– Full IP addresses no longer collected meaning you can use the internet anonymously
– Retention of your data retention is reduced to 30 days after which it is deleted minimising the risk to your privacy
– Lightning mode automatically provides you with the fastest server which I find convenient as a user as you avoid manually setting preferences enabling you quicker access
– If you are a Mac or Windows user, you can choose your location preference based on distance, latency and download speeds
– If you are an Android user, you can pick which applications DO and DON’T go through the HMA VPN tunnel
– New kill switch function stops all internet traffic should you lose your connection to the HMA server
While HMA is a decent VPN, you can get better quality VPNs at an affordable price. Surfshark, for example, offers premium VPN features for a super low monthly fee — so you don’t have to settle for less.
First, the strengths — HMA is very resourceful as far as servers. There are over 760 to choose from, but what’s truly impressive is the 320+ available locations. HMA is global when it comes to servers, with some truly exotic additions to the list.
A healthy number of servers means nothing if they aren’t fast. HMA knows that well and offers more than 1,000 servers whilst continually expanding its high speed connections, the majority of which are capable of delivering speeds of 20Gb per second, resulting in excellent speeds across the board. Even the most intense of streaming sessions won’t have you waiting for the video to buffer. Oh, and Netflix/iPlayer can totally be unblocked abroad, too.
Clients are solid across all platforms as well — although the styling may suit some more than others.
The most worrying aspect by far was HMA’s location, and, by extension, its logging policy. Despite HMA being part of Avast, this VPN still operates from the United Kingdom, which has some of the most severe surveillance laws in the world.
Overall, HMA remains a very capable VPN and a favorite for accesssing restricted content. With that said, it does little to ensure complete and total privacy, making your choice a matter of priorities.
Most VPNs claim that they deliver the best speeds in the VPN market, but not HMA. Download speeds are a lot better and more consistent even when tested multiple times on the same location than upload speeds which can be erratic somehow. Though it doesn’t make any false claims, HMA delivers impressive speed results among its peers, yet not as fast as other leading providers like NordVPN and ExpressVPN.
Speed determines how fast content uploads, so if you're torrenting or streaming, you want the speed to be somewhat identical to your regular internet speed. Since a VPN encrypts your data, it usually takes a bit longer to send your data back and forth, which can slow down your connection. However, if your ISP deliberately slows down your connection (also known as throttling) a VPN might increase your internet speed. Testing a VPN is somewhat pointless because new servers pop up and affect speed. Your speed can also differ according to your location, so your speed test might not match ours. Having said that, we tested the speed in numerous locations to provide you with the average.
We have to give credit where it’s due — HMA delivers an enjoyable user experience from start to finish, all in a playful, casual manner.
There are no complications to speak of when it comes to installation and setup. The GUI is intuitive, with all settings and preferences being exactly where you’d expect them to be.
We were particularly impressed with the Android app. With an easy setup and a choice between three modes — Instant, Location, and Freedom — you are a tap away from choosing automatic, manual, or censorship-free connections, respectively.
In addition to the usual knowledge base (which is rather comprehensive), HMA provides live chat and a ticket system, which they claim is 24/7 and “from real people”. We can attest to the latter — all in all, our questions were answered in a satisfactory manner, but we did have to wait several hours for a response to our ticket.
We personally test the customer support team of every VPN we review. This means asking technical question through the live chat feature (where applicable) and measuring the response time for email questions. Whether you need to connect to a specific server, change your security protocol, or configure a VPN on your router, finding a VPN with quality customer support should be important to you.
HMA’s prices are in the same territory as some of the best VPNs on the market — on one hand, that’s reasonable considering the whopping number of locations and the stellar performance this VPN offers. On the other hand, you don’t get much in terms of privacy and security.
In any case, you can cancel your subscription at any time and even get refunded with the 30-day money-back guarantee, assuming you’re under the 10 GB bandwidth limit.
You can subscribe to HMA with a credit card (VISA, MasterCard, AMEX, UnionPay), via PayPal, or using WireTransfer.
HMA might offer a good service at a reasonable price, but does it match up with other top VPNs? We find it hard to say “yes”. To be sure you’re choosing the right VPN for your needs, review this list of top recommended VPNs.
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