2021 Surfshark Review by VPN Vredict
“One of the best value-for-money VPN providers in the market today if not the best.” This new company holds three unique winning aces: ♠ Unlimited simultaneous connections (!) ♣ Watching not only US & UK Netflix but The Netherlands, Japan, India, Italy, Canada and Denmark (!) ♦ Ridiculously low price with our special offer of $1.99/month
Surfshark Verdict | Review Summary
Company name: Surfshark Ltd.
Experience: 2 years
Simultaneous connections – strong card
This young company remarkably surprised us with its speed capabilities, the media streaming abilities (especially with Netflix) and the fact that they offer unlimited simultaneous connections with one of the lowest prices in the market today.
Supporting most of the devices
Perfect for streaming
Surfshark is perfect for media streaming, very good for torrenting and provides a solid solution for restricted regions. The competition with our No.2 choice is very close, and with a slight improvement, they can go higher in our ranks.
Surfshark General Score:
Is Surfshark the best value-for-money VPN deal?
Surfshark Pricing & Payment Method Overall (scores 97%)
How much Surfshark cost?
Surfshark proposes 3 plans: (i) a monthly plan without discount – $12.95 per month; (ii) 6-month plan with a discount of 50%(!) – $6.49 per month. (iii) a 24-month plan with 82%(!) discount – $2.49 per month;
Surfshark is definitely one of the lowest prices in the market, and with its unlimited simultaneous connections, Surfshark is one of the best value-for-money VPN providers in the market today if not the best.
In addition, all of its plans come with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
If you are a family or a small business that uses VPN – This should be your choice.
With what can I Pay Surfshark?
Surfshark proposes a wide range of payment methods starting from various credit cards, including Visa, MasterCard, Amex and more through Paypal, Apple Pay, G-Pay by Google and ending with several alternative payment methods such as Bitcoin, and other digital payments. In January 2019 Surfshark teamed up to launch Litecoin Lightning Network.
We see more room for Surfshark to expand its payment methods through the far east and particularly the Chinese market with payments systems like Alipay, UnionPay and VT Pay.
Paying for VPN and staying anonymous
One of the ways to track a person’s activity is to follow his financial behaviour by track his credit card purchases and study his or her behaviour. To pay anonymously, you will need to have a cryptocurrency account. Paying with cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Ethereum, XRP or Litecoin, allows you to stay anonymous online with no ability to track you. Surfshark offers you to pay with cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and keep your identity totally confidential.
You can pay with:
Is Surfshark Secure?
Surfshark Privacy & Security Overall (scores 97%)
How much Surfshark is Secure? | Surfshark Protocols and Encryption
As the big players in the VPN market, Surfshark uses the highest level of encryption, known as AES-256. In a nutshell, Surfshark applies the 256-bit cryptographic cipher into their set of encryption, by doing that, they share the same encryption standards with organizations like CIA and FBI, these organizations and many others use AES-256 to secure the transmissions of high profile confidential data. Unencrypt AES-256 is literally impossible and considered the pinnacle of encryption. If you want to go online in public places like coffee shops then the safest way is to go with VPN that has AES-256.
Surfshark uses OpenVPN protocol, which supports both UDP and TCP ports and supports IKEv2. They do lack of L2TP/IPsec, SSTP and PPTP. IKEv2 is being widely used on mobile devices. Surfshark comes with MultiHop technology – their branded name for double VPN, this adds another layer of security where a user can connect via two different servers, improving the complexity, by routing a user’s traffic through two different servers, a user would have even more security. Bear in mind that while using this option, your speed might be slower.
Does Surfshark support Split-Tunnelling?
Surfshark presents a technology which they called ‘Whitelister’ which is split-tunnelling, for those of who are not familiar with the term, split-tunnelling allows a user to decide what part of the traffic goes through VPN and what doesn’t, meaning that the users can set which app will run under VPN and which not.
Does Surfshark keep logs?
Surfshark does not store users logs in their database. This little fact in VPN companies is the jurisdiction of the company, a derivation of it is the regulation that the company is under, Surfshark is registered in the British Virgin Islands, where rules are less strict and allow VPN companies act more unobstructedly outside of the 5/9/14 eyes alliance.
Does Surfshark use Kill Switch?
For those of you who are using gambling platforms online, Surfshark offers a handy Kill Switch that will automatically eliminate any software or websites you were using if your VPN service just dropped.
