Atlas VPN review
Atlas VPN is a beginner-friendly freemium VPN that focuses on being secure and private. This VPN service has great extra features, impressive connection speeds, well-developed apps for all OS, and the best free version we’ve tested so far.
It is also amazing at unblocking streaming services like Netflix and BBC iPlayer, keeping your browsing ad-free with its ad blocker feature, and making sure your data hasn’t been leaked thanks to its powerful data breach checker.
In this Atlas VPN review 2023, we will dig into all the strengths and weaknesses of this freemium VPN. Read on to find out about its speeds, features, security, and apps to finally decide whether it’s the best VPN for you.
📢 LIMITED OFFER: Get Atlas VPN, now 83% OFF!
|🥇 Overall rank:||#3 out of #35|
|📖 No logs policy:||No-logs|
|💵 Price:||From $1.82/month|
|🖥️ Servers:||750+ servers in 38 countries|
|🍿 Streaming services:||Netflix, BBC iPlayer, YouTube|
|🔥 Coupons:||Atlas VPN coupon 83% OFF|
Atlas VPN pros and cons
- Unblocks most streaming services
- Includes web filters
- WireGuard® protocol
- Live support
- Built-in 2FA login
- Free version
- 30-day money-back guarantee
- Based in the US
- Small server fleet
Visit Atlas VPN to learn more about the features.
Is Atlas VPN safe?
Atlas VPN is a secure VPN provider. It has essential security features you’d expect from a VPN, like a no-logs policy, AES encryption, and a reliable kill switch. While the tunneling protocols you can select are truly secure, there are only two options – IKEv2 and the market-standard WireGuard.
However, there’s still room to grow for Atlas VPN. The provider doesn’t use RAM-only servers, instead, they keep data in fully encrypted drives. Additionally, their no-logs policy hasn’t been independently audited, only the security tests that were done for the iOS app.
On the other hand, if you’re wondering who owns Atlas VPN – it has been acquired by Nord Security, the owner of the market-leading NordVPN. So, it’s expected that Atlas VPN will follow the same security standards and practices as NordVPN.
Encryption and tunneling protocols
When you connect to one of Atlas VPN's servers, your connection becomes encrypted, meaning no one can see what you're doing online.
Specifically, Atlas VPN uses the AES-256 cipher which is the current standard for data protection, used by numerous governmental and financial institutions. And they have also implemented a ChaCha20 cipher with the Poly1305 authenticator that ensures next-gen security.
As for tunneling protocols, there are two options: IPSec/IKEv2 and WireGuard. The latter is the marker-standard tunneling protocol and the newest addition to Atlas VPN, ensuring faster speeds and lower ping. And it’s available on Android, Windows, macOS, and iOS devices.
Atlas VPN is based in the United States, Delaware. Unfortunately, the United States is at the forefront of the 5-Eyes alliance, and not a privacy-friendly jurisdiction in general, which is why this won't be one of Atlas VPN's selling points.
However, just like other reputable VPN services, Atlas VPN does have a no-logs policy. The document says that they aren't storing any private information. While this isn't mentioned explicitly, the no-log policy seems to also apply to the free version.
Their policy mentions that you can contact them to have your account permanently deleted. California users can even ask to get a copy of the data the company has on them.
Atlas VPN has added a safety feature that helps to prevent data leaks. It's called a kill switch and is designed to shut down your Internet traffic if a link to the VPN server is interrupted. We perform two tests to check how it works: by blocking the connection from a router and disabling background VPN processes.
In the first test, the kill switch worked well and killed the connection when access to the server was blocked. The only qualm that we had is that it doesn't notify you that the kill switch is triggered. However, we found it useful that the Internet connection can be restored by disabling and enabling the kill switch.
The second test was more complicated than usual, as the service doesn't support OpenVPN. So, the VPN processes are tied to the client. So, we had to disable the client with the kill switch turned on. Even so, the kill switch works even in such circumstances.
Plans and pricing
Atlas VPN is one of the cheapest VPNs on the market. Especially when keeping in mind that the service offers unlimited simultaneous connections.
