PureVPN vs PIA Comparison

PureVPN vs PIA: Speed, Streaming & Torrenting Comparison in 2021

Are you looking for a vpn and are considering either PureVPN or PIA?

The difference in connection speeds between PureVPN and PIA is like day and night.

While Private Internet Access is able to deliver excellent connection speeds, PureVPN is great at unblocking geo restricted content and accessing internet in restricted countries like China.

But how does PureVPN compare with PIA in other areas like torrenting support and privacy policy?

In this PureVPN vs PIA comparison, we are going to compare PureVPN with PIA in terms of their connection speeds, torrenting as well as streaming support.

So let’s get started.

Here is a quick summary.

PureVPNPrivate Internet Access
JurisdictionHong KongUnited States
StreamingNetflix, Hulu, Amazon, iPlayerNetflix
TorrentingP2P serversAll servers
Kill SwitchYESYES
Works in China?YESNO
Pricing$ 3.33/month$ 3.33/month


PureVPN is a company based in Hong Kong that enables you to access the internet in restricted countries like China, Qatar, Iran and UAE.

Here is a detailed review of PureVPN.

Private Internet Access, on the other hand, is a VPN company that provides you with private and anonymous internet access using secure encryption technologies and connection protocols.

Find a detailed Private Internet Access review here.

Server Collection

Which one between PureVPN and PIA has more servers?

The vpn that has more servers will offer you more options when it comes to choosing a vpn server to connect to.

PureVPN, at the time of writing this PureVPN vs PIA comparison, has a total server count of 2,000 servers that are located in 140 different countries.

PIA, on the other hand, has 3,340 servers that are spread over  32 different countries in different continents.

If you are looking for a vpn that has a larger collection of servers then I recommend Private Internet Access.


Which streaming platforms will you be able to unblock with either PureVPN or PIA?

Most people will buy a vpn in order to be able to stream geo restricted on streaming platforms like Netflix and Hulu.

However, these platforms  are very smart at detecting proxy servers or vpn IPs that are used to circumvent their content restrictions and then block them.

So a vpn that really wants to great for torrenting should be able to replace these IPs as soon as they are blocked.

PureVPN, currently, is able to unblock Netflix libraries in different countries like the US, UK, Brazil and Japan.

In order to access Netflix in these countries, you need to access Netflix while connected to a server that is based in these countries because streaming servers are not labelled in PureVPN.

Apart from Netflix, PureVPN is also able to stream content on Hulu, Amazon Prime and BBC iPlayer.

PIA, on the other hand, is only able to unblock Netflix libraries in the United States.

I experienced proxy server errors when trying to access Netflix in other countries like Canada and Germany.

I was also blocked when I tried to access Hulu, Amazon Prime and iPlayer using Private Internet Access servers.

Clearly, PureVPN is able to unblock more streaming platforms than PIA.

If you are looking for a vpn that is great for streaming then I recommend PureVPN.


I started this PureVPN vs PIA comparison by mentioning that PIA delivers much faster connection speeds than PureVPN.

However, how exactly does PIA vs PureVPN speeds compare?

If a vpn is able to deliver better connection speeds, it will also translate to a better streaming experience.

I test the speeds of these two vpns by connecting to three servers based in three different countries.

After connecting to their servers in the US, UK and Hong Kong, I used speedtest.net to measure the download and upload speeds.

PureVPN has an average connection speed of 76% of my original speeds before connecting to their servers.

Private Internet Access, on the flip side, had an average connection speeds of 94% of my original download speeds.

As you can see, PIA is a much faster vpn than PureVPN.

If you are looking for a vpn that has great connection speeds then I recommend PIA over PureVPN.


How does PureVPN vs PIA torrenting support compare?

If you don’t want to serve jail time, then ensure that you use a vpn whenever you are downloading torrent files from the internet.

A vpn with assigned you a shared IP address that makes it hard for your torrenting activities to be tracked back to you.

PureVPN currently allows you to download torrent files on their servers.

Before you start downloading torrent files on their servers, you need to first connect to their P2P optimized servers.

The dedicated torrenting servers are easy to identify in the server list because they are labelled.

