ZenMate is a Germany-based VPN provider that works as an app and as well as a browser extension. ZenMate is a Freemium VPN provider, meaning it has a free version and premium version. We provide a complete ZenMate review of2018 that evaluate its performance.
Pros of ZenMate Review
- Easy to install and use
- Compatible with every platform and devices
- Encrypted with AES128
- No logs or traffic
- Unlimited bandwidth and turbo speed
- Affordable yearly pricing plan
Cons of ZenMate Review
- No live support
- Limited server location
ZenMate Review Features
ZenMate is a Freemium VPN, meaning that it offers both, a free VPN service and a paid VPN service. You will find limited features available in its free VPN service. We provided a detailed analysis of these features below:
ZenMate Free VPN Features
Following are the features for a ZenMate Free VPN:
- Servers available in US, Germany, Hong Kong, and Romania
- Only an extension for Chrome and Firefox internet browser
- Unlimited data with no restrictions
- It has two protocols i.e. Layer 2 Tunneling Protocol (L2TP) and Internet Protocol Security (IPSec)
ZenMate Premium VPN Features
Below are the features for a ZenMate Premium VPN:
- Availability of 30 servers in 29 countries
- Installed for multiple devices i.e. Windows, Mac OSX, Android, and iOS
- Faster speed than the free version
- Blocks Malware
- Connect ZenMate in 5 different devices at a single time
Is ZenMate Secure?
ZenMate is located in Germany which is not an ideal place for a VPN service provider to operate. Germany has a clear stance to end internet privacy and ZenMate is loyal to German data privacy laws.
The ZenMate App
You get a free trial for ZenMate app once you locate the ZenMate email when it had sent you at the time of setting up Username and Password. Download the app from the ZenMate website and use the free trial version to check the performance of the app.
The ZenMate app is synchronized with its websites. If you were logged in on its website then it wouldn’t require a username and password. The app will take you straight to the servers you want to connect.
ZenMate Review Chrome Extension
The ZenMate Chrome extension uses a 128-bit encryption for ZenMate security, which is a bit weaker to its premium version. However, the speed for ZenMate Chrome extension is far better than its app. The download speeds has an improvement and is quicker to perform.
Does ZenMate VPN unblock Netflix?
ZenMate does well unblocking Netflix but not on regular basis. It works well when you are connected to US and UK servers, but every time you change a server, it gives a proxy error.
ZenMate uses an IP address that has still not been detected by Netflix and that is the reason why it can unblock Netflix. Alongside Netflix, it can unblock BBC iPlayer and Amazon Prime.
ZenMate Review: Pricing and Plans
Even though ZenMate offers a free extension/plugin for web browsers, our ZenMate premium review is primarily concerned with its premium plan. Using the paid plan, your entire web activities are encrypted, while the free plan will only get the activities in your browser encrypted.The pricing plan offered by ZenMate is no different from other VPN providers designed in three tiers. The pricing tends to change as you increase the subscription time with the VPN provider.
- For a one year subscription, the product costs at $4.99/month
- For a six-month subscription, the product costs at $7.49/month
- For monthly subscription, the product costs at $8.99/month
It is great to see ZenMate have reduced their prices to a great margin. Its one-year subscription pricing plan stood at €6.49/month or $7.31, which was way more than the leading VPN providers in the industry.
If we were to assess the pricing previously, we would dare say the product is clearly over-priced. But considering the revised pricing plan, we believe it is a right match and the one which is worth it.
ZenMate Review: Payment Methods
All major credit card options (VISA, MasterCard, American Express etc.) are available including UnionPay, Qiwi Wallet, and PayPal. However, we couldn’t locate BitCoin option, which means the company no longer supports BitCoin payments. It’s a shame to have been removed from the list. This would offer users an anonymous payment option, allowing anyone to sign up for the service without revealing personal information.
ZenMate Review: Server Count
Once you obtain a premium package, you can access to 29 different server locations, which is very low for a VPN service provider. Since ZenMate has recently started its premium services from being a browser extension, the performance seems very fair and it only will increase as the days prolong.
That said, the server list covers major locations and offers access to content from all over the globe. However, we would like to see more server options in the future.
ZenMate Review: Customer Support
For users who might want to contact ZenMate support staff on urgent basis can only contact through email. However, we found out that their responses were timely and covered all the aspects of the problem.Initially, it was difficult to locate how one would contact through email since it did not had a separate icon. We found out ‘Support through email’ inside FAQs, which we are sure a beginner wouldn’t have found the option with ease.