The monthly plan will charge the most, it would be up to $10.99/month. Therefore, we never recommend short-term plans. However, already with a year-long subscription, you’d get a huge discount and the monthly price would only be $3.29/month.
The 2-year plan is where Atlas VPN shines with budget-friendly prices. With this subscription plan, you’d only have to pay up to $1.82/month.
Every plan comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee, so you can try the paid options out and decide whether you like them enough to justify the purchase.
Payment methods include credit cards, Google Pay, and PayPal. There are also options to pay with cryptocurrency, including BTC, LTC, ETH, and more, as well as QIWI.
However, if you want to get Atlas VPN for a really cheap price, feel free to check out our collection of the best coupon codes for VPN services.
Atlas VPN free version
Atlas VPN is one of the few services that have a free version, and it shouldn't be underestimated. However, it is important to note that there is a 5 GB data limit on this plan – so it won't be your best bet for downloading and streaming large media files.
Atlas VPN continues to be the value king in that regard. As a free user, you're getting access to three locations: Netherlands – Amsterdam, USA – Los Angeles, and USA – New York.
However, the free version won't give you access to streaming-optimized servers, unlimited bandwidth, 24/7 support, unlimited simultaneous connections, and the SafeBrowse feature.
Atlas VPN compared to other VPNs
|Review||Atlas VPN review||NordVPN review||Surfshark VPN review||IPVanish review||ExpressVPN review||CyberGhost review||PrivateVPN review||PureVPN review|
|Price (lowest price per month)||$1.82/month||$3.29/month||$2.30/month||$3.33/month||$6.67/month||$2.19/month||$2.00/month||$2.08/month|
|Free version||Yes, unlimited||Yes, 7-day||Yes, 7-day||No||Yes, 7-day||Yes, 1-day on a desktop, 3-day on Android, and 7-day on iOS||Yes, 7-day||Yes, 7-day|
|Servers||750+ servers in 38 countries||5500+ servers in 60 countries||3200+ servers in 100 countries||2000+ servers in 50 countries||3000+ servers in 94 countries||9700+ servers in 91 countries||200+ servers in 63 countries||6500+ servers in 78 countries|
|WireGuard tunneling protocol||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||No||Yes|
|Streaming||Netflix, BBC iPlayer, YouTube||Netflix, Hulu, BBC iPlayer, Disney+, and more||Netflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime Video, and more||Netflix, BBC iPlayer, YouTube||Netflix, Hulu, BBC iPlayer, Disney+||Netflix, Hulu, BBC iPlayer, Disney+||Netflix, Hulu, BBC iPlayer, Amazon Video, and more||Netflix, BBC iPlayer, YouTube|
|Logging||No logs, not audited||No logs, independently audited twice by PwC||No logs, not audited||No logs, independently audited by Leviathan||No logs, independently audited by Cure53||No logs, independently audited by Deloitte||No logs, not audited||No logs, always-on audit by KPMG|
How does Atlas VPN work?
Atlas VPN like any other VPN on the market encrypts your data online and changes your IP address. So, in turn, no third parties, ISP, or government can follow your activity online and log it.
Additionally, a VPN is a great tool to unblock geo-blocked content, securely torrent, and more.
If you’re wondering how to use Atlas VPN, all you need to do is connect to a server. This way, a VPN creates a secure connection tunnel. All of the data coming from your computer is encrypted and routed through the secure tunnel.
When the encrypted data reaches Atlas VPN servers, then it is decrypted and sent to the website you wanted to visit. This way it appears that the request came from Atlas VPN servers, so your data is secure and hidden.
How to download Atlas VPN?
- Step 1: Go to Atlas VPN website and press the ‘Grab the deal’ button.
- Step 2: Choose your subscription plan. Each option includes a 30-day money-back guarantee.
- Step 3: Proceed to checkout by clicking the button at the bottom-right corner.
- Step 4: Create an account. For that, you’ll be asked to enter your email address and payment information.
- Step 5: Press the ‘Complete purchase’ button and download the app.
- Step 6: Install the VPN app by following the given instructions.
