VPN Testing Methodology

The team at VPNExplained is strongly independent and we pride ourselves in providing 100% impartial advise. That said, we are transparent on how we make referral fees from certain VPN providers when you sign-up for a VPN via our links. These commercial relationships pay to keep the lights on at VPNExplained HQ but have no bearing on the content of our reviews.

How do we test VPN providers?

Firstly we pay for our VPN subscription, out of our own hard earned cash. That way we are free to get a normal VPN subscription, one that hasn’t been boosted or fine-tuned in away way. Whats more we install the VPN apps on systems that aren’t clinically cleaned, in other words, they have other programs and applications running, so we can spot errors, app conflict issues and more.

After several hours of putting each app through our test program (a fancy way of saying we visit a load of websites). In essence, we connect to multiple servers and check to see if we can access popular apps, service and websites, like Netflix, WhatsApp and BBC iPlayer. The tests are done with a 75Mbps fibre broadband connection, which is routinely checked to ensure we are receiving our guaranteed 54 Mbps download speed.

When installing the VPN apps, we pay particular attention to the download process. How easy was it to sign-up, was it easy to download and install the apps (across multiple devices) and did we experience a reliable server connection. Furthermore, we hunt around a VPNs privacy policy (the fine-print) to highlight any discrepancies or terminology that is questionable.

The world of VPNs is ever-changing, as such we try (i say try as we are rather busy) to update our reviews on a regular basis, with most VPN reviews being double-checked and updated monthly. However, some of the top VPN providers are consistently upgrading their service and as such we get notified of changes weekly.

Testing the VPN speeds?

It not easy to test a VPN speed, as the location for the server and the load on each server is constantly changing. However, to provide the best recording, we take an average of the download, upload and ping across multiple locations.

  • Amsterdam, NL
  • Frankfurt, DE
  • London, UK
  • New York, US
  • Paris, FR
  • San Francisco, US
  • Singapore, SG
  • Sydney, AU
  • Tokyo, JP
  • Vancouver, CA

Our VPN speed tests are there to give you a guide and to filter out any bad eggs, but you should expect slightly different results, depending on your location, distance from the exchange and internet service provider.

We are consistently updating and expanding our test server, with the hope of adding a user-generated ranking in the not too distant future.