Surfshark vs PIA (Private Internet Access) [2022]: Speed, Netflix, Firestick, China, Etc

PIA is one of the most popular VPNs on the market, with a reputation for being fast and reliable. Surfshark has made waves in recent months due to its revolutionary new features like torrent technology built into their service. With low prices and free plans available, it’s no wonder many people are switching to PIA from Surfshark.

The “nord vpn” is a VPN service that offers excellent speed, Netflix compatibility and access to the US market.

Surfshark and PIA are two of the industry’s leading players. Each is well-liked by a large number of users. Surfshark, on the other hand, has regularly outperformed the competition in my testing. We must go into the specifics to understand why. Fortunately, our Comparison guide is here to help.

We’ll take a look at all each service has to offer. I’ll divide the competition into categories and choose a winner for each.

Surfshark

Unlimited Bandwidth

Unblock Netflix

Unlimited Connection

Support Bitcoin

Surfshark Plans

1-Month Plan $12.95/month

1-year Plan $3.99/month

2-year Plan $2.49/month

 30-day money-back guarantee

Get 81% OFF!

PIA VPN

Unlimited Bandwidth

Bypass Geo-Restriction

Kill Switch

Support Bitcoin

PIA VPN Plans

1 Month Plan $9.95/month

1-year Plan $3.33/month

2-year Plan $3.29/month

 30-day money-back guarantee

Get 67% OFF!

Comparison

We’ll start by going through the specs that Surfshark and PIA have. A table that compares the two may be seen below:

 logo Surfshark Surfsharklogo pia vpn Access to the Internet in a Secure Environment
Policy on LoggingLogging is not permitted.Logging is not permitted.
JurisdictionThe British Virgin Islands are located in the Caribbean.The United States of America (Five-Eyes Member)
Encryption4096-bit RSA Key Exchange ChaCha AES-256 SHA-256 Hash Authentication4096-bit RSA Key Exchange AES-256 AES-128 SHA-256 Hash Authentication
ProtocolsUDP OpenVPN Shadowsocks OpenVPN TCP IPSec/IKEv2 IPSec/L2TPUDP OpenVPN WireGuard OpenVPN TCP IPSec/L2TP
Adblockers and anti-malware softwareYesYes
On/Off switchYesYes
Tests for LeaksThere were no leaks discovered.There were no leaks discovered.
Tests of SpeedFastFast
Torrenting & P2PYes, indeed (Optimized P2P Servers)Yes, indeed (On All Servers)
StreamingNetflix Amazon Prime is a subscription service that allows you to Hulu iPlayer (BBC) Firestick Roku is a streaming media player (Via Router) Kodi Apple TV is a device that allows you to watch (Via SmartDNS) Android Television (Android TV)Netflix Hulu Firestick Amazon Prime Kodi
GamingiOS and Android on Windows Xbox One is a video game console that was released (Via DNS or Router) PS4 is a game console that was released in (Via DNS or Router) Nintendo Switch is a game console that was released in (Via DNS or Router)iOS and Android on Windows Xbox One is a video game console that was released (Via Router) PS4 is a game console that was released in (Via Router) Nintendo Switch is a game console that was released in (Via Router)
CompatibilityChrome for Windows, macOS, Android, and iOS Firefox Opera Routers chosen by TorChrome for Windows, macOS, Android, and iOS Firefox Opera Routers chosen by Tor
Simultaneous Connections are when two or more things happen at the same time. are when two or more things happen at the same time.Unlimited10
Servers1700+3300+
ChinaYesOn occasion (1 Out of 3 Servers Worked)
Tunneling in Two PartsYes, indeed (As Whitelister)Yes
Features Not IncludedHackLock by CleanWeb (Add-On Feature) Searching in the Dark (Add-On Feature) MultiHopPIA MACE
Prices$12.95/Month $6.49 per month (6 Months) $2.49 per month (2-Year)$3.33/month (1-year) $2.69/month $9.95 (1 month) $3.33/month (1-year) (2-Years)
Our Opinion4.94.2
Websitewww.surfshark.comwww.privateinternetaccess.com

Privacy & Security

PIA is at a disadvantage since it is based in the United States and so falls within the authority of the Five Eyes. It risks being shut down if it does not adhere to severe copyright and privacy rules.

In Comparison, Surfshark is based in The British Virgin Islands are located in the Caribbean.. As such, it’s not restricted by any laws that make operating a VPN difficult.

Comparison of Encryption

Surfshark and PIA use industry-standard encryption. Both use AES 256-bit encryption with SHA-256 hash authentication and a 4096-RSA handshake, which is military-grade. On Android, Surfshark VPN also uses ChaCha encryption, which is a distinction. This is wonderful since AES-256 has a backup in case of failure or unavailability.

