Speedify (review) is the VPN industry’s newcomer.
Is Speedify more of a proxy of sorts, is it a true full-blown VPN provider?
We’re going to take a look at their software during this data-backed Speedify VPN review.
Philadelphia’s Connectify started the service in 2014. But despite that short time frame, they already have more than 200 servers in 35 countries.
And they have undertaken a couple of ambitious projects, including creating their own protocol called “Channel Bonding.”
So what is the verdict?
|LOG FILES:||No Logging Policy|
|LOCATIONS:||28 countries, 1000+ servers|
|NETFLIX:||Available in the Netherlands only|
|ENCRYPTION/PROTOCOL:||ChaCha 256-Bit Encryption; Channel Bonding|
|COST:||$8.99 a month / $49.99 a year. 30-day money-back guarantee.|
Speedify is ambitious at least.
They raise the bar very high by starting with their own protocol choice. Then they continue to load additional features.
Here’s a quick look at what they have done well in the last two years.
They Created their Own VPN Protocol
For a moment, let’s be honest with each other:
Most VPNs offer equivalent stuff.
The encryption standards and tunnel protocol options are pretty standard.
But Speedify doesn’t wait long to deviate.
They only offer one VPN protocol option. And it is his own creation called “Channel Bonding”.
What is it?
Contrary to popular belief, it is not a Tinder replacement feature. So don’t get too excited.
Instead, Channel Bonding allows you to use multiple Internet connections at one time.
That means it will combine your WiFi, mobile data, Bluetooth, and wired connections all in equivalent time to speed everything up.
The Speedify application then connects to your “Speed Servers” within the cloud to open all the information transferred through your various Internet connections.
Channel linking also ensures that if you lose one of your internet connections during a crucial upload or download, your transfer will continue to transfer.
(Ok, a bit like Tinder in any case).
Very Strong ChaCha 256-Bit Encryption
Once again, Speedify impressed us by updating their encryption standards as well.
Speedify touts its 256-bit ChaCha key, which is reportedly more powerful and harder to hack than the standard AES-256 employed by almost every other VPN service we’ve reviewed.
The whole concept behind ChaCha is extremely technical, but let’s just say you don’t need to worry about hackers’ intrusion. This is probably the most important point of Speedify.
Access to Over 200+ Servers
Some VPN companies that have been around for many years only offer a couple of dozen servers.
The problem with the low number of servers is twofold:
- Servers can become overloaded with users competing for equivalent limited resources, and performance can suffer as a result.
- You may be forced to connect to a server at a long distance from your physical location, which, again, will affect performance.
However, despite being only a couple of years old, Speedify offers access to more than 200 servers in 35 countries. So you don’t have to worry!
The Tor Browser Works
Tor is an online browser and stands for The Onion Router.
Mainly, it is customary to anonymize your web activity, running your web traffic through “Tor Relays”.
These are just servers that thousands of volunteers travel across the planet.
At each relay, your traffic is redirected so frequently that it is impossible to report where your point of origin is (or where you are physically seated).
The Tor browser “runs on top of Speedify,” according to the corporate. This is usually a nice perk because while Tor increases privacy, it doesn’t help with security.
So a VPN on top would help you keep an eye on both issues at the same time.
Extremely Simple to Use
When you first start Speedify, it will bind to the last server you were on. The link is very quick and simple.
If for any reason you want to change the server, click on the “Connected” section with the yellow padlock. This exposes the list of servers with a large number of server options.
As you will see, some states and countries have a fairly unique server location.
So you will just choose the state or country otherwise it can be really granular and choose a specific server in that state or country.
And that’s it!
An extra layer of protection is provided by the inclusion of a kill switch.
When you connect to Speedify, it temporarily cuts your internet connection while it finds the VPN server.
When transferring between servers or losing your Speedify VPN connection, however, it will cut your connection.
That’s an honest thing, believe it or not.
The purpose of the kill switch is to prevent your real IP address from being revealed temporarily while the Speedify connection is interrupted.
Your IP could also be revealed for a fraction of a second, but that’s enough for anyone who might be tracking too, like a government. So it is one more layer of privacy protection to hide your real IP.
You Can Hire a Dedicated Server
A dedicated server means that you don’t need to share resources with other people.
Instead, you can be selfish and hoard everything for yourself.
This could be overkill if you’re just trying to find basic uses, like bypassing firewalls and geo-blocks. Having a fanatic server is not cheap.
However, it is worth it for professional streamers.
For example, if you want to measure streaming events on social media for work, you will need a lot of bandwidth. Having a fanatic server means that no other user will hog your bandwidth once you need it.
If you choose to travel the dedicated server route, paying annually would be cheaper in the future.
Good Customer Support
Speedify offers email and social media for quick customer support inquiries.
There is also a knowledge domain that you will inspect before emailing them. But there is no live chat.
Fortunately, even their email support is quite fast.
When you send an email to customer service, you receive an automated response stating that the hours of operation are Eastern calendar hours.
But it only took his team about 90 minutes to urge me to come back.
This is what I asked:
- What VPN protocols does one support? What about OpenVPN?
- Do you offer team discounts? the location is not so clear.
- Does Speedify work with routers, Tor, game consoles, and SmartTV?
- Do you offer a money-back guarantee?
They responded to everything except Tor.
So I wrote to him to clarify the Tor problem and received the following reply a quarter of an hour after Tor and Speedify work together on top of each other.
In other words, just fire up Speedify and then start using Tor.
Very useful overall! B
The month-to-month Speedify option costs $ 8.99 per month.
That’s in line with the ~ $ 7-10 monthly price range we’ve seen.
