What is Betternet VPN?

Betternet is a free and premium VPN service that offers ad-supported access for free users and a paid account with premium features.

Subscribers can avail the benefits of Betternet using its brilliant privacy & data security features against the rising threats online. Betternet is a great choice for citizens demanding simple to use and one-touch unblocking solution. This Betternet review is updated as of Sep 2017, we will critique the server network, security features, logging policies, support, pricing and numerous other aspects of Betternet.

Lets see how it compares to a premium quality VPN provider below.

purevpn_shield

PureVPN

$2.92/mo

betternet vpn review

Betternet

$2.99/mo

 Does Not Keep Logs Keeps logs and shares with third parties
 No ads In-app advertising
 No One Click Connectivity One-click Connectivity
 141+ Countries 8 Countries

 

Premium users get an edge over the freemium subscribers with the following features only available to paid subscribers:

  • 5 Simultaneous Connections,
  • Dedicated Servers, Faster Speeds,
  • No Ads,
  • Great Server Locations, and
  • Round The Clock Customer Support.

Pricing plans are offered in the following denominations:

  • Monthly plan @ $2.99/month
  • Annual plan @ $35.88/12 months

Note: Both premium packages offer similar features. However, no protocol selection option is offered in both the packages.

How Does Betternet Work?

A VPN requires a massive amount of hardware infrastructure and financial resources to operate with delightful results. Free VPN services are usually sponsored by third party advertisers and BetterNet’s free users experience the same.

Our Betternet review unveils that the service works with a one-click encryption model. As soon as users’ install and launch Betternet on their supported devices, the VPN service routes his entire network traffic through a secured encrypted tunnel(as with all VPN services).

This ensures top-notch identity & data protection of users’ against ISPs, hackers, snooper, phishers, identity thieves, surveillance agencies and every eaves dropper monitoring network activities. Once anonymous Betternet allows them to bypass geo-restrictions(BBC iPlayer, NBC, Spotify, HBO Now etc.), safely access banking services from anywhere in the world.

 

Does Betternet Use Cellular Data?

This depends if you are using the VPN while connecting to a 3G/4G network or Wi-Fi. If it is the former, Betternet or any other VPN service will use cellular data. The main goal of a VPN is privatizing and cloaking your online behavior. As a result, it will add a layer of encryption to every data packet transmitted on a 3G/4G connection. You can of course choose to use a Wi-Fi connection to avoid wasting too much money on cellular data.

 

Betternet Review By Features

Pricing Plans

Our Betternet review finds the provider serving users of all levels with its pocket-friendly plans. Currently, Betternet offers two premium plans. There is also a perpetual free service option available for users who need nothing more than an app to unblock websites for browsing.

Premium users get an edge over the freemium subscribers with the following features only available to paid subscribers:

  • 5 Simultaneous Connections,
  • Dedicated Servers, Faster Speeds,
  • No Ads,
  • Great Server Locations, and
  • Round The Clock Customer Support.

Pricing plans are offered in the following denominations:

  • Monthly plan @ $2.99/month
  • Annual plan @ $35.88/12 months

Note: Both premium packages offer similar features. However, no protocol selection option is offered in both the packages.

Payment Methods

According to our Betternet Review, the VPN only accepts payment via Play Store and iTunes. However, this can be considered a positive aspect of the service as Betternet retains no credit card information of users (but remember Google does).

Betternet Mobile Apps Review

Moreover, when subscribing to the premium version, subscribers agree to get automatic account renewal once their accounts expire. After careful Betternet review, we recommend you keep count of your subscription tenure. Remember to cancel the service on time if they don’t want to get charged for next month or next year.

Multi-Login Feature

During our Betternet review, we found that the service offers simultaneous connectivity. It gives subscribers the option to use a single Betternet account on up to five devices at a time, irrespective of device type and OS as long as it supports VPN.

Once subscribed to Betternet premium account, a user can access geo-blocked services and play region-restricted games on Android, iOS, Windows and Mac OS X by using a single Betternet account.

Free Trial Version Without Credit Card

The provider is widely acclaimed for its free service model. According to our Betternet review, the VPN doesn’t require any credit card information from subscribers but displays unwanted ads.