Can Surfshark block ads, malware and trackers?
Definitely, yes. Surfshark uses a technology they call ‘CleanWeb’ and makes it impossible for ads, malware and trackers to infiltrate your device.
Can I watch Netflix with Surfshark? or any other media streaming service?
It is not just a straightforward YES, Surfshark dominates this possibility, while others mostly provide Netflix US & UK streaming services, Surfshark let you, together with Netflix account, watch Netflix content from The Netherlands, Japan, India, Italy, Canada and Denmark (!)
How to use Telegram in restricted countries?
In several countries, the internet is domestically monitored to the extreme and VPN services that can assist detour censorship are blocked as well. In regions like China and the middle east countries, where the cyber environment is exceptionally complicated, Surfshark offers a solution called ‘No Borders’ which is based on Obfuscation Servers; This technology uses hi-tech complexity servers connection which looks for an alternative route to connect to VPN when the conventional system fails. Surfshark let you choose whether you want to enable an alternative list of obfuscated servers if the usual way is not working. This option should be used mostly for heavily restricted regions.
Using Tinder globally with VPN
Everyone knows the go-to app for singles everywhere. Yet, TInder is blocked in several countries. That was up until Surfshark offered a solution for this in which by using their VPN, you can access Tinder from anywhere in the globe.
Watching Amazon Prime with VPN
Amazon Prime’s developing video streaming service let you access to content such as worldwide movies and TV shows. With the US or UK-based Amazon Prime account and a VPN, you can relocate your internet connection as you watch an enormous amount of titles from the UK or US.
Watching BBC iPlayer with VPN
Watch all your favourite TV Series on BBC through Surfshark VPN service and enjoy BBC’s excellent news coverage, children’s programming, and drama series with channels like BBC One, BBC Two, CBeebies, and more.
Can I torrent with Surfshark?
Surfshark offers P2P connection, and as a derivation of low speed loses, torrenting is smooth and faultless.
Don’t want your ISP to see you are connected to VPN?
By using ‘Camouflage Mode’, it will automatically enable once a user connects to a restricted network. If it enables, your ISP cannot see that a user is connecting to the VPN server. If there are some restrictions on a network (e.g. ports are blocked, or VPN is not allowed on that network), then Camouflage will enable and will allow a user to connect. Therefore, for example, in China, there are some issues with restriction or port blocking, Camouflage should automatically enable it. Unfortunately, a user cannot enable Camouflage mode manually. It only enables automatically if a user uses a restricted network.
Shadowsocks and restricted locations
Surfshark offers a Shadowsocks, which is open-source. The benefit of this technology is that it is a proxy which works on a browser when a user connects to Surfshark servers. Shadowsocks was implemented to Surfshark servers so Surfshark users in restricted countries, for example, China, would be able to connect easier.
Surfshark Privacy & Security Components
|Internet Activity Log||–||–||–||–|
|No Logs||✓||✓||✓ (Partly)||✓|
Surfshark Speed Rating
Surfshark Speed Overall (scores 96%)
How Fast is Surfshark?
Surfshark impresses with its low download speed lose, between 10%-52% depending on the location, this is a good result when comparing with other providers in which we experienced a 65-80% speed drop.
Can I watch streaming media with Surfshark?
We did not experience any disconnections and testing several streaming services brought no buffering even with 4K streaming (with our 100Mb connection).
How Fast is Surfshark?
Our routine check under 100Mbps provided us with a ‘net speed’ of 98.1 Mbps without connecting to VPN servers. Connecting through Surfshark server in Austria (EU) delivered an outstanding download speed result of 88.3 Mbps, upload speed of 52.13 Mbps and 37ms ping. We checked in more locations as follows:
Surfshark Servers Speed
|Server Location||Download Speed||Upload Speed||Ping|
|Austria (EU Server)||88.3 Mbps||52.13 Mbps||37 ms|
|New York (US Server)||67.81 Mbps||30.05 Mbps||98 ms|
|Singapore (Asia Server)||47.06 Mbps||13.58 Mbps||273 ms|
Although relatively Surfshark has a mid-size number of servers, which is more than 800 in more than 50 countries, the results we could find are quite satisfying. Many companies brag with their tremendous amount servers, yet, what they don’t expose us to, is the numbers of users that they have. As the big players in the VPN market have heavier traffic from a larger number of users, a new emerging company like Surfshark, backup its amount of service according to its growth, keeping the ratio between the numbers of users and the number of servers in a way that speed results stay competitive.
