anything and everything. Take care of yourselves and your data folks!