TunnelBear is a free VPN service that promises to ‘keep your internet travels private and secure’. In this article, we compare the two most popular VPNs: TunnelBear vs. PureVPN. We cover speed, Netflix compatibility, desktop apps, China restrictions and more!
TunnelBear is a VPN provider with a free tier, but it was not enough to defeat PureVPN. PureVPN is the best pick in terms of speed, security, and Compatibility in all of the areas we evaluated.
1-Month Plan $10.95/month
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Let’s take a closer look at PureVPN and TunnelBear:
|Policy on Logging||There will be There will be no logging..||There will be There will be no logging..|
|Jurisdiction||Hong Kong||Canada is a country that has a (Five Eyes Member)|
|Protocols||UDP OpenVPN TCP IPSec/IKEv2 IPSec/L2TP PPTP SSTP OpenVPN||IPSec/IKEv2 OpenVPN|
|Adblockers and anti-malware software||Yes||Yes|
|On/Off switch||Yes||Yes, indeed (macOS, Windows, Android)|
|Tests for Leaks||There were no leaks discovered.||There were no leaks discovered.|
|Test your speed||Fast||Average to Quick|
|Torrenting & P2P||Yes, indeed (optimized P2P servers)||Yes|
|Streaming||Netflix Amazon Prime is a subscription service that allows you to iPlayer (BBC) Firestick Roku is a streaming media player (Via Router) Kodi Apple TV is a device that allows you to watch (Via Router) Android Television (Android TV)||Netflix Amazon Prime Hulu Max Kodi from HBO|
|Gaming||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)||Mac OS X Windows Linux (limited) Android|
|Compatibility||Chrome for Windows, macOS, Android, and iOS Firefox Routers Selected by Tor||Mac OS X Windows Linux (limited) Android iOS Chrome Firefox Opera|
|Simultaneous Connections are when two or more things happen at the same time. are when two or more things happen at the same time.||10||5|
|Tunneling in Two Parts||Yes||Yes|
|Features Not Included||Wi-Fi encryption Dedicated Internet Protocol (IP) (Add-On Feature) Forwarding of Ships (Add-On Feature) Protection Against DDoS (Add-On Feature)||phantomBear (Obfuscated Server)|
|Prices||$10.95/month $4.16 per month (One year) $2.91 per month (Two years)||Unrestricted (limited usage) $9.99 per month $4.21 per month (1 year) $3.33 per month (3 years)|
Let’s take a look at how PureVPN and TunnelBear fared in each category now that we’ve learned more about them.
Security and Privacy
TunnelBear is headquartered in Canada, which is a member of the Five Eyes. Because PureVPN is based in Hong Kong, which is not a member of the Five, Nine, or Fourteen Eyes, you won’t have to worry about your online activities being monitored. (The nations of the Five, Nine, and Fourteen Eyes have agreements to exchange intelligence data.)
As China adopted the National Security Law in 2020, PureVPN shut down all of its Hong Kong servers. Such legislation jeopardizes internet freedom and security. To further secure its consumers, the VPN provider re-evaluated its jurisdiction.
Comparison of Encryption
When it comes to encryptions, there is no difference between PureVPN and TunnelBear. Both of them employ AES-256-bit encryption, which is so strong that even a supercomputer would struggle to crack it.
Protocols for Virtual Private Networks
Both PureVPN and TunnelBear have OpenVPN and IPSec/IKEv2 as their Protocols for Virtual Private Networks. But only PureVPN uses PPTP and SSTP for added security.
Protection Against Leaks
Your genuine IP address will not be revealed if you use a reliable VPN service. So I put PureVPN and TunnelBear to the test to see whether they can safeguard their users from leaks.
When I connected to PureVPN’s Singapore server, I got the following results:
And here’s one from TunnelBear’s server:
There are no IP leaks on any of them.
Because it erases all your data once you detach your device, a RAM or diskless server will give you with additional protection. PureVPN and TunnelBear, however, do not provide this service. However, they both swear by their zero-logs policy. However, it would be preferable if they upgraded their systems.