In addition to this, upon starting the free version of Betternet VPN, users are asked to view a video. These video views and target advertisements are Betternet’s chief source of income.

 

Ads Disabling Process

Betternet uses a unique model for providing its VPN service to customers. It uses ads for attracting customers and bring is commissions on sales. Every user becomes an booster when joining the service. To get rid of the ads, go to the settings of the application. Tap on the top right side and you will see a menu. Hit the “I don’t want to help anymore button”. This will free you from seeing ads, but may reduce the quality of your service.

 

Wi-Fi Security

When you connect to a Betternet server, you can feel assured that your connection remains secure and private. It does not matter if you are connecting to a public or private Wi-Fi network, as the provider boasts plenty of security protocols and high level of encryption to protect your identity. Since VPNs mask your IP address, it is impossible to trace your internet activity back to you. You can freely explore the web anytime, anywhere.

 

Add New Platform

As mentioned earlier, Betternet uses a unique medium for providing its service. It typically uses two platforms for making money. The first is by offering free sponsored advertisements. All mobile applications have “install an app” button. Upon clicking on this button, you are offered with a few choices. If you install the application, Betternet earns money. The other is “watch a video and connect” platform. For each video you watch, the VPN gets cash!

 

Is Betternet Safe?

Our Betternet review discovers that the service offers effective encryption protocols including OpenVPN with AES 256bit & IPSec with AES-CBC 128bit encryption to secure your online data & activities. If you are,for instance,residing in China and want to unblock social media websites such as Facebook and Twitter, Betternet is a great secure choice to access these websites.

We tested the service for DNS Leaks with various online tools and tested data packet encryption with packet capturing software WireShark. None of the 5 DNS leak tests gave away our real IP address and location.

However, users should keep in mind that it retains subscribers’ information for service delivery purposes. In addition, Betternet also collaborates with partners and third parties therefore there is the possibility that users’ data could be used by partners and third parties as well.

Money Back Guarantee

Although Betternet offers a free trial version, but to deliver subscribers with a realistic experience of paid version, Betternet offers a 30-day fair usage refund policy. However, the refund policy consists of a surprising limitation according to which a subscriber shouldn’t consume more than 50 MB of data.

We Bestvpnprovider.com, in our Betternet review consider the offered data limit to be very unrealistic, as 50 MB of data is inadequate to evaluate a service for streaming and online gaming.

Server Locations

According to our Betternet Review, the VPN has servers located in all prime regions of the world. However, the freemium version offers no option for server selection, but premium subscribers get an opportunity to spoof their location to the US, UK, Canada, Netherlands, France, Germany, Japan and Singapore.

Surprisingly, Betternet hasn’t disclosed the exact number of servers, but we expect them to offer servers in Australia, allowing users to unblock Seven Network and more channels.

We decided to evaluate Betternet’s high-speed performance claims and tested their service using a 10 Mbps intentionally throttled connection. After carrying out the betternet test, we achieved surprising results:

Before connecting to Betternet:

betternet speed review

After connecting to Betternet UK server:

betternet speed test

As soon as we connected to Betternet’s UK server, our download speed dropped slightly with a noticeable increase in ping speed. But to our surprise, we were able to stream various popular videos on YouTube, Netflix, Dailymotion and Vimeo hassle free without interruptions.

 

Betternet China

Not every VPN works in China, as the government takes copyright laws and data retention very serious. As a result, it regularly blocks a list of VPNs to deny internet users the right to encrypted and anonymous browsing. Betternet in China is just one of those very few providers that offers support to users in the country. Although sometimes it may be difficult to get a secure and stable connection at times, but you can feel relieved to use Betternet for bypassing geo-restrictions and content limitations in China.

 

Betternet for Kodi

According to our Betternet Review, you can use the VPN service for unblocking certain geo-restricted add-ons on Kodi. Thanks to its good security and encryption features, it is very difficult to trace your IP address. Therefore, if you connect to a server in another country, you can easily access the located-restricted content, be it music, video, or any other format.

