NordVPN vs PIA – both of these VPNs are well renowned but which one is better?
In today’s head to head comparison, we have NordVPN and PIA to see which one offers better privacy, security, and online accessibility.
So, In this guide, you’ll be able to find comparative tables to help you decide in choosing NordVPN or PIA?
However, If you’re just interested to know which VPN is the winner in this entire comparison. We have found that NordVPN has performed quite better than PIA.
NordVPN vs PIA: Head to Head Comparison
NordVPN unquestionably wins this comparison because its has a massive server network and top-notch features. Here’s a rundown of some of the most prominent features of NordVPN that gives it an edge over PIA:
NordVPN is the winner!
- Logging: NordVPN does not keep any logs
- Speed: 24.91 Mbps
- Servers: 5000+ servers in 59 countries
- Jurisdiction: Panama (safe for a VPN service)
- Price: $3.49/mo
- Support: Live Chat, Faqs, guides, email
- Streaming: Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Hulu, Amazon Prime, etc.
A Quick Comparison of NordVPN and PIA
If you don’t want to read in detail then you can check the list of factors we have used to compare NordVPN and PIA in the below table. Also, you can explore our detailed VPN comparison chart.
|Logging Policy||No logs||No logs|
|Speed||24.91 Mbps||21.4 Mbps|
|Server Network||5000+ servers 59 countries||3300+ Servers 48 countries|
|Customer Support||Live chat, Email, Faq, Guides||Live chat, Email, Faq, Guides|
Overview of NordVPN and PIA
NordVPN and PIA are undoubtedly two big names in the industry. Both VPNs have been in the market for decades now. On the surface, both VPNs tend to offer similar features. For instance, both VPNs offer Kill switch, DNS leak protection, malware protection, and no logs policy.
However, NordVPN has an edge over PIA VPN because of its safe Panama jurisdiction. In addition, it’s extra value-added features such as double encryption and TOR over VPN allows NordVPN to even work in heavingly censored countries (China) where PIA doesn’t.
1. Pricing Plans
Result: PIA is slightly cheaper than NordVPN by costing $0.64 less.
NordVPN – It offers three subscription plans which include a 3-year plan, a 1-year plan, and a 1-month plan. Its most affordable plan costs $3.49/mo , however, PIA VPN’s plans are still cheaper than NordVPN.
PIA – The subscription plans of PIA include monthly, yearly, and half-year plans. Although the pricing for each plan is listed in the table above, it’s worth noting that PIA VPN is quite cheaper than NordVPN. PIA clearly wins this round.
Payment methods and Refund policy
Result: Although both providers offer a 30-day money-back guarantee, PIA offers more payment methods than NordVPN.
|Payment method & Refund||NordVPN||PIA VPN|
|30-day Money-back guarantee||Yes||Yes|
NordVPN – It can be purchased through either credit cards or cryptocurrencies. That’s about it. Similar to PIA VPN, NordVPN subscription packages are refundable within 30-day.
PIA VPN – It offers a 30-day refund policy but also accepts way more payment options than NordVPN. Instead of just accepting credit cards and crypto, PIA VPN also accepts payments made through PayPal, Amazon Pay, and Mint.
2. Jurisdiction: NordVPN vs PIA
Result: NordVPN is headquartered in the safe jurisdiction of Panama, whereas PIA is not (USA).
NordVPN – It is headquartered in the safe jurisdiction of Panama. This country is considered a heaven for online privacy. With no mandatory data retention laws in place, ISPs in Panama are not obligated to keep logs.
PIA – It is located in the unsafe jurisdiction of the United States. This is one of the major downsides of Private Internet Access. Being headquartered in the US, law enforcement agencies can legally ask PIA VPN to hand over user data.
3. Logging Policy
Result: NordVPN has a clearer and proven no-logging policy, whereas PIA’s logging policy is quite vague.
|No logs retained||No traffic logs, but the overall policy is vague|
NordVPN – It comes with a great logging policy that guarantees no storage of user data at all. With no timestamps, IP addresses, and bandwidth logs, there is no way that any authority can compromise your privacy. Best of all, it is headquartered in the data retention free jurisdiction of Panama.
4. Speed: NordVPN vs Private Internet Access
Result: NordVPN is faster by 3.53 Mbps on average than PIA VPN.
Speed is another key performance factor to determine the better service between these two. Because let’s face it, if a VPN is not fast, you can’t download torrents with it or browse your favorite shows on Netflix.
|Speed in Countries||NordVPN||PIA VPN|
|US||25.46 Mbps||19.16 Mbps|
|UK||25.09 Mbps||25.78 Mbps|
|Germany||24.29 Mbps||22.25 Mbps|
|Australia||24.81 Mbps||18.4 Mbps|
|Avg. Download||24.91 Mbps||21.39 Mbps|
NordVPN – Testing the service on a 30 Mbps connection, NordVPN didn’t disappoint delivering remarkably good speeds at 24.91 Mbps on average.
