Hola VPN is one of the better-known names associated with VPNs. A product of the Israel-based Hola VPN Networks Ltd.
This service has amassed over 180 million users since its launch in 2012.
It markets itself as the first peer-to-peer VPN on the market, but we don’t think it’s a good thing.
Rather than offering a paid service that’s subsidized by premium users, it compromises the safety of its users with several insecure practices.
For starters, Hola VPN makes users share their bandwidth with one another.
You won’t be hiding your IP address by connecting to a foreign server operated by Hola.
You’ll be using someone else’s IP address, while another stranger will have connected to yours.
By the end of this review, you will, without a doubt, know if this VPN is the right option for you or not.
Hola VPN Review
I will keep it simple but concise and straight to the point. You will learn about its products and services offered.
Below is the breakdown of what I would be covering:
- About Hola VPN Review
- Compatible Devices
- Features of Hola VPN
- Speed and Performance
- Price (Free or Paid version)
- Privacy and Security
- Pros and Cons
1. About Hola VPN Review
Hola VPN is an Israel-based provider of virtual private network services. But the structure of its virtual network is entirely different from what other providers offer.
While the majority of VPN providers have their virtual networks, consisting of servers located in various regions of the world, Hola VPN uses a different approach.
Its network is described as the community-powered (Peer-to-Peer) VPN that is formed from the computers of its users.
To put it simply, each user’s computer serves as a nod; thousands of such nods scattered around the world form a hugely powerful virtual network.
This approach is to innovate and disrupt the market and as expected might be seen as controversial by some people, though the fact that millions use Hola VPN stands for itself.
On the other hand, in exchange for this, you have to share your bandwidth with other users. With that being said, if you don’t want anyone to use your computing power, you can upgrade to the paid version of the software Hola VPN Plus.
The unusual structure of the network poses some questions. Is Hola VPN safe? Is it faster or slower than other VPNs? Does it provide a stable connection? Does it suit for torrenting and streaming? Look for the answers in our Hola VPN review.
2. Compatible Devices
The service has custom apps for all the popular platforms, including Windows, macOS, Linux, Chrome OS, iOS, Android, routers, game consoles, and Smart TVs.
It also has browser extensions for almost all popular browsers. You can easily download Hola VPN Chrome, Hola VPN Firefox, Opera, and Microsoft Edge.
However, with the free version, you won’t be able to use Hola VPN on Xbox, Playstation, Consoles, routers, Apple TV or Smart TVs.
Both mobile and web apps are intuitive and easy to use. I also like the fact that the free version of Hola VPN takes just under one minute to download and requires no configuration.
Hola VPN Windows App
The Windows app of this VPN looks like your average browser. You open it up and you’ll see an option on the top right corner to pick country locations.
Hola VPN macOS App
The macOS app is also similarly designed. It has the same browser like look and feel and works just as fast. It too has an option to pick locations and that’s about it.
Hola VPN Android App
As for the Android app of this VPN, it boasts a simple design and looks more like a proper app than a browser.
It is very easy to use and pretty fast too in my opinion. As for app rating, the Android app of Hola VPN has around 4.5 stars on Google Play Store.
Hola VPN iOS App
The iOS app also boasts a simple design. It has the same look and feels like the Android app and works just as well.
As for ratings, the iOS app of Hola VPN has a 3.5-star rating on the Apple App Store and pretty decent reviews.
3. Features of Hola VPN
It mixes peer to peer to technology with the basic VPN structure to access blocked websites.
Free users use this VPN because it has a split-routing technology where users share their idle routing resources only when their device is not being used and for that, they get better connection and stability and the best part about it that it doesn’t affect a user’s system or browsing.
If you don’t want to share your resources then you can upgrade to a plus version or paid version where you can get better security too along with unlimited access to streaming.
Hola VPN Fake GPS Location
Like any other VPN, you can change the location of your device. The company has launched its Hola VPN GPS android app for this purpose.
I didn’t find it worth comparatively.
Hola VPN Ad Remover
The chrome extension for the Hola VPN Ad Remover is a must to install before removing the malware ads.
