How To Install Private Internet Access On Your Device
PIA is compatible with a large range of devices. It has native apps for Windows, macOS, Android, iOS, Linux, and FireSticks, and it also has browser extensions for Chrome, Firefox, and Opera. If you want to set it up on your gaming console, smart TV, or other WiFi-enabled devices, you can set it up on your router.
How Does Pia Impact Connection Speed
U.S. servers for PIA VPN were on par with Mashable’s standard service. We noticed some drops in upload speeds, but download speeds were consistently in the 60Mbps range for servers located in New York City, Atlanta, and the Midwest.
We noticed a 10 Mbps drop in my upload speed when we were connected to the Midwest VPN.
We had no speed issues using the Android app. There were negligible 5Mbps drops in download speed, and we never noticed any hiccups or slow-loading images while browsing the web on the default server.
PIA VPN faces another setback with users because it does not bypass Netflixs strict security measures. Most VPNs are blocked by Netflix ever since the streaming service began actively cracking down on VPN and proxy usage, but this feature would have made PIA VPN a contender even with some of the concerns mentioned previously.
Additionally, PIA VPN does not penetrate Chinas Great Firewall . It does support P2P traffic, for those who like to torrent.
What Is A Double VPN And Does It Even Work
Fergus is a freelance writer for How-To Geek. He has seven years of tech reporting and reviewing under his belt for a number of publications, including GameCrate and Cloudwards. He’s written more articles and reviews about cybersecurity and cloud-based software than he can keep track of—and knows his way around Linux and hardware, too. Read more…
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Which VPNs Offer Double VPN
As of 2022, double VPN connections were relatively rare until recently, when suddenly more and more VPN services started offering them. A quick look around the internet shows the following VPN services offer some kind of double-hop functionality at time of writing:
Please note that weve arranged them alphabetically to avoid turning this into some kind of best double VPN popularity contest.
How Can I Get A Free Private Internet VPN
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Can I Use A VPN On My First
First-generation Firesticks do not support VPN tunnelling, and as such, you cant install a VPN app on them directly. So how do you find out if youre using a first-generation device or not? Look for the FCC ID on the back: if its 2ABDU-0509, you have a first-gen Firestick.
In some cases, you can still stream safely by installing a VPN on your router. This is slightly more complex but will automatically encrypt and protect traffic going to and from every device on the network. Private Internet Access’ website has step-by-step guides to installing its service on Tomato and DD-WRT routers.
Which VPN Is The Fastest
The recent addition of the Lightway protocol has made ExpressVPN significantly faster than all its competitors. This is fantastic for watching BBC iPlayer and other streaming channels, as it ensures a much better video quality than all other services. Thanks to ExpressVPNs lightning-fast speeds your internet connection wont get slowed down too much and youll be able to watch anything with no buffering breaks.
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Why Isnt My VPN Working Properly
Having problems with your VPN app? If it isnt connecting or youre having difficulty unblocking a particular streaming service, you might be able to solve the issue by clearing the Firesticks cache. This is very straightforward and only takes a minute:
Is Private Internet Access Trustworthy
You can access your data securely using Private Internet Access. Most encrypt their data through WireGuard and OpenVPN protocols, which is why their apps are considered among the safest. OpenVPN can be configured to use the default cipher of AES-128, or it may be configured to use the more secure cipher AES-256.
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Install Private Internet Access
Open up the Downloader app. Youll see a text entry box on the right, so navigate to it and press the center button on the remote control. This is where we enter the address of the APK wed like to install, so type the following exactly as shown but without the quotation marks:
Next, click the Go button at the bottom of the screen. Your file should begin to download, and once its finished, youll be asked to confirm the apps permissions. Click INSTALL here, and OPEN on the next screen that appears.
The good news is that PIAs Android app works perfectly with the Amazon Firesticks remote control. This means that you can get started right away without the need for any additional software. Log in using your PIA username and password. The app will ask for access to your VPN configurations, so click OK, and OK again on the following page.
Now you can actually access the PIA app. Before you connect, we recommend enabling the kill switch and adblocker options on the right-hand side of the screen. You should also click on Settings, scroll down the list, and enable Connect on boot so that the VPN will automatically connect whenever you turn on your Firestick.
When youre ready, return to the left-hand side, choose which server youd like to use, press up on the remote, and click the button to connect to the VPN.
What Customer Support Does Pia Offer
PIA has a support center with articles for troubleshooting technical issues and problems with your account. The articles arent as detailed as those offered by competitors like ExpressVPN, but theyre numerous. A news page alerts you to reasons for any system outage.