General Remark about VPN Speed
Please bear in mind that the speed is a result of cumulative factors such as your actual internet connection if you are using LAN or Wi-Fi connection, your exact location, the device you are using, whether it is a laptop, desktop or mobile phone, it all have different specifications that influence your speed.
Surfshark Speed Components
|Reliability & Consistency||95%||97%||94%||94%|
Which devices does Surfshark support?
Surfshark User-Friendly Overall (scores 90%)
Surfshark is a young company which logically, started with focusing on the major devices operating systems such as Windows, MacOS, Linux, iOS, Android, consoles and smart TVs and extensions for popular browsers. Having said that, we miss greater support for routers and some mobile devices that are less popular today, such as Blackberry and Windows phones.
Installing VPN on Router with Surfshark
If you decided about a VPN which is configured and installed on your router, you can modify your home Wi-Fi network to an anonymous and protected with all of your traffic encrypted. You just go online with any of your devices which will stay behind the router (meaning connected to your Wi-Fi through your router with the VPN installed on it), you don’t have to wait to connect each time you start a device because you are always connected through the front shield – the router. Unfortunately, Surfshark supports a limited number of routers that support OpenVPN. According to a random check we made, only higher-end, newer models of routers will support it, so if you already have a router which doesn’t support OpenVPN and you wish to implement a VPN on your router, then Surfshark is not the VPN vendor for you. If you still didn’t purchase a router, then you should check your possibilities with buying one that does support OpenVPN, and you can enjoy Surfshark adding a protection VPN layer on your router and all of your devices behind it.
Surfshark extensions for Chrome browser and Firefox browser
Surfshark provides extensions for Firefox and for Google Chrome. Both of these extensions’ interfaces are easy to operate and setup. You can get all of Surfshark’s features, including a convenient one – the Cleanweb which will put an end to all those annoying ads, malware and trackers.
Can I install Surfshark on Mac?
Surfshark brings to the table a superb app for Mac, it is clear and can easily be operated by a novice with features like OpenVPN, split tunnelling, Cleanweb that can block ads, malware and trackers, Kill Switch and all the rest of the great features we detailed in the privacy section. Installation is straightforward either through downloading the app from the App Store or by downloading a DMG file from Surfshark website.
Surfshark supports macOS 10.12 and later. Though, users can set-up OpenVPN protocol manually on 10.4.X and later.
Surfshark Android & iOS Apps
Surfshark is no different from other prominent VPN providers and offers both Android and iOS (iPhones) apps that work smoothly and easy to manage. Surfshark can be installed from Android 5.0 and from iOS 9.0.
Can I watch Apple TV with Surfshark?
Surfshark offers a fabulous solution for allowing you to use VPN over smart TVs. With a very easy-to-install process on Apple TV and Amazon Fire, you can watch these streaming services and more. We checked several streaming media vendors, and we only had a problem with enabling streaming Hulu.
Surfshark VPN for Xbox and PlayStation
If you are a gamer and you ask yourself Why should I use a VPN on my Xbox or Sony PlayStation? Then the answer is to keep your identity and activity private, AND a significant factor in gaming is to prevent your internet service provider from limiting your internet bandwidth. Surfshark offers a VPN solution for both Xbox and PlayStation, which prevent anyone from watching your activity and identity.
Surfshark User-Friendly Components
|Consoles & Smart TV||✓||✓||✓||✓ Fire TV|
Surfshark Support Rating
Surfshark Support Overall (scores 90%)
Surfshark provides several convenient solutions for supporting its users and even potential users. Surfshark live chat which is working 24/7, is being offered on the very first moment a visitor is on their website, meaning if you have any question, you don’t have to burrow in the FAQ section or their blog, you just ask it, and you get a response promptly. We quite overload their support team with various questions from sales matters to deep technical issues, and we always got a professional, clear, honest and kind answers.
Surfshark Knowledgebase is well organised and makes it easier with finding specific issues you are having. We tried to submit some requests through their systems, but it took too long to answer and sometimes we never got an answer.
Guides and walkthrough tutorials are very instructive and useful, but we are lacking videos that become more and more common in how-tos and guides.
Surfshark Support Components