ZenMate VPN Review and Test 2023: Is ZenMate Safe to Use?
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- Works with Netflix USA.
- It’s pretty affordable.
- Based in Germany.
- It offers a wide range of protocols and encryptions.
- Has 300+ servers throughout 31 countries.
- Over 40 million users.
Pros and Cons
+ Unblocks BBC iPlayer as well as Netflix US
+ Kill Switch
+ DNS leak protection
+ Easy to use
+ Offers a 7-day free trial and 14-day money-back guarantee
– It doesn’t offer anonymous payments
Is ZenMate Still Free?
Not exactly. ZenMate’s free version does not exist at present. However, you will be glad to know that the ZenMate Premium offers a 7-day free trial if you have doubts and qualms about using this VPN. You can go for it.
The price is not that hefty. Have a look at the below-mentioned table. If you’re a regular VPN user, go for its 2-year plan, as more savings are coming.
ZenMate offers different payment plans:
- 1-month plan ($9.99 each month)
- 1-year plan ($3.49 per month / $41.88 yearly)
- 2-year plan ($1.75 per month / $42 for two years)
Neither of these plans has bandwidth limitations, and they all offer a maximum of 5 connections simultaneously. With the free browser extension, you can take a free trial for the premium plan that lasts a week.
However, getting to it can be a little tricky. The first thing you need to do is to choose ZenMate Limited, and when you subscribe to it and verify your email, you will be able to get the free trial of the premium plan.
ZenMate supports three payment options: Sofort Banking, PayPal, and Credit Card.
Speed Test and Performance
In my ZenMate review, I spent much time testing its performance.
In many cases, these cheaper VPN services usually struggle in this domain. I did a thorough audit and concluded that ZenMate’s performance is quite solid – it’s far from unusual, but I can’t say it’s terrible.
The performance of any VPN depends on how many servers it owns. Surprisingly, ZenMate owns an impressive number of servers. As per the website, there are around.
Since I’m from the US, when I connected to the US server, I had a better performance. I tested it from a US location with a 600Mbps connection. Its performance was good, and I noticed a significant high speed at 200-210Mbps. It was far better than most of its competitors.
I also tried the UK server, and the download speed dropped significantly. At this server location, my speed was 50-75Mbps in one session and then hit the mark of 115-120Mbps in the next session. So, it’s a mixed bag.
With this VPN, finding the right server close to your location is essential, and this takes a bit of time. That’s all about its speed. Now, let’s talk about its performance. I also tested the VPN’s unblocking abilities, and it passed the Netflix guard, as well as the iPlayer’s VPN security.
All the security tests also showed green lights without any leaks through IPv6, WebRTC, or DNS.
To check out the full extent of ZenMate, I suggest using the desktop version.
It performs the best compared to the browser extension – it is an absolute VPN service, not proxy encryption. Here are some of the most notable features:
This feature will help you browse the internet from a single location, even if you’re using different server locations for a different website. Because of this feature, ZenMate can switch locations automatically.
With ZenMate, tracking protection is impressive. This iconic feature will ensure that no third-party service will hover over your head and track your location all the time.
Stream Live Sports
Using this feature, one can easily view multiple live sports events even if they are not telecasting in your country.
The in-built Kill Switch feature ensures your data by all means.
This feature automatically reconnects the app in case the internet connection is disconnected.
ZenMate offers mobile app support for all the leading OS and versions. ZenMate for Android is a user-friendly and feature-rich app. It has excellent encryption for secure operations.
Multiple Language Support
ZenMate supports multiple languages and targets global audiences. German, Korean, Russian, Spanish, Turkish, and English are the major ones. Even its customer care support is available in multiple languages.
Is ZenMate Safe?
Started as a proxy service, ZenMate is not a fully-fledged VPN with some considerably good encryption and safety protocols.