 

Betternet Review Stats

Our Betternet review unveils that the VPN has more than 38 million users from all over the world. This ensures that the VPN is a good choice for most users. Among these numbers, 60% of the users belong from outside USA. The servers at Betternet receive more than 1 Petabyte of daily traffic, which is equal to watching 500,000 HD movies.

 

Betternet Torrenting

According to our Betternet review, the service supports P2P/Torrenting. You can easily download/share as many torrents as you want, as the VPN will encrypt all traffic to a secure network. This ensures nobody can trace back your torrenting activity. Apart from this, the service does not log your IPs, ports, user information or timestamps. This further guarantees safety for torrenting, regardless of where you are located in the world.

 

Betternet IP Leaks

For testing the reliability and security of the service, I performed two tests for IPv4 and IPv6 leaks on Ipleak.net and Perfect Privacy IP Check. Both tests revealed that the service is leaking the IPV4 and IPV6 data. The VPN fails miserably to hide the IP address, location, and DNS information, which makes it a unsafe option for most users.

Betternet IP Leaks

 

Is Betternet Legal?

To answer this question: users must first understand about the legality of VPN services collectively. Many countries around the world impose no restrictions on using VPN services, as long as the activity is LEGAL. This means, the act of surfing through another IP via Betternet is legal. However, if you are engaged in P2P/torrenting, you could enter into copyright infringement issues. This is why it is necessary to select a completely secure service, you can trust!

 

Customer Support

Being a free VPN service, our Betternet review unveils that the provider does not offer a 24/7 live tech support at the moment. However, the VPN offers an informative knowledge base area, FAQs section, and e-mail ticketing system. Users can get an instant solution for common queries through FAQs section.

In addition to this, the email query system is powered by Zendesk, and it aims to provide a detailed solution for complex issues faced by subscribers.

For our Betternet review, we decided to evaluate Betternet’s customer support and dropped off a query enquiring about the offered protocols.

However, we received no response from Betternet until the next day. We hope that provider improves customer support in future.

betternet protocol review

Security & Encryption Protocols

Most VPN providers in the market offer a traditional set of encryption protocols (PPTP, L2TP/IPSec, IKEv2, and OpenVPN), but Betternet distinguishes itself by providing a unique set of tunneling protocols.

We conducted in-depth analysis of Betternet services for our Betternet review and discovered following secured protocols with respective encryption keys:

  • OpenVPN with AES256 bit of encryption
  • IPSec with AES-CBC 128 bit of encryption

Note: After studying the offered encryption protocols of service in our Betternet review, we suggest users choose Betternet solely for unblocking sites, as it doesn’t provide an adequate protection for torrenting and P2P file sharing

Log & Usage Policy

Being located in Canada, Betternet isn’t obliged to follow any strict data retention regimes. In addition to this, Betternet apparently claims that it doesn’t collect, log or store users’ data on any of its servers or elsewhere.

However, Betternet only keeps subscribers’ data which is mandatory for service delivery. After examining Betternet’s privacy policy we came up with following data which is recorded by Betternet:

  • Connection time
  • Total amount of data transferred per day

Note: Although Betternet states to retain users’ information for service delivery purposes, a surprising part of their privacy policy confirms that Betternet works with partners and third parties. Interestingly, Betternet takes no responsibility for what its partners or third parties do with the retained data.

What is Betternet for?

Betternet offers a range of privacy benefits to users over multiple platforms. Betternet is great for the following online activities:

  • Bypass state censorship & firewalls
  • Access geo-blocked websites
  • Unbeatable online protection for emails, VoIP, torrents etc.
  • Browse websites anonymously on the internet
  • Access your favorite live TV channels while travelling abroad
  • Secure online banking
  • Secure mobile devices over public WI-FI and mobile networks

How to Use Betternet

Betternet follows a simple seven step installation process. If you’re unfamiliar with VPN installation on different platforms then here’s how to install Betternet  on Windows:

  • Go to the official website of Betternet
  • Go to the download section
  • Download the Betternet Windows app on your system and install
  • Launch Betternet software
  • Proceed by skipping the guide and hints
  • Now click on connect button and wait till you’re connected
  • Upon successful connection, enjoy accessing thousands of blocked websites and services

Verdict: Is Betternet A Good VPN Service?