If ZenMate enhances their customer support with features such as forums or live chat, then it would be an excellent upgrade. It will allow users exchange information with other users and staff. It will further help ZenMate to improve their services on the basis of user’s recommendation.
Users can contact ZenMate customer support staff via social media as its available on Facebook and Twitter.
ZenMate Premium Review: Compatibility
ZenMate is accessible on many devices and platforms except for Linux as it doesn’t mention anywhere on its page.Users must remain certain that when using ZenMate as a browser extension, it will only encrypt browsing traffic, while other traffic will not be encrypted. However, the premium version of ZenMate covers the entire traffic from user’s device.
In the customer support section, it also covers ‘Tutorials’ where users are briefed with installation process for browser, mobile, and desktop. However, the process seems very descriptive with no images, which becomes difficult to follow the steps.
Despite these facts, downloading ZenMate software is an easy process which only involves two steps i.e. downloading the software and providing logging details. So, providing a tutorial or not, it can easily be accomplished by a beginner user.
Protocols and Encryption
From the technical aspect, the latest protocol TLS 1.2 (RFC 5246) is being used by ZenMate to protect users’ data. ZenMate further uses AES 128 bit encryption algorithm, instead of AES 256 bit, to encrypt user’s traffic. In our opinion, the encryption level isn’t the strongest as per industry standard.
Furhtmore, the lack of protocol options also play down ZenMate. The actual reason for this is not clear; perhaps its due to the cost or merely a preference of performance, we are not quite sure.
ZenMate vs Hola
Hola is a free web browser extension just like ZenMate, but has yet to offer a Premium Plan that could provide higher online security and privacy to its users. Hola is available in only 9 countries, whereas, ZenMate is present in 29 countries around the world.
The Premium Plan for ZenMate does not compromise or sell user information, in fact it does not store any logs or traffic. On the other hand, check out the Hola VPN Review sells your internet activity to third-parties and uses each user as a node in the overall network. Both these VPN services can be used by online users that do not have high requirements for online privacy.
ZenMate has mentioned on its website that ZenGuard GmbH is responsible for collection of any kind of data or it’s processing. This seems a bit doubtful from the users point of view as they’re trusting ZenMate with their information. The information is in fact managed by another party, which challenges the authority of ZenMate in accessing the data.
VPN users are still unknown to the facts about 14-eyes countries. These are the 14 countries that have made a special agreement that allows them to collect, analyze, and share intelligence amongst themselves.
The agreement restricts these countries to spy on each other as enemies, but rather they can help each other by spying onto their citizens. US is not allowed to spy on their own citizens, and considering that matter they can ask UK to spy on them, which makes citizens vulnerable.
Since ZenMate is located in Germany, which is a part of the agreement, it will have to compromise user’s data when it accounts for performing illegal activities.
For initial years, ZenMate has operated as web browser extension so that its users could access websites operating outside their country for free. We are certain that when a user does not pay for the product, that means ‘users’ are the product.
They might collect user’s information and browsing history and sell it to the third-party, therefore it doesn’t make ZenMate safe and secure for the paid services as well.
However, ZenMate has made it clear and evident that it does not collect, store, or process any user information. It further mentions that there are 5 different cases where this rule might not apply:
- When users contact with their customer support
- When subscribing to newsletter
- When providing information upon users request
- When users connect to a server to use ZenMate
- When users post a comment on forums and communities.
What does ZenMate do?
ZenMate provides protection and security to online users by letting them change their geographical location and to access the web from anywhere around the world.
What is ZenMate Used for?
ZenMate is used for accessing the web from any parts of the world that have geo-restrictions. ZenMate also offers protection and security to its users from external threats including cyber threats. It allows torrenting, visit the censored parts of the internet, using a public Wi-Fi, and allows expats to access online shops.
ZenMate Twitter Review
To some VPN users, ZenMate is easily the best VPN they have ever had the pleasure of using. This is because it helps them unblock Netflix, HBO, Hulu, and other channels so they can stream their favorite TV shows and movies outside their country region.
— Rednegade (@REDNEGADE_) April 20, 2017
Nick Tomaino, an investor at Runa Capital firmly believes that the first VPN product comes on his mind when thinking of privacy and security is ZenMate.
— Nick Tomaino (@NTmoney) October 5, 2016
ZenMate Review Reddit
One Reddit user have a conflicting belief when using ZenMate as he believes the service brought him a fine experience, but suggest the service is only good for Europeans who are trying to access websites in the US instead of the other way around.
ZenMate Review – Video Tutorial
In this video, BestVPN examines ZenMate VPN service including their unique selling proposition and discrepancies.
ZenMate Review: Conclusion