- Step 7: Sign in, connect to the server, and enjoy Atlas VPN services.
Speed and performance: is Atlas VPN fast?
While all VPNs will slow your connection down, some do a better job than others. To see how Atlas VPN performs, we decided to test the WireGuard protocol to see just how much of the original connection speed is retained.
- Baseline: 300 Mbps download/300 Mbps upload
|Location||Download speed (Mbps)||Upload speed (Mbps)|
Since the implementation of the WireGuard tunneling protocol, the speeds of Atlas VPN improved drastically. In the five locations where we tested, there were no noticeable connection speed drops with download or upload speeds. So, you’re really unlikely to have to deal with buffering or lags.
This is exactly what you should expect from WireGuard considering it's one of the fastest protocols on the market.
Overall, Atlas VPN offers really great speeds. While this wasn't one of the provider's strengths before, it is now.
Servers and locations
A large server fleet means good global coverage, wherever you are. It also means that it's easier to find a faster server as the user loads are spread out across them evenly.
Unfortunately, Atlas VPN doesn't cover too many locations. It only has 750+ servers across 38 countries. Compared to VPN market veterans, like NordVPN or Surfshark, these numbers seem low.
|Rest of the world:||2|
Atlas VPN was a mobile-only VPN service for a while, so these numbers reflect the variety that's usually available on free apps on mobile app stores. Although the service did catch up by introducing desktop clients, their fleet size has room to grow.
Right now, the server selection is the largest in Europe. The coverage in other areas of the world is much poorer, there are very few locations in Asia, the Americas, and the rest of the world.
Recently, Atlas VPN introduced 10Gbps servers. No matter whether you’re simply browsing the web or doing data-consuming activities like streaming, these servers optimize connection speeds. The way it works is that the 10Gbps servers have more bandwidth, so they’re capable of transmitting data faster.
When connecting to a server, you can choose a Privacy Pro feature that includes SafeSwap and MultiHop+. Servers with these features will route your traffic through multiple IP addresses, making it virtually impossible to track you.
Does Atlas VPN work in China?
We tested whether Atlas VPN works in China, and it does. Even though it doesn’t offer traffic obfuscation, which is the main method of fighting VPN bans, changing the IPSec/IKEv2 tunneling protocol to the WireGuard can fix the restriction issue.
But keep in mind that not all of the servers and countries work well each time you connect. Therefore, you would need to search for an available one. We have succeeded while connecting to Denmark, Ireland, and a few other countries. And, luckily, the connection was quite stable!
If you are curious about more options for VPNs that work in China, you will always find a list of them on our website.
Streaming: Does Atlas VPN work with Netflix?
|Platform||Does it work?|
|BBC iPlayer||✅ Yes|
|HBO Max||✅ Yes|
Atlas VPN is a great option for a VPN for streaming. This provider is capable of unblocking plenty of the most popular streaming sites. So, you can pick from plenty of different global content libraries and not run out of content to consume.
Additionally, due to the great connection speeds, your streaming experience with Atlas VPN will be seamless and lag-free. More so, Atlas VPN has streaming-optimized servers, so you’ll truly get the highest quality experience.
Unblocking Netflix with Atlas VPN
Atlas VPN exceeded our expectations and easily unblocked 11 different Netflix libraries. So, if you run out of things to watch, you can install it and discover shows available in other countries.
We’ve successfully accessed Japanese Netflix as well as the UK and the US libraries with no interruptions. Likewise, Atlas VPN is definitely a great provider giving you the opportunity to watch anything on Netflix if you find the right server.
Unblocking other streaming sites with Atlas VPN
Atlas VPN also managed to block other popular streaming platforms. For example, the famous British media streaming service, BBC iPlayer, was easily accessible, so you won’t have any issues with streaming the most popular shows in the UK without any interruptions.
During the tests, we didn't notice any stutters or buffering issues so if you want to watch BBC iPlayer from the USA or another country, this VPN is an excellent choice.