There are plenty of reasons to consider Betternet  as for data security & online privacy. BetterNet’s free VPN offer is a great way to field test the service using its limited functionality and speed. Incase the service doesn’t help a lot you can always consider another provider with better features.

Betternet doesn’t require credit card information or any other detail for their free trial. In addition to this subscribers get100% online protection, reliable network security, reliable browsing speeds plus much more.

How is Betternet Free, Exactly?

BetterNet offers a great free service allowing subscribers to easily install and use the cost free version of the VPN provider. The free factor usually comes with an intrinsic cost this is usually you having to watch all the ads and marketing emails sent to you from BetterNet affiliates& partners.

Our Betternet review unveils the three main sources that keep the service free & active:

  • Video ads
  • Sponsored apps
  • Betternet products

Betternet usually displays video ads of 10 to 15 seconds before connecting to VPN server. Moreover, “app suggestions” are displayed at the bottom of connecting window, consisting of sponsored apps.

Other VPN like Betternet

Like Betternet many other VPN providers offer free trial services to subscribers. However, the reliability and security of these services is always in question compared to full featured premium VPN services. Not to forget, there are VPN providers who sell users’ data & activities to third parties for revenue.

Choosing a free VPN alternative is simply gambling with one’s digital privacy. However, according to user reviews and security experts’ suggestions, following are some trusted VPN services like Betternet:

Cross-Platform Availability

Multi-platform availability is an unusual aspect of a VPN service offering free services. Betternet takes an edge over competitors by offering in-house developed and managed apps & pug-ins for Windows, iOS, Chrome, Firefox and Android.

Betternet for PC

Betternet for PC offers instant access to almost all geo-blocked websites and services on PC, allowing users’ to go anonymous and stay secure against a range of online threats. Prospect users’ can download Betternet  for PC from its official website.

betternet vpn review app

How to setup Betternet VPN on iPad

To use Betternet VPN for your iPad device start by downloading the BetterNet VPN iOS app from the provider’s website.Betternet not only offers a perpetual free version, but a ridiculously easy to use app only in three steps. Here isstep by step guide to install Betternet VPN on iPad:

  1. Go to the official website of Betternet VPN on click “Platforms” in the navigation menu, click on the iOS optionhow to install betternet
  2. Download the iOS app for your iPad and install
  3. Launch the Betternet VPN iPad app and simply tap on connect button

Your Betternet iPad app is now ready to secure your network.

How to use Betternet VPN for Opera Browser

Opera browser does not offer a Betternet extension for its web browser. Opera is associated with SurfEasy VPN, which the company acquired back in 2015. You can sign up to SurfEasy directly from through the browser too.

To use Betternet VPN with Opera you will be required to download the official app for your relevant operating system. There are although dedicated extensions for both Google Chrome &Mozilla Firefox browsers.

Betternet for Chrome

Betternet offers an extension for Chrome users allowing once click privacy and ability to enjoy unrestricted access to blocked sites and secure communication. Netizens can connect with10+ locations and securely access the internet without restrictions.

 

betternet chrome extension review

Betternet for Firefox

Betternet for Firefox browser is the most suitable solution to go online with zero restrictions. With Betternet for Firefox not only provides top-notch privacy and 100% identity protection but is also one of the few VPN add-ons that work with the browser. Moreover, single tap connectivity gives subscribers a simple, easy and fast connection to the nearest available server.

betternet firefox addon review

Betternet Mac OS X Review

There is no dedicated app offered by Betternet for Mac devices. Subscribers can although configure the service manually over Mac devices. Accessing any geo-blocked sites (YouTube, BBC iPlayer, Vimeo, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snap Chat and more) on Mac OS X is just a click away with Betternet. The website does inform that the Mac app is coming soon.

 

Betternet for iPhone

The Betternet app for iPhone devices offers a simple way to go anonymous online. A promise of total online privacy &security comes with BetterNet for iPhone. Also, the service allows users to evade ISP bandwidth throttling while ensuring 100% online freedom. Betternet for iOS can be downloaded from iTunes.

betternet iphone app review

How to Use Betternet on iPhone

Now, that you know about the perks of using Betternet on iPhone, here’s how to use Betternet on the iPhone:

  • Go to iTunes
  • Search for Betternet
  • Download and install Betternet on your iPhone
  • Once installed, launch it and click connect

It’s that simple.

