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Buffered VPN is a VPN service with a relatively small selection of servers, but

those that are there are fast and dependable, and when you're connected, you can
learn a lot about them. It has robust encryption and some solid privacy protection.
Better yet, it's headquartered far from the oversight of any intelligence network.
It does have some serious blind spots when it comes to streaming, though. Read on
to see our full review of the service from when we tried it out.

Design: Accessible and Detailed


Buffered VPN uses the small-client design that is common among numerous VPNs that
cross the smartphone/desktop barrier. It takes up very little space, which makes it
neat when on your desktop screen, but when it comes to scrolling through servers,
it would have been nice to be able to expand the window to show more information.

The color scheme is the blue-and-white that is all too common on popular VPNs. It's
attractive but doesn't stand out from the crowd in any way.

When you're connected to a server, a wealth of information is presented. You can


see your upload and download speed at that time, as well as the total amount of
information that has been transferred in either direction since you connected to
that particular server. You're also privy to your public IP address.

Settings, options, and account information are hidden within a pop-out menu, though
most of the choices there send you to the web account backend, requiring an
additional login.

We did find the omnipresent Buffered advertisements at the base of the client
rather annoying, especially considering its already small size. Some include
encouraging you to refer a friend or upgrade to a longer subscription.

Buffered VPN
POJCHEEWIN YAPRASERT PHOTOGRAPHY/GettyImages
Setup Process: Quick and easy
Getting going with Buffered VPN is a breeze. Once you've signed up to one of its
subscription packages you download the client for your respective operating system
� it's compatible with Windows, macOS, Linux, and has applications for both iOS and
Android � and install it like you would any other program or app.

Then you put your login information into the small, neat window and you're in. The
home screen has a small selection of servers to pick from, with more available if
you scroll down the list.

SERVER SELECTION: LACKING IN KEY AREAS


Selecting a server in Buffered VPN is easy, but the numbers aren't exhaustive.
There are 41 countries to pick from with a total of 44 servers, at the time of
testing. That's better than some services we've reviewed � ZenMate VPN had hundreds
of servers, but only 30 countries to choose from � but it's far below others, where
there have been as many as 60 countries and thousands of servers.

Still, the ones you can connect to, do so with quick ease. There is no information
about server load or how popular they are, but when you do connect you can learn a
lot about your speed and data usage.

Servers near and far proved to offer excellent upload and download rates and a
decent ping.

One major oversight is a lack of any streaming optimized servers. This meant that
we were never able to view Netflix, Amazon Video, or other services that don't like
VPNs. It's not even a case of not being able to view a foreign version of those
services. When you were connected to Buffered VPN you couldn't use them at all.
While there will always be a game of cat and mouse between VPN providers and these
services, we hope Buffered will find a solution to this missing feature at some
point in the future.

Performance: Fast and Seamless


We saw almost no dip in raw bandwidth when connected to Buffered VPN. Servers near
and far proved to offer excellent upload and download rates and a decent ping. We
saw no stuttering during gaming or in loading websites, and connecting to them was
a breeze.

Windows Firewall did seem to throw up a couple of concerns about our web browser
during testing which was odd, but didn't prove to be a hindrance.

Privacy Policy: Decent, but Imperfect


Privacy is a major reason that many people choose a VPN, so any VPN worth its salt
needs to hold it dear. Fortunately, Buffered VPN does just that. It has no server
logs stored by default, so whether a government agency demanded that Buffered hand
over data on what you've been doing, or the service was hacked, there is no
information to give. What you do when connected to a Buffered VPN server is your
business.

But the likeliness of anyone demanding information from Buffered VPN is unlikely
and even if they did, it would be even less likely to comply. Buffered has recently
moved to Gibraltar, which while technically under control of the British
government, operates independently and is therefore not subject to the information
sharing associated with the 14-Eyes or other intelligence networks.

The only aspect of Buffered VPN's privacy which we weren't huge fans of was the
information collected on your device. This is limited to hardware and software
specifics, but that information is collected and held by Buffered VPN for 30 days
for technical support reasons and for improving its service. You can opt-out of it,
however, in the client's options menu.

Buffered VPN
Buffered VPN
Security: Strong and Comprehensive
There's very little to complain about when it comes to Buffered VPN's security.
Users can enjoy a number of important protective measures while connected to
Buffered's servers:

DNS leak protection: When you're connected to a Buffered VPN server you can feel
secure that you'll never be connected to a public or easily-accessible DNS where
data snooping could occur.
Automatic kill switch: Although we would like to see this enabled by default (you
can switch it on in the options menu) the kill switch makes sure that if you drop a
connection to Buffered's VPN servers for whatever reason, your internet will not
function while you're reconnecting. This prevents any form of data oversight while
you're not protected by Buffered's other measures.
Strong encryption: Buffered VPN only uses the OpenVPN protocol and military-grade,
AES 256-bit encryption which makes it practically impossible for anyone to see what
you're doing online when connected to a VPN server.
Torrenting: Officially Supported
Buffered officially supports torrenting on its servers and is happy to do so while
providing anonymity for its users, which could help protect them from legal
recourse if they were to accidentally torrent something illegal.

There are no torrent optimized servers, but all of them function well enough for
it. We encountered no problems torrenting when using Buffered VPN.
There are no torrent optimized servers, but all of them function well enough for
it.

Price: A Little on the Expensive Side


Buffered VPN offers a variety of payment methods and subscription options. You can
choose between credit and debit cards, PayPal, or Bitcoin, for those who want an
extra layer of anonymity in their VPN usage.

It also offers a 30-day money-back guarantee should you not prove happy with the
service.

Buffered VPN has three subscription options to pick from, starting at $13 a month,
which is more expensive than most of the other VPN options out there. Its yearly
plan is much more affordable at $79, or the equivalent of $6.60 a month. The two-
year plan is the most affordable at $99, working out at $4.12 a month.

The longer subscriptions offer far more value for money, but there are a number of
cheaper VPN services out there that are worth considering if cost is of major
importance to you.

Competition: Buffered VPN vs. NordVPN


Our favorite VPN has been NordVPN, so we use it as a measure for any new VPNs we
review. Buffered VPN actually holds up rather well, delivering a comparably fast
service for only a little more money each month. It also has many of the same great
security and pro-privacy features of NordVPN.

Where it falls down though is in server selection. Nord has more than 5,000 servers
to pick from in as many as 60 countries. Its servers aren't picked up by Netflix or
Amazon either, so you can use it to watch any streaming services you like.

Final Verdict
A solid, fast VPN that just lacks those key streaming features.

Buffered VPN is one of the better VPN services we've reviewed, with a great
selection of fast servers and robust security and privacy features. There are some
little details about the user interface we'd change if given the chance, but
overall we were very happy with our time using Buffered VPN's service. It just
really needs to add some streaming optimized servers, but if you can get past that,
it's worth using.