Protocols for Virtual Private Networks

The two VPNs share support for OpenVPN (UDP & TCP) and IPSec (L2TP). Setting them apart is Surfshark’s support for IKEv2 along with Shadowsocks and PIA’s for WireGuard.

Surfshark has announced the deployment of WireGuard on all servers. WireGuard is the newest and most secure protocol available, so it’ll get a significant increase once it’s finished.

Protection Against Leaks

PIA and Surfshark claim to provide complete DNS and IP address Protection Against Leaks. The two also have a On/Off switch on all their apps. Furthermore, they regularly subject themselves to independent audits to ensure they’re trustworthy.

To see whether both live up to their claims, I conducted Tests for Leaks using IPLeak.net. Before looking at the results, here’s a screenshot of a test that I ran without using a VPN:

ip leak test no vpn No VPN IP Leak Test

Here’s what happened when I connected to Surfshark’s Hong Kong server:

ip leak test Surfshark hong kong Surfshark Hong Kong IP Leak Test

And here’s what happened when I moved to the PIA Singapore server:

ip leak test pia singapore PIA Singapore conducts an IP Leak Test.

Neither of them succeeded in masking my true IP address. As a result, I can trust both of them to keep my identity private anytime I use the internet. Troublemakers won’t be able to track my position and hurt me if I use them.

Server Safety

PIA’s servers are not in RAM-disk mode, however Surfshark’s are. As a result, keeping logs with Surfshark is not possible, making it more secure. PIA has announced intentions to deploy RAM-disk servers throughout its whole network in the near future.

Another advantage that Surfshark has when it comes to Server Safety is HackLock. This extra feature (an additional subscription) is an alarm system that informs you when your data gets involved in a security breach.

Final Thoughts

Surfshark is the winner in this category because to its usage of military-grade and Chacha encryption, as well as its running RAM-disk servers.

PIA employs AES 256-bit encryption and has good security precautions in place. It also supports WireGuard. Unfortunately, the service is limited since it lacks a RAM-disk server network. It’s also located in the United States, which has rules that make it easier to access your personal data.

Test your speed

Surfshark is well-known for its quickness. The same cannot be true of PIA, which has been chastised for its slowness. It slows down your internet connection, making it harder to download files, play video games, or watch movies online.

I ran several experiments to determine whether what people claim is true. Let’s start with my primary connection:

Test your speed no vpn Test your speed – No VPN

Here’s how Surfshark’s Singapore server fared:

Test your speed Surfshark singapore Test your speed – Surfshark Singapore

Finally, after connecting to PIA’s Singapore server, here are the results:

Test your speed pia singapore Test your speed – PIA Singapore

Both services performed admirably, much to my surprise. Surfshark, on the other hand, is a quicker VPN. While my downloading improved after switching to PIA, my ping and uploading suffered. Nonetheless, the outcomes were not as horrible as I had anticipated. I have to add that it isn’t sluggish in the least.

Torrenting & P2P

On their servers, the majority of services support torrenting. Surfshark and PIA are no exception, with Surfshark claiming to be the best torrent VPN. It hasn’t enabled P2P on all of its servers, however.

PIA, on the other hand, has a fully functional peer-to-peer network. As a result, it seems to be more suited for downloading torrents on paper.

Surfshark has devised a workaround for the absence of a fully functional P2P network. When the service detects torrenting activity, it switches you to a P2P-friendly server immediately.

I put each service to the test to see whether it can really keep me safe when torrenting. Let’s start with the results of a test in which I didn’t use any VPN:

torrenting no vpn No VPN Torrenting Leak Test

Now, after connecting to Surfshark’s London server, these are the results:

torrenting Surfshark uk Test of Torrenting Leaks – Surfshark UK

Here are the results when I migrated to PIA’s California server:

torrenting pia uk PIA UK Torrenting Leak Test

The two services were able to hide my real IP address as I torrented. Nevertheless, my winner for this round Surfshark vs PIA is Access to the Internet in a Secure Environment. I chose it because it’s got a fully enabled P2P server network. In addition, it is quick enough to ensure that I finish downloading in no time.

Streaming

I’m a movie lover who watches movies on Netflix virtually every day. As a result, I need the best VPN for the work. Surfshark is well-known for being able to get around most streaming websites’ geoblocks. On the other hand, PIA is reported to be horrible at working around geoblocks.

Netflix

I needed to test whether each VPN could access international libraries on Netflix since it is the world’s most popular streaming platform. Surfshark VPN was the first service I tested. I tried viewing Spotlight on its server in New York:

netflix us Surfshark Surfshark – Netflix – Netflix – Netflix – Netflix – Netflix – Netflix

Then, while connected to PIA’s NY server, I went back to the title:

netflix us pia PIA – Netflix PIA – Netflix PIA – Netflix PIA

As you can see, both VPNs work to get over Netflix’s geoblocks in the United States. Unfortunately, only Surfshark did well since PIA was unable to load the game at full quality. Furthermore, it resulted in considerable buffering, which almost destroyed my watching experience. As a result, Surfshark is my winner in this round.

