NordVPN provides above-average global server coverage, reliable streaming service and good BitTorrent access, making it an attractive VPN option for movie lovers and gamers.
There’s no need to worry about your online privacy and security with this VPN, as it provides optimal privacy and security protections.
How to Choose a VPN
In this head-to-head comparison article, I’ll be pitting Avast Secureline VPN against NordVPN.
In this article, I’ll share the 10 most important VPN features to keep in mind when you’re shopping for VPNs. I’ll explain why each feature is important, reveal how well both providers performed in each category and declare a victor for that feature.
At the end of the article, I’ll tally up the overall score and declare a champion. By that time, you should know enough about both providers to be able to make an informed choice between the two.
The internet is in your pocket, on your wrist, on your desk – it’s even waiting to entertain you on your smart TV. With so many devices, a fast connection is essential.
Pixel Privacy conducts our VPN connection speed tests as follows:
- When testing the connection speeds of a VPN, we use a Windows virtual server, located in North America, with a gigabit Ethernet connection.
- We use the Windows version of the provider’s app, which is configured to connect using the OpenVPN protocol over UDP.
- We use the app from Speedtest.net to test the connection speeds.
- A team of 3 users connect to 3 different locations – the United Kingdom, the United States and Hong Kong – at 3 different times of day over the course of 3 days.
- The results of the tests are averaged out to determine the final reported connection speeds.
Average Connection Speed
The average connection speeds are a study in contrasts. While one provider delivered average speeds fast enough for any online activity, the other provider’s speeds could be somewhat limiting.
Avast Secureline delivered average download speeds of 73.8 Mbps, which can easily handle any online activity, up to and including streaming 4K video.
On the other end of the speed spectrum is NordVPN, which delivered download speeds that were quite a bit slower, coming in at 17.90 Mbps. While much slower than Avast’s speeds, the provider can still handle most online activities, including streaming HD video.
Be advised that your results will be different from the speeds we saw due to variables such as your ISP-provided connection speeds, where you’re located and where the VPN provider’s servers are located.
Average Connection Speed Winner: Avast Secureline VPN
Both of the providers in this round of competition are reasonably priced when compared to some of their other competitors.
Avast’s single Mac or PC price is average when it comes to VPN pricing. However, the charge rises to the mid-to-high range when you want multiple connections (5). Android or iOS users can protect a single mobile device for a low annual price.
NordVPN’s pricing is just slightly lower than Avast’s when considering their annual subscription charge. Plus, NordVPN’s annual subscription allows users to connect up to 6 devices at one time, at no extra charge.
I don’t list exact pricing in this section, as most VPN providers change their pricing structure or offer special deals on a regular basis. So, be sure to visit the provider’s website for their most recent pricing.
Pricing Winner: NordVPN
How can you tell if a politician is lying? His lips are moving. How can you tell you’re being monitored on the internet? You’re connected to the internet.
There are plenty of third parties that are interested in your online activities.
Whether it’s a hacker looking to steal personal or business information, or your own ISP saving records of your online travels so they can sell the info to advertisers, someone is always looking over your shoulder. This makes privacy protection more important than it has ever been.
Be sure to research a VPN provider’s privacy protections by considering the following:
- Is the provider based in a privacy-friendly country?
- Does the provider save logs related to their users’ online antics?
- Does the provider accept Bitcoin or other forms of private payment?
NordVPN is located in the privacy-amiable confines of Panama. NordVPN isn’t required to keep logs of their customers’ online activities, so they don’t. Various methods of privacy-protecting subscription payment are available.
Avast Secureline VPN is based inside the privacy-copacetic borders of the Czech Republic. While the VPN service doesn’t keep any record of their users’ internet activities, they do record a user’s real IP address, the IP address they’re assigned for their VPN session, the start and stop times of the session, and the amount of data used during said session.
Avast Secureline VPN also does not accept Bitcoin or other privacy-friendly payment types.
Privacy Winner: NordVPN
When you’re researching VPN providers, it’s important to never get hung up on a VPN’s performance in just one or two categories. Take a careful look at every feature category so you can make a complete and informed decision.
In this section, I examine multiple features that both providers offer, taking a close look at each one. I then reveal how well each provider performs in a particular service category, declaring a winner in each one.
Arguably, if you’re using a VPN, the most important reason for using it is to keep your online activities safe from monitoring.
VPN providers supply encrypted connections for their users. The encryption hides the user’s online activities from prying eyes, protecting their internet history and personal information from those who would monitor it.
They also offer various safety features to protect your activities from detection or from being accidentally exposed.
NordVPN makes use of high-level AES-256 bit encryption to protect their connections, offering OpenVPN with TCP/UDP, IKEv2/IPsec, L2TP/IPSec, PPTP and SSTP protocols. It also offers kill switch protection, DNS leak protection, and advertising and malware blocking.
