Offering both free and paid plans, Hide.me seems to have a lot of fans. Still, as the free plan only gives you 2GB of bandwidth per month while the monthly subscription is really expensive, we have a lot of questions to answer in our Hide.me review.
On paper Hide.me looks excellent. It has plenty of protocols, the strongest 256-bit AES encryption, and a decent number of servers and locations. A dedicated Hide.me proxy is great for torrenting. And the vast choice of features will satisfy advanced users.
However, is Hide.me worth the price? Can it compete with the industry leaders when it comes to speed and stability of the connection? We’ve tested Hide.me thoroughly to see if its strong points outweigh the drawbacks
Let’s start with Hide.me strong points saying the provider is based in Malaysia, far from all the surveillance organizations. Users who feel paranoid about authorities watching their online activity will appreciate the fact.
From the compatibility standpoint, Hide.me is among the industry leaders. It works on macOS, Windows, Windows Phone, Android, iOS and Linux. You also can install this VPN on consoles, smart TVs and routers. Moreover, there are extensions for Chrome and Firefox and free Hide.me proxy you can use to access geo-restricted websites.
The number of servers is Hide.me offers keeps growing. Currently, they offer 1400 servers spread around 55 locations. While top VPNs operate 3000+ servers, what Hide.me offers is still enough for stable performance.
It is worth mentioning that if you opt for the free plan, you’ll only have access to five server locations and will be able to use one device only. With the paid plan, you can use up to five devices simultaneously, which is a standard offer. Naturally, you also get unlimited bandwidth and access to all the available locations.
What do you get with Hide.me VPN?
- Advanced security features
- Zero-logs policy
- Dedicated proxy for torrenting
- User-friendly and simple interface
- There is a free plan for basic needs
- Rather high prices
- Poor speeds on distant connections
- Won’t unblock Netflix
If you wonder how much Hide.me charges for the service, here are the pricing plans for you to consider. If you go long-term, the pricing is actually quite reasonable. Anyway, you’ll have 30 days to try it out and see if the VPN suits your needs.
Privacy and Security
When it comes to VPN services, security definitely matters. VPNs are meant to protect our online activity from prying eyes and hacker attacks. Can Hide.me really hide the user from any surveillance?
Encryption and Protocols
Hide.me has 256-bit AES encryption which is the most robust option so far. In addition, the encryption protects not only your internet connection itself but also passwords, files, payment details, and other personal data that might be stolen. That’s why you shouldn’t worry about your privacy and safety with Hide.me.
When it comes to protocols, this provider doesn’t stand behind its competitors. Users can choose between OpenVPN, SoftEther, IKEv2, L2TP/IPSec, PPTP, SSTP protocols. Torrent fans will appreciate the SOCKS5 secure proxy that allows for better speeds while codifying your traffic.
The paid plan additionally offers a dynamic port forwarding feature. Using it, you can let your P2P software connect directly to the destination server instead of connecting through the centralized environment. It improves speed significantly.
Moreover, Hide.me works with TOR so you can use this VPN to get enhanced protection for your online activity.
Kill Switch is the vital feature for all VPNs: it will interrupt your internet connection if the VPN turns off for some reason. In this way, your activity won’t get exposed even for a second, and you will stay safe. All top VPN providers have a kill switch, and Hide.me is not an exception.
IP and DNS leak protection is another standard feature Hide.me offers. Once you connect to the VPN server, the application deletes the local gateway to your connection to make your IP address totally invisible for others. This feature works with IPv6 too.
To prevent the DNS leak, Hide.me will assign a public DNS to the network interface. Therefore, all the DNS requests will go through the VPN network and not through your actual one.
Additionally, this provider offers Split Tunneling – the feature that allows splitting your connection. It is useful when you need a VPN to protect say your torrenting software but not to your browser activity. This way you will hide the activity you want to hide while having a fast connection through other apps.
Hide.me Logging Policy
This provider keeps no logs whatsoever. And that’s great news because logs can easily expose your online activity. Hide.me gathers the amount of bandwidth used and keeps your email address. Still, both things come at no surprise considering that there is a free plan with limited bandwidth, and you voluntarily give the provider your email address.
