NordVPN and IPVanish are two of the biggest VPN brands in the industry. But which one performs better?
NordVPN is the winner in this comparison with IPVanish in terms of speed, server network, logging policy, Netflix support and more.
Here’s a quick summary of the key features of NordVPN vs IPVanish:
|Logging Policy||No logs||No traffic logs|
|Speed||24.91 Mbps||24.86 Mbps|
|Server Network||5,500+ servers|
|Customer Support||Live Chat||Live Chat|
Not interested in reading the rest of the article? See the comparison video below instead:
To see how more than 60 popular providers compare in terms of features, you can see this detailed spreadsheet of VPNs.
Pricing, payment options and refund policy
IPVanish is slightly more affordable than NordVPN, but offers a smaller money-back guarantee. Currently, the 1-year plan of IPVanish costs $3.25/month. However, the provider offers a money-back guarantee for only 7 days.
|Regular Plans||1-month: $11.95/mo|
|Cheapest Plan||3-year deal||2-year deal|
|Special Offers||3 months free on 3 year plan||No Special Offers|
|Money-back Guarantee||30 days||7 days|
|Payment methods||Credit cards, Alipay, cryptocurrencies||Credit cards, PayPal|
NordVPN has gotten more expensive lately. Its 3 year plan now costs $3.49/month. It follows a 30-day refund-period policy, which is longer than that offered by IPVanish.
In terms of payment options, it is disappointing that IPVanish doesn’t accept cryptocurrencies. NordVPN doesn’t accept PayPal but cryptocurrencies are accepted.
Therefore, this round is a tie as both providers offer similar pricing and both lack in some areas that are provided for by the other.
Privacy & Data Logging
NordVPN has the better logging policy and the advantage of a safer jurisdiction as compared to IPVanish. The factor of jurisdiction that a VPN is under has increased ever since Snowden disclosed the spying exploits of the Five, Nine, and Fourteen Eyes.
NordVPN does not retain user information such as IP addresses and connection timestamps. Your activity remains completely logless while using NordVPN. In addition, the provider is located in Panama which is a country having no association with surveillance groups like the Five Eyes and the privacy-friendly laws of the country allow the provider to operate without storing any logs.
|Headquarter||Panama (safe)||USA (unsafe)|
IPVanish does not store traffic logs, but the overall policy of the company is a little vague. Considering the fact that IPVanish is based in the US, there are some concerns as to the ability of this VPN to keep their users secure from privacy scandals, especially since they assisted Homeland Security with a user’s logs.
Therefore, NordVPN is the safer choice as far as privacy and logging policy is concerned.
NordVPN offers 5,500+ servers in 59 countries whereas IPVanish has a network of 1,300+ servers in 60+ countries. As far as the server spread is concerned, both providers cover almost the same amount of regions in the world. However, NordVPN’s total number of servers is significantly larger than IPVanish’s.
The smaller server size of IPVanish isn’t that big of a problem because the provider still covers most of the regions that most VPN users would normally connect to.
Check following table to spot server availability from IPVanish and NordVPN in your desired country.
|Bosnia & Herzegovina||Yes||No|
|British Virgin Islands||No||No|
|Isle of Man||No||No|
|Papua New Guinea||No||No|
|Trinidad and Tobago||No||No|
|Turks and Caicos Island||No||No|
|United Arab Emirates||Yes||Yes|
Nonetheless, on the basis of sheer count alone, NordVPN is winner in this round.
NordVPN is slightly faster than IPVanish on average. The speeds for both providers on a 30 Mbps connection on four different server locations. NordVPN’s average download speed is 24.91 Mbps as compared to IPVanish which managed to reach 24.86 Mbps.
|US: 25.46 Mbps||US: 24.63 Mbps|
|UK: 25.09 Mbps||UK: 24.69 Mbps|
|Germany: 24.29 Mbps||Germany: 25.16 Mbps|
|Australia: 24. 81 Mbps||Australia: 24.96 Mbps|
|Avg. Download: 24.91 Mbps||Avg. Download: 24.86 Mbps|
The difference is hardly significant between the two providers IPVanish is one of the few providers that delivers consistently good speeds along with NordVPN, which takes a prominent place in this list of fastest VPNs of 2020.
Therefore, this round is a tie.
Both providers offer impressively strong security features. The VPN protocols that NordVPN supports include only OpenVPN and IKEv2, whereas IPVanish includes these two protocols in addition to L2TP and PPTP.
|Protocols Supported||OpenVPN, IKEv2||OpenVPN, L2TP, PPTP, IKEv2|
Both IPVanish and NordVPN use AES-256 encryption which is one of the strongest encryption technology in existence. For authentication, NordVPN uses stronger RSA keys (RSA-4096) as compared to IPVanish (RSA-2048). Nonetheless, RSA-2048 is still ridiculously strong and virtually unbreakable in practice.
As an insurance policy against accidental identity leaks, both providers offer killswitch in their apps which instantly cuts of your internet connection in case of a VPN connection drop.
Thus, this round is a tie.
App Usability and Interface
NordVPN and IPVanish both offer appealing and usable mobile and desktop-friendly apps.
|One click installation setup||Windows, MacOS, Linux, iOS, Android||Windows, MacOS, Android, iOS|
NordVPN’s home menu consists of a list of server locations to choose from as well as a world map showing all the available server locations that you can directly connect to. Users can also configure some setting such as VPN protocols by clicking the Settings tab.
