One of the leading VPN powerhouses at the moment, SurfShark boasts a global network of 3,200 servers in 65 countries. Ever since its initial launch in 2018, this service has shown many strengths that have put it at the top of the game. In this SurfShark VPN review, we’re going to take a look at the VPN’s features, evaluate where it stands against rivals, and give our final verdict on whether the VPN is a hit or miss.
SurfShark reviews show that different users appreciate this VPN for many reasons — it is fairly easy to use, meaning that even beginners will find their way around it, and it offers strong security features unavailable with a lot of your average VPNs. SurfShark also boasts unlimited simultaneous device connections, making it one of the, if not the best VPN for multiple devices. By contrast, in a SurfShark vs ExpressVPN showdown, the latter would lose with five simultaneous device connections. SurfShark, meanwhile, is compatible with all major devices and platforms and further offers a SurfShark Chrome extension.
Of course, there are certain things that SurfShark VPN could improve to give its users an unparalleled experience, which we’ll talk about later in this SurfShark review, but first, let’s focus on the key elements that make this service one of the best VPN alternatives on the market at the moment.
As expected from one of the most secure VPNs, SurfShark does not collect your browsing history, IP address, or session information. The VPN provider, however, collects your email, password, and some basic billing information. This is a minor detail given that SurfShark reviews say that you can easily create and use an email separate from your personal one and use alternate anonymous payment methods if you do not wish for the vendor to have access to any of your data.
When talking about SurfShark VPN, one of the most important features to keep in mind is its encryption. Unlike some of its counterparts, SurfShark offers the highest level of encryption and, as previously mentioned, has a strict no-logs policy. The industry-standard AES 256-bit encryption this VPN uses is at the same level of encryption that is commonly used by militaries and governments. SurfShark VPN reviews confirm that this type of encryption is virtually impenetrable, meaning that neither the internet service provider nor third parties can see any of SurfShark users’ activity.
Most VPNs use hard drives that have to be wiped clean manually, while SurfShark uses RAM-only servers. This means that the server network will automatically wipe all data once users turn off their VPN, leaving no possibility for a data breach from malicious third parties.
SurfShark VPN offers four different protocols to choose from to encrypt online activity — IKEv2, Shadowsocks, WireGuard, and OpenVPN.
SurfShark VPN reviews show that out of the four, IKEv2 performs best in terms of speed. While it works best when connected to nearby servers, it also performs well on long-distance ones. It’s available on Windows, Android, iOS, and macOS SurfShark apps. Using SurfShark, Firestick can also be easily set up. On the other hand, if you live in a high-censorship country such as the UAE, Egypt, and especially China, Shadowsocks could be more up your alley. Protocols such as IKEv2 don’t perform so well in terms of overcoming data-censoring and internet restrictions.
The research for our SurfShark review meanwhile suggests that OpenVPN may be the best choice for high-security protocols because it is constantly improved by professionals and can be used in two versions — UDP and TCP. TCP may be a bit on the slower side but offers a stable connection, while UDP is a bit faster, helping SurfShark rank as the leading VPN for streaming, gaming, and video calls. Finally, WireGuard offers better speed than OpenVPN but is slower than IKEv2. Nonetheless, it performs well on both nearby and long-distance servers and is great for general browsing, streaming, gaming, etc.
SurfShark experiences only minor drops in speed both on nearby and long-distance servers. The research for our SurfShark VPN review has shown that using the “Fastest Server” option, the service will automatically connect you to a local server, and the final result will be a 4% speed decrease. Bear in mind that this is nothing compared to the average speed decrease of 10-20% that you’ll experience using most other VPNs.
Connecting to long-distance servers, on the other hand, may result in an up to 8.5% speed decrease, which is still a minor fall that will show almost no difference in your browsing/streaming activities. Keep in mind that the results may vary based on the long-distance server you’re trying to connect to.
Additionally, our SurfShark review shows that if optimal server speeds for gaming are your primary concern, you’ll be happy to hear that SurfShark VPN allows speeds no lower than 32 Mbps at all times. Of course, using the “Fastest Server” option is the best choice if you’re looking for the fastest server connections possible. This is definitely something to look forward to seeing how, in terms of speed, in a SurfShark vs NordVPN face-off, the former still takes the throne.