Another success we encountered was Hulu. Atlas VPN easily unblock the site and we were able to try out streaming the content with no interruptions or lags. Same as with HBO Max. This streaming site was accessed easily, the video quality was high and there were no interruptions or lags.
We also tried Atlas VPN when trying to access a geo-restricted NBA highlights video on YouTube that was only available to US viewers. Just like with other streaming platforms, it worked wonders.
So, overall, Atlas VPN is a trustworthy option as a VPN for streaming.
Does Atlas VPN allow torrenting?
Atlas VPN torrenting capabilities are nothing exceptional to put it simple. They don't have dedicated P2P servers like, for example, NordVPN, nor are they advertising the functionality. However, despite this radio silence, we can confirm first-hand that torrenting does work.
The download speed we got was around 4-6MB/s (32-48mbps). So it took approximately 7 minutes to download a 2.7 GB file.
Your results may vary, as the speeds will be affected by the same variables that make VPN speeds hard to pinpoint, plus the seeders/leechers, and other nuances. You'll have to test the service yourself to get an idea of how it performs realistically.
The provider doesn't advertise this, but torrenting works on the Atlas VPN free version, as well. Though, don't expect the speeds to be as fast as with the premium subscription.
Interface and ease of use
|Android||Great application, very easy to use|
|iOS||The same as the Android one|
|Windows||Some connection errors, built-in 2FA|
|macOS||macOS Similar to Windows, but runs smoother|
|Linux||No GUI, works through a terminal|
The applications offered by Atlas VPN are easy to use and extremely intuitive. They will especially appeal to those who don’t have much experience using VPN applications.
Atlas VPN offers apps for Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, and Linux. For your convenience, Atlas VPN introduced the auto-connect and quick-connect options (on all apps except Linux). Additionally, you have an option to translate the app into various other languages.
Moving on, with the latest additions to the platform, this VPN now also natively supports Android TV and Amazon Fire Stick. Atlas VPN has enough options to match the biggest services out there.
Let's have a look at the main Atlas VPN user interfaces.
Surprisingly, The Android app of Atlas VPN has been around much longer than its desktop counterpart. This translates well into the user experience. The mobile app has a much cleaner interface. It doesn't come off as cluttered or basic.
Feature-wise, the available toggles are Tracker Blocker and a system-wide kill switch. You can also check if your emails appeared in any data breaches with Data hack detection.
As far as VPNs for Android go, it's a solid app that is perfect for daily use.
You'd have a hard time telling the Android and iOS apps apart. Both apps look and feel absolutely identical. Which is great and is something that companies should do more often.
All the features in Android and iOS apps are the same – the Tracker blocker, Data hack checker, and a kill switch. The only difference we found is that the sharing of usage statistics button is located elsewhere. Still, that really won’t radically change your experience.
Overall, it’s a solid VPN application for iPhone.
The Windows VPN app itself borrows the design from the mobile apps (as they were introduced first). There are a lot of rounded corners to make it pleasant to the eye. The app is pretty easy to navigate and find what you need.
Since there’s only a small number of countries, there is no need for a server search function yet. You can scroll through the list, which isn't that big of a problem.
The login has built-in 2FA. Every time you're logging in from a new device, you must confirm the code sent to your email. Although it may seem frustrating, this adds another layer of security.
The experience was very smooth on the macOS app. Image and text scaling could use some polish, but overall, the text was readable.
One thing to note is that you don't explicitly select the server to connect to, the app connects you to the nearest one. The difference is that it's not displayed at the top of the list, so you'll have to scroll through the list to check which location has a green icon next to it.
There's also a
While there's no dedicated app for Linux as on other operating systems, Atlas VPN introduced a service for Linux. The VPN for Linux now comes with the state-of-the-art WireGuard protocol and specialty servers.
Additionally, Linux users can take advantage of servers optimized for streaming, as well as SafeSwap and MultiHop+ servers for added privacy online.
Even though Atlas VPN doesn't have a graphical user interface for Linux, you can install the service and use the terminal to connect to the servers. It's pretty easy-to-use if you're an experienced Linux guru.