Gaming

A VPN’s gaming skills are a good indicator of its quality. A service must safeguard you while also connecting you to gaming servers in other countries. Furthermore, it must function on consoles, cellphones, and PCs.

I’m a Call of Duty Mobile junkie that plays in my spare time. As a result, I utilized the game to put Surfshark and PIA’s gaming skills to the test.

Surfshark was the first service I tested. The Hong Kong server was my first pick. I had a total of three excellent matches. There was no lagging or frame drops in any of them. I forgot I was using a VPN since everything went so well.

After my initial try, I moved over to Access to the Internet in a Secure Environment’ server in Singapore. Unlike with Surfshark, I experienced some lagging. Fortunately, the delays weren’t game-breaking. Still, they were frustrating since I’m used to gaming without hindrances.

Surfshark is the winner in this category. It is, without a question, a superb gaming VPN that will satisfy your demands. Despite the fact that PIA did not perform terribly, its latency prevented it from meeting my gaming demands.

Compatibility

If your VPN isn’t compatible with your devices, it’s worthless. As a result, you must subscribe to a service that has a high level of compatibility. Both PIA and Surfshark excel in this aspect, since they provide applications for a variety of OS systems. They may also be installed on routers that are compatible.

Refer to the table below for a better understanding of what each VPN does:

SurfsharkAccess to the Internet in a Secure Environment
Chrome for Windows, macOS, Android, and iOS Firefox Opera Routers chosen by TorChrome for Windows, macOS, Android, and iOS Firefox Opera Routers chosen by Tor

Surfshark is compatible with Chromebook, while PIA is not. Meanwhile, Access to the Internet in a Secure Environment has a browser extension for Opera; something Surfshark doesn’t have. It should be noted, though, that Surfshark has apps for some smart TVs like Android TV.

My winner in this round of our Surfshark vs Access to the Internet in a Secure Environment battle is Surfshark because it supports Chromebooks and a few smart TVs. PIA may have a foothold with Opera, but that browser isn’t popular.

Surfshark came out on top.

Simultaneous Connections are when two or more things happen at the same time. are when two or more things happen at the same time.

A VPN that allows for more Simultaneous Connections are when two or more things happen at the same time. are when two or more things happen at the same time. gives you more value for your money. It can protect more members of your family or business organization. As such, it’s best if you select a service that allows for more concurrent device pairings.

PIA lets you connect up to 10 gadgets at the same time. It stands out in the industry because of this. Only a few other VPNs match its offering or provide a better one. An example of which is Surfshark that allows for unlimited Simultaneous Connections are when two or more things happen at the same time. are when two or more things happen at the same time..

Surfshark came out on top.

Servers

A VPN’s ability to mask your IP address becomes simpler as the number of servers increases. As a result, a service with a broader network is preferable. Fortunately, both PIA and Surfshark have a sufficient number of servers to merit commendation.

In only a few years, Surfshark has grown to a network of over 1700 users. Its quick expansion makes it an appealing proposition. PIA has a network of over 3300 servers, so the service still has a lot of catching up to accomplish. As a result, it takes first place in this category.

Winner: Access to the Internet in a Secure Environment

China

Only a few VPNs can get over China’s Great Firewall. The challenge has been preventing PIA from improving its reputation. According to reports, just one out of every three servers can scale the Great Firewall. To make matters worse, the competent servers are inconsistent in their performance.

Surfshark, on the other hand, has been praised for its ability to function across the Great Firewall. It does it without trouble on a regular basis. As a result, many people suggest it as a must-see for everyone visiting China.

Interface & Usability

Both PIA and Surfshark feature straightforward interfaces and user-friendly applications. Their color palettes are very similar, with both defaulting to a dark look. PIA, on the other hand, provides you the option of switching to a light theme. It enjoys an advantage over its competition in this regard.

PIA’s Windows software does not reduce to the taskbar, unlike other VPNs. Rather, it remains hidden in the system tray.

When you first open it, you’ll see a massive fast connect button. By hitting the “VPN SERVER” button below, you can get a complete list of servers. Click the three-dot symbol in the upper right corner of the program to access the settings.

interface pia PIA Interface is a program that allows you to interact with your

After you launch the Surfshark Windows program, you’ll see a fast connect button. There’s a list of servers you’ve recently connected to underneath that. A bar on the side provides access to the VPN’s settings, special features, and a complete list of servers.

interface Surfshark Interface of Surfshark

My preference lies with Surfshark’s app because I don’t like how PIA’s minimizes into the system tray. The overall vibe of Surfshark’s app is also much more inviting. As such, I’m declaring it as the winner of this round of our Access to the Internet in a Secure Environment vs Surfshark match.