Comparing SurfShark vs PIA (Private Internet Access) means that our VPN of the day would come out as a sore loser compared to PIA’s 30,080+ servers in 75 countries. On the other hand, SurfShark’s network of 3,200 servers in 65 locations may not be the largest one, but it never fails to give reliable results. More often than not, SurfShark VPN reviews rave about the fact that a lot of servers are spread across the US, making it easy to unlock US-based content. In fact, since the servers are split up into 24 different locations, most users enjoy that they can bypass regional blackouts for sporting events, for example.
Plus, using SurfShark, Netflix can be easily accessed whether you’re looking to unlock US, UK, or any other regional content, which is something not all VPNs allow. For example, one of rival IPVanish’s flaws is that Netflix is not well-supported, making SurfShark not only the obvious winner in a SurfShark vs IPVanish showdown but also the best VPN for Netflix.
As previously mentioned in our SurfShark VPN review, this VPN offers servers in countries with high censorship, including China, UAE, Russia, Vietnam, Turkey, etc. It also has virtual locations in Costa Rica, Argentina, and Chile. That means that if you live in one of these countries, you can easily access a physical server that is actually located outside those regions, making it easy to find more connection options and get faster speeds.
Additionally, bypassing geo-restrictions and unblocking Disney+, Netflix, HBO, BBC iPlayer, and even YouTube TV is pretty fast and straightforward. Our SurfShark VPN review also shows that while SurfShark ranks as the best VPN for Kodi or Hulu, seamlessly unblocking these streaming platforms, it doesn’t do too well with Amazon Prime US, famous for its robust geo-restrictions.
Yet another feature that sets this VPN service apart from its competition is the ease of torrenting. Before file-sharing, most VPNs will have you manually choose a torrent-friendly server, but this is not the case with SurfShark VPN. According to SurfShark reviews, even if you’re not connected to a P2P-optimized server, the VPN will automatically connect you to the nearest one the second you open a torrent client. This includes torrent clients like BitTorrent, Transmission, or uTorrent and P2P-based streaming platforms like Popcorn Time, Kodi, or VLC.
The service’s customer support website offers a lot of helpful information. You can find the solution to just about any issue you’re having with your VPN there. Plus, you can get some general information you may need, including how to set your VPN on your router, streaming services, premium features, billing, etc.
Most of the SurfShark reviews we came across seem to appreciate the dedicated troubleshooting section that helps solve the problem you’re having on your own. However, if this doesn’t do the trick (or you just don’t have the energy to deal with troubleshooting on your own), you can live chat with the customer support, send them a message directly on the website, or email the support team. Either way, the SurfShark customer support is available 24/7 and is helpful, friendly, and knowledgeable.
Just like most VPNs on the current market, SurfShark VPN offers a couple of pricing plans to choose from. If, even after this SurfShark VPN review, you are still not convinced that this is the right VPN provider for you, you can opt for a SurfShark free trial with a 100% money-back guarantee for the first 30 days of service. While this is a great deal, it’s not the best one you’ll come across. For example, in SurfShark vs CyberGhost combat, CyberGhost would take the crown with its 45-day money-back guarantee — the longest trial offered on the market at the moment.
However, if you really set your heart on SurfShark, you can go for the monthly payment that will set you back $12.95/month. The SurfShark price for six months comes in a lot cheaper at $6.49/month, while the 24-month plan comes in at an average of $2.49/month.
So, is this VPN worth a shot? The short answer is definitely. SurfShark VPN has a lot to offer in terms of speed, security, and pricing. While our SurfShark review highlighted some things that the VPN provider could improve (its server network size, for example), it is still a strong virtual private network provider that made a name for itself relatively quickly. We expect that its features will only keep on improving and that SurfShark will continue to challenge its competition along the way.
SurfShark is an excellent choice for a VPN because it offers various features that you may not find in other similar services, including military-grade encryption, P2P torrenting, and reasonable pricing.
According to most SurfShark VPN reviews, the VPN is one of the fastest ones on the market and can only slightly slow down your internet connection if you try to connect to a long-distance server. However, it still performs better than most of its competition.
SurfShark VPN does not have any data, bandwidth, or speed limitations.
The monthly prices range from $2.49/month to $12.95/month based on which pricing plan you opt for.
Yes, the research for our SurfShark VPN review shows that users can connect to multiple compatible devices with a single account.
The VPN can be used on an unlimited number of devices.