good
Hide.me secures its place in our top 10 with good to very good grades in all test categories. The app is filled to the brim with handy features, the performance is solid, and with 10 GB of data per month, the free tier is also worth a look.
Try hide.me now *
Bedienung & Features
10 / 10
Support
8.6 / 10
Server Network
8.0 / 10
Performance
8.0 / 10
Security & Privacy
7.4 / 10
VPN

hide.me VPN Review: Worth Your Money?

Author
Martin Gschwentner
Translation
D Bare
Last update
17. Mar 2023
Ad disclaimer: For links on this page, EXPERTE.com may earn a commission from the provider. This supports our work and has no influence on our editorial rating.

As corporations and security services collect ever-larger amounts of data, the desire for digital anonymity continues to grow. VPN providers like hide.me make it easier than ever before to conceal your identity with just a few mouse clicks. However, not every VPN is created equally.

In this review, we've examined hide.me to see whether it allows you to do a digital disappearing act.

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What Is hide.me?

Hide.me* is a Malaysian VPN provider that professes not to create logs, prioritizing the security and privacy of its users. Unlike most of its competitors, a free version of hide.me is offered, which is meant to familiarize new users with VPNs. Below, we'll discuss what the free and paid versions offer, as well as how each performs.

hide.me VPN Review

Review
8.4
good
Visit Website*
Bedienung & Features
10 / 10
Support
8.6 / 10
Server Network
8.0 / 10
Performance
8.0 / 10
Security & Privacy
7.4 / 10
  • Good speeds

  • Free version

  • User-friendly clients and apps

  • Wide range of settings

  • Relatively high monthly price

  • Unimpressive server network

  • Occasional connection issues

  • Last independently audited in 2015

1.

Installation and Features

Hide.me offers apps for Windows, Android, macOS, iOS, and Linux, as well as Android TV and Amazon Fire TV. Beyond that, the service also provides browser extensions for Chrome and Firefox, and on its website, installation guides for routers and other devices.

You can download all available hide.me apps and browser extensions in the website's customer area.

Since hide.me, unlike most other VPN providers, offers a free version of its software, users don't need to supply payment information when registering. Simply select and download the client for your operating system (and, if manually installing, select a VPN protocol) before installing the application. Within a matter of minutes, thanks to the instructions on hide.me's website, we were able to get the desktop client running.

The desktop app is uncluttered and provides a nice overview of the program. In the interface's center, you'll find a large "Enable VPN" button that automatically creates a VPN tunnel between you and the best location. On the bottom left, you can see your IP address, while at the top left and right, you'll find a notifications bell and a gear icon that takes you to the settings menu.

Hide.me's desktop client is uncluttered and finished elegantly in blue.

To connect to a different server, simply click on the "Change" button in the bottom right of the main screen. Hide.me's server list is divided into three areas: Favorites (which you can augment by clicking on the star symbol next to a server), Recommended Servers, and finally, a Full Server List. Servers can be arranged alphabetically, or on the basis of their ping (descending).

Beyond that, there are two additional server categories. As the name implies, Streaming servers are designed for usage with on-demand platforms, such as Netflix or Disney+, allowing you to view foreign content (we'll discuss how well this works below in the "Performance" section). Alternatively, multi-hop servers allow you to create a connection over two VPN tunnels simultaneously, providing enhanced security.

Finding the right VPN server with hide.me is easy since you're given a nice selection of categories and filters.

So far, so good. If you want to dive into the more complicated side of hide.me, click on the gear symbol at the top right of the main window to open the settings menu. Here, more advanced users can set auto-start preferences, location selection, or modify how the program behaves. For example, auto-start can be set to interact differently with trusted and untrusted WLAN or Ethernet networks.

You'll also be able to make use of the platform's extra features here. These include the ability to manually configure a DNS server or exempt certain programs and apps from your VPN connection through split tunneling.

Split tunneling allows you to specify which programs and applications use your VPN tunnel, and which don't.

Added security is provided by "Stealth Guard", which works similarly to split tunneling, but designates which apps or programs should never run without a VPN tunnel. Not just for programs, you can even include your Internet connection, meaning that you'll only have connectivity if a VPN tunnel through hide.me can be established.

Should you only want to use certain apps or programs with the protection of a VPN for security reasons (such as a torrent client), this feature can prove extremely useful.

Stealth Guard allows you to select which apps or programs launch only when a VPN connection exists.

The platform also features a classic kill switch, that completely severs your connection whenever there are disruptions, but, with a unique twist: You can run user-defined scripts once the kill switch is activated.

It's also possible to change protocols, but more on that in the "Security and Privacy" section below.

