VPN Unlimited vs PIA

Few services have gained as much popularity as VPN Unlimited and Private Internet Access or simply PIA. Both of them have great offerings that only a few handful of competitors can match. Nevertheless, experts unanimously agree that VPN Unlimited is the better one of the two.

Comparison

Here’s a table showing all the perks and features both have to offer:

logo vpn unlimited
VPN Unlimited
logo pia vpn
Private Internet Access
Logging Policy No LoggingNo Logging
Jurisdiction United States (Five-Eyes Member)United States (Five-Eyes Member
EncryptionAES-256
SHA-256 Hash Authentication
4096-bit RSA Key Exchange
AES-256
AES-128
SHA-256 Hash Authentication
4096-bit RSA Key Exchange
Protocols OpenVPN UDP (Only on Windows, Linux, and Android)
OpenVPN TCP (Only on Windows, Linux, and Android)
PPTP
IPSec/L2TP (Only on iOS and macOS)
IPSec/IKEv2 (Only on Windows)
WireGuard (Only on iOS, macOS, Windows, Linux, and Android)
KeepSolid Wise (Only on iOS, Windows, Android, and Linux)
OpenVPN UDP
OpenVPN TCP
IPSec/L2TP
WireGuard
Ad and Malware BlockersYesYes
Kill SwitchYes (Windows, Android, iOS, macOS)Yes
Leak TestsNo Leaks FoundNo Leaks Found
Speed TestsFastFast
Torrenting & P2PYes (Optimized P2P Servers)Yes (On all servers)
StreamingNetflix
Amazon Prime
BBC iPlayer
Firestick
Roku (Via Router)
Kodi
Apple TV (Via Router)
Android TV
Netflix
Amazon Prime
Hulu
Firestick
Kodi
GamingWindows
Android
iOS
Xbox One (Via Router)
PS4 (Via Router)
Nintendo Switch (Via Router)
Windows
Android
iOS
Xbox One (Via Router)
PS4 (Via Router)
Nintendo Switch (Via Router)
CompatibilityWindows
Linux
macOS
Android
iOS
Firefox
Opera
Microsoft Edge
Chrome
Selected Routers
Windows
macOS
Android
iOS
Linux
Chrome
Firefox
Opera
Tor
Selected routers
Simultaneous Connections510
Servers500+3300+
ChinaYesSometimes (1 Out of 3 Servers Worked)
Split TunnelingYes (Only on Android)Yes
Additional FeaturesTwo-Factor Authentication
Personal Static IP Address
Personal VPN Server
PIA MACE
Prices$9.99/Month
$4.99/Month (1 Year)
$199.99/Lifetime
$9.95/Month
$3.33/Month (1 Year)
$2.69/Month (2 Years)

Special Offer: 73% off and 2 months free for a 2-year subscription
Our Rating4.54.3
Websitewww.vpnunlimitedapp.comwww.privateinternetaccess.com

Simply looking at their specs won’t be enough. To really know which service to get, it’s essential to thoroughly review them. Once that’s done, it’ll be right to finally make a decision.

Privacy & Security

Private Internet Access and VPN Unlimited are both headquartered in the United States. Due to that, neither of them is free from Five Eyes Alliance authority. Restrictive laws hinder their operations and prevent them from going about without facing being shut down.

Encryption Comparison

Both VPN solutions use AES-256 encryption as well as SHA-256 hash authentication. Apart from that, they also utilize an RSA-4096 key exchange, which is extra secure.

Setting PIA apart is the fact that it uses AES-128 as a backup for AES-256.

VPN Protocols

VPN Unlimited and Private Internet Access both support OpenVPN, WireGuard, and IPSec/L2TP. 

Making the former service stand out is that it also supports PPTP, IPSec/IKEv2, and Keepsolid Wise. Also, it’s protocol support depends on the platform.

Leak Protection

Leak protection is something the two VPN service providers claim to provide. To determine if they’re true to their claims, I tested each one out with IPLeak.net. Below is the result with Private Internet Access and its server in Singapore:

IP Leak Test – PIA VPN Singapore

IP Leak Test – PIA VPN Singapore

And this is how VPN Unlimited’s corresponding server fared:

IP Leak Test – VPN Unlimited Singapore

IP Leak Test – VPN Unlimited Singapore

Unsurprisingly, both were able to mask my legitimate IP address. As such, I recommend both to anyone who’s looking to remain under the radar. With either, your identity is 100% secure.

Server Security

The only thing preventing the two VPNs from breaching your privacy is their no-logging policies. 

Fortunately, there hasn’t been an incident wherein subscribers of either had their data stolen.

In Conclusion

Private Internet Access and VPN Unlimited are both very safe. But, the winner for this category is PIA. Why? Because it has more extensive protocol support than its competitor. In addition, it has more security features like split tunneling and a kill switch on all platforms. So, PIA wins in this VPN Unlimited vs PIA battle.

Speed Test

VPN services always bring down internet speeds. However, the rate they do this varies. To see which of the two is faster, I conducted a few tests. Below is a screenshot of the outcome after I connected to Private Internet Access’ Singapore server:

Speed Test – PIA VPN Singapore

Speed Test – PIA VPN Singapore

Here’s how VPN Unlimited’s same location server did:

Speed Test – VPN Unlimited Singapore

Speed Test – VPN Unlimited Singapore

The results left me surprised. I didn’t expect PIA to lag behind VPN Unlimited as much as it did. While connected to it, only my upload speeds didn’t take a severe hit.

Torrenting & P2P

Private Internet Access and VPN Unlimited both allow for torrenting on their servers. Be that as it may, only the former VPN service provider has a 100% optimized P2P network. Therefore, on paper, it’s better equipped for the job.