Let us once again mention here that Hide.me is located in a privacy-friendly Malaysia. Therefore, no surveillance organizations can demand user data from this provider. Besides, even if they could, they would get nothing, because no user data gets collected.
In addition to the rock-solid protection, a good VPN should offer decent speeds to be usable. We have run several tests to check the speeds Hide.me can offer. Also, we’ve reviewed the reliability of IP and DNS leak protection. So let us share the results with you.
Our starting connection speed was 97.9 Mbps for download and 54.12 Mbps for upload. We are located in Europe – it is an important note since the distance between your device and a VPN server influences the speed.
So, we’ve started with a European server. And the speed wasn’t exactly impressive. The download speed was 43.21Mbps, and the upload stopped at 34.14Mbps. Our ping with Hide.me was 47 ms, which is something you can bear.
Connecting to the US server also gave us decent results. The download speed was 30.98Mbps, and the upload – only 24.02Mbps. Definitely, not really impressive, but quite usable.
When connecting to faraway Asian servers, don’t expect to get speeds any better than 8Mbps. Overall, Hide.me cannot compete with the industry leaders in terms of speed, but it is still above average. It is worth noting that torrenting through the dedicated proxy will be somewhat faster.
No DNS leaks detected
When it comes to protection, Hide.me does not disappoint. IP and DNS protection feature works flawlessly hiding all the vital information about the user. We have detected zero leaks using this provider. Therefore, getting Hide.me you can be sure you’re 100% safe, and your online activity will not be compromised.
Torrenting and Streaming
Since many users get a VPN service to use torrents safely and get access to the geo-restricted information, it is important to check if the provider is suitable for these activities. You should remember that not every VPN works with streaming services and allows torrenting.
Hide.me not only allows to use torrents but offers a specialized proxy we keep talking about. It is great for speedy P2P connections so all the torrenting fans will be more than satisfied. And with the ironclad protection, you can be sure that your data and online activity remain safe and unnoticed.
However, Netflix addicts will be disappointed since Hide.me doesn’t work with this streaming service. We’ve tried all the available servers and had no success connecting to Netflix with this VPN turned on. Hide.me used to unblock Netflix, but as the streaming giant actively bans all the servers that belong to VPN providers, Hide.me at some point failed at outsmarting it.
At the same time, if you prefer HBO over Netflix, Hide.me will come in handy. With this provider, you can enjoy your favorite series without any limitations.
How much does Hide.me cost?
There are two options for you to choose from – a free and a paid plan. The free plan is great if you need the VPN every now and then because it offers only 2 GB of data per month and is limited to one connection at a time. Also, you will have access to no more than five locations.
If your needs are bigger, consider getting a paid plan. The prices are the following:
- 1 month – $14.95/month (billed monthly)
- 1 year – $9.99/month (billed annually)
- 2 years – $5.41/month (billed every two years)
As you can see, this provider is not cheap. Therefore, we advise you to get a 2-year subscription to save quite a lot of money. You’ll have 30 days to get a full refund in case you don’t like the service.
Alternatively, you can try the free plan first, but you may not get the ‘real feel’ of the service because of the limited number of available locations.
Hide.me offers several payment methods: credit card, PayPal, WebMoney, and even Bitcoin. Therefore, you’ll have plenty of options to choose from. Mind though, that to make use of the money-back guarantee you’ll have to pay with a credit card or PayPal.
Hide.me customers have 24/7 access to the support team via the live chat, email, or ticketing system. Additionally, you can visit the user community to look for answers to your questions.
Agents in the live chat respond very quickly – we got an answer in less than one minute. However, these specialists will help you only with basic questions and issues. For more complicated queries, you will be forwarded to the tech team.
Overall, Hide.me live chat is a quick way to get answers to some simple questions, and it works perfectly for these needs. But if you have a more complex situation, it may take a while to have it resolved.
Do We Recommend Hide.me VPN?
Hide.me is a reliable VPN service that offers robust encryption, a wide range of protocols to choose from and a few handy special features. It is a solid pick for users who value their privacy most.
Decent speeds make it a good choice for torrenting. Hide.me is compatible with various devices including smart TVs and FireStick, which is something streaming fans will appreciate. Sadly, it doesn’t work with Netflix. But if you prefer other streaming platforms, Hide.me is a great solution.