When it comes to online security services, two names are popularly known as the frontline of the industry – the ExpressVPN and IPVanish.
The fact remains that both are outstanding providers that you might have some difficulty deciding the better one. However, both providers have their differences in many aspects too. This leads us to have a comparison list of facts and figures between the two service providers, and this is what this article is about. So let’s talk about ExpressVPN vs IPVanish.
Here’s an overview of things to cover in this comparison between the two service providers
- Speed – Many servers were tested
- Reliability – the VPN apps were tested on Mac OS, Windows, iOS, and Android
- Features – Checking to see if all of the features work correctly
- Connections – How many connections does a subscription have?
- Security – Do any of the apps leak DNS requests or IP addresses?
- Logging policies
- Jurisdiction – Where is the location of the VPN, and how does it affect the security of your data?
- Torrenting – Which VPN provider is best?
- Streaming services such as Netflix – Which VPN provider is best for streaming services?
- Price – Which VPN provider offers its services at the lowest prices?
- Payments and refunds – What are the options for payment and policies for refunds available?
- Value – Which VPN provides the best value for your money?
ExpressVPN vs IPVanish: Head-to-Head Comparison
|Operating system apps||Windows, iOS, some routers, Linux, Android, Amazon Fire TV/ Firestick||Windows, macOS, Android, iOS, Amazon Fire TV/ Firestick|
|Manual install devices||Set-top boxes, routers||Set-top boxes, Linux, routers|
|Split tunneling||Desktop apps||Android Only|
|Free-extras||A browser extension for Chrome, Firefox, and Safari||None|
Clearly, from the facts provided in the table above, IPVanish offers a double of simultaneous connections offered by ExpessVPN. This means it can serve a good number of people at once, provided it is manually installed on a range of devices. One plus ExpressVPN has got over IPVanish is the addition of an automatic command-line based Linux installer and custom router firmware. However, a router is seen as just one connection for both providers which automatically encrypts the traffic of any device connected to it.
Another thing worth noting is that ExpressVPNs don’t work by themselves, which is unlike most VPN providers. Instead, they are used as a way to have a quick switch in servers without opening the application. Also, your browser geolocation settings are automatically adjusted to which whichever server of your choice.
Another plus point of ExpressVPN is that it comes with a Media Streamer app – a Smart DNS proxy that helps you to bypass geo-restriction without encrypting your traffic. This eventually helps you to have a balance between the two most important factors you need when using a browser – security and speed.
ExpressVPN has a great lineup of features for various types of users. The Split tunneling option is one of the popular features that are also not allowed for neither of the providers across all devices. While ExpressVPN limits this to its desktop apps, IPVanish only allows this feature in its Android app. Without this feature, you can be faced with some problems while multitasking.
Pricing & discounts, Payment Methods and Refund Policy
|Subscription periods||One month, Six months, One year||One month, three months, One year|
|Special offer||Three months free and 49% discount with an annual subscription||A discount of up to 60% on IPVanish plans|
|Highest price per month||$12.95||$10|
|Lowest price per month||$6.67||$6.49|
|Money-back guarantee||30 days||Seven days|
ExpressVPN has always been one of the higher-priced VPNs in the market. It offers 1-month, 6-month, and 1-year plans as shown in the table above. In contrast, IPVanish isn’t very cheap either, although its best deal of one-year is available for $6.49/month, which is considerably cheaper.
Are you looking for a short-term VPN? Then IPVanish would be the better option while ExpressVPN ensures long-term coverage. However, both providers have a close gap between their lowest prices per month and allow you to terminate the deal within their respective trial periods with a full refund. While ExpressVPN gives a 30-day guarantee of testing the service, IPVanish offers a 7-day trial period to ensure the service meets your expectations.
ExpressVPN’s one-year deal reduces the price by 49%, and you also get to have an extra free subscription of 3 months. On the other hand, IPVanish saves up to 60% on your subscription.
Unblocking Capabilities and Jurisdiction
|Netflix||US, UK, Germany, Canada, France, Paris||US|
|Amazon Prime Video||Yes||No|
With ExpressVPN, you can unblock almost any major streaming service, and of the ones tested, but only failed to access ABC. IPVanish, on the other hand, has the capability of unblocking a wide variety of streaming services. However, geo-restriction measures employed by larger platforms like Netflix and BBC iPlayer make them quite difficult to beat.
With ExpressVPN, its strong and fast servers ensure the VPN is able to access Netflix like a breeze and passes through its geo-restrictions with no difficulty as such. IPVanish has a shaky history with Netflix, as its servers frequently experience difficulty in connecting to the US Netflix without being caught by the site’s proxy detection system.
When it comes to selecting a good VPN service, Jurisdiction is a big factor for most people, and in this aspect, IPVanish and ExpressVPN also have their differences. For example, the IPVanish service provider has admitted that its connection doesn’t work freely in a location like China. Also, the Chinese government has reportedly been blacklisting its IP addresses. Therefore, the odds of getting a strong working connection are quite slim.
IPVanish is a provider based in the United States and puts IPVanish (and its customers’ data) within the United States jurisdiction. ExpressVPN, on the other hand, is based in the British Virgin Islands – a good jurisdiction that respects privacy. It means customer’s data security is ensured.