Mobile App

Mobile versions of hide.me are offered for iOS, Android, Windows Phone, and Blackberry. Similarly to the desktop version, these offer a clear but somewhat boring overview of the program's services and features.

The footer includes buttons that allow you to alternate between VPN, Location, Settings, and Extend, the expanded menu view. For both the Location and Settings buttons, options are not as extensive as in the desktop client (for example, Stealth Guard is missing). With that said, split tunneling is offered as well as the ability to manually configure a DNS server.

Although the smartphone app does everything it's supposed to, its appearance isn't all that exciting.

In sum, hide.me perfectly blends simplicity with advanced settings, catering equally to those who want to surf anonymously with as little fuss as possible, as well as others interested in creating a more personalized VPN experience.

Visit Website*
Bedienung & Features
10 / 10
2.

Server Network

Hide.me possesses a network of around 1,900 servers spread across 49 countries. Most servers are located in the US and Europe, with Brazil, Singapore, Morocco, and South Korea serving South America, Africa, and Asia, respectively. In comparison to other VPN providers, the network is not particularly extensive, lacking coverage in both Africa and South America.

Hide.me's Euro-centric server network doesn't come as a big surprise.

Even though the number of servers on offer is decent, we would have liked to see more variety, especially considering that other VPN providers host servers in twice as many countries. Particularly in Asia, hide.me's base, the trend has been for greater development and growth. Still, we're hopeful that the service will expand more in its backyard.

Visit Website*
Server Network
8.0 / 10
3.

Performance

The speed of all VPNs from our sample is evaluated using a server in Europe with a 1 GB/s connection. We tested random hide.me servers in the US and Germany at different times of the day in order to gauge the service's performance. More information concerning our methodology can be found in our VPN speed test.

The table below shows the average results from the last 365 days, arranged in order of download and upload speed (descending):

1.
NordVPN
195.6 Mbit/s
Download
42.9 Mbit/s
Upload
2.
Surfshark
191.7 Mbit/s
Download
42.8 Mbit/s
Upload
3.
Mullvad
200.8 Mbit/s
Download
18.1 Mbit/s
Upload
4.
ExpressVPN
175.0 Mbit/s
Download
42.0 Mbit/s
Upload
5.
HideMyAss!
167.7 Mbit/s
Download
16.1 Mbit/s
Upload
6.
TorGuard
166.5 Mbit/s
Download
16.3 Mbit/s
Upload
7.
hide.me
153.9 Mbit/s
Download
27.0 Mbit/s
Upload
8.
PrivateVPN
155.1 Mbit/s
Download
21.2 Mbit/s
Upload
9.
Proton VPN
154.8 Mbit/s
Download
18.8 Mbit/s
Upload
10.
IPVanish
156.4 Mbit/s
Download
15.0 Mbit/s
Upload
11.
PureVPN
113.1 Mbit/s
Download
41.4 Mbit/s
Upload
12.
TunnelBear
129.4 Mbit/s
Download
18.4 Mbit/s
Upload
13.
VPN Unlimited
109.6 Mbit/s
Download
37.6 Mbit/s
Upload
14.
ZenMate
126.3 Mbit/s
Download
18.8 Mbit/s
Upload
15.
CyberGhost
118.6 Mbit/s
Download
18.4 Mbit/s
Upload
16.
Private Internet Access
109.7 Mbit/s
Download
17.0 Mbit/s
Upload
17.
Windscribe
82.2 Mbit/s
Download
43.3 Mbit/s
Upload
18.
Hotspot Shield
79.9 Mbit/s
Download
38.8 Mbit/s
Upload
19.
VyprVPN
106.0 Mbit/s
Download
12.2 Mbit/s
Upload
20.
Perfect Privacy
99.3 Mbit/s
Download
12.7 Mbit/s
Upload

When the test was conducted, hide.me clocked a download speed of 153.9 MB/s and an upload speed of 27 MB/s. This was good enough for seventh place in our ranking, which is good, especially considering that the speeds aren't too far off the leading providers.

The diagram below shows hide.me's average speeds over the past months.

MonatDownloadUpload
2/23February 2023
Download: 118.6 Mbit/s
  118.6
Mbit/s
February 2023
Upload: 41.6 Mbit/s
 
3/23March 2023
Download: 115.0 Mbit/s
  115.0
Mbit/s
March 2023
Upload: 42.1 Mbit/s
 

However, speed isn't everything. For that reason, we tested hide.me for an entire day to see how it performed for all sorts of routine tasks, and to check its connections' reliability and stability. Our general impression was good as connections were quickly established, functioned smoothly, and didn't generate captchas when performing Google searches. The only blemishes were occasional disruptions, which shouldn't occur.

