Atlas VPN: A Comprehensive Review And Guide For One Of The Best VPN Services Available
Updated: Apr 2
Are you searching for a VPN that offers a secure and private browsing experience without breaking the bank? Look no further than Atlas VPN! This freemium VPN boasts impressive connection speeds, well-developed apps for all operating systems, and a range of extra features that make it the best free VPN we've tested thus far.
One of the most remarkable things about Atlas VPN is its ability to unblock popular streaming services such as Netflix and BBC iPlayer. Additionally, the ad-blocker feature ensures a seamless and ad-free browsing experience, while the powerful data breach checker keeps your data safe from prying eyes.
Our Atlas VPN review for 2023 provides an in-depth analysis of the VPN's strengths and weaknesses. From connection speeds to security features and app functionality, we've got it all covered to help you determine whether Atlas VPN is the right VPN for you. So, read on to discover everything you need to know about this beginner-friendly VPN service!
Table of Contents
Unblocks most streaming services
Small Server Fleet
Includes web filters
email subscription reminders
No 3rd party audit
Built-in two factor login (2fa)
30 day money back guarantee
When it comes to security features, Atlas VPN ticks all the right boxes. With a strict no-logs policy, AES encryption, and a reliable kill switch, this VPN provider is undoubtedly a safe bet. However, there are only two tunneling protocols available; IKEv2 and WireGuard, both of which are highly secure.
Despite its strong security features, there's still some room for improvement with Atlas VPN. The provider doesn't use RAM-only servers and instead stores data in fully encrypted drives. Moreover, while their no-logs policy is in place, it hasn't been independently audited. It's worth noting that only the security tests for the iOS app have been conducted so far.
On a positive note, Atlas VPN has been acquired by Nord Security, the parent company of NordVPN, a market-leading VPN service. This acquisition suggests that Atlas VPN is likely to follow the same high-security standards and practices as NordVPN, providing users with peace of mind knowing that their online activities are secure and private.
When you connect to Atlas VPN's servers, your online activities are encrypted, providing you with a secure online browsing experience that keeps your data safe from prying eyes. This VPN service uses the AES-256 cipher, which is the current industry standard for data protection and is trusted by numerous governmental and financial institutions worldwide. Moreover, Atlas VPN has also implemented the ChaCha20 cipher with the Poly1305 authenticator to ensure next-generation security and protection.
In terms of tunneling protocols, Atlas VPN offers two options - IPSec/IKEv2 and WireGuard. The latter is the market-standard tunneling protocol and the newest addition to Atlas VPN. With WireGuard, you can enjoy faster speeds and lower ping, making it a great option for online gamers and streamers alike. It's worth noting that WireGuard is available on a range of devices, including Android, Windows, macOS, and iOS, ensuring seamless and secure browsing across all your devices.
Like many other reliable VPN services, Atlas VPN has a strict no-logs policy. Their policy states that they do not store any private information about their users. While it's not explicitly mentioned, it appears that this policy also applies to the free version of the service.
In addition, Atlas VPN's policy allows users to contact them to permanently delete their account. California users can even request a copy of the data that the company holds on them, giving users more control over their personal information.
Atlas VPN has introduced a valuable safety feature called a "kill switch" to help prevent data leaks. The kill switch is specifically designed to terminate your Internet traffic in case the connection to the VPN server is lost. To test the effectiveness of this feature, we conducted two tests - one by blocking the connection from a router and the other by disabling background VPN processes.
In the first test, we observed that the kill switch functioned well and terminated the connection when access to the server was blocked. However, the only downside is that the user is not notified when the kill switch is triggered. Nevertheless, we found it convenient that the Internet connection can be restored by disabling and enabling the kill switch.
The second test was more challenging as the service doesn't support OpenVPN, and the VPN processes are linked to the client. So, we had to disable the client while the kill switch was on. Despite this, the kill switch proved to be effective even under such conditions.
The SafeBrowse feature can be found in the "assistant" menu toggle and serves as an optional safety measure to block potentially harmful websites. With the feature enabled, access to websites that are included in the blacklist will be denied while browsing with the VPN on.
Similar features can be found in other VPNs such as Cyberghost or NordVPN, but they are often considered premium features that require a subscription to access.
Atlas VPN recently introduced the SafeSwap feature which can be found under the Privacy Pro tab. This feature allows your IP address to rotate while connected to the server, providing an additional layer of security. Unlike other VPN providers where you would have to disconnect and connect to a different server to achieve a similar effect, SafeSwap switches your IP address while you browse, approximately every 10 minutes.
