Network: Servers in 13 countries
Software: Win, Mac, iOS, Android
Refund Policy: 7 day guarantee
Retail Price: $4.99 a month
Discount Price: Save 20% Off
Welcome to our review of SurfEasy. This VPN is part of the Opera browser family, and is headquartered in Canada. Though they mention unblocking content, their goal seems to be to provide an easy privacy solution. They are not p2p friendly, and they handle torrent traffic in an interesting way. If you have p2p software running, the VPN will not connect. As you would expect, they have a very nice looking website. We will take a look at the features soon, but first we will look at pricing.
Pricing and Discounts
The pricing for SurfEasy is simple, and does not offer many options. As you can see in the image, there are 2 options. The Total VPN option allows you to use up to 5 devices for $4.99 a month. A year’s worth of service gives you a price of $3.99 a month. Their mobile VPN option allows coverage on only one device, and is $2.99 a month. For a year, the price drops to $2.49 a month. There is also a USB option for $69.99 with no recurring fees, but we will mention it more in the features section.
SurfEasy has a small number of payment options available. Those options are Visa, MasterCard, and PayPal. The PayPal option can be nice if you want a way to manage your subscription easily. They mention a free trial, but instead, it is a 7 day money back guarantee that is offered to new members.
If you are shopping around for VPN providers, features can set one vpn service apart from others. SurfEasy has a few features that would set them apart, but nothing revolutionary.
First, we will talk about their Wi-Fi Security option. If you use public Wi-Fi, SurfEasy wants to make sure you are protected. By clicking the gear you see in the image, you are able to access all of their options. The drop down box displays a heading that says “Wi-Fi Security” and gives you the option to enable protection or disable warnings. Ad Tracker Blocking is another feature they offer. If you have ever done a search for an item online, and had that very item show up in ads for the next week, that is because you have been tracked. You can toggle this feature by turning it on or off. We mentioned a USB option, and this feature is called their Private Browser (USB). This version of their service is a proxy and must be purchased from them at a one-time price of $69.99. The advantages to getting their USB option is no matter where you go, you can browse protected and take the information with you. That is good for places like the public library, or anywhere you do not want your data tracked. The device also comes with a built in password manager, and the do not track option is set by default on this device. It offers free updates, and has an onscreen keyboard to prevent key loggers from recording what you are typing. All of these items are provided on their encrypted USB drive. In addition to these, they also allow for 5 simultaneous connections. The devices are tracked inside of each account.
SurfEasy has server locations in 13 strategic and popular countries. Those countries are Canada, USA, UK, Germany, France, Norway, Brazil, Spain, Japan, Singapore, Netherlands, Australia, and Italy. Though they do not offer as many as other providers do, they specifically mention the ability to unblock geo-restricted content on their website. As with other providers, you can switch back and forth between regions as much as you wish.
Whether you plan on streaming live events, or watching content from other countries, performance is important. With anything encrypted, you may expect to see a slight speed loss with the service. The acceptable amount of loss could be up to 25%, depending on the factors. In our image below, we performed our speed test and saw a very modest speed loss of 8%. SurfEasy provides 256 bit encryption as part of OpenVPN. There is not a way to change that, or find that out without contacting support. Please understand that the results we have provided here are not consistent. Other servers gave different speeds than the one you see here, and they are more inline with the 25% loss. You may wish to test it on your own, however.
Security and Privacy
Without security on your VPN, you run the risk of having your information stolen. SurfEasy makes a point of letting the user know how well they are secured. They support the OpenVPN Protocol with a 256 bit encryption key for Windows, Mac, and Android. Their iOS app connects by using the 128 bit L2TP protocol.
They offer several means of support, including a knowledgebase, email address, ticketing system, and even a phone number. SurfEasy is available 7 days a week, with the hours Mon-Fri 8am to 8pm (EST) , and Sat – Sun 9am to 5pm (EST). They do not give an expectation of time for answering questions, but they do state it will be as soon as possible.
With SurfEasy, there is software available for the following operating systems.
- Mac OS X
Again, they also have their USB version available. As far as other devices, we were unable to find any other setup guides for other products like Linux, DD-WRT, or Tomato routers.
As you would expect with a product called SurfEasy, the sign up procedure is easy as well. That is the case with only 3 steps to give you access. In the image, we have already chosen the Total VPN Plan. in step 2, choosing PayPal means you only have to enter in an email address and a password. Then, all you have to do is hit pay now, and you are signed up.
How to Use SurfEasy for Desktop
It is safe to say that there is no technical knowledge needed for SurfEasy VPN service. In fact, if you have some technical knowledge, you may find it frustrating. In showing you this process, we will use their Windows cient. You could expect similar ease in setup with Mac, however.
- After downloading the client, you choose the region you wish to connect to, as shown by the red arrow. You can also choose the region by using the gear shown by the blue arrow. The security settings are on by default. If you are happy with the server, move to the next step. Unfortunately, you can only choose the country, not the specific location of the server.
- You can connect 3 different ways. The first way is by sliding the slider to the “ON” position. The second way is at the top of the the settings box, as you see. The 3rd way is by right clicking the shield with the red X in your tray. That brings up the same menu as the gear.
- Once connected, you can browse or unblock material, just as if you were there.
How to Use SurfEasy for Mobile
For the mobile version, we will use the Android operating system. Both the Android and iOS versions of the install are available on the website. Android runs OpenVPN, but iOS runs the 128 bit L2TP protocol.
- Your first step here is to go to the Google Play Store, and do a search for SurfEasy VPN. Then, go ahead and download it.
- Launch the client, and you will see the first and second screens you see in the image below. Now, enter the email address and password you used to sign up for the service.
- In the third image, go ahead and click the box that says you trust this application.
- In the fourth image, you are connected, and you may change servers by pushing the gear in the left hand top of the screen.
- Enjoy the mobile security.
Favorite features of SurfEasy:
- Easy to use
- No logs policy
- Use up to 5 simultaneous devices
- 7 day money back guarantee
- Reasonably priced
Thoughts to make SurfEasy better:
- Add more countries
- Add 24 hour support
- Add support for other devices
- Let the user choose specific cities
- Add more protocol support
In conclusion, SurfEasy does what you expect it to do. It provides encryption and unblocks geo-restricted content. We usually like more control in choosing our servers than they provide. If you are looking for a low cost service that is easy to use with very little action on your part, SurfEasy is a good choice. If you are looking for more control, a wider selection of servers, or want to participate in p2p activities, you need to explore other options. Again, SurfEasy offers a 7 day money back guarantee to their new users. That should give you plenty of time to test their service.