Features of Atlas VPN
Even though Atlas VPN doesn’t offer an incredibly wide range of features, it still has something to boast about. This includes the SafeBrowse feature for a malware and ad-free browsing experience, an IP rotator, and data breach monitoring. Continue reading to find out more about each feature in depth.
You can find the SafeBrowse under the “assistant” menu toggle. It's an optional safety measure that you can enable to block malicious websites. Whenever you're browsing with a VPN on and stumble upon a website that's included in the blacklist, you'll be denied access.
If you've used Cyberghost or NordVPN, you have encountered other variants of the same feature. This is considered a premium feature, so if you want to take advantage of it, you'll have to subscribe.
Atlas VPN added the SafeSwap feature that you can find under the Privacy Pro tab. When you connect to its server, your IP address is rotated while you're connected.
With other VPN providers to achieve a similar effect, you'd have to disconnect and then connect to a different server. With SafeSwap switching is happening while you browse, every 10 minutes or so.
Each SafeSwap has not one but a multitude of IP addresses assigned to it. These are shared between users, making the IP rotations unpredictable. Unless you check manually, you won't notice that the IP addresses are changed. This doesn't increase speed drops.
There are three SafeSwap locations to choose from: The Netherlands, Singapore, and the United States. I suspect that they're planning to increase the server numbers. Though I don't think this increase will be exponential, considering how many IP addresses the provider has to buy up to set up one SafeSwap server.
Data Breach Monitor
Although it sounds like some cutting-edge technology, this feature simply checks whether your data has appeared in data breaches. That's a premium feature, so free users won't have access to it.
If your data did end up in such a data breach, you'd get the bullet points with the kind of data that was revealed. So, you can quickly check whether only your email address leaked, or whether passwords were affected as well. This serves as a good tool for reference when you're trying to patch up security holes.
Atlas VPN video review
In case you want a shorter (and more fun!) version of this Atlas VPN review, feel free to watch our video about this VPN service. It might help you decide whether Atlas VPN is truly for you.
|24/7 live chat||✅|
You can access the customer support sections directly from the AtlasVPN app. When you click on the FAQ, you get transferred to the website. There are some general explanations and workarounds to solve technical issues.
Email support is available for all users via [email protected] – while the Premium users can use 24/7 live chat support as well.
Email requests took a few hours to be responded to, while a live chat connection was instantaneous. Overall, it's a solid showing from Atlas VPN. This is just about as good as VPN support goes.
Is it worth getting Atlas VPN?
Whether Atlas VPN is worth getting depends entirely on your expectations. It's not a NordVPN or Surfshark caliber VPN service, but it has plenty of upsides and is growing at a very fast pace.
This Atlas VPN review shows that the service is an ideal starting point for anyone who wants to try out a VPN. The free version offers strong encryption, while the premium adds on with unblocking Netflix and most other popular streaming platforms. Lighting fast WireGuard protocol and features such as SafeBrowser will elevate your security to the next level.
More on VPN providers from Cybernews:
NordVPN vs. ExpressVPN: which VPN performs better?
Private Internet Access review: is PIA a good VPN to use?
PureVPN review: trustworthy or not worth it?
Atlas VPN vs NordVPN: see how these two VPNs compare in 2023
Is Atlas VPN free?
Yes, there are both free and premium versions. The free version gives you 5 GB of data per month, so you’re better off with the paid one if you need to use a VPN a lot.
How good is Atlas VPN?
Atlas VPN is a lightweight and straightforward service. Although their premium version seems a bit lacking, their free version is one of the best.
Is Atlas VPN safe?
Yes, Atlas VPN is safe. It uses strong AES-256 encryption, which should add adequate protection and privacy. Their kill switch is also working fine, and they have a strict no-logs policy.
How do I use Atlas VPN?
If you're on mobile, you'll have to head to Google's Play Store or Apple's App Store, find the app, and install it. On the desktop, you'll have to head to their website and download the app there. From there, it's as simple as clicking "Connect."
How many devices can I use with Atlas VPN?
You can use Atlas VPN with as many devices as you want, as the service offers unlimited simultaneous connections.
Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked