NordVPN is a time-tested and reliable security solution. However, the VPN industry delivers more and more curious options. Is VPN Unlimited among a handful of services that can beat Nord in terms of security, speed, ease of use, torrenting, as well as access to geo-blocked streaming websites? We compared two providers side-by-side in this NordVPN vs VPN Unlimited comparison and here is what we found out.
Known as the world’s largest VPN, NordVPN delivers 5400+ servers in 59 countries. The company’s goal is a permanent-growth; therefore, you can be sure to see even more servers in its network any time soon.
VPN Unlimited loses this category with only 400 servers available. On the other hand, it covers a larger number of countries – 80.
NordVPN supplies pretty fast speeds, especially if you choose nearby servers. We tested it out with servers in Europe (close to our location) and the USA. We barely noticed any slow-downs when routing our traffic through European locations. Far-away destinations expectedly had a more significant impact on speeds yet we could still use them without facing buffering or lagging.
VPN Unlimited showed similar results. All the nearby servers we hooked up to were on a par with NordVPN. Remote connections were slower and less consistent. We came across a server that gave us only 6 Mbps and this was a disaster. Every other server produced decent speeds.
On top of industry-standard encryption (AES 256-bit cipher together with either OpenVPN or IKEv2/IPSec protocols), NordVPN supplies advanced functionality including Double VPN, Onion over VPN, and Obfuscation. The first option is self-explanatory – your traffic will be routed through 2 VPN servers. When using Onion over VPN, you’ll benefit from secure and anonymous access to Tor Network. Obfuscation will come in handy for users living in countries that ban VPN usage.
The service goes the extra mile to ensure total security. Therefore, you are protected against all types of leaks and identity exposure caused by server malfunctions (the service supplies the Internet and app-level Kill Switch). To shield you from malicious websites and ads, NordVPN designed CyberSec technology.
VPN unlimited relies on the same AES 256-bit encryption but offers wider access to protocols. Besides OpenVPN, IKEv2, and IPSec, it delivers cutting-edge WireGuard. Its trademark KeepSolid Wise protocol makes your traffic look like a regular HTTPS, and it is useful for networks that ban VPNs.
The service has no DNS leaks but we discovered WebRTC and IPv6 leaks on Windows and macOS devices. You can disable WebRTC and IPv6 through the apps but the fact that this issue appears is concerning. All the apps have a Kill Switch and that’s good.
If you wish to have a dedicated IP address, VPN Unlimited will make it happen (at an extra cost). Even more, you can have a personal server and its bandwidth all to yourself.
Unlike its opponent, VPN Unlimited uses some logs. In particular, it registers the amounts of bandwidth users consumed. Luckily, no other logs are retained.
Panama, the country NordVPN is registered in, was chosen thanks to its strong privacy laws, freedoms given to businesses, and no affiliation with any intelligence agencies. It means that the government won’t demand NordVPN to monitor user activities and submit this data for further investigations.
VPN Unlimited is registered in the USA and this is bad news for your privacy. On the demand of authorities, the service might be forced to monitor traffic passing through its servers. If this ever happens, the service will have to keep it secret from the clients. The possibility of this to happen increases considering that the USA is a member of the infamous The Five Eyes spy alliance. This fact, as well as logging, makes us question whether VPN Unlimited is a safe provider.
VPN Software and Ease of Use
NordVPN supplies native apps for Android, iOS, Linux, Windows, and macOS devices. On top of that, you can configure its software manually on TV boxes, smart TVs, game consoles, and routers. You can also have NordVPN extension for Chrome and Firefox browsers. Thanks to multi-logging, you may use up to 6 simultaneous connections.
If you choose NordVPN, you’ll benefit from one of the most user-friendly apps. They give you the freedom to configure your connections however you want it. Despite the wealth of available settings, everything is pretty straightforward even for inexperienced users. Finding a suitable server is as easy as 123. Servers are organized by countries (the app suggest connecting to the fastest ones), purpose (there are four lists of specialized servers), and frequency of employment (favorite servers). You may also specify a server location on a map. Finally, if you want to keep everything as simple as possible, you can go with an automated one-click connection.