If you need help from a human, your options are raising a support ticket or starting a live-chat conversation. In our testing, we typically received replies to support tickets within five hours, which is lengthy compared to some other VPN services, and the live chat is a new development we havent had a chance to test yet. However, we expect it to be fairly similar to competitors, which means an initially script-based chat, followed by more in-depth advice.
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How To Use Bbc Iplayer With Private Internet Access
Using a VPN is the best way to access BBC iPlayers content from outside the UK but few services actually manage to provide a stable and consistent experience. The reason is that streaming platforms like the BBC iPlayer are incredibly stringent toward VPNs and are constantly trying to block known servers.
One of the several premium VPN services that work well with BBC iPlayer is Private Internet Access . It offers a polished service that prides itself on privacy and security. Its great for streaming BBC iPlayer too, thanks to its giant network of 29,650 servers in 70 countries. PIA has impressive unblocking capabilities, good speeds for streaming, and even offers app customization options.
I watched several episodes of This Time with Alan Partridge as well as the first season of Call the Midwife, and aside from having to switch servers once I had no other issues. The video quality was great throughout, so I could watch BBC iPlayer buffer-free. Plus, PIA is backed by a 30-day money-back guarantee, that it encourages you to use to test the service risk-free.
Apps For Most Devices But Smart Dns Doesnt Work
You can use Private Internet Access to watch Netflix on your phone, tablet, computer, or TV. The VPN has native apps for Windows, macOS, iOS, Android, Fire TV, and Android TV.
You can use PIA on up to ten of these devices at the same time, which is double the allowance of some other popular VPN services.
The VPN also provides browser extensions for Chrome, Firefox, and Opera. These provide a simple and convenient method to quickly change your Netflix region.
PIA provides apps for all major platforms.
However, there are a couple of major drawbacks if you want to use PIA to unblock Netflix on your TV.
Firstly, the VPNs Smart DNS feature does not unblock Netflix. You wont be able to easily access geo-blocked Netflix libraries on your PS4 or Apple TV.
To get PIA to work with these devices, youll have to install the VPN on your internet router. However, this is a complex setup process, and we only recommend it for advanced VPN users.
Secondly, when using the VPNs Fire TV app, we were only able to unblock Netflix on 25% of US servers. This is significantly less reliable than its desktop and mobile apps. We encourage PIA to issue a fix for this as soon as possible.
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Never Download Apk Files From Third
In the tutorial below, we install PIA using its APK file. This is Androids equivalent of a EXE file on Windows or an APP file on Mac. PIA allows users to directly from its website and we strongly advise against getting it from anywhere else. These files are often repackaged with malware and uploaded with the aim of tricking unsuspecting users into infecting their own systems.
Due to a lack of vetting, malicious APKs may even be hosted on seemingly reputable websites. As such, the only way to guarantee your file is safe is to get it directly from your VPN provider.
Is Using Private Internet Access For Netflix Legal
One of the questions many people ask when thinking about downloading a VPN solution is whether theyre legal or not. Across a large part of the world, its entirely within the law to use a VPN service like Private Internet Access for Netflix and many other use cases.
There are, however, some countries where the use of VPNs is outlawed. In China and Russia, its illegal to use a VPN service. But these countries have been criticized for their strict online censorship laws for a long time. In reality, most people are fine to use a VPN and wont get in trouble with the authorities.
While VPNs are legal across a significant part of the world, streaming platforms like Netflix dont see them in a positive light. In fact, Netflix has made it a violation of its user agreement to stream content while connected to a VPN service. Heres a snippet from its terms and conditions:
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How Much Does Private Internet Access VPN Cost
Private Internet Access has three billing options, starting at $9.95 per month. That’s below the $10.11 per month average we’ve seen across the VPNs we review. While affordable, it’s a little too rich for our list of the best cheap VPNsits previous price of $6.95 would have easily made the cut. Comparable top VPNs do more for less. Editors’ Choice-winner Mullvad VPN costs a mere $5.46 .
Like most VPNs, Private Internet Access incentivizes longer subscriptions with steep discounts. A one-year plan costs $39.95, which is significantly less than the $70.06 average we’ve seen across the VPNs we’ve reviewed. Private Internet Access also has a three-year plan for $79. The company changes up its discounted subscriptions frequently, but you should expect most of the deals to hover around those price points. Still, we caution against starting out with a long-term subscription. Instead, start with a short-term plan so you can test the service in your home and see if the VPN meets your needs.
Private Internet Access is affordable, but it’s worth noting that there are also some worthy free VPN services to choose from. Hotspot Shield and Editors’ Choice winner TunnelBear offer free subscriptions with data limitations500MB per month and per day, respectively. ProtonVPN, however, is the best free VPN we’ve yet tested, in large part because it places no data restrictions on free users.
