If you’re a long-time VPN user, you’re probably familiar with PureVPN and PIA – Two of the Top VPN providers in Canada. These providers have existed in the industry for a long time and have a huge base of loyal customers, but which one is the better choice while staying in Canada?
The purpose of this detailed PureVPN vs PIA in Canada comparison is to find the answer to this question, namely the winner between these two VPNs in Canada.
PureVPN vs PIA in Canada: Head to Head Comparison
We have compared both PureVPN and Private Internet Access for Canada on a few performance criteria. Here is a brief overview of different factors, on which these VPNs had to fight on:
A Quick Comparison of PureVPN and PIA in Canada
To test the depth of both VPNs we examined PureVPN vs PIA in Canada. So, if you’re in a hurry and want to know a summary of the comparison, you can take a look at the comparison table below:
|Jurisdiction||The British Virgin Islands||USA|
|Logging Policy||No activity or user-related logs||No activity logs|
|Pricing||CA$2.79/mo (US$ 2.08/mo)||$2.69/mo|
|Speed||76.75 Mbps||85.5 Mbps|
|Server Network||6,500+ servers
|Customer Support||Live chat|
|Netflix Unblocking||Supported||Not supported|
Moreover, you can see our VPN comparison chart in which we have compared more than 60 providers.
Detailed Analysis of PureVPN vs PIA in Canada
PureVPN is a British Virgin Islands-based VPN service that is known for the geographical diversity of its servers, presence in over 140 countries, and innovative features like split-tunneling. The provider also has a good logging policy with a loyal fan base across the world.
PIA is a USA-based VPN service. It offers a range of basic features, but it covers these basics very well. The US jurisdiction is not considered a positive thing for any VPN service, so that is one of the major downsides to PIA.
Further details of PureVPN vs PIA in Canada will be uncovered in the following detailed comparison.
1. Pricing Plans: PureVPN vs PIA in Canada
Result: PIA VPN is less expensive than PureVPN in Canada if you want to subscribe to the 2-year plan.
|Best plan||CA$2.79/mo (US$ 2.08/mo) (2-year plan)||$2.03/mo (3-year plan)|
PureVPN – It offers multiple plans. The 1-month plan is costly as it $10.95/month. The 1-year plan is also on the expensive side costing $5.82/month. However, PureVPN offers better value for the longer-term plans, especially the 2-year subscription that is priced at CA$2.79/mo (US$ 2.08/mo) in Canada
PIA – It also offers 3 plans: 1-month, 1-year, and 2-year plans. The 3-year plan, costing $2.03/month, is more affordable than PureVPN’s subscription for the same period. Therefore, PIA is automatically the better choice for long-term subscriptions in Canada.
Payment Methods and Refund Policy
Both PIA and PureVPN offer a good refund policy and accept multiple payment methods in Canada.
|Payment method & Refund||PureVPN||PIA|
|Money-back guarantee||31 days||30 day|
PureVPN – You can purchase PureVPN through different payment methods including credit cards, PayPal, and cryptocurrency. Users that want to remain anonymous can easily choose PayPal or cryptocurrency to purchase their desired PureVPN subscription in Canada. In addition, PureVPN offers a 31-day money-back guarantee.
PIA – It also facilitates users by accepting payments through cryptocurrency, credit cards, and PayPal. The company used to have a 7-day refund policy, but it has extended this to 30-day now, making it just as good as PureVPN (with just a day short).
2. Logging Policy: PureVPN vs Private Internet Access in Canada
Result: PureVPN has a more transparent logging policy as compared to PIA in Canada
Does PureVPN keep logs? – It has a more transparent and reassuring logging policy as well as the advantage of being located in a privacy-friendly jurisdiction of The British Virgin Islands. The provider keeps no logs of personally identifiable information such as user activity, IP address, DNS requests, etc. which leaves no chance of any third parties gaining access to your private files and information.
Does PIA keep logs? – It has a rather vague logging policy. Although they maintain that they keep no traffic logs, it is unclear if they do store logs of other user-related information such as IP addresses. As such, there is nothing conclusive about PIA’s treatment of user metadata.
Furthermore, PIA is based in the USA, which is one of the worst countries for privacy, due to mass surveillance programs in the country as you can also see in Private Internet Access and TunnelBear comparison.
Jurisdiction is a very crucial aspect when selecting a VPN provider in Canada. If the jurisdiction is located in a country such as the US, where any law enforcement authority can ask for user logs and data then it completely defeats the VPN purpose. Therefore, trusting IPVanish with your personal data wouldn’t be a smart decision. So using a provider like PureVPN, which supports user and privacy-friendly jurisdiction is the best decision. Also, we recently pitted PureVPN against a top-tier VPN provider and you can learn more about their brawl in PureVPN and ExpressVPN comparison in Canada.