VPN Unlimited supports pretty much the same devices as NordVPN, plus Chrome and Firefox extensions. One account gives you access to 5 simultaneous connections (you may purchase access to 5 more devices additionally). However, there is a trick – VPN Unlimited memorizes devices you used before and once it registers connections from five different devices, you can’t use any new ones. The only solution is to delete old devices from your account but you can remove only one device per week.
Its apps provide a minimalistic design – it is convenient but might not be what advanced users would like to see. All the major settings are concentrated on the Protection tab while available locations are placed on the Servers list. There is also an interactive map showcasing servers and their whereabouts. We enjoyed that apps provide information about server loads – this way, you can see which servers are potentially faster. Besides that, the apps provide lists of favorite locations (the ones you used before) as well as streaming servers.
NordVPN is an excellent choice for torrent enthusiasts thanks to P2P-optimized servers in 40 countries. Totally, it gives you hundreds of servers for torrenting to choose from. If you require an even faster connection but without encryption, unlimited SOCKS5 proxy is at your service!
VPN Unlimited is unlikely to please torrenting buffs. The service honestly says that “VPN Unlimited is not to download torrents”. It only has 5 servers (in the US, Canada, Romania, Luxemburg, and France) to cater to your torrenting needs. Proxy is not available.
There is hardly any VPN that is better in unblocking geo-restricted websites than NordVPN. We tested it with the US and Japanese Netflix and we confirm – it works. Besides Netflix, you can use it to unblock BBC iPlayer, HBO, HULU, Amazon Prime, and a bunch of other platforms. Its proprietary SmartPlay function will help you pick servers suitable for streaming.
‘On and off’ – this is the best way to describe VPN Unlimited’s unblocking capabilities. The vast majority of its servers don’t work with Netflix, even the ones recommended on the Streaming Servers tab. The situation changes when the service adds new IP addresses but it is a matter of time till Netflix and its counterparts blacklist them. Because of this, we don’t recommend using VPN Unlimited for unblocking video streaming content.
Email, tickets, and live chat – these are three options to contact the NordVPN support department. All three methods are available 24/7, replies come pretty fast, and they are on point. Apart from that, you can access huge knowledge base comprised of guides, articles, FAQs, and YouTube videos.
VPN Unlimited doesn’t have online chat but you can complain about your issues or ask a question via a contact form or email. Also, you can search through the FAQ and Manual sections to find solutions to the most common issues.
Pricing Plans and Payment Methods
NordVPN complements its every single plan with a 30-day money-back guarantee. Although the one-month plan is not the cheapest, long-duration subscriptions come with steep discounts:
- One month – $11.95 per month;
- 1 year – $6.99 per month (billed $83.88);
- 2 years – $4.99 per month (billed $119.76);
- 3 years – $3.49 per month (billed $125.64).
Additionally, you may purchase a dedicated IP address that will cost you $70 yearly ($5.83 per month).
The service supports anonymous payments via cryptocurrencies and gift cards. You can also pay with your credit card and money transfers through Qiwi and Webmoney.
VPN Unlimited’s subscription options are more flexible although more intricate. The prices vary based on the number of supported devices (up to 5 or up to 10) and duration:
- 1 month – from $9.99 to $14.99 per month;
- 1 year – from $5.00 to $7.50 per month (billed $59.00 or $89.99 yearly);
- 3 years – from $2.22 to $3.33 per month (billed $79.99 or 119.99$ every 3 years);
- Lifetime – from $99.99 to $149.99.
If you would like to purchase a dedicated IP address, add $12.50 to the billing monthly. A personal server will cost you $18.33 per month.
Before you subscribe, you can test the service out with the free 7-day trial. After you subscribe, you have 7 days to claim your money back if you change your mind. VPN Unlimited supports only credit cards, PayPal, and Bitcoin.
VPN Unlimited is a solid service with decent security features and interesting add-ons, dedicated servers and IPs in particular. However, it just can’t beat the competitor with considerably larger server network, faster speeds, better unblocking capabilities, and advanced security functionality. Therefore, NordVPN became the unconditional winner of our NordVPN vs VPN Unlimited comparison.