 

Is Betternet Safe for iPhone?

Although the iPhone application offers a remarkable interface and design, in terms of security and encryption – it does seem to lack a little. The tests on the Windows client showed IP leak tests, which only makes us distrust the service.  It is safe to assume that you can definitely receive better safety from other VPNs on iPhone – one that does not leak your IPv4 and IPv6 information.

 

Where Can I Download Betternet Android APK?

BetterNet’s Android APK is available for download from the Google Play Store, and is universally available on all stores.Android users will find the Betternet Android app very lucrative when accessing streaming services, on public Wi-Fi, banking on mobile devices, listening to music, sending texts and email etc.

download betternet android apk review

Betternet vs. Hotspot Shield

Hotspot Shield stands amongst some of the top free VPN providers and a direct competitor of Betternet. Buta vast difference among the two providers services remains. Following is a Betternet vs. Hotspot Shield head to head comparison:
betternet vs hotspotshield review

 

Opera VPN vs. Betternet

FeaturesOpera VPNBetternet
Pricing (Yearly)FreeFree
Countries56
Servers20+20+
ProtocolsPPTP, OpenVPNOpenVPN and IPSec
EncryptionAES-128bit & AES-256bitAES-256 Bit and CBC-128bit
LogsYesYes
Torrents & P2P AllowedYesYes
Based InCanadaCanada
Proxy ServersYesYes
Simultaneous UsersNone5
Added FeaturesNoneNone

 

Betternet vs. ExpressVPN

FeaturesBetternetExpressVPN
Pricing (Yearly)Free$99.95
Countries694 Countries
Servers20+1,500+
ProtocolsOpenVPN and IPSecOpenVPN, SSTP, PPTP, L2TP/IPSec, IKEv2
EncryptionAES-256 Bit and CBC-128bitAES-256-CBC
LogsYesNo
Torrents & P2P AllowedYesYes
Based InCanadaBritish Virgin Islands
Proxy ServersYesYes
Simultaneous Users53
Added FeaturesNoneNAT Firewall, Split Tunneling, Live Chat, Private DNS

 

Betternet vs. NordVPN

FeaturesBetternetNordVPN
Pricing (Yearly)Free$69
Countries661
Servers20+1000+
ProtocolsOpenVPN and IPSecOpenVPN, SSTP, PPTP, L2TP/IPSec, IKEv2
EncryptionAES-256 Bit and CBC-128bitAES-256-CBC
LogsYesNo
Torrents & P2P AllowedYesYes
Based InCanadaPanama
Proxy ServersYesYes
Simultaneous Users56
Added FeaturesNoneNAT Firewall, Kill Switch, and DNS Leak Protection

 

Betternet Support for Smart TV/Router/Game Consoles

We were quite disappointed to find out that Betternet does not offer any support whatsoever for Smart TV/Routers/Gaming Consoles. In fact, the service claims that it is incompatible with all the devices mentioned above. This means, you can only use the VPN on your smartphones, tablets, laptops, or computers. However, if you want to gain additional compatibility, you can always get support from services like PureVPN, ExpressVPN, and NordVPN.

 

Final Verdict

After ourin-depth Betternet VPN review, we have concluded that Betternet is relatively a new service in the privacy space and has massive areas of improvement.The list begins with their meager server selection that they can expand on, next in line are the few tunneling protocols& more can be added, and finally loopholes in the privacy policycan be improved.

After careful review of Betternet services, out editorial betternet rating for the service is an average 3 out of 5.

Summary
Review Date
Reviewed Item
betternet review
Author Rating
31star1star1stargraygray
Ameer Abbas

Ameer Abbas is a senior editor and a most viewed writer on Quora in Internet Privacy, Cyber Security, VPN and Torrents. He has continued work as a privacy advocate with Best VPN Provider and is working towards becoming an established privacy & security author online. Ameer takes a keen interest in technology, geo-political affairs and international cyber laws. Ameer loves outdoor sports including cricket, swimming, athletics, and football.
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18 Responses to Betternet Review – Why Only 3 Stars ***Updated September 2017***
  1. Michael says:

    I should have done my research before using Betternet. I got myself into big trouble…… started downloading torrents and I got a legal notice thanks to the IP leak issue. FML… how can a service operate when they have such serious issues? There is no way I can work around the copyright infringement. I need a good suggestion on which VPN gives good security. No games.