Private Internet Access Encryption
To put it simply, encryption changes your text into inscrutable code. Its what prevents people from accessing your data, the entire point of VPNs. Private Internet Access lets you choose your encryption methods.
Private Internet Access Suggested Encryption
|Default Recommended Protection|
Now lets talk about what each of these terms means.
For the encryption itself, youll choose between the Advanced Encryption Standard of 128 or 256 bits. 256-bit is the current standard of the National Institute of Standards and Technology2, while 128-bit is a bit outdated. However, if you want to prioritize speed, which we dont recommend doing often because of security risks, 128-bit still provides better protection than having no encryption at all.
Authentication means making sure that the right person is accessing the network.
SHA stands for a Secure Hash Algorithm. Whats a hash exactly? Its basically a key that VPN servers use to encrypt and decrypt data. SHA uses algorithms that the sender, which is your computer, and the receiver, which is the VPN server, share, so both could decrypt encrypted data.
Hashes are irreversible, meaning you cant work backward to figure out the algorithm, and each and every hash is unique. SHA-1 was the first version of the algorithm, and as the first pancake in the batch, its inferior to later versions. In fact, in 2016, Google found that some hashes from SHA-1 arent unique, a huge security issue.3
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Verify The Server Location
When you run PIA, it will automatically connect to a server, usually the one closest to you. However, to watch a foreign Netflix library, you will need to connect via a server in that country.
Make sure youre connected to a server in the US, UK, France, Germany, Italy, or Japan, since these are the only Netflix libraries PIA works with.
Does Pia Work Well For Torrenting
When selecting the best VPN for torrenting, there are a few things you want to look for:
While PIA offers secure apps with a kill switch, the speeds were not good in my tests. This means that torrenting will be most likely be slow. On a positive note, PIA does have port forwarding, which is useful with torrenting, but the slow speeds are still a big drawback.
Another drawback for torrenting is the US jurisdiction. The US has very strict copyright violation laws and many large media companies that go after people for copyright infringement. Using a VPN in an offshore jurisdiction may be safer, as they would not need to comply with copyright infringement laws or deal with DMCA issues. We cover this issue more in our ExpressVPN vs PIA comparison.
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The Largest VPN Server Network
Server network size and server locations are important when choosing a VPN for Netflix.
PIA has more servers than any other VPN service. It has 29,643 servers in 78 countries.
Larger server networks make it harder for Netflix to ban each servers IP address.
In addition, user bandwidth is spread out over a greater range of servers, resulting in minimized server load and faster speeds.
Recently, Private Internet Access even introduced streaming-optimized servers. These servers regularly refresh their IP address, increasing the likelihood of bypassing Netflixs VPN blocks.
These servers are placed within the general list, and not in a separate part of the app. Just search Streaming to find them. They are located in the US, UK, Italy, Japan, Finland, and Sweden.
Sadly, our PIA VPN tests revealed that the US, UK, Japan, Sweden, and Finland servers dont work with Netflix.
Private Internet Access has dedicated servers for streaming.
These servers do work more consistently with other popular streaming services, like Disney+, Hulu, and Amazon Prime Video.
What Are The Best Pia Servers For Torrenting
The best PIA servers for torrenting depend on your location.
I always recommend connecting to the nearest server.
However, the PIA app also shows what servers have the lowest latency.
So, try your nearest server and a few low-latency servers for the best results.
Additionally, ensure youre using the WireGuardprotocol, and that port forwarding is enabled in the app and your torrent client.
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Flash Routers Combined With New Firmware
The term flashing refers to installing a new firmware in your router. These firmware work as an Operating System within your router and they end up determining its capabilities.
For a router to support VPN such as PIA, it needs firmware like DD-WRT or Tomato.
- DD-WRT is compatible with more routers as compared to Tomato. It lets you adjust the extent of the Wi-Fi signal and prioritize the online traffic.
- Tomato allows you to run two VPN servers simultaneously. It is also more user-friendly and has more bandwidth monitoring options than DD-WRT.
Port Forwarding Specifically For P2p
Port forwarding increases the number of peers you can connect to in a torrent swarm. This potentially improves your torrenting bitrate when both downloading and uploading data.
Port forwarding on PIA is as simple as checking a toggle inside the app.
PIA is one of the few VPN services to offer port forwarding. The feature is available on PIA for Windows, macOS, Linux, and Android, but not iOS.
Port forwarding is especially important if you want to upload or seed torrents as quickly as possible. Seeding without properly forwarded ports is a lot slower.
However, port forwarding on PIA is not available when youre connected to servers in the US. If you live in the US then youll need to make a choice between port forwarding and connecting to a nearby server, as both will affect your upload speeds.
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