Each SafeSwap server has multiple IP addresses assigned to it, which are shared between users. This makes the IP rotations unpredictable and doesn't result in speed drops. Currently, there are three SafeSwap locations available: The Netherlands, Singapore, and the United States. It's possible that Atlas VPN will increase the number of servers in the future, although the number may not be exponential due to the cost of buying up IP addresses to set up SafeSwap servers.
Data Breach Monitor
As much as it may sound like an advanced technology, Atlas VPN's Data hack detection feature simply checks whether your data has been exposed in any data breaches. However, this feature is only available to premium users, and those using the free version won't have access to it.
If your data appears in a data breach, the feature provides you with a quick summary of what kind of information was compromised. This allows you to determine if only your email address was exposed or if more sensitive data, such as passwords, were affected. This feature is a valuable reference tool for improving your security measures.
As one of the most affordable VPN services in the market, Atlas VPN offers unbeatable value with its unlimited simultaneous connections.
While the monthly plan is the most expensive at $10.99/month, we advise against opting for short-term plans. Instead, the annual subscription offers a significant discount, bringing the monthly cost down to just $4.08/month.
For the ultimate savings, the 3-year plan offers the best deal at a budget-friendly price of only $1.83/month.
All subscription plans come with a 30-day money-back guarantee, giving you ample time to try out the paid options and determine if it's worth the investment.
Atlas VPN offers a variety of payment methods, including credit cards, Google Pay, and PayPal. For added convenience and anonymity, users can also pay with cryptocurrency such as BTC, LTC, ETH, and QIWI.
3 year plan
As one of the few VPN services that offer a free version, Atlas VPN should not be underestimated. It's important to keep in mind that there is a 5 GB data limit on this plan, so it may not be ideal for downloading or streaming large media files. Nevertheless, Atlas VPN still provides excellent value for the price.
As a free user, you'll have access to three locations: Netherlands - Amsterdam, USA - Los Angeles, and USA - New York. However, please note that the free version does not include access to streaming-optimized servers, unlimited bandwidth, 24/7 support, unlimited simultaneous connections, and the SafeBrowse feature.
As with other VPN services, Atlas VPN provides online encryption and changes your IP address, making it impossible for third parties, ISPs, or government entities to track and log your online activity. Beyond protecting your privacy, VPNs are also useful for accessing geo-blocked content and torrenting safely.
To use Atlas VPN, simply connect to a server, which creates a secure connection tunnel. All data sent from your computer is encrypted and routed through this secure tunnel. Once it reaches Atlas VPN's servers, the data is decrypted and sent to the website you want to visit. This makes it appear as though the request originated from Atlas VPN's servers, effectively securing and hiding your data.
Here are the steps to get started with Atlas VPN:
Go to Atlas VPN website and press the ‘Grab the deal’ button.
Choose your subscription plan. Each option includes a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Proceed to checkout by clicking the button at the bottom-right corner.
Create an account. For that, you’ll be asked to enter your email address and payment information.
Press the ‘Complete purchase’ button and download the app.
Install the VPN app by following the given instructions.
Sign in, connect to the server, and enjoy Atlas VPN services.
Although all VPNs tend to slow down internet connection speeds to some degree, some VPNs are better than others at minimizing this effect. After implementing the WireGuard tunneling protocol, Atlas VPN showed a significant improvement in connection speeds across all five locations we tested. We observed no noticeable drops in either download or upload speeds, meaning that users are unlikely to experience any buffering or lags while using the VPN.
Considering that WireGuard is one of the fastest protocols on the market, this outcome is precisely what we expected.
Overall, Atlas VPN offers impressive connection speeds, which is a marked improvement from before.
Atlas VPN's server fleet plays a crucial role in providing global coverage and faster server selection. However, the provider's current server count of 750+ across 38 countries is relatively lower than that of its market competitors, such as NordVPN and Surfshark.
The service was originally designed for mobile devices, and its server fleet reflects the limited variety typically found in free mobile apps. Although the introduction of desktop clients has expanded the service's device compatibility, Atlas VPN's server fleet still has room to grow, particularly in areas outside Europe.
Thankfully, Atlas VPN's recent launch of 10Gbps servers has significantly optimized connection speeds for data-intensive activities like streaming. The service also offers a Privacy Pro feature, which includes SafeSwap and MultiHop+ to further protect your privacy by routing traffic through multiple IP addresses.
Atlas VPN proved to be a highly effective tool for unblocking multiple streaming services, including Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Hulu, and HBO Max. During our tests, we were able to access 11 different Netflix libraries without any interruptions, including those from Japan, the UK, and the US.
In addition to its impressive unblocking capabilities, Atlas VPN also demonstrated exceptional streaming quality with no buffering or stuttering issues. This made it an ideal option for watching popular shows and sporting events from around the world, such as NBA highlights on YouTube that were only available to US viewers.
