VPN Provider

Best HideMyAss Alternatives: Which VPN Is Faster?

Author
Janis von Bleichert
Last update
16. May 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.

There aren't many alternatives to a VPN if you're interested in online anonymity and streaming otherwise geo-restricted content. HideMyAss (HMA) is one of the most well-known VPNs available, however, not necessarily the best as quite a few other services excel in different areas.

In our EXPERTE.com VPN comparison series, we carefully assessed 27 providers. Below, we'll let you know the best alternatives to HMA and their strengths and weaknesses.

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Surfshark
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Potential Disadvantages of HideMyAss

You might be wondering why you need an alternative to HideMyAss in the first place. The VPN doesn't do anything wrong per se, as our review showed, however, it does have some weaknesses that its competitors don't, such as:

  • Outdated app
    The app's mascot (a colorful and cheeky donkey) certainly has fans among the userbase, however, we're not among them. To us, the app shows its age and we'd prefer something more modern and elegant, like those offered by its competitors.

  • Mixed streaming performance
    During our test, we could only occasionally rely on HMA to grant us access to otherwise unavailable streaming content. We couldn't watch Netflix and Amazon Prime Video content from abroad, despite its dedicated streaming servers. Luckily, we didn't encounter any issues with Disney+ and BBC iPlayer. Under ideal conditions, a VPN should grant access to all streaming catalogs.

  • No split tunneling (desktop)
    Split tunneling is a useful VPN feature: It allows you to specify which apps or websites use your VPN or regular connection. HMA offers this, but only for Android devices, and not in the desktop app.

  • Located in the UK
    When it comes to where a VPN is based, there are several different views: Some users prefer offshore VPNs located in places like Panama or the British Virgin Islands, since they adhere to less restrictive data privacy laws and aren't members of intelligence-sharing agreements. Others see countries with strict data privacy laws as better since it means that information is in safer hands.

    HMA is based in the UK and belongs to the second group. Whether that's an advantage or disadvantage depends on you.

  • Doesn't offer SmartDNS
    Many VPN services include Smart DNS, a feature that makes it possible to bypass country restrictions on just about any Internet-capable device. HideMyAss is not among them.

  • No WireGuard
    WireGuard is widely seen as the new gold standard among VPN protocols. Many of the biggest VPN services have integrated it, however, once again, HMA isn't among them.

HideMyAss Alternatives: Our Top 5

As the above has shown, HMA is far from perfect. At the same time, none of its competitors are either, with some simply doing better in specific areas. Below, we'll introduce you to our Top 5 alternatives to HideMyAss:

1.

Better Overall Package: NordVPN

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

NordVPN was the best service from our VPN sample with the Panama-based provider offering an unbeatable combination of user-friendliness, reliability, and security at an affordable price. Applications are available for Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, iOS, and Android TV, as are Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox browser extensions.

What we like

NordVPN excels in the core features of a VPN but also offers a number of extras, such as ad and malware blockers. Split tunneling and a kill switch are also included.

In addition, there's a visually-appealing user interface, excellent performance, and a large server network to look forward to. Overall, NordVPN does everything just a bit better than its competitors, including HMA.

NordVPN was EXPERTE.com's best VPN.

What makes NordVPN better than HideMyAss?

There's no doubt that NordVPN offers a better overall package: Its performance is stronger (as shown by our speed test), more features are available (including split tunneling for desktop users), and streaming is more reliable. As if that wasn't enough, NordVPN's two most affordable packages cost less than HMA's.

  • Excellent performance

  • User-friendly apps

  • Lots of features, including split tunneling

  • Good for streaming

  • Supports Smart DNS

  • WireGuard-based protocol (NordLynx)

  • Server network could be larger

Review
9.4
excellent
Visit Website*
Check Review
Performance
10 / 10
Security & Privacy
9.4 / 10
Bedienung & Features
9.4 / 10
Support
9.4 / 10
Server Network
8.6 / 10
2.

More Affordable: Surfshark

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

Our price-performance winner, Surfshark, has only been on the market since 2017, however, it's quickly and rightfully established itself as one of the leading VPNs. Based in the British Virgin Islands, the VPN offers apps for Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, and iOS, as well as Android TV, Apple TV, and Fire TV.

What we like

Surfshark's relatively low cost is definitely a big advantage, however, that's far from the only thing we liked about the VPN: The program scores owing to its top security standards, powerful performance, and a wide variety of features. Alongside split tunneling, you'll also get access to MultiHop and static IPs.