Hide.me gave a good accounting of itself when it came to video streaming as well, no doubt owing to its special servers. Through them, we were able to view foreign content on a number of major streaming platforms (Amazon Prime, Netflix, Disney+, and BBC iPlayer).

We're less sure about hide.me's suitability for usage in China, where websites and services are often blocked. This is because it couldn't create a connection from China. Then again, this shouldn't come as a big surprise since the provider states their inability to 100% guarantee such connections on their website.

For everything else, hide.me put in a solid performance, despite the occasional connection problems.

Visit Website*
Performance
8.0 / 10
4.

Security and Privacy

Hide.me makes a variety of protocols available: IKEv2, OpenVPN, SoftEther VPN, SSTP, and WireGuard, the new gold standard and most secure protocol on the market. IKEv2 supports AES 128, AES 256, and OpenVPN AES 256 encryption.

It's possible to configure additional protocol settings, such as designating a "Fallback Protocol" for use if your main protocol runs into problems.

Hide.me passed our VPN leak tests for IPv6, DNS, and WebRTC using different locations and protocols without any issues.

We didn't identify any leaks during testing.

As noted above, hide.me is headquartered in Malaysia, where foreign regulations have no influence on the company's internal data management processes. For that reason, according to hide.me, connections on any of its servers are never logged or saved. In the past, independent data privacy analysts confirmed the company's claims: In 2015, DefenseCode awarded hide.me its "Privacy and Anonymity Certificate."

Since then, hide.me has not submitted to any external audits. An annual transparency report is released every year, the latest being from 2020, however, we would prefer an independent, third-party assessment.

On paper, hide.me looks okay, but we're disturbed by a few factors. The provider was one of the first VPNs to submit to an independent audit, and its CEO, Sebastian Schaub, commented on their importance in 2019. As such, it's difficult to understand why the provider hasn't performed such checks more regularly or recently.

Visit Website*
Security & Privacy
7.4 / 10
5.

Customer Support

There's plenty of support and help on hide.me's website: Tickets can be submitted in the support area, or you can consult the knowledge base, which contains FAQs and detailed guides. If you have time, it's also worth checking out the forum.

Reports about problems can be filed within the desktop client itself, adding a further layer of convenience. During testing, we received an answer to our query in less than an hour.

Apart from that, there's also a live chat on the company's website. When using it, we received an answer to our request for help in under a minute.

Direct support is available via ticket or live chat.

With its knowledge base, forum, live chat, and in-app support hide.me offers plenty of ways to solve any issues that might arise. Thanks to quick response times, the quality of direct support is also very good.

Visit Website*
Support
8.6 / 10
6.

Pricing

Hide.me is known for its free version, which provides 10 GB of data (monthly), and the ability to connect to 5 server locations. Unlimited VPN surfing requires a 'premium' subscription, which enables usage of all available server locations, 10 simultaneous connections, and features like Streaming Support and Port Forwarding.

How much you pay for a premium subscription depends on the length of your contract. For month-to-month usage, hide.me is one of the pricier services, but, monthly costs drop by 61% if you sign on for two years.

Business plans are available, but, for further details, you'll have to contact hide.me.

An overview of hide.me's current rates is provided in the table below:

FreePremium 3 yearsPremium 12 months
Monthly Price $0.00 $2.44 $5.00
Contract Period (Months) 0 36 12
Limits
Data Volume 10 GB unlimited unlimited
Number of Devices 1 10 10
Features
Number of Servers 150 1,900 1,900
Number of Countries 5 47 47
No Server Logs
P2P Allowed
Tor Access
Kill Switch
Protocols
OpenVPN
WireGuard
PPTP
SSTP
IKEv2
IPSec
L2TP
OpenVPN
WireGuard
PPTP
SSTP
SOCKS5
IKEv2
IPSec
L2TP
OpenVPN
WireGuard
PPTP
SSTP
SOCKS5
IKEv2
IPSec
L2TP

All subscriptions come with a 30-day, money-back guarantee.

Conclusion

Review
8.4
good
Visit Website*
Bedienung & Features
10 / 10
Support
8.6 / 10
Server Network
8.0 / 10
Performance
8.0 / 10
Security & Privacy
7.4 / 10

In nearly every category, hide.me is good or excellent, even taking its somewhat unremarkable speeds and occasional connection issues into consideration. We particularly liked the wide variety of features that are included, from split tunneling to Stealth Guard. That hide.me's interface remains user-friendly and uncluttered is impressive.