I ran tests to check if each leaked during torrenting sessions. This is the result after I torrented while using PIA and its Singapore server:

Torrenting Leak Test – PIA VPN Singapore

Torrenting Leak Test – PIA VPN Singapore

Now, this is how VPN Unlimited’s same location server performed:

Torrenting Leak Test – VPN Unlimited Singapore

Torrenting Leak Test – VPN Unlimited Singapore

As expected, neither VPN solution failed my tests. Nevertheless, this VPN Unlimited vs Private Internet Access round goes to PIA because its entire network is P2P-enabled.

Streaming

Streaming is something that PIA isn’t known for. It can’t unblock sites like Hulu and BBC iPlayer with consistency. On the other hand, VPN Unlimited has a great track record. Many say that it reliably bypasses the geoblocks of Amazon Prime, Hulu, Netflix, and BBC iPlayer.

Below is a screenshot showing how Private Internet Access after watched Spotlight using its server in New York:

Netflix US – PIA VPN

Netflix US – PIA VPN

Here’s how VPN did after viewed the same movie using its special server for streaming in Los Angeles:

Netflix US – VPN Unlimited

Netflix US – VPN Unlimited

Both were able to grant me access to Netflix USA without hitches. Also, they didn’t introduce issues with quality and buffering. Still, my winner for this category is VPN Unlimited, as it can work around more geoblocks.

Gaming

I had to see how each would perform with Call of Duty Mobile. After all, I’m a very competitive person that needs to remain protected during every play session.

PIA didn’t fare so well. While paired to its server in Singapore, I had trouble getting into several matches. Moreover, lag and drops in frames happened frequently.

In comparison, VPN Unlimited and its corresponding server did so much better. Not once did I have problems with lagging or frame drops. Entering matches was also very easy. Hence, it’s the clear winner in this PIA vs VPN Unlimited category.

Compatibility

Check out the table below know what each service works on:

VPN UnlimitedPrivate Internet Access
Windows
Linux
macOS
Android
iOS
Firefox
Opera
Microsoft Edge
Chrome
Selected Routers
Windows
macOS
Android
iOS
Linux
Chrome
Firefox
Opera
Tor
Selected routers

Although it doesn’t work alongside Tor, VPN Unlimited has more browser extensions. Therefore, it’s the winner once more in this round of our match.

Simultaneous Connections

Private Internet Access allows for up to 10 simultaneous connections, whereas its competitor allows for only up to 5. As such, it is the winner of this category by default.

Servers

VPN Unlimited has a small network when compared to other VPN services. It operates a tad bit more than 500 servers around the globe. Meanwhile, PIA has a rather large network that consists of 3000+ servers. As such, it takes the win in this category.

China

Many have found success in China while using VPN Unlimited. The same can’t be said for PIA, which seldom bypasses the country’s Great Firewall.

Interface & Usability

All of Private Internet Access’ apps are remarkably minimalistic. When opened, you’ll instantly see a quick-connect button and tabs where servers may be chosen. The three-dot icon on the top right corner is where you head to access the settings.

PIA VPN Interface

PIA VPN Interface

VPN Unlimited’s apps aren’t as nice as PIA’s. Why? They’re clunky, hard to get around, and unresponsive. Furthermore, they also take up a lot of space. Hence, I would not suggest them to those who’ve got older devices.

VPN Unlimited Interface

PIA VPN Interface

Additional Features

VPN Unlimited lets you establish a VPN server and personal IP address without charge. It also allows you to utilize 2FA authentication to make logins more secure. This is wonderful for anyone who wishes to double down on security.

PIA doesn’t have much in terms of exclusive features. Why? The VPN chooses to prioritize key things that make a VPN great.

Customer Support

Check out the table below to see what each offers when it comes to customer service:

VPN UnlimitedPrivate Internet Access
Live ChatYesYes
Email SupportYesYes
Phone SupportNoNo
Ticket SupportYesYes
Video Tutorials NoNo
Online Knowledge BaseYesYes
Average Response Time1 Hour45 Minutes

As you can see, the two are very similar. That said, VPN Unlimited has a faster average response time. Due to that, it’s the winner of this category.

Prices

Here’s a table detailing the pricing schemes of each service:

VPN UnlimitedPrivate Internet Access
Subscription Lengths1 Month ($9.99/Month)$9.95/Month
1 Year ($5.00/Month)1 Year ($3.33/Month)
Lifetime ($199.99)2 Years ($2.69/Month)
Highest Price Per Month$9.99$9.95
Lowest Price Per Month$4.99$2.69
One Year Price$59.99$39.95
Money-Back Guarantee 30 Days30 Days
Special OfferLifetime for $199.9973% discount for a 2-year plan + 2 months free

Both offer excellent value for money. Still, the winner for this category is VPN Unlimited. While its base prices are more expensive, it offers a lifetime deal. This is great for anyone who’s looking to commit and save big. Thus, it's the winner in this Private Internet Access vs VPN Unlimited round.

Verdict

Is VPN Unlimited better than PIA?

Yes. Despite having shortcomings, VPN Unlimited is superior to its competitor. With it, you’ll be able to unblock nearly any streaming site, browse freely in China, and play games without hitches, as the VPN is really fast. Also, you’ll be getting great value for money.

About the author 

Kris Soliongco

Kris has two passions in life: writing and tech. He’s been building computers since he was eight years old and is very knowledgeable about online security. The first time he was exposed to VPNs was in 2016. Since then, he’s used a plethora of services and has gained much experience.

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