The program can be installed and used on an unlimited number of devices as well. Rounding things out, we found its app to be well-executed.

Surfshark was EXPERTE.com's top price-performance pick.

What makes Surfshark better than HideMyAss?

Surfshark is more affordable than HMA (when signing on for a 12 or 24-month contract; HMA's monthly rates are slightly lower). The VPN also finished several places ahead of HMA in our speed test, offering more features, such as Smart DNS and desktop split tunneling. In terms of streaming, Surfshark was far more reliable than HMA.

  • More affordable 12 or 24-month subscriptions

  • Huge selection of features, including split tunneling

  • User-friendly apps

  • Top performance

  • Smart DNS

  • WireGuard

  • Expensive monthly price

  • iOS apps not as well-developed

Review
8.8
good
Visit Website*
Check Review
Performance
10 / 10
Bedienung & Features
9.4 / 10
Support
8.6 / 10
Security & Privacy
8.0 / 10
Server Network
8.0 / 10
3.

Better for Streaming: ExpressVPN

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

Our list continues with ExpressVPN, which, like Surfshark, is based in the British Virgin Islands. Both versatile and reliable, this VPN's quality impressed across the board, however, its developers have priced the service accordingly.

ExpressVPN is available for all typical operating systems and can also be installed on routers and gaming consoles.

What we like

During testing, ExpressVPN was always near the front of the pack: Its apps are some of the best on the market, it put in a strong speed test performance, and with its 3,000 servers across 94 countries, surpasses many of its rivals. Another positive: ExpressVPN regularly allows its commitment to security to be independently audited by third parties.

Are you looking for a streaming VPN? If so, ExpressVPN is worth checking out.

What makes ExpressVPN better than HideMyAss?

ExpressVPN surpasses HMA both in terms of its appearance as well as what's under the hood. Said differently, it offers more power in a better-looking package.

The service is especially good at streaming content from abroad and bypassing geo-restrictions, as we were able to access catalogs on all four services we tested it on. Even HBO Max couldn't prevent ExpressVPN from giving us access to otherwise unavailable content.

  • Strong streaming performance

  • Good speeds

  • User-friendly apps

  • Includes Smart DNS

  • Offers split tunneling

  • Relatively expensive

  • No WireGuard

  • Questionable parent company

Review
9.4
excellent
Visit Website*
Check Review
Performance
10 / 10
Security & Privacy
9.4 / 10
Server Network
9.4 / 10
Support
9.4 / 10
Bedienung & Features
8.6 / 10
4.

Free and More Focused on Privacy: ProtonVPN

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

Proton VPN is a Swiss open-source VPN that has continually improved over the past few years and is now just a step or two away from our winner's podium. It offers apps for Windows, macOS, Linux, iOS, and Android, as well as Chromebooks and Android TVs. If desired, it can also be manually installed on routers or other hardware.

What we like

There are two things in particular that we like about Proton VPN:

  • 1.

    Its emphasis on user privacy and security is visible in its open-source approach and range of features. For example, "Secure Core" makes it possible to route traffic through an additional VPN server in a country with strict data privacy laws, before heading to your target country.

  • 2.

    The service also scores by offering the most generous free VPN package on the market, setting no data limits whatsoever. This means that you can surf as much as you'd like, even though you're limited to a small number of server locations and cannot stream video content.

In our opinion, Proton VPN offers the best freemium VPN on the market.

What makes Proton VPN better than HideMyAss?

Proton VPN is open source, whereas HMA isn't. Alongside useful security features that HMA doesn't offer, Proton VPN also includes split tunneling. During our speed test, Proton VPN finished a few places ahead of HMA, staking out second place overall. Rounding things out, for streaming, the Swiss provider also did well, allowing us to access otherwise unavailable content catalogs on all four providers we tested.

  • Top performance

  • Open source

  • Powerful free version (no data limits)

  • Security features like "Secure Core"

  • Lacks Smart DNS

  • Server network could be larger

  • Limited support options

Review
9.1
excellent
Visit Website*
Check Review
Performance
10 / 10
Security & Privacy
10 / 10
Bedienung & Features
10 / 10
Server Network
8.0 / 10
Support
7.4 / 10
5.

Customizable App: Private Internet Access

Private Internet Access
Private Internet Access