Avast Secureline also uses AES-256 encryption and uses OpenSSL libraries on IPSec and OpenVPN with UDP. Kill switch protection, as well as DNS leak and IPv6 leak protections, are also available.
Security Winner: Tied!
Users who need protection for a large group of folks (I’m looking at you, Shirley Partridge) will appreciate a VPN that allows a large number of devices to simultaneously connect to their service on one set of login credentials.
Avast Secureline limits users to 1 connection at a time. Well, unless you’re willing to spring for their more expensive multi-device subscription – then the allowance increases to 5.
NordVPN allows a generous 6 connections at once, and that’s available to all subscribers.
Simultaneous Connections Winner: NordVPN
How many streaming services do you subscribe to? I myself have subscriptions to numerous services, including Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Hulu, HBO, EPIX and many more. (Hey, it’s my job, okay?)
If you subscribe to any streaming services, you’ll find that most services offer varying content in each country they’re available in. That’s due to the content contracts they sign with television and movie studios, limiting the availability of their content to certain areas of the world.
Plus, some streaming services, such as Hulu, are only available in a few countries.
Avast Secureline has servers located in the United States, the United Kingdom and Germany that are designated for streaming. They worked well unblocking Netflix in those 3 countries. I randomly tried servers in other countries, but was turned away at the Netflix gate each time. The provider doesn’t offer reliable access to other streaming services.
NordVPN unblocks a number of streaming services, both in the United States and abroad. Services include, but are not limited to: Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Amazon Prime Video, HBO, Showtime and Hulu.
Streaming Support Winner: NordVPN
|Provider||# of U.S. Streaming Services VPN Unblocks||# of International Services VPN Unblocks||Link|
|Avast Secureline VPN||1||2||Visit Site|
P2P/BitTorrent is arguably the best way to share files with large numbers of users on the internet. While there are plenty of legal reasons to share files, some users make use of the technology to share copyrighted content, such as movies and music.
As you can imagine, copyright holders and Internet Service Providers don’t appreciate such activities.
Many ISPs have knuckled under to pressure from movie studios, record companies and other copyright holders and are throttling or blocking P2P activity on their networks.
However, you can use a VPN to avoid these roadblocks.
A VPN keeps your P2P and other online activities incognito by covering your internet connection in a layer of encryption, which prevents your ISP from detecting your file sharing activities.
It also hides your real IP address, so even if the file you’re downloading was placed there by a record or movie firm, they won’t be able to trace your activities back to your computer.
Avast Secureline allows P2P action on 8 servers in 6 countries designated as “P2P” servers.
NordVPN allows P2P file sharing on servers in 46 of the countries they serve.
BitTorrent Support Winner: NordVPN
Global Server Coverage
If you’re an online gamer, or if you love to go on endless streaming binges, you’ll appreciate the content-unblocking power that comprehensive global server coverage brings to the table.
NordVPN has 5,550+ servers well spread out among 60 countries.
Avast Secureline VPN has servers stationed in 55 cities in 34 countries. The provider does not deign to share their actual server numbers.
Global Server Coverage Winner: NordVPN
I’m willing to bet that you own more than one connected device. That’s why the number of device platforms that your VPN provider supports is such an important consideration.
NordVPN’s native app support covers the Android, Windows, macOS, Linux, Android TV and iOS platforms. It can also be used with Tomato and DD-WRT-flashed routers, certain other brands of routers, NAS devices, Windows Phone devices and more. Browser extensions are available for the Firefox and Chrome platforms.
Avast Secureline offers support for macOS, Windows, iOS and Android devices. They also offer browser extensions for the Chrome and Firefox platforms.
Multi-Platform Support Winner: NordVPN
|Provider||Platforms Supported||Browser Extensions?||Link|
|Avast Secureline VPN||4||Yes (Chrome, Firefox)||Visit Site|
|NordVPN||6||Yes (Chrome, Firefox)||Visit Site
Customer support is like a fire extinguisher. No one wants to use it, but it sure comes in handy when you need it.
Avast Secureline offers a trouble ticket system, a searchable support library and a user forum. And, Avast Secureline offers a “Total Care” phone support number (844-340-9251). This is unusual in the VPN industry. However, Avast’s support library can be a bit confusing, as it covers all of Avast’s products and services, so search results need to be read carefully.
NordVPN provides 24/7 live support chat, email support and a searchable support library.
Customer Support Winner: Tied!
And The Winner Is…
NordVPN had an easy time of it in this round of competition, scoring the best in the lion’s share of the categories.
NordVPN was top dog in the privacy, pricing, global server coverage, multi-platform support, streaming service access, simultaneous connections and BitTorrent categories.
Avast Secureline VPN scored highest in the average connection speed category.
The two tied in the security and customer support arenas.
NordVPN proved to be the champion in this head-to-head competition, performing especially well in categories that would be critical to movie lovers, online gamers and users who require protection for a large number of devices.
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