ZenMate VPN 2020

ZenMate VPN Review for 2020

Is ZenMate As Reliable As It Is Affordable?

Stefan

by Stephan Kubrik
digitalwelt Lead Columnist for IT Security

digitalwelt logo

Currently there are over 47 million people worldwide that use ZenMate, and their Google Chrome extension is the #1 VPN extension in the Chrome Web Store. So, what makes ZenMate VPN such a popular VPN provider? Keep on reading our review because we’re about to dive in deep and let you know all about the best and the worst parts of ZenMate.

ZenMate is a German company based in Berlin, that offers a virtual private network under the same name. The company launched in 2013 and has been growing ever since.

Their service is available on all major operating systems and they also offer a free browser extension for Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox.

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ZenMate VPN
ZenMate
Rating 4.5

starts at $2.22
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Is ZenMate Good?

ZenMate is probably the most affordable high-quality VPN app out there.

Its up-to-date features hold up against other competitors in today’s market where new features are released constantly. And their user-friendly interface is great no matter if you’re just downloading your first VPN app or you have been using one for decades.

ZenMate is a highly secure and privacy-focused service. Unlike most VPNs, the app barely seems to affect your internet speed.

They offer servers in over 74 different countries. Amongst which you’ll also find special servers for unblocking geo-restricted streaming services and servers for downloading. You’ll be able to find out everything about it in the app overview section in our ZenMate review below.

Plus, they offer a 7-day free trial period as well as a 30 day money-back guarantee. So, you can test-out the service for yourself and decide if it’s right for you.

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Considering the low price and the service quality ZenMate offers, we think it’s one of the best, most reliable VPNs out there. Here’s a list of pros and cons to help you make up your mind if ZenMate is right for you.

ZenMate Pros:

  • Servers in 74+ countries
  • Servers for streaming and downloading
  • Military-grade encryption
  • Affordable yearly plan
  • Easy to use & fast speeds
  • No-logs policy

ZenMate Cons:

  • Expensive 1-month plan
  • No Linux app

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How to Use ZenMate VPN

ZenMate is probably one of the simplest, most easy-to-use VPN out there after installing. The Android and iOS apps can also be found in the Google Play Store and App Store.

Once you’ve downloaded the app for your device, if you’re using a mobile phone, the installation process should start automatically. If you’re on a desktop, run the installer and then sit back and wait for the app to install. It shouldn’t take more than 2 minutes.

How To Install The ZenMate Browser Extension

To install the ZenMate extension on your browser, just search for it in the Mozilla Firefox or Google Chrome web stores and click add to my browser.

Once your app is installed you must create and verify your account. By now you should already be familiar with this standard process. After you’ve created your account check your email to verify the address as well and log-in.

Now the app is up and ready to run. You can either connect automatically to a server by clicking or tapping the big round button with a shield on it. If you choose to do that, ZenMate connects you to one of the fastest available servers based on your location.

Or if you want to connect to a server from a specific country or one optimized for downloading or streaming, just choose one from their lists and click or tap it to connect.

Your internet traffic is now encrypted, your virtual location has changed, and you’re surfing the web with a different IP address. Which means you’re 100% virtually anonymous and protected.

Is ZenMate VPN safe?

Just like most VPNs out there, ZenMate uses military-grade encryption. That refers to the industry standard AES-256 encryption that’s unbreakable even by the most advanced computers out there.

The browser extensions, however, use AES-128 encryption instead of 256. But this is also one of the most advanced security configurations.

So, is ZenMate safe to use?

ZenMate VPN prides itself on being one of the best tools for internet anonymity out there. That’s why they have a strict no-logs policy. Which means none of your internet activity is recorded while using the app. So ZenMate never keeps any logs of its users that could later on be handed over to authorities.

ZenMate VPN Overview

Like previously mentioned, ZenMate is available on almost all major operating systems. You can use the app in either compact or detailed mode. In detailed mode you’ll be able to check out the different server lists and connect to a specific server.

They offer dedicated apps for Windows, macOS, iOS, Android, and Android TV. As well as the free browser extensions available for Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox. The app also works with Amazon Fire Stick TV and Chromecast if you cast from a device that is using ZenMate, or if you set up an OpenVPN connection on your router.

They don’t offer a Linux app but if you want to use ZenMate on different platforms they support OpenVPN configuration.

