Betternet is a free VPN software, which is available on Android, Windows, iOS, Mac, and other extensions. It can be downloaded on the desktop or as an app on the smartphone. How it works is that it connects you to a remote server, and routes your device’s internet connection through a private server than the internet service provider (ISP).
What do you need to use Betternet for?
Betternet is a great tool to reroute your router and device to a private network, so you are not dependent on the internet service provider (ISP). Betternet connects you securely to a remote network. This can help with speed and with the fact that the transfer of data is through the Betternet VPN and not through your device.
What are the positives with Betternet VPN?
One of the biggest plus points of the program is that it is completely free. While there are enough free and paid VPN programs available, Betternet assures of good quality for free, making their money instead of the number of downloads, ads that are visible to users, and relies on affiliate apps and programs for income. The recent addition of Betternet Premium offers enhanced services at a minimal cost.
Betternet is available across devices and is compatible with a number of operating systems, making it’s market penetration pretty high, and is one of the most well know unpaid VPN providers. It’s not a heavy program to load on the system, and
What are the negatives of Betternet?
With free VPN programs, the biggest drawback is the fact that you get to be subject to a number of advertisements and marketing messaging. It is not a pretty sight or a clean experience, as you are being distracted by the constant messaging. Also, there is always a doubt that your data is not safe, as the service provider does give access to affiliates to reach you. Malware and viruses could also penetrate the system, even with all the security measures.
With Betternet, a lot of the times, the speeds are extremely slow, as low as 100 Mbps, and it is a hassle to work on the connection. It also means that this VPN is not the best choice for downloading torrents or other data, which requires faster internet speeds.
Also, in the case of government surveillance, while Betternet has servers all over the world, the company is based in Canada and falls under that jurisdiction. So, through the network, it is possible for government agencies to track your data and information. While this is standard practice, it also raises the question of privacy and individual right to information.
According to an academic study in 2016, Betternet was listed as the top 10 apps on Android that track user data and enable third-party tracking software. This has attracted a lot of criticism from users worldwide. After the study, Betternet did, however, amend and tighten its security and make the documentation more transparent.
What are the alternatives to Betternet?
While there are a number of VPN software available, some of the direct competitors of Betternet are Nordvpn, Hotspot Sheild, Psiphon, Tunnelbear, Protonvpn, ExpessVPN, Windscribe, VPN unlimited, etc. Hotspot Shield has an edge over Betternet because of the internet speeds it provides, and in terms of security, Nordvpn rates better than Betternet. The program also competes with a number of paid VPNs and service providers, which someone would choose in order to avoid advertisements and have more privacy. Overall, there are very fine points differentiating Betternet from its competitors, and privacy is surely one of the key factors.
What’s the final word on Betternet?
Betternet serves the functional purpose of a VPN and is one of the most popular apps and programs to use. However, the app does face a lot of criticism over privacy breach, and the fact that there might be a third-party tracker for data, which is a deterrent for many users. Speeds too seem to be too low a number of times, and this defeats the purpose of sharing and accessing data from various sources.