The AES 256-bit encryption (desktop users) and AES 128 encryption (mobile app) are pretty standard and robust. ZenMate for MAC follows IPSec and IKEv2 protocols. ZenMate for Windows is considered an excellent VPN for Windows as it has IPSec and IKEv2 protocols along with L2TP/IPSec.
You will enjoy DNS leak protection as well. However, ZenMate, for a mobile app, will fail to offer advanced security features.
I liked its in-built kill switch that adds another protection layer. As soon as your connection becomes unsecured, the session will end soon. However, I was disappointed once I noticed that there was no split tunneling available.WebRTC protection is also absent. However, I didn’t experience any leaks in our test.
Privacy & Logging Policy
More than anything, making sense of the privacy and logging policy of ZenMate was the most challenging part of reviewing ZenMate. There are some complex words, ambiguity, and confusion.
As I have already mentioned, ZenMate is a Germany-based VPN and is a member of the 14 Eyes alliance. Being a member of this alliance means that it is bound to save some information for government purposes. Users’ IP addresses might get saved.
For instance, the users of the UK (VPN for the UK) or the US are likely to share some information with the respective government. Though there is a strict no-logging policy on the website, there are some grey areas. Regarding encryption, ZenMate for Chrome uses AES 256 for desktops and 128 for impressive mobile.
From what I’ve read and researched, there seems to be no indication that the company keeps logging sessions or their user’s IP addresses. However, they do record payment details and emails.
Overall, they offer the right amount of privacy on your connection.
If you don’t understand privacy laws and the VPN domain overall, chances are you won’t understand their policy.
Does ZenMate Keep Logs?
So, the air is not that clear. Honestly, there is hardly any VPN with a zero-logging policy. Some data will log no matter what. The only thing that matters is the logs are not that much that it can create a headache. In this sense, ZenMate Premium is not a migraine.
ZenMate is very versatile regarding the number of platforms and devices it’s compatible with.
It is also one of the VPNs that work for gaming.
ZenMate also supports different browsers, including:
ZenMate’s rise from a free version to a full-fledged VPN was an impressive one. Many aspects were improved. Sadly, its torrenting ability still lags. It didn’t help me to do P2P file sharing. I was even allowed to use torrents on its servers.
There is a tab designed explicitly for torrenting in the ZenMate dashboard, and you will get a list of servers optimized for torrenting. With its help, you may go around blocks and ISP for various torrent sites.
Does ZenMate Work with Netflix?
I tested ZenMate for Netflix streaming several times because I like watching movies. I got mixed results and couldn’t pinpoint what that was all about.
To stream on Netflix, you go to the app → choose servers designed for Netflix streaming throughout different countries.
When I tried it the first time, it worked smoothly throughout various countries. However, the next time around, Netflix wouldn’t work for any other country except the US. Unless you want to stream Netflix US, you can’t rely on ZenMate for streaming in other countries. I would rather use ExpressVPN or NordVPN, which are on the list of the best VPNs for Netflix.
My ZenMate VPN review concludes with its customer support, which is its weakest aspect, in my opinion.
First of all, the website doesn’t offer any other type of customer service channel except a ticketing system. Why is this a big deal?
Well, it shouldn’t be, except for the fact that after you’ve sent a ticket, it takes the support days to give you a reply. For many people, this is too much waiting. I would personally like to see ZenMate add at least an email where their users can contact them and get quick responses.
However, their support page has a lot of helpful information that might be able to help.
Is ZenMate a Good VPN?
Well, that’s a tricky question. The answer to this question depends on what you expect from your VPN. If you’re a non-technical user and your needs are simple, then go for it. The two-year plan is a very pocket-friendly deal.
But if you want something that can give you 100% online protection and an ad-free experience, then ZenMate might disappoint you. That being said, its speed, performance, and server location are far better than many VPNs. You can give it a shot for sure.
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Sadly, ZenMate Premium or any other subscription doesn’t come with an in-built ad blocker. However, you can go for a separate ad blocker by ZenMate for free and club it with ZenMate for Windows to have an ad-free browsing experience.