PIA, on the flip side, supports torrenting on all their servers.

You can start downloading torrent files on any PIA server without having to first connect to any specialized P2P servers.

All their servers are P2P optimized.

If you are looking for a vpn for torrenting then I recommend PIA over PureVPN because you’ll get better download speeds and anonymity.

Privacy Policy

Most vpns hide a lot of prohibitive clauses deep inside their privacy policies.

They manage to get away with this because more than half of internet users will not read privacy policies anyway.

In order to ensure that your vpn is not screwing around with you privacy on the internet, you should read through their privacy policies to establish whether there is more than meets the eye.

How does PIA vs PureVPN privacy policies compare?

PureVPN having their headquarters in Hong Kong is based in a country that does not have mandatory data retention laws that obligate vpn companies to keep logs of their users.

They also state in the privacy policy that they do not keep logs of your IP address or DNS queries.

However, PureVPN appears to be log happy than is necessary because they keep a lot more logs about you that could easily tie you to certain activities on their servers.

PureVPN keeps logs of the server that you connect to, your bandwidth usage as well as your ISP.

Private Internet Access, on the contrary, is based in the United States which is not a privacy friendly location.

However, PIA tries to provide you private and anonymous internet access as they state in their privacy policy that they do keep no traffic logs.

Even though that sounds great, I find it rather vague.

PIA could make life easier for everyone by stating what logs they keep and what they don’t because all vpns need some kind of logs to operate.

For example, how do they ensure that you don’t exceed the total number of connected devices?

If you are looking for a vpn that claims to collect no logs about you then PIA it is.

Encryption and Data Protection

How does a vpn protect your personal information?

By ensuring that it is encrypted using a technology that is impossible to decrypt by an unintended device.

PureVPN uses 256-bit encryption by default to encrypt your personal information.

Private Internet Access, on the other hand, only uses a 128-bit encryption technology to encrypt your data before being transmitted.

While both 128 and 256 bit encryptions are secure, 256-bit encryption provides additional security while 128-bit encryption delivers better connection speeds.

PureVPN also support connection protocols like OpenVPN, IKEv2, L2TP/IPSec, SSTP and PPTP for transmitting your data.

PIA gives your connection protocol options that include OpenVPN, PPTP, L2TP and IPSec protocols.

Even though both PIA and PureVPN still support PPTP, this protocol is vulnerable to attacks from hackers and should never be used unless you know what you are doing.

Overall, both Private Internet Access and PureVPN will provide you secure internet access.

Ad Blocker

Will PIA and PureVPN enable you to block ads on the websites that you visit?

The more internet users become blind to ads the more aggressive websites get with ads, which makes internet users even more blind to these ads… a vicious cycle.

Do you remember those ads that keep following you around the internet on every website that you visit?

It is time you disabled these ads as well as block ad tracking completely.

PureVPN has an ad blocker that will disable these ads and enable you to have an ad free browsing experience.

In addition to ad blocking, PureVPN apps also have a malware blocker that protects your devices from being infected by malware infected websites that you visit.

PIA also has a security feature called PIA MACE that enables you to block ads on most websites and video platforms like YouTube.

It also has a malware blocker with a database of over a million known malware infected websites.

It will then block these websites every time you try to access them in order to protect your device from being infected.

Both PureVPN and PIA are great if you are looking for a vpn with an ad and malware blocker in their apps.

Dedicated IPs

If you are constantly being asked by the websites that you visit to fill a captcha to prove that you are not a robot, then you are using a shared IP that has been abused.

You could remedy that by switching to a dedicated IP address that is unique to you.

Since the IP is only used by you, you reduce the chances that it’s blacklisted on these sites that you visit.

So you’ll be able to access these websites without those annoying captchas.

A dedicated IP might also be necessary when you need an IP that you can whitelist in your applications in order to have a secure remote access.

PureVPN provides dedicated IPs as an addon feature that you purchase separately from your normal vpn subscription.

Private Internet Access, unfortunately, does  not support a dedicated IP address.

So you won’t get an unique IP that you could use for example to access your home security camera feed remotely.

If you are looking for a vpn that supports dedicated IPs then I recommend PureVPN.

