|Price||Free, $11.99 a month|
|Website||Google Play Store|
VPN Monster is a free VPN service designed for mobile users. It is available for the Android and iOS operating systems. Currently, it is one of several free VPN products from the Singaporean data analytics company, Autumn Breeze/Innovative Connecting PTE. Limited. The app has more than 10 million downloads in the Google Play Store and an average star rating of 4.5 stars. Unfortunately, Autumn Breeze offers only a vague website that is nearly identical to the Innovative Connecting site. They do not offer a specific website for VPN Monster. Even though the company states that you can use it on your PC, there is no native application for it. Instead, they suggest you use BlueStacks. Since there is no native app, you may have issues getting it to work properly.
In our review of VPN Monster, we will take a more in-depth look of what it has to offer. We’ll additionally run a DNS leak test, speed test, and streaming tests to see if is worthy of the praise people give it. While there is a premium version that the company says is faster and with no ads, we are going to test the ad-supported free version of the VPN. Although “free” VPNs may sound like a good idea, keep in mind there is always a cost. You should consider that before making your final decision on this one.
VPN Monster Pricing and Payment Options
As we mentioned, VPN Monster offers a premium version and free version. Their monthly price is a pretty steep $11.99 a month, but the prices improve if you pay up front for a year of service. There is no money-back guarantee, but they offer a 7-day free trial. Not surprisingly, they do not offer any payment types other than using your Google Play Store or Apple account. We would like to see the company offer more payment options
About the Parent Company, Autumn Breeze PTE
Where Are the Servers?
VPN Monster only offers 8 locations in 7 countries on the free version. However, there are 5 more countries and additional locations in the premium version. Let’s take a look at what countries and specific locations are available.
- US – New York
- United Kingdom
- US – San Francisco
- Russia (Premium)
- United Kingdom (Premium)
- France – TF1 (Premium)
- US – Los Angeles (Premium)
- Canada (Premium)
- Japan (Premium)
- Australia – ABS (Premium)
- US – San Francisco (Premium)
- US – New York (Premium)
- Singapore (Premium)
- India (Premium)
- South Korea (Premium)
- US – Fox (Premium)
- Netherlands (Premium)
- United Kingdom – Sky Go (Premium)
What Does VPN Monster Offer?
This one does not offer much. After you download it, you tap the power button in the center. To the right of that button is an icon of the world. That is where you find the servers available. In the middle image, you see the menu icon. From that point, you can tap on it to reveal the single feature of the VPN Monster app, the Kill switch. It will shut down your internet if the VPN drops. That way, you can continue to stay safe until the VPN reconnects.
One thing that should concern you with VPN Monster is the lack of encryption transparency. We were not able to find any place where they mention the encryption strength, or what protocol they use. That is important because you will potentially leave yourself vulnerable to hackers or others that want to spy on your activities. Their security policy states they are a “non-obligatory log network”. They do not have access to any information from the app, and the only information they get is if you provide it to them through interactions.
DNS Leak Test
With any VPN provider, leak tests are important. There is no point in using a VPN if it is going to reveal where you are. As you can see in the image below, we tested the free server in New York. We did not have any issues with VPN Monster showing our IP address. However, it does show 4 requests from Google DNS services. This does not surprise us since Google is a popular DNS provider, but we prefer VPNs that offer their own private DNS service.
VPN Monster Speed Test
Speed tests are also important when considering free VPN services. In this test, we used three different locations. We did an unprotected speed test, a speed test in New York, the UK, and Germany. With any VPN service, you can expect some difference in performance due to encryption. That said, we had quite a bit of speed loss. We are not happy with the results, but perhaps the premium servers are faster.
- Internet connection without VPN – 458 Mbps – tested to New York City
- New York – 29.7 Mbps download, 20.9 Mbps upload – 94% speed loss
- Germany – 17.3 Mbps download, 20.7 Mbps upload – 97% speed loss
- United Kingdom – 20.7 Mbps download, 20.6 Mbps upload – 96% speed loss
Netflix and BBC iPlayer Test
We always like to challenge the VPNs we use by seeing whether or not they will unblock access to streaming services. The way we do that is to connect to Netflix and BBC iPlayer. Interestingly, the image shows that Netflix at least saw that we were connected to a UK server. However, a search failed to find UK exclusive content. That means it failed to play the UK version of Netflix and failed to connect to the BBC iPlayer. Despite being connected to the UK, we got the message that states “BBC iPlayer only works in the UK” as you see below.
The customer service for VPN Monster is what we would expect from a mobile service. Short of contacting the parent company, the only way to get ahold of them is to select the feedback button inside the app. There does not seem to be anything other than an email address. Also, it gives you no estimation of how much time it will take to answer any questions.
VPN Monster did not surprise or impress us. It is what we expected from a free mobile VPN product. In the community, they are a dime a dozen. Security wise, many companies will tell you that they do not keep logs and are safe to use. However, auditing them usually shows that something else is going on. That said, we will take a look at the good points of the service and what needs to be improved.
- No Logs
- Provide and name protocols
- Increase the speed of servers
- Expand network
- Lower price on one month of premium service
- Fix issue to unblock BBC
- Fix issue to unblock Netflix
- Add more features
As you can see, there are definitely some issues we had with this one. From their very limited network and their low speeds to their high price for their one-month premium service and not being able to unblock the BBC, there are not many good points. This VPN may be ok if you want to gain access to a different Netflix library on occasion. However, unless you have great speeds normally, you may find it unusable for that purpose. It may also help you get around censorship in some countries and organizations, provided that the firewall is not overly strict. There are plenty of options out there that will give you a better experience.