3. Speed Results: PureVPN vs Private Internet Access in Canada
Result: PureVPN is slightly faster than PIA in Canada. Both VPNs deliver excellent speeds in general.
Although both providers are quite fast, PureVPN managed to outperform PIA by a small but notable margin. To measure the speeds of both VPNs in Canada.
|US: 91 Mbps||US: 51.67 Mbps|
|UK: 86.09 Mbps||UK: 74.59 Mbps|
|France: 90.84 Mbps||France: 91.84 Mbps|
|Australia: 76.75 Mbps||Australia: 85.5 Mbps|
|Avg. Download: 88.63 Mbps||Avg. Download: 73.46 Mbps|
PureVPN – It has reached as high as 54.73 Mbps on the CA server and maintained an impressive speed.
PIA – Its highest speed was recorded when connected to one of its CA servers, where it reached 53.17 Mbps. Therefore, Private Internet Access’s fastest server was France during our testing.
Speed Test # Canada Server
On the Canadian server, PureVPN gave a download speed of 54.73 Mbps and a high upload speed of 97.09 Mbps.
PIA was slower on Canada server as compared to PureVPN. It managed a download speed of 53.17 Mbps
4. Servers in Countries
Result: There is no clear winner here. PureVPN covers more countries through virtual servers, but PIA offers more servers in total with bare-metal servers only.
PureVPN – It has 6,500+ servers spread in 140+ countries and 4 servers in Canada . The extensive geographical coverage of the server network is one of the USPs of PureVPN, as most other providers in the VPN industry have their networks confined to a smaller footprint. However, it must be pointed out that many of PureVPN’s servers are virtual.
PIA – It has a larger total server count of 35,912+ in 77 countries and 4 servers in Canada. Although the number of servers is pretty impressive, PIA is only spread around 77 countries. The good thing is that PIA is entirely composed of physical servers only, which is one of the factors behind their smaller geographical coverage.
5. Device Compatibility: PureVPN vs PIA in Canada
Result: Both PureVPN and PIA offer excellent compatibility for devices and platforms. However, PureVPN offers apps for more devices.
PureVPN – It is compatible with the commonly used platform and devices out there. This includes Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Linux, Fire TV, Kodi, and more. The mobile apps are neatly designed and work with optimal responsiveness. In addition, PureVPN offers extensions for Chrome, Firefox, and Edge. With one PureVPN subscription, you can connect up to 10 devices simultaneously.
You can also set up PureVPN on Firestick, Roku, and Kodi. It can also be configured on routers and used on devices that don’t have native support for VPN.
PIA – It offers dedicated apps for most common devices including Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, and Linux. For browsers, it offers extensions that support Opera, Firefox, and Opera. With PIA, you can connect up to 10 devices at the same time.
6. App Usability and User Interface
Result: Both PIA and PureVPN offer well-designed apps for desktops and smartphones. This round is a tie.
PureVPN and PIA have easy-to-use apps for a variety of devices and platforms. However, PureVPN has a much more appealing app design as compared to PIA, which has a very basic app design.
|One-click installation setup||Android, iOS, Windows, macOS||Android, iOS, Windows, macOS|
In terms of performance, both apps work quite smoothly in Canada. However, PIA usually takes a longer time to connect to a server. The desktop app of PureVPN starts with the Streaming Mode selected by default.
It takes a little getting used to as there are multiple sub-menus full of different settings, so the app can certainly be made more user-friendly. However, the smartphone app of PureVPN boasts an awesome design and superior usability.
PIA offers a much simpler app that simply resides on the taskbar in your desktops. You can switch servers, connect, or disconnect the VPN from the taskbar.
The smartphone apps of PIA also feature excellent usability. You can connect to a server directly from its home screen menu.
7. Customer Support: PureVPN vs PIA in Canada
Result: PureVPN offers 24/7 live chat support. PIA does not offer live chat support in Canada.
Customer support is something that can either make or break a VPN service. Every product has flaws and you can’t expect to satisfy all customers. But if the customer support team is kind, respectful, and empathetic to their customers, it can convert even displeased customers into people that can spread positive word of mouth about a brand.
PureVPN – It is evident that the provider takes customer support quite seriously in Canada. 24/7 live chat support is incredibly useful for instantly getting answers to your questions, as well as for raising complaints if you are experiencing troubles with the VPN. PureVPN’s website also consists of a lot of helpful articles and detailed guides that explain the setup process and other important details to facilitate the user in Canada.
As a test, we asked customer support about servers to watch Netflix in Canada through their live chat feature, and they replied instantly.