There is definitely room for improvement when it comes to the server network though, as hide.me still can't really go head-to-head with the big names. We would also like to see the company return to its pioneering approach to external audits, backing up its CEO's more recent remarks about their importance with action. When it comes to price, hide.me is only interesting if signing on for a two-year contract.

hide.me VPN
hide.me VPN
(31,514 )
Hide.me secures its place in our top 10 with good to very good grades in all test categories. The app is filled to the brim with handy features, the performance is solid, and with 10 GB of data per month, the free tier is also worth a look.
78 locations in 49+ countries
many features, incl. split tunneling
free plan with 10 GB monthly
anonymous payment
no recent audit
8.4
good
Data Volume
10 - ∞
Devices
1 - 10
Protocols
7
Contract Period
0 - 36 months
hide.me Free
$0.00
monthly price
Visit Website*
Free forever

Customer Reviews

In the reviews that we evaluated, hide.me was rated 'good'. Users praised the service's simplicity, performance, and level of customer support.

Customer Ratings
4.2 / 5
31,514 Bewertungen
Visit Website*
We analyzed the reviews and ratings from various portals and found 31,514 ratings with an overall rating of 4.2 out of 5 .

Alternatives

Should you want a provider whose commitment to security and privacy is unwavering and who regularly submits to independent audits NordVPN, ExpressVPN, and TunnelBear are all excellent choices. NordVPN and ExpressVPN have the added benefit of also being faster than hide.me.

On the other hand, if you'd prefer a free alternative with unlimited data ProtonVPN is worth taking a closer look at.

A list of the best alternatives can be found below.

Best Overall 2024
NordVPN
NordVPN
(877,857 )
NordVPN is our number one VPN because it combines speed, ease-of-use, and functionality in a slick package that's also pretty affordable.
5,500+ servers, 60 countries
excellent performance
no logs
6 devices simultaneously
affordable 2-year package
9.4
excellent
Data Volume
unlimited
Devices
6
Protocols
5
Contract Period
1 - 24 months
NordVPN 2-year plan
$3.79
monthly price
Visit Website*
30 days money-back guarantee
ExpressVPN
ExpressVPN
(736,465 )
ExpressVPN can impress with a strong performance, a huge server network, and excellently designed applications, but this quality also comes at a higher price.
3,000+ servers
160 cities in 94 countries
reliable performance
good for streaming
secure browser extensions
9.4
excellent
Data Volume
unlimited
Devices
5
Protocols
7
Contract Period
1 - 12 months
ExpressVPN 12 Months
$6.67
monthly price
Visit Website*
30 days money-back guarantee
Proton VPN
Proton VPN
(144,686 )
With its open source philosophy and extra security features, Proton VPN targets security-conscious VPN users. But thanks to its user-friendly interface and suitability for streaming, it's worth a look for a wide audience.
open source & external audits
2,900+ servers in 67 countries
great performance
free plan without data limit
not suitable for China
9.1
excellent
Data Volume
unlimited
Devices
1 - 10
Protocols
3
Contract Period
0 - 24 months
Proton VPN Free
$0.00
monthly price
Visit Website*
Free forever
Surfshark VPN
Surfshark VPN
(207,223 )
Surfshark is one of the cheapest providers on the market, but it's a lot more than a great budget option: the relatively new VPN boasts strong protection, many features, and a great support with 24/7 live chat.
3,200+ servers in 100 countries
unlimited number of devices
many apps (Linux, FireTV, ...)
cheap 24-month plan
expensive monthly plan
8.8
good
Data Volume
unlimited
Devices
unlimited
Protocols
3
Contract Period
1 - 24 months
Surfshark 24 months
$1.99
monthly price
Visit Website*
Get 83% Discount
HideMyAss! VPN
HideMyAss! VPN
(86,656 )
HideMyAss' main claim to fame is its impressive server infrastructure, but the VPN also delivers solid speeds and handy features like its IP Randomizer. When it comes to streaming, however, it's not always the most reliable choice.
290 locations in 210 countries
IP Randomizer
strong performance
support with live chat
unreliable for streaming
8.6
good
Data Volume
unlimited
Devices
5
Protocols
1
Contract Period
12 - 36 months
HideMyAss! 36 months
$2.99
monthly price
Visit Website*
30 days money-back guarantee
Top VPN Provider 2024
Sponsored
from $3.79
per month
NordVPN
from $6.67
per month
ExpressVPN
from $0.00
per month
Proton VPN
from $1.99
per month
Surfshark
show all
Author (German Version): Martin Gschwentner
Martin Gschwentner majored in American Studies and Media Studies in Germany, the USA and France and works as a freelance editor in Paris. He is a doctoral student at the Institute for English and American Studies at the University of Paris Diderot, where he is researching the influence of money on US politics. On EXPERTE.com he writes about IT security, data protection and software for the self-employed and small businesses.
Translation: D Bare
* Ad disclaimer: For links marked with an asterisk, EXPERTE.com may earn a commission from the provider. The commission has no influence on our editorial rating.
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