Surfshark came out on top.

Features Not Included

PIA features a built-in adblocker called PIA MACE that helps keep viruses at bay. It’s not the finest adblocker, but it’ll do the job.

However, if you want to be completely safe, I propose using a different blocker. It’s also worth noting that Surfshark has a rival named CleanWeb.

Meanwhile, Surfshark has a feature called Whitelister, which is its version of Tunneling in Two Parts. With it, you’ll get to provide your information to specific websites and services that need it.

MultiHop is also included. To boost security, the function transmits your web traffic over two servers.

There are two premium add-on features available with the VPN. The first is HackLock, a data breach alarm system that notifies you if your data has been compromised. The second is BlindSearch, a customized search engine.

Surfshark wins this round since it contains more features that you can find helpful on a daily basis.

Surfshark came out on top.

Customer Service

Customer service is amazing at Surfshark and PIA. You may reach out to them in a number of ways. I did it over chat since I had some inquiries about their price. Both service agents were kind and fast to respond with clear answers.

Below is a quick overview of what each service offers in regards to Customer Service:

 SurfsharkAccess to the Internet in a Secure Environment
Live ChatYesYes
Email Customer ServiceYesYes
Support over the phoneNoNo
Ticket AssistanceYesYes
Video InstructionsNoNo
Knowledge Base on the InternetYesYes
Average Time to Respond4 HoursTime: 39 minutes

The two VPNs are equal in what they offer. However, Access to the Internet in a Secure Environment wins this round of our PIA vs Surfshark match because of its faster response times.

Winner: Access to the Internet in a Secure Environment

Prices

PIA is well-known for its low prices. It is less expensive than others in the business, making it an excellent alternative for individuals on a tight budget. In contrast, the pricing of Surfshark VPN are practically identical to those of NordVPN and ExpressVPN. Neither of these services is recognized for being inexpensive.

Refer to the table below to get a better idea of how much each VPN costs:

 SurfsharkAccess to the Internet in a Secure Environment
Lengths of Subscriptions$12.95/MonthMonth-to-Month ($9.95/Month)
 $6.49 per month (6 Months)$3.33/month for a year
 $2.49 per month (2-Year)$2.69/month for 2 years
The Most Expensive Month$12.95$9.95
Lowest Monthly Rate$2.49$2.69
Price for a year$77.88$39.96
Guaranteed Money-Back30 Days30 Days
Special PromotionA 2-year plan gets you an 81 percent savings. A 6-month package gets you a 50% discount.73 percent off a two-year plan + two months free

PIA and Surfshark offer the same plan schemes. That said, the difference in price between the two is quite large. PIA is very much cheaper than Surfshark, whose Price for a year is almost double that of PIA’s.

Winner: Access to the Internet in a Secure Environment

Verdict

Is Surfshark superior than PIA?

Yes. Almost every category is dominated by Surfshark. With time, the number of servers it has will decrease. It may also be installed on an endless number of devices, albeit being more costly. If anything, the service provides excellent value for money.

Surfshark is a quicker and more secure alternative. Because the VPN can be utilized in China, it can reach a whole new population. Finally, it has more additional functions and improved applications.

Surfshark is the overall winner.

Surfshark vs PIA (Private Internet Access) [March 2022]: Speed, Netflix, Firestick, China, Etc. Surfshark is a VPN service that has been around since 2013. It offers a free trial period of 10 days and is available on multiple platforms including Windows, Mac OS X, Linux and Android. NordVPN is another VPN service that was founded in 2008. They offer a 30-day money back guarantee and are available on multiple platforms including Windows, Mac OS X, Linux and Android. Reference: surfshark vs nordvpn.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is PIA better than Surfshark?

A: I am not familiar with the service, so I cannot answer this. Please feel free to ask another question.

Is PIA VPN good for Netflix?

A: PIA offers a variety of servers to help you get the best Netflix experience, which includes one specifically for Netflix. This can be helpful in areas where there is no other option.

Is PIA VPN good for streaming?

A: Yes, PIA VPN is a good option for streaming. The speed test on the website was very high and it seems to work well with games like Fortnite.

Related Tags

  • express vpn
  • windscribe
  • surfshark vs private internet access reddit
  • pia vpn
  • cyberghost

1. NordVPN

Visit NordVPN

 5

2. Surfshark

Visit Surfshark

4.5

3. Atlas VPN

visit Atlas

4.3

4. ExpressVPN

visit Express

4.6

5. CyberGhost

visit CyberGhost

4.3

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