Kill Switch

There are times when your vpn app disconnects from the server, like when you are switching servers or when your internet connection drops.

It is during these few seconds that your real IP is exposed and you are identified.

This is not very welcome especially if you were in the process of downloading a torrent file using your torrent client.

Once your IP is revealed, your ISP can see your traffic and this torrenting history can be used against you in a court of law.

PureVPN and PIA both have inbuilt kill switch that will cut off internet access for your entire device whenever your vpn app disconnects from the server.

This ensures that there is no continued internet access by other applications which might exposed your IP.

So the kill switch will ensure that internet access is only possible through your encrypted, anonymous and secure vpn tunnel.

Both PIA and PureVPN are great if you are looking for a vpn with a kill switch.

Split Tunnelling

A vpn will cause a speed drop depending on the server you connect to, the time and load on this server as well as the distance of this server from you.

This might affect applications that need great speeds in order to function properly… like your application that runs backups.

So it might be a good idea to whitelist this application and exempt it from having its traffic channelled through your vpn tunnel.

A split tunnel enables you to specify certain applications that will have their traffic routed through your ISP as usual and not through your vpn servers.

While PureVPN has a split tunnel capability, PIA does not support split tunneling in any of their apps.

So if you are looking for a vpn that supports split tunnelling then I recommend PureVPN.

Internet traffic through the apps in your split tunnel is not encrypted by your vpn and is transparent to your ISP.

So you lost the vpn protection when you go outside the vpn tunnel.

Works in China?

So you want a vpn that you can carry with you to China, right?

Or a vpn that you can use to access internet in restricted countries like China, Russia, Iran, Uganda, Qatar etc…

Let’s find out if you’ll be able to use either Private Internet Access or PureVPN in any of these countries.

PureVPN has a technology that is able to make its vpn traffic look like normal https traffic and bypass the deep packet inspection technology of the great firewall of China.

In addition to that, PureVPN also has servers based in China, in the cities of Beijing and Shanghai.

You can connect to these servers if you want to access content that is restricted to the Chinese audience.

PureVPN will be able to work flawlessly in China and enable you to unblock censored websites like YouTube.com without being detected by the firewall.

PIA, unfortunately, is completely blocked and will not work in China.

If you are looking for a the best vpns for China then I recommend PureVPN.


So how much does to cost to use either PIA and PureVPN?

Let’s now do a Private Internet Access vs PureVPN pricing comparison to find out the cheaper vpn between the two.

If you want to get the cheapest price for a vpn, always go for their longest pricing plans.

This is the case because the longer the plan the bigger the discount that you get.

PureVPN costs $ 3.33/month on their 2 year plan while PIA costs $ 3.33/month on their 1 year plan.

As you can see, both vpns are priced exactly the same and there are no saving in $$$ by choosing one over the other.

However, you’ll save time and frustration by choosing the one with a longer plan so that you don’t have to be renewing or creating new vpn accounts every year that comes.

If you are looking for a vpn that offers longer subscription plans then I recommend PureVPN.

Payment Options

What payment methods will you be able to use to pay for your Private Internet Access or PureVPN plan?

Let’s finish this PureVPN vs PIA comparison in 2021 by listing their support payment methods in order to establish the one that supports anonymous payments options.

PureVPN and Private Internet Access, currently, support credit card payments, PayPal as well as crypto payments.

Since crypto payments do not require a billing address, they are great for you if  you don’t want to give any personal identifying information about you like you street address.

So sign up with a fake email and pay with crypto if you don’t want anyone knowing who you are.

If you are looking for a vpn that supports cryptocurrency payments then either PIA or PureVPN is a great option.

In Conclusion

I hope this PureVPN vs Private Internet Access comparison has opened your eyes to the advantages and disadvantages of these two vpns.

Are you now ready to make your choice between PIA and PureVPN?

If you are looking for a vpn with great connection speeds, has more servers and does not keep logs, then I recommend PIA.

However, if you are looking for a vpn with servers in more countries, has great streaming support and works in China then I recommend PureVPN.

Have you used either PureVPN and PIA before?

Please share your comments in the comments below.

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