IPVanish has an appealing desktop app which allows users to select a server from a country, city, and the specific server itself. This is a nice feature that gives a good amount of control to the user. Users can simply choose a server country if they’re not interested in picking any specific server within a given location. It also has a settings tab.
Both providers offer great mobile apps. NordVPN retains most of the functionality of the desktop app in its mobile version. The homescreen allows you to do most of the interaction, which makes it very simple to use.
Similarly, IPVanish has a simple-to-use mobile app with most of the features on its desktop version intact. However, you can only use OpenVPN protocol with IPVanish on mobile.
Therefore, both providers are equally matched as wall as app interfaces and functionality is concerned.
Features & Compatibility
Both providers offer great features and compatibility but NordVPN has an edge over IPVanish.
|Split Tunneling||No||Android only|
|Extra Features||Ad and malware blocking||None|
|Browser Extensions||Chrome and Firefox||None|
|OS Support||Windows, Linux, MacOS, iOS, Android, Fire TV||Windows, MacOS. Android, iOS, Fire TV|
NordVPN is equipped with killswitch and a wide range of advanced features including Onion over VPN, DoubleVPN, CyberSec, and obfuscated servers. IPVanish lacks features similar to these but does offer split-tunneling on its Android app.
In addition, IPVanish supports 10 multi-logins whereas NordVPN supports 6. As such, if you’re looking for privacy protection on multiple devices, IPVanish might be the better option.
In terms of compatibility, NordVPN fares better. For instance, it offers a command line-based installer which IPVanish lacks. Both providers have dedicated apps for the Amazon Fire TV (2nd generation).
As such, while both providers deliver good range of functions, NordVPN’s advanced features trump IPVanish’s.
NordVPN has more powerful when it comes to unblocking VoD streaming services like Netflix.
|Netflix||US, UK, Australia, Canada,|
|Amazon Prime Video||US, UK||No|
NordVPN is one of the best services for removing geo-restrictions on popular streaming services. It works well for unblocking multiple libraries of Netflix and also works with Hulu, BBC iPlayer, and Amazon Prime Video. All of these services have some of the strongest geo-restriction mechanisms in place, so it speaks volumes about the strength of NordVPN.
IPVanish has deteriorated over the years when it comes to unblocking streaming services. The service used to work well with Netflix, but it is no longer supported after Netflix detected its IP addresses. Similarly, the service is unable to bypass geo-restrictions on BBC iPlayer, Hulu, and Amazon Prime Video. However, it does work with most regional sports streaming channels like bEIN Sports, ESPN etc.
Thus, NordVPN is the winner in this round.
Both NordVPN and IPVanish offer live chat support 24/7 for answering general, billing, as well as technical queries.
We tested the response time of both providers by asking a question. NordVPN responded to our question through live chat within 30 seconds (we actually measured this with Google’s stopwatch):
Doing the same for IPVanish, the response time a minute longer (1.5 minutes).
But to be fair, the customer queue was also longer for IPVanish, whereas when I approached NordVPN, the queue length was only 1 compared to IPVanish’s 5.
The response time is a highly variable measure and it is a function of time of day, queue length etc.
As such, just because the recorded response time of a provider is a few seconds longer than the other, it doesn’t mean that their customer support is inferior.
Other than live chat, both of the VPNs provide support through tutorials, emails, and live chats, making it a comprehensive support provider.
Therefore, both providers are equally matched in terms of customer support.
Availability in China
Both providers are unreliable within China.
China is the most challenging country for VPN providers to offer their service in. The country blocks VPN traffic with sophisticated technologies and it takes extraordinary measures and resources to ensure VPN functionality in China.
Nonetheless, NordVPN does manage to work occasionally in some regions of China, it is very inconsistent. IPVanish, on the other hand, is almost always blocked and unavailable for use in China.
Therefore, NordVPN is slightly better for use in China.
NordVPN is more secure and reliable for torrenting than IPVanish. Since NordVPN is beyond the reach of DMCA notices and has no obligation to retain logs of user activity, it is quite safe to use this VPN for p2p activities. IPVanish is capable of good speeds and its support for protocols like SOCKS5, obfuscation, and kill switch make it a good choice for torrenting. Unfortunately, the jurisdiction doesn’t work in its favor and can be a deal breaker. So, if you’re looking for ultra foolproof security for torrenting, IPVanish may not be the best choice in spite of its other strengths.
Therefore, NordVPN is the better choice for downloading torrents.
Disclaimer: We do not encourage neither condone the use of torrenting to illegally acquire copyrighted material.
Final Verdict: NordVPN is the winner!
The winner in this comparison is NordVPN which has bested IPVanish owing to faster speeds, larger servers, stronger privacy, unblocking strength and more!
IPVanish is a very capable service in its own right and actually excels in some aspects where in NordVPN lacks. For instance, it offers 10 simultaneous connections and supports split-tunneling on Android. Unfortunately, its major weakness lies in its slightly vague logging policy and lack of support for popular streaming services.
It bears mention that this comparison shouldn’t be used to judge IPVanish in a bad light. IPVanish is a very good VPN service on its own and stands tall among its competitors for its excellent overall performance, range of features, and speed.
But in a head-to-head comparison of raw power and sheer ability, NordVPN is the better choice as compared to IPVanish.