ZenMate VPN Server Locations

VPN Review

4.8 out of 5

ZenMate has about 3,700 servers in over 74 countries all over the world. They offer servers on every continent.
What’s most notable about ZenMate’s servers is the fact that in the app they offer 2 different kinds of server lists. One is for downloads and the other is for streaming.

The downloads servers are optimized for ensuring faster download speeds and for keeping torrents you might have downloaded private.

ZenMate Technical Support & Customer Support

VPN Review

4.7 out of 5

ZenMate VPN offers 24/7 support in English. If you’re experiencing any issues you can contact them via live chat straight from their website. If you don’t want to use live-chat you can also submit a ticket in the Support section. Or you can always send them an email and expect a response promptly.

ZenMate also offers some “how to” articles and answers to frequently asked questions on their website. So, if you don’t want to speak with anybody you can just browse their documentation. These articles are being updated frequently and some might find them very helpful.

But we think the quickest way to get an answer is via live chat. We put it to the test ourselves and their customer support team tends to respond very fast.

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ZenMate Features

VPN Review

5.0 out of 5

Other than the special streaming and downloading servers that we already covered, ZenMate has a bunch of other interesting features.

The 1st one is the kill switch feature. You can turn the kill switch feature on or off from your settings. While on, if the VPN connection drops for any reason, ZenMate automatically shuts down your internet connection so you’re not left exposed at any moment.

This can be especially useful when traveling or when using poorly secured public Wi-Fi networks. Because you’re not risking being vulnerable for hackers or cyber-criminals to steal your sensitive information.

Another interesting feature that ZenMate has to offer is the fact that their service is available on an unlimited number of devices.
While most VPN services offer about 5 to 7 simultaneous connections with 1 subscription, ZenMate offers unlimited devices for just 1 subscription. Which means you can protect all your devices using ZenMate VPN.

ZenMate Speed Review

VPN Review

4.2 out of 5

Most people think VPN services slow down their internet connection. However, a reliable VPN should let you experience fast speeds.

In fact, some ISPs tend to limit users’ speeds to avoid congestion, so if you do use a VPN service, sometimes you might end up having a faster download speed.
To see how ZenMate VPN affects users’ internet speed we tested our connection with the VPN turned off and on.

We connected to both preferred and random servers not optimized for download speeds and did not experience any drop in performance. Our download speed went from 188.26 Mbps when ZenMate was off to 185.62 with ZenMate running.

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ZenMate VPN for Torrenting

As previously mentioned, ZenMate has special servers optimized for downloads. When connecting to one of the servers from that list you can keep all your downloads private and experience the fastest possible download speeds.

Since torrenting is in a legal grey-area in most countries around the world, the downloads feature can be particularly helpful, so you don’t get into any trouble with the authorities. Especially since ZenMate doesn’t mention anything about not using their service for torrenting.

In fact, they say they support it as long as it’s P2P and doesn’t violate copyright laws.

ZenMate For Streaming

The special streaming servers list contains optimized servers for unblocking geo-restricted content from different countries all over the world. Here you’ll discover servers guaranteed to work with platforms like Netflix US, Netflix Japan, HBO GO, Disney Plus, BBC iPlayer, YouTube, Amazon Prime, and more.

If you choose the US server from ZenMate’s list of streaming servers, you’ll be able to access Netflix US without any problems from any location. And you’ll get access to a ton of content that’s restricted in other countries as well.

We tested a few of the streaming servers and didn’t encounter any problems unblocking Netflix US, Disney Plus or BBC iPlayer.

For unblocking Amazon Prime Video though, a VPN service isn’t all it takes. You must also use an Amazon account linked to a US credit card.

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Closing Thoughts – Is ZenMate VPN Good?

ZenMate VPN offers 3 different payment plans. A 1 month $10.99 subscription, a 6 month plan for $5.39 per month and an 18 months subscription for only $2.22 per month with which you get an 6 extra months worth of VPN protection for free.

This makes ZenMate one of the most affordable VPN options out there, and if you are not satisfied, there is a 30-day money back guarantee.

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Stefan

by Stephan Kubrik
digitalwelt Lead Columnist for IT Security

digitalwelt logo

Stephan Kubrik is a Computer Scientist and expert on VPNs and computer viruses. Stephan has been researching for the Fraunhofer Society and has been developing software for the autonomous discovery of computer viruses and trojans using artificial intelligence.

He was previously a Research Associate at the Technical University of Cologne, studied Computer Engineering, and regularly publishes in IT magazines and journals, including the PC Magazine and digitalwelt.


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