Features and Pricing Summary:
Network: Servers in 9 countries
Software: Windows, Mac, Android
Refund Policy: 7 day guarantee
Retail Price: $7 a month
Discount Price: Save 40% Off
Welcome to our review of LiquidVPN. This company was founded in the US in 2013. They are a new player to the market, so they have not had the time to build up the impressive server locations that some of their competitors have built. They take the time to mention they are very p2p friendly, and they have some great features, but we will talk more about them in a moment. First, we will discuss their pricing.
Pricing and Discounts
There are usually several factors that come in to play when looking for a VPN service. One of those factors is cost. LiquidVPN offers 3 different plans, each with 2 different terms of service. The “Sidekick” plan is $7 a month, or $4.75 a month for a year of service. The second plan is called the “Road Warrior”. It’s one month pricing is $10, with a year being $5.75 a month. Lastly, the “Ultimate” plan is $18 a month, or $8.83 a month for a year. The only difference between the “Sidekick” and the “Ultimate” plan seems to be the number of simultaneous connections on each plan.
LiquidVPN offers standard payment methods, including PayPal, credit cards, and Bitcoin. We are glad to see they use Bitcoin. For those that are privacy minded, Bitcoin adds a bit of anonymity to your transactions. Choosing the PayPal option is a good way to keep your payment information safe, as well as giving you another way to manage the payment for your account. LiquidVPN offers new members a 7 day money back guarantee.
Back to those features we mentioned earlier, LiquidVPN has some interesting components to it, some of which you see to the right. Some of them are standard features you would find in any other VPN service. Those are items like the auto-reconnect when the connection drops, launching the client on startup, and auto connect when the client is opened. If you select the 2nd and 3rd boxes, starting your computer would lead to you connecting to the VPN without doing anything additionally. Interestingly, they have 4 different types of VPN connections they refer to as VPN Topologies. Each one is different, and has a specific purpose. We won’t go in to the specifics here, but the types are the public IP VPN topology, shared VPN tunnel, modulating VPN tunnel, and the static VPN tunnel. If you wish to know what these mean and the differences, LiquidVPN’s website makes it easy to find under the features section. The Zero Log DNS Service is another one of their features. That is a encrypted DNS feature that helps protect your privacy. It also acts as a SmartDNS that allows you to watch content or play games that are specific to the US and UK. An example of that would be the BBC iPlayer. As more companies begin to crackdown on users that view content from outside the targeted area, SmartDNS is a reasonable alternative. Their transparency policy is also a good feature. Any time LiquidVPN gets a DMCA notice or complaint, they post it and tell how they resolved the issue. All these features are available on all the levels of account, but the “Sidekick” account allows you to have 2 simultaneous connections. The “Road Warrior” package will allow you to have 4 simultaneous connections, and the “Ultimate” package will allow up to 8 simultaneous connections. That is one of the highest number of connections offered in the industry. There are other features as well, but you may see those on your own should you choose the service.
As we mentioned, LiquidVPN has a limited number of servers in strategic locations. These servers are located in popular countries for streaming content, and possibly p2p traffic if you engage in that kind of activity. The image below shows the locations on a map.
For the record, those countries are the Netherlands, Romania, US, Germany, UK, Singapore, Sweden, Canada, and Switzerland. Depending on your goals, you may not use all of those, but you have the option to do so. If you are traveling overseas and you are from one of the countries mentioned or a different country, you can watch programming from them easily.
Performance is a big factor when choosing a VPN provider. Because of the level of encryption, you may expect a slight speed loss when using a VPN. A 10-25% speed loss is in the accepted range for VPN services. In our test below you can see the results with LiquidVPN.
As you can see, we encountered a 24% speed loss. That is still in the acceptable range, but it is at the high end. That said, if you are streaming video, you would not be able to tell a difference. It may not load quite as quickly, but you should not have any problems. For the purposes of this test, we used 256-bit encryption.
Security and Privacy
VPN services provide security through encrypted protocols. Every protocol has their own algorithms used in data encryption. LiquidVPN gives you a few options. The choices they provide are OpenVPN (UDP and TCP), L2TP, PPTP, and SSTP. The last one is a Windows only based encryption protocol that is very secure. However, the best protocol to use is OpenVPN (UDP). That is because it provides the perfect mix of speed and security.
LiquidVPN provides several methods for support. They have an excellent knowledge base, and provide 24 hour technical support through a ticketing method. They do not have a phone number (at least one mentioned on their website) or live chat. There is no turn around time listed for support on their support page, but we have received a fast response upon emailing them.
LiquidVPN’s service supports major operating systems, whether mobile or desktop. Of course, they offer apps for Windows and Mac, but if you are going to use mobile devices, they have setup guides do help you. The VPN service may also be used on DD-WRT and Tomato routers. They provide manual set up guides for Linux/Ubuntu, and several other devices and operating systems.
Sign Up Process
The process for signing up for service is fairly easy. First, choose the number of connections you need. We went over the different programs ealier, but for the sake of this review, we will choose the “Road Warrior” plan. Select the plan, then add your first name, email, password, payment method, last name, and make sure to check the box at the bottom as well. We are a bit unnerved that they require so much information. For a VPN provider that touts themselves as privacy minded, they require more information than other companies.
How to use LiquidVPN for Desktop
Unlike the early days of VPNs, most companies have custom interfaces that are easy to use, and you don’t have to be tech savvy to use them. LiquidVPN is no exception, though there are a few pieces of information that we can share with you, as you would normally use the service.
- Your first step in this process is to launch the client. After doing this, you will see a box that looks like this. If you are happy with the server selection, say you were happy with being located in Virginia, just hit connect. If you are not, proceed to the next step.
- If you want to choose a specific server, click on the part of the connect box that looks like a location emblem, as noted by our green arrow. This will bring up the list of servers. If you are not technically savvy, you may not think about that initially.
- Now that you have selected a server, double click and it will take you back to the main console. Simply push the connect button, and you will see the button turn from red to orange, indicating it is connecting. Next, the button will turn red again and change to disconnect status.
- The red bar in the center of the console that says disconnected will now turn green and say connected.
- Browse to any website you wish, and enjoy the benefits of being located in that country.
How to Use LiquidVPN for Mobile
LiquidVPN is beta testing a new Android app. There is no iOS software for LiquidVPN at this point. However, they do have setup guides. Just follow the guides, and you should be fine. Once you do that, you would be able to connect just like you would be able to for the desktop versions.
Favorite features for LiquidVPN:
- Easy to use interface
- Zero Log DNS service
- 24 hour support
- Easy setup guides
- Decent Speeds
- p2p friendly
Thoughts to make LiquidVPN better:
- Add more servers/countries
- Add mobile apps
LiquidVPN is a straight forward service that offers servers in strategic areas. Depending on what your goals are, LiquidVPN does what it is supposed to. It will definitely provide you with encryption and help you get around geo-restrictions. There are not many extra features, but we agree they do have a familiar interface. If you do not need many connections, you can get a great deal on their service, and they provide a 7 day money back guarantee so you can test it out.