It restricts the sites and third-party websites from malware and tracking.
4. Speed and Performance
Because of the specific structure of the Peer-to-Peer network, its performance is a sort of inconsistent.
Speed test results vary significantly depending on the location chosen, but in general, they are quite acceptable though not great.
We tested the connection speed using the SpeedTest tool. For European servers, the average result is in the range of 50-59 Mbps, which is quite encouraging.
The speed decreases when you connect a US server: the average figures that we managed to get were lower than 50 Mbps somewhere in the range of 42-46 Mbps.
And still, this is not bad; at least, we didn’t experience any difficulties with streaming video.
5. Price (Free or Paid version)
Probably, the strongest selling point of this VPN is the availability of a full-featured free version. Unlike other providers, it doesn’t set any speed or bandwidth limits.
You can utilize the whole vast network for absolutely no money. The only price for it is sharing a small fraction of your idle resources with any users.
If this price is unacceptable for you, then you have to switch to the premium version and enjoy higher security.
Hola VPN has a paid version for users who don’t want to share their idle resources or require full security.
The initial cost of this VPN Plus is $11.95 per month, which is comparable with the pricing of top VPN providers.
Of course, there is an opportunity of buying the product at a reduced price if you opt for an annual or a bi-annual plan:
- 1 month – $11.95 per month
- 1 year – $6.99 per month
- 3 years – $2.99 per month
- Free limited version
The cost of the 3-year plan seems lucrative, but it is available only in the framework of a temporary special offer.
Also, before purchasing a large pack, a user wants to be convinced the product suits him.
Though Hola VPN Plus doesn’t have a trial period, it has a money-back guarantee 30 days, which is not bad.
6. Privacy and Security
Its free edition is an unblocker and does not provide any security features.
Though all proxied traffic and control are done over a secure SSL tunnel, not all your traffic is routed through it as it works as a proxy, routing the user traffic through remote servers, which allows hiding the real IP for accessing any sites in various countries.
The paid version has the features of a real VPN. Hola VPN uses IKEv2/IPSEC with AES 256-bit encryption, which complies with the industry’s modern standards.
It means the Hola VPN provides a high level of security while Hola free VPN proxy is enough for removing geo-restrictions.
Hola VPN Logging Policy
The issue of keeping user logs is another point of concern. Usually, when we are using a VPN, we don’t want anybody to track us.
But in the case with Hola, all the traffic passes the user’s computer, and keeping logs can be just a protective measure in this context.
If a scammer or a cybercriminal uses your PC for making something illegal, your IP automatically falls under a cloud of suspicion.
And still, when it comes to privacy, Hola VPN is not the best choice. Though they claim that logs are collected the purpose of improving its service, crime prevention, and network abuse prevention, the very idea of tracking your activities might bother the privacy-savvy users.
7. Pros and Cons
- full-featured free version
- up to 10 connections
- the number of servers is almost unlimited
- it unlocks any geo-restricted content
- it is based in Israel
- it does collect user logs
- the free version uses your bandwidth (though only a small part of it and when the device is not used)
- the paid version is on par with the market leaders price wise
Hola VPN doesn’t add extra protection on the contrary, it takes it away.
At best, it’s a hybrid VPN for accessing blocked content. At worst, it’s a risky service with no security or privacy features and a history of misconduct.
Let’s put the many issues aside for a moment. Hola VPN is fast and useful for unblocking.
With a peer-to-peer connection, you can (in theory) deal better with regional blocks, especially in the United States.
In short, you’ll be much better off with a VPN that offers servers in all major cities worldwide, in addition to real protection.
All of the premium VPNs below offer 30-day money-back guarantees, meaning you can use their services for free for a full month before committing to a long term plan.
This is where I will wrap up the post for today.
I hope I did not leave anything? If I did tell me below in the comment section.
Also, tell me:
Have you downloaded any VPN yet?
If not download and install Hola, try it out and let’s know your experience in the comment section.
Or maybe you have a question let me know in the comment section.
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