PIA – It also offers support to customers through the email ticketing system. Unfortunately, it does not offer a live chat feature which is a bummer. Like PureVPN, PIA’s official website is full of guides and instructions for installing its VPN apps, configuring different settings, and getting the best out of the service.
8. Torrenting: PureVPN vs PIA in Canada
Result: PureVPN is a safer choice for torrenting as compared to PIA in Canada
A large number of online users in Canada use VPN for peer-to-peer (P2P) file-sharing via BitTorrent. This method is a perfectly legal way to share files. However, sharing copyrighted material such as music, movies, and games is illegal in most countries.
Even if you are not using this technology for downloading copyrighted materials, your ISP might throttle your bandwidth. Therefore, the best way to prevent this is to use a VPN for torrenting Canada.
PureVPN – It unblocks torrent websites and allows safe downloading of torrents in Canada. The fact that PureVPN has a no-logging policy and is based in The British Virgin Islands which is another favorable advantage when it comes to downloading torrents safely.
PIA – It supports torrent though it should be remembered that the provider is based in the US. This fact combined with the surveillance capabilities of agencies and the vague logging policy of PIA makes it a less than ideal choice for downloading torrents in Canada. Though as far as performance is concerned, PIA is very efficient for unblocking and download torrents in Canada.
However, a strict zero-log policy, port forwarding add-on, and SOCKS5 proxy support helps build up this provider image as one of the best VPNs for torrenting in Canada.
Disclaimer: We do not encourage nor condone the use of VPNs to engage in illegal activities including copyright infringement.
9. Netflix & Unblocking Strength in Canada
Result: PureVPN is much more reliable for unblocking popular streaming services in Canada as compared to PIA
VPNs are having a hard time unblocking streaming services in Canada these days. With geo-restriction and anti-VPN technologies improving, it’s not as easy for VPNs today to find access to popular streaming services.
|Netflix||US (Inconsistent)||US, Germany|
|Hulu||US, Japan||US, Japan|
|Amazon Prime Video||No||Yes|
PureVPN – The good news is that PureVPN is still one of the few VPNs that are effective for unblocking VoD services in Canada such as Netflix, Hulu, BBC iPlayer Canada, and Amazon Prime Video. The fact that PureVPN offers speeds than PIA also gives it a definite edge over PIA because seamless streaming requires fast internet connections.
PIA – It has the ability to unblock some streaming services in Canada, however, not all. If you want to watch US Netflix through one of its servers, PureVPN might be a better choice. During our testing, we did manage to get Netflix US after extensive testing because most servers were not working with Netflix and we constantly got the Netflix proxy error.
10. Security Features: PureVPN vs PIA in Canada
Result: Both PureVPN and PIA are quite evenly matched in terms of security. You get valuable features from each provider that can boost your online privacy and security in Canada.
PureVPN – It uses AES-256 encryption. The VPN protocols offered by PureVPN include OpenVPN, L2TP, PPTP, SSTP, IKEv2. PureVPN allows easy switching between different protocols directly through its apps. For authentication, PureVPN uses RSA-2048. In addition, advanced features such as kill switch and IP/DNS leak protection are also offered by PureVPN.
PureVPN offers strong security and privacy features including Split Tunneling, Double VPN, NAT Firewall, and DDoS protection. It also uses two different kinds of authentication:
- For data channel: AES-256-CBC cipher with HMAC SHA1 hash authentication.
- For control channel: AES-256-CBC cipher with HMAC SHA384 hash authentication and RSA-4096 handshake encryption.
PIA – It implements AES-256 encryption but you can only use the OpenVPN configuration, which is unchangeable. PIA offers a kill switch as well as an ad and malware blocking capability using its proprietary MACE technology.
PIA uses AES-256-bit ciphers, RSA-4096 for the handshake, and SHA256 for data authentication for its data channel. For its control channel, PIA uses simple hash authentication and the same ciphers as the data channel.
Final Verdict: PureVPN is the Winner in Canada
PureVPN is better than PIA in terms of speed, logging policy, pricing, server locations, unblocking strength, and more. Although PIA is itself a very good VPN, it falls short in many departments when compared to the raw strength and strong functionalities of PureVPN in Canada.
Some of the areas where PIA gets the better of PureVPN with a larger overall server count. In most other departments, however, PureVPN has outperformed PIA. To learn more about this provider, check out our PIA VPN review in Canada.
So if you’re looking for a VPN in Canada with better privacy, compatibility with VoDs like Netflix, speed, and affordability in Canada, PureVPN is much the better choice in this comparison of PureVPN vs PIA in Canada. You can discover more about this service in our in-depth PureVPN VPN review in Canada guide.