While Atlas VPN's server fleet is relatively small, it still provides solid global coverage and the option to choose servers with unique features like SafeSwap and MultiHop+ for added privacy. Overall, Atlas VPN is an excellent choice for anyone looking to access geo-restricted content and enjoy high-quality streaming experiences.
When it comes to torrenting, Atlas VPN may not have the same impressive capabilities as some other VPN providers, but it still gets the job done. Although they don't have dedicated P2P servers like NordVPN, we can confirm that torrenting works just fine. However, it's worth noting that the download speed may vary depending on a range of factors, including the number of seeders/leechers and other variables that affect VPN speeds.
In our tests, we were able to download a 2.7 GB file in about 7 minutes, with download speeds averaging around 4-6 MB/s (32-48 Mbps). Interestingly, torrenting is also available on the Atlas VPN free version, although the speeds may not be as fast as with the premium subscription.
Ultimately, the best way to gauge how Atlas VPN performs for torrenting is to test it yourself.
The user-friendly interface of Atlas VPN applications makes it easy for even novice users to navigate them effortlessly. The VPN provider offers applications for Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, and Linux. The auto-connect and quick-connect features are available on all apps except the Linux version, providing you with added convenience. Furthermore, the app can be translated into multiple languages for your ease of use.
Recently, Atlas VPN added support for Android TV and Amazon Fire Stick, making it more accessible across various devices. With this new addition, Atlas VPN can compete with other major VPN providers in the market.
Atlas VPN has an interesting history with its Android app, which has been available for much longer than the desktop version. The user experience reflects this, as the mobile app boasts a cleaner interface that feels neither cluttered nor basic.
In terms of features, the Android app offers a Tracker Blocker and system-wide kill switch toggles. You can also check whether your emails have appeared in any data breaches with Data hack detection.
Overall, as far as VPNs for Android go, the Atlas VPN app is a solid choice for daily use.
As far as user interface is concerned, Atlas VPN's iOS app is virtually indistinguishable from its Android counterpart. This uniformity in design is a welcome feature that other companies could benefit from adopting.
Like the Android app, Atlas VPN's iOS version offers the same features, including a Tracker Blocker, Data Hack Checker, and Kill Switch. The only notable difference is that the button for sharing usage statistics is located in a slightly different location. Nevertheless, this small variation has no significant impact on the user experience.
All things considered, Atlas VPN's iOS app is a dependable VPN application.
The design of the Windows VPN app has been modeled after the mobile apps, featuring a lot of rounded corners to make it visually appealing. Navigating through the app is easy, with all the necessary features within reach.
Given the limited number of countries, a server search function is not yet necessary. Users can easily scroll through the list without much trouble.
The login process includes a built-in 2FA, which requires users to confirm a code sent to their email each time they log in from a new device. Although this may seem like an inconvenience, it adds an extra layer of security to the login process.
As for the macOS app, we found it to be a smooth and seamless experience. The only minor critique we have is that image and text scaling could be improved, but the text was still readable and clear.
One thing to keep in mind is that you won't be able to choose the specific server to connect to; instead, the app will connect you to the closest one automatically. While the server location won't be displayed at the top of the list, you can easily find it by scrolling through and looking for the green icon next to the location.
Atlas VPN may not have a dedicated app for Linux, but the service now includes a specialized VPN protocol - WireGuard - for the Linux operating system. Linux users can take advantage of specialty servers designed for streaming, as well as SafeSwap and MultiHop+ servers for enhanced online privacy.
Despite the lack of a graphical user interface, Atlas VPN's Linux service is user-friendly for those familiar with Linux. The installation process is straightforward, and you can connect to servers using the terminal.
Atlas VPN provides a seamless customer support experience accessible from the app itself. By clicking on the FAQ section, users are redirected to the website, where they can find helpful explanations and troubleshooting advice for technical issues.
All users can reach out to the support team via email at email@example.com. However, Premium users have access to 24/7 live chat support for more immediate assistance.
While email responses can take a few hours, live chat support provides instant solutions to your queries. Overall, AtlasVPN's customer support is commendable and sets a high standard in the VPN industry.
Deciding if Atlas VPN is a good choice for you depends on your individual needs and expectations. While it may not reach the same level as top-tier VPN services like NordVPN or Surfshark, Atlas VPN has a lot of advantages and is quickly expanding its capabilities.
Our review of Atlas VPN indicates that it's a great starting point for those who want to experiment with VPNs. The free version provides robust encryption, and the premium version offers the added benefit of unblocking most popular streaming platforms, including Netflix. The WireGuard protocol ensures lightning-fast speeds, and features like SafeBrowser can significantly enhance your online security.
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