PureVPN does not have much difference from TunnelBear, apart from the fact that TunnelBear is under Canada, which is part of an intelligence-sharing agreement. Both of them protect their users from leaks, but PureVPN has more Protocols for Virtual Private Networks than TunnelBear. In that case, PureVPN wins this round.
Test your speed
I want to be sure that my VPN service can match my speed requirements. It improves the consistency and efficiency of work. I attempted to determine which of them is the quicker.
First, I recorded my base speed. This is what I came up with:
To observe the difference, I tested two of PureVPN’s servers: US and Singapore. These were the results of my efforts:
TunnelBear was also put to the test, and the following are the results:
When I tried PureVPN and TunnelBear, their download speeds were almost identical. There was a considerable variation in outcomes when I tired their respective servers. TunnelBear is slower and has worse ping numbers than PureVPN.
PureVPN is the winner in the speed department, in my opinion.
P2P and torrenting
Torrenting and file sharing are both possible with TunnelBear and PureVPN. PureVPN claims about its P2P-optimized servers. TunnelBear also claims that torrenting is possible on all of its servers.
However, if you run into any problems when downloading, TunnelBear offers several suggestions (US, UK, Canada, Netherlands, Germany, Sweden, Romania) to ensure a seamless torrenting experience.
I ran a test to establish that both PureVPN and TunnelBear do not allow leaks while torrenting. Before using PureVPN or TunnelBear, this was my torrent address:
This is what I received when I utilized PureVPN’s Singapore server:
This is what I got about TunnelBear’s counterpart:
While both PureVPN and TunnelBear prevented any leaks, PureVPN takes the lead here since it has optimized P2P services. PureVPN wins in terms of P2P and torrenting file sharing.
Both PureVPN and TunnelBear can unblock geo-restricted material from popular streaming services like Amazon Prime Video and Netflix. However, only PureVPN can be installed on routers, making it more compatible with Roku and Apple TV devices. Android TV and Firestick are also supported.
As someone who spends lazy days watching Netflix, I’d enjoy a VPN service that would provide me with a great HD video streaming experience. To watch Spotlight on Netflix, I used PureVPN and TunnelBear’s respective US servers, with the following results:
While viewing, both provided me with gratifying outcomes. There were no delays or data gaps, and the visual quality was not pixelated. If Netflix were the only streaming service I was considering, I’d call this a draw.
However, when it comes to overall functionality, PureVPN is the clear victor since it works with more devices than TunnelBear.
PureVPN and TunnelBear both work with a variety of browsers and operating systems, but only PureVPN works with gaming consoles like the Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, and PlayStation 4. When a VPN can be installed on a router, this is a benefit. A router may be used to link gaming consoles.
PureVPN also includes a Port-Forwarding add-on that helps you stay connected to a game’s server.
With this, PureVPN is unquestionably the best VPN for gaming.
TunnelBear and PureVPN are unquestionably compatible with the most popular browsers and OS systems. TunnelBear, on the other hand, is at a disadvantage since it cannot be deployed on routers.
Take a look at the compatibility chart between TunnelBear and PureVPN:
|Chrome for Windows, macOS, Android, and iOS Firefox Routers Selected by Tor||Mac OS X Windows Linux (limited) Android iOS Chrome Firefox Opera|
It’s already a benefit if your VPN is installed on your router. PureVPN triumphs once again in terms of compatibility.
Simultaneous Connections are when two or more things happen at the same time. are when two or more things happen at the same time.
We want to get the best value for the price we pay, and that means every VPN user, including myself, looks for a VPN service that will offer extra Simultaneous Connections are when two or more things happen at the same time. are when two or more things happen at the same time.. TunnelBear allows five devices at a time.
PureVPN supports more devices than TunnelBear since each subscription allows for ten simultaneous connections.
PureVPN won this round because numbers matter.
PureVPN has over 6500 servers in over 180 locations across the globe. That’s more than twice as much as TunnelBear offers. In 41 countries, the latter has 3000 servers. More servers offer more alternatives for you to choose from, so you can find something that meets your requirements. It will also aid in the concealment of your IP address.