PIA – It couldn’t deliver the same level of speed as NordVPN, however, it still managed to achieve an average speed of 21.39 Mbps which is not too far behind NordVPN. Therefore, NordVPN once again is the winner.
5. Server Network: PIA vs. NordVPN
Result: NordVPN has roughly 1700 more servers than PIA.
|5000+ servers in 59 countries|
3300 + servers in 48 countries
NordVPN – It offers significantly more servers as compared to PIA. The server network of this provider encompasses more than 5000+ servers with a presence in 59 countries. The best thing about NordVPN is that all of its servers are physical and not virtual.
PIA VPN – It offers a decent server network consisting of 3300+ VPN servers, however, it only offers coverage in 48 countries whereas NordVPN offers coverage in 59 countries. PIA VPN also uses entirely bare-metal (physical) servers, however, it still has no competition against NordVPN.
6. Compatibility: NordVPN vs Private Internet Access
On the compatibility front, both NordVPN and PIA support similar platforms/devices. As such, both of these providers are evenly contested when it comes to compatibility.
NordVPN – It supports a wide range of devices, including Android TV, Firefox, Chrome, Windows, macOS, iOS, Android, and more. NordVPN is also compatible with routers, which in turn makes it compatible with devices that don’t support VPNs natively.
PIA VPN – It is compatible with desktops and smartphones, including PC, Mac, Linux, iOS, and Android. However, unlike NordVPN, PIA VPN also supports the Opera browser which is a big plus. But all in all, both providers more or less support the same kind of devices.
7. Customer Support: PIA vs NordVPN
Result: NordVPN offers live chat support with a response time of 30 seconds
|Live chat||Yes||Yes (requires a lot of steps)|
NordVPN – In this comparison, we found that NordVPN is obviously better than PIA in terms of customer support. We were pleasantly surprised to see that it only took 30 seconds for NordVPN to entertain our query.
PIA – The customer support is notably inferior compared to NordVPN. When it comes to providing easy live chat functionality, PIA VPN is not all that good. The reason is that you’ll need to fill in a short form just to get in contact with their live chat representative. NordVPN wins this round for it’s excellent and responsive live chat support.
8. Torrenting: Private Internet Access vs NordVPN
Result: NordVPN offers better torrenting support thanks to its obfuscation technology and thousands of servers.
|Torrenting Features||NordVPN||PIA VPN|
NordVPN – It offers a wide range of P2P-enabled servers that can help you access and download any torrent file you can imagine. In addition, thanks to its obfuscation technology, NordVPN can stay under the radar of your ISP. The system-wide kill switch feature of NordVPN ensures that your IP doesn’t leak while you are torrenting.
PIA VPN – It supports P2P networking and torrenting on its servers. In fact, it has a port-forwarding feature specially designed to optimize your torrenting speed. However, the fact that PIA is located in the US means that the company will have to comply with any DMCA notices it receives.
NordVPN is headquartered in Panama, it is significantly safer than PIA.
9. Unblocking Strength: PIA VPN vs NordVPN
Result: NordVPN can unblock more streaming services than PIA VPN.
Unblock streaming channels is one of the major reason for using VPNs. To can find out which VPN can unblock more streaming services with the help of this table.
|Streaming Channels||NordVPN||PIA VPN|
|Amazon Prime Video||Yes||Yes|
NordVPN – It can effortlessly unblock Netwflix along with a bunch of other streaming services as mentioned in the table above. As for performance, in our testing, NordVPN managed to deliver HD streaming quality.
10. Security and Features
Result: NordVPN offers more security features, however, PIA is not too far behind.
Although both VPNs offer similar features and have strong security but you can find out which one offers more value for money.
|Security Features||NordVPN||PIA VPN|
|Onion over VPN||Yes||No|
NordVPN – It offers significantly more features than PIA VPN. Both providers have the following features in common:
- AES-256 encryption
- OpenVPN tunneling protocols
- IP/DNS leak protection
- Ads, tracker, and malware blocker
- P2P support
- Browser extension
But NordVPN has multiple unique features that PIA doesn’t have:
- Onion over VPN – Combination of Tor + VPN technology for users that need greater security
- DoubleVPN – The VPN chaining technology that increases user security by routing data through 2 servers
- Dedicated IP addresses
- 6 simultaneous connections
On the other hand, PIA has only these unique features:
- 10 simultaneous connections
Final Verdict: NordVPN is the winner!
So based on our detailed NordVPN vs PIA comparison, NordVPN is clearly the winner. Although PIA is still a very powerful contender, NordVPN managed to perform better in major areas such as streaming, server network, jurisdiction, logging policy, and more.
Nonetheless, PIA is still a very reliable and reputable VPN. However, the fact that it is headquartered in the US and lacks in some key performance areas, makes NordVPN the winner in our head to head comparison.