    • BestVPNProvider says:

      We are really sorry to hear about that Michael. If we didn’t test each VPN before writing a review, we probably wouldn’t have an idea about the IP leak issue too. Downloading torrents is indeed risky. Consider using PureVPN or ExpressVPN. Both have exceptional security features and don’t suffer with any IP or DNS leak issues.

  2. Johnathan says:

    This was quite the lengthy review to read, but I’m glad I went through with it. You guys really do post unbiased opinions about different providers. Thanks for the insight Ameer.

    • admin says:

      Glad you enjoyed reading the review. If you have any questions about the provider, feel free to ask us. We will be glad to help you out!

  3. Michael says:

    Phewwwww lucky savee…. I didn’t want to use a service that suffers from IP leaks. Wait till my friend hears about this. The guy has been using Betternet for ages. Lol

    • Admin says:

      Yes it is quite shocking to see Betternet suffering with DNS and IP Leaks. For a secure alternative, you might want to consider using NordVPN or ExpressVPN.

  4. Jeffrey says:

    i tried the monthly plan, very poor performance not a fan anymore.

    • admin says:

      Hi Jeffrey
      Sorry you had a bad experience, I will suggest trying out one of the top brands in our rankings. For P2P try out NordVPN, for streaming I always recommend ExpressVPN. Do let me know which one you went with.

  5. Brian says:

    great review ameer but im still not convinced, is there a comparable service that i can use in the USA. price is no matter for me.

    • admin says:

      Hi Brian
      I suggest you try out NordVPN. We are offering an exclusive deal for it on our home page in the latest deals section.

  6. Xi says:

    very useless in china, cannot get speed, no connection …

    • admin says:

      Hi Xi
      It maybe because of China’s latest block on foreign based VPN services, and the Great Firewall has evolved too. I will recommend using Nord VPN, they introduced new servers for China and features in their Windows app to help you easily connect to the best and fastest servers. Have a look at our Nord VPN review , we are also offering an exclusive package for 2 years.

  7. Shaun says:

    Complete waste of money, no alternative servers and speed issues all the time. I cancelled and subscribed to nord vpn with the 2 year special deal on the reviewer’s suggestion and its working fine with kodi and even let me share the account with my brother living in Australia.

    thankyou ameer

  8. […] services including gaming optimized IPVanish, VyprVPN, and super speed ExpressVPN. (Read complete betternet review […]

  9. musaahmad says:

    is this service any better than PIA, it has seemed to slow down over the last two months.

    • jasper says:

      I found it usefull on my phone but otherwise its not really very good when used free. You will eventually have to buy their premium plans for more servers and faster servers. I don’t think it’s a good buy since there are better faster service than betternet. Even purevpn came up faster when compared to betternet and it is one of the cheapest vpn services available. I would recommend N Nordvpn or Zenmate they are very good instead of better net.

  10. TB says:

    After installing Betternet I experienced dramatic loss of bandwidth (PC was connected via ethernet so no wireless issues). I took screenshots and sent it to the support team as proof:

    Betternet off: 92Mbps up and 35Mbps down.
    Betternet on: 12Mbps up and 2.5Mbps down.

    Ping also went from 14Ms to 627Ms.

    Support was no help, they sent a boilerplate response. So I uninstalled, however the program leaves behind bits and pieces on your PC even after uninstalling.

    • Ameer says:

      Hi TB
      Its just one of the many side effects of using a free vpn for torrents, streaming and even browsing. I would highly suggest get a premium VPN, they are now available for really low prices and they are worth it sometimes. PureVPN is selling a 2 year for $58 on their 10 year anniversary.

      Zenmate is a brilliant service and now available from our website for $54 for the year. It might sound a bit expensive now but trust me there is nothing else in this universe i would recommend than a premium brand. Have a look at our other tested services like ExpressVPN and IPVanish.

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