PureVPN takes first place in the server category.
To get around China’s heavily controlled internet environment, you’ll need a reliable VPN service. If you’re going to use the app, PureVPN does not promise to function in China. However, it suggests that manual setup be tried on restricted servers. They do not, however, guarantee the connection’s quality or dependability.
TunnelBear, on the other hand, allows you to “tunnel” anywhere on the planet. You may attempt to get through China’s firewall by using their obfuscated GhostBear service. You can’t expect a consistent connection all of the time, but it’s worth a try. Before visiting the nation, make sure you’ve downloaded the app.
TunnelBear has a better probability of getting beyond China’s firewall based on this knowledge. This round is won by TunnelBear.
Usability and User Interface
PureVPN provides a straightforward user interface with sections for your dashboard, locations, alerts, and support. When you click locations, a list of nations and servers will appear. There are further sections for “notification” and “configuration on devices.” If you wish to recommend the service to a friend, you may do so effortlessly via its interface.
On Mac OS, the program appears like this:
On macOS, TunnelBear features a simple UI. It features a bear that goes from one tunnel to the next, with the tunnels representing the various nations. TunnelBear’s UI looks OK on mobile, however for easier navigation on a laptop or desktop, it would be preferable if it had an expanding window rather than a tiny one.
The TunnelBear interface (map and country list) looks like this:
In general, I like PureVPN’s user interface. It’s much simpler to use than TunnelBear’s. This round is won by PureVPN.
Features Not Included
PureVPN offers Secure Wi-Fi as well as add-on services like as a Dedicated IP, game-specific Port Forwarding, and DDoS protection. TunnelBear offers GhostBear, an obfuscated server that allows you disguise your VPN activity as normal web data.
In terms of Features Not Included, PureVPN has more offers than TunnelBear. It takes over TunnelBear in this round, too.
I can chat with the Customer Service of PureVPN, which I appreciate. It also takes less than five minutes before someone can attend to my needs. TunnelBear, on the other hand, does not have a live chat feature, but it still responds fast via email and Ticket Assistance.
To understand each one’s Customer Service offers, refer to this table:
|Email Customer Service||Yes||Yes|
|Support over the phone||No||No|
|Knowledge Base on the Internet||Yes||Yes|
|Average Time to Respond||2 minutes||Time: 42 minutes|
Comparing TunnelBear vs PureVPN, the latter has a faster response time and has a live chat feature. TunnelBear does not lag far behind in terms of response time, but it loses this round because you cannot chat directly to a Customer Service representative.
I’ll also give PureVPN a chance in this round.
Take a look at the PureVPN vs TunnelBear price and discounts:
|Lengths of Subscriptions||One month (500MB free each month)|
|One month’s worth of service ($10.95/month)||One-month subscription ($9.99/month)|
|a year ($4.16 per month)||One-year subscription ($4.99/month)|
|$2.91/month for two years|
|$3.33/month for three years|
|The Most Expensive Month||$10.95||$9.99|
|Lowest Monthly Rate||$2.91||$3.33|
|Price for a year||$49.95||$59.88|
|Guaranteed Money-Back||31 days||Exceptions are made on a case-by-case basis.|
|Special Promotion||For a one-year strategy, save 62 percent.||For a three-year strategy, save 67 percent.|
|For a two-year strategy, save 73 percent.|
PureVPN looks to be more inexpensive than TunnelBear, which provides a free but restricted membership. PureVPN offers a cheaper rate when comparing their lowest and one-year costs. With that, PureVPN retains my vote.
Is PureVPN a superior option than TunnelBear?
Yes. From what we’ve discussed per category, PureVPN tops TunnelBear in almost all the areas. It is faster, offers more Compatibility when it comes to gaming and streaming, has optimized servers for file sharing, and has more Protocols for Virtual Private Networks.
However, if you want to give TunnelBear a try, it is a good option. You may even give it a go at no cost. You have nothing to lose if you are dissatisfied with its performance.