However, moving forward with the annual option will avoid abundance at just $ 49.99 a year.
You can also buy a fanatic server for around $ 100 a month.
All major credit and debit cards are accepted. So are PayPal and Amazon Pay. There does not appear to be any support for cryptocurrencies or cash payments.
They divide the plans into Starter, Individual, and Team options. The Starter is slightly limited in monthly data, but the others are all-inclusive and feature everything we’ve covered so far.
In addition, both plans have a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Speedify offered a lot of cool features at a cheap price.
We were most proud of our experience.
Unfortunately, there were a couple of possible deal-breakers. Here’s a quick rundown of the most critical points.
Inside 5 Eyes Jurisdiction
Speedify was established in one of the United States’ first colonies.
Interesting for history lovers. It is not that interesting for privacy.
That means it is firmly under the jurisdiction of the National Security Agency and therefore the Five Eyes Security Agreement.
Speedify says on its website that it accommodates all legal court orders. Spoiler alert:
They retain some identification data, such as financial information and Google Analytics information, about users.
On the positive side, they process all payments through an outside company. Fastspring may be a subscription billing service in California.
So if your top VPN priority is privacy and security, an American company probably shouldn’t be your first choice.
DNS Leaks Found
When your surfing habits are exposed while being linked to a VPN service, this is referred to as a “leak.”
In theory, this could never happen. However, in practice, it is more common than you might think.
Speedify may be a perfect (bad) example.
- https://ipleak.net/ (none found)
- https://www.perfect-privacy.com/check-ip/ (none found)
- https://ipx.ac/run (none found)
- https://browserleaks.com/webrtc (none found)
Next, we test DNS leaks and locate five.
- https://www.perfect-privacy.com/dns-leaktest/ (none found)
- http://dnsleak.com/ (1 leaks found!)
We also run the VPN installation files through VirusTotal permanently. That came back completely clean, thankfully.
The fact that DNS and WebRTC leaks have been found is concerning, to mention the fewest.
US Servers are Slow
The simplest thanks for testing VPN performance is to experience your connection speed without a VPN, and then repeat when connecting to your servers.
So that’s exactly what we did.
We started with download speeds of 86.89 Mbps and upload speeds of 33.72 Mbps.
Then we hooked up to a Speedify EU server and got respectable results.
EU Server (Netherlands):
- Ping: 30
- Download: 61.77 Mbps (28.9% slower)
- Upload: 26.40 Mbps (21.7% slower)
Then we bind to a Miami-based American server. And that’s when everything went downhill.
US Server (Miami):
- Ping: 132
- Download: 38.57 Mbps (55.6% slower)
- Upload: 6.04 Mbps (82.9% slower)
With these combined results, Speedify comes in at 31st place out of 78 VPNs.
Once you find yourself under all the “no logging” claims on a VPN website, you will quickly realize that they all log something.
It depends exactly on what.
Speedify emphasizes that no logs are kept in the slightest.
- The time and location on the network from which an initial Speedify connection was made.
- The amount of knowledge transfer.
- The duration of the Speedify connection.
- Bandwidth statistics (but the user will change this).
- When you place an order or contact support, you will be asked to enter your name, email address, address, phone number, or master card information.
- Information from Google Analytics.
- The service uses Raygun.io for “bug tracking”. But user can disable it if need.
Limited Device Compatibility as of May 2019
Windows, macOS, iOS, and Android are all supported by Speedify.
As of February 2019, they currently do not support routers or Linux. But we were told that they are performing on this compatibility as we speak.
Currently, they are also not compatible with game consoles or smart TVs.
However, there is a solution.
You can start by running Speedify on a Windows device and share the connection with the rest of the network (it is not possible to share the network with a MacOS computer yet).
Once you have shared the reference to the Windows device, you will share it on the router’s WAN port and connect all your other devices to the router.
On your smartphone or tablet, you can download Speedify software. The iOS app can be found here, and the Android app can be found here.
You can use an equivalent Speedify account on up to 5 devices at the same time.
Does Not Work With Netflix
In the past, you will use pretty much any VPN to connect to Netflix.
But then Netflix got to know the sport and began blocking proxy servers, thanks to “license agreements.”
It’s like “Whack a Mole” to them. Shoot down five, ten more emerge.
Unfortunately for the viewer, it is a tiring process trying to access Netflix content from another country.
You constantly need to test (and retest) different server locations, even with an equivalent VPN, to find one that eventually works.
Though connected to Speedify, Netflix does not allow you to stream movies. You will, however, be able to browse the available movies and watch episodes that you have already downloaded.
However, we ran a couple of our own tests and located a server in the Netherlands that worked:
- New York blocked
- Chicago blocked
- The UK blocked
- Canada blocked
- Holland works
Very Limited Torrenting
Most people recognize torrents simply as a way to download content illegally.
But it also has other legitimate uses. Many organizations, like Wikipedia even, will use it to manipulate massive files at a much faster rate.
So does Speedify support P2P? Partially.
Speedify says in its knowledge domain that torrents are generally not allowed.
However, they are making a couple of servers available for torrenting and Peer view downloads.
You just have to choose “Connect to P2P server” from the list of servers. So you don’t really have a choice as to which server to use. you are only assigned to at least one.
Do I Recommend Speedify?
They are within the US and are therefore part of the Five Eyes agreement. It uses a third-party payment processor, also within the US.
They, are filtering DNS as a kind of sieve. Their server speeds in the US were not good.
They are not currently supported on Linux, routers, game consoles, or SmartTV. BitTorrent only works on a select couple of servers and Netflix doesn’t really work either.
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