Setup and interface
|Automatic setup wizard||Linux, Windows, Android, iOS, and some routers||Windows, macOS, Android, and iOS|
|Main location selection||List-based||List-based|
|Extra settings pages||Yes||Yes|
Both VPN services sure look good on either a smaller or bigger screen with a one-click connection and minimal clutter. In this area, IPVanish particularly takes the lead here; users are allowed to select their preferred region and server right on the main screen of the app. ExpressVPN takes an additional tap to ensure a server switch.
IPVanish offers more security options for mobile devices. Its users can choose to use split tunneling, scramble OpenVPN traffic, block LAN access, and change protocols. ExpressVPN includes a Smart Location feature, which allows connection automatically to the fastest server available.
For desktop apps, ExpressVPN allows you to make use of split tunneling and its kill switch as protection measures when you’re on a desktop computer. The desktop app of IPVanish allows you to switch IP addresses at intervals or configure third-party DNS.
Servers and performance
|Total number of servers||2000||1000|
From the statistics provided in the table above, ExpressVPN has its servers in almost double the number of countries compared to IPVanish servers. It is also discovered that ExpressVPN has twice the number of servers of IPVanish. The two service providers have a close gap competition in their network principles. ExpressVPN has a broader coverage but fewer servers in each location, while IPVanish has clusters of servers in highly demanded areas such as the US, the UK, and Brazil.
It’s important also to note that both providers allow their users to select specific cities in the country of their choice for the server they want to connect to. Furthermore, this helps bypass regional blackouts such as those used by the NHL or local TV streams online. However, comparing both in general view, IPVanish takes more time to establish a connection than ExpressVPN.
|VPN protocols||SSTP, OpenVPN, L2TP, and PPTP||OpenVPN, L2TP, PPTP|
|OpenVPN data encryption||AES-256||AES-256|
|OpenVPN control channel encryption||RSA-4096||RSA-2048|
|Cloaking technology||Cipher block chaining||OpenVPN obfuscation|
|App security||Kill switch (desktop only)||Kill switch (desktop only)|
|DNS status||Private DNS||Private DNS|
Both VPNs have the capability of using certain similar protocols such as OpenVPN, L2TP, and PPTP protocols. While IPVanish does not support SSTP, ExpressVPN is enabled. This is useful in bypassing firewalls that are built to block the commonly used VPN protocols solely.
They both use the same 256-bit AES encryption and SHA512 hash. However, ExpressVPN uses 4,096-bit RSA keys, while IPVanish uses 2,048-bit. The cipher chain block chaining that ExpressVPN offers makes it seem as though you are not using a VPN at all. Also, it is especially useful in places where there is a restriction on the use of a VPN, such as the United Arab Emirates. With IPVanish’s ability to scramble your OpenVPN traffic, this may not help with the use of other protocols.
Besides, both VPNs come with a kill switch on their desktop apps only. This means that if you’re using a cell phone or your tablet and the VPN connection drops, you might end up sharing some information accidentally.
|HQ base||British Virgin Islands||United States|
|User details for sign up||Email address||Email address|
|Anonymous payment options||Mint and Bitcoin||None|
ExpressVPN is currently based in a location with no mandatory data-retention laws – the British Virgin Islands. IPVanish, on the other hand, is based in one of the Five Eyes countries, the United States. It practically means that governments in the US, the UK, Canada, Australia, or New Zealand can have access to information about each other’s citizens and share among themselves. However, having a VPN provider with a solid no-logs policy makes sure this doesn’t matter so much.
When on ExpressVPN, it only logs the date the connection is made, the amount of data transferred, and the server you’re connected to. The real IP addresses or timestamps are not registered. It basically allows you to anonymously sign up with a throwaway email address and cryptocurrency mode of payments.
On the other hand, IPVanish, which claims to have had “zero-logs” service in years, has been put in doubt recently. This followed after the details of a suspect’s email address, source IP address, and other details were all provided by IPVanish on a request by the Homeland Security. This may mean that there is no way to sign up for this service anonymously.
|Static IP address possible||No||No|
Both VPNs have similarities in their configurations as both VPNs make use of shared address allocation and a NAT firewall. Also, neither of them offers static IP addresses or any Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) protection.
Furthermore, in shared address allocation systems, all the users that are connected to a particular server simultaneously or at the same time share the same IP address. It means the activities of the individual users cannot be determined or differentiated from the other users. It also occurs even if the logs on a particular IP address are requested on a specific date.
NAT firewalls are configured and enabled to block unsolicited incoming traffic. In a situation where your router is unable to detect which device the encrypted VPN traffic is requested for, the NAT firewalls help to decrypt the packet headers. It then gets the relevant IP address and sends the traffic where it’s needed. NAT firewalls also help to discard VPN traffic, which seems odd in any way. Here’s a tip: NAT firewalls work best when they are when coupled with an extra firewall, like the one included in most major operating systems. Also, note that neither of these VPN services offers specific anti-DDoS servers.
Lastly, both VPN providers have great customer services. ExpressVPN users are particularly offered greater flexibility in their support contact which includes a live chat with great and fast response. They also have an extensive knowledge base for their users, which addresses some (if not all) of the frequently asked questions. Meanwhile, you can contact IPVanish supports via email with the provision of a good number of tutorials and walkthroughs.
Undoubtedly, we’re quite sure that you have clearly seen that both ExpressVPN and IPvanish have their similarities and differences too. However, in this face-off between both VPN service providers, the information provided above is to guide you in choosing the better one between the two.
For most folks that are well informed about the two, they would typically choose ExpressVPN over its counterpart, IPVanish, because of the extra features that come with it. These features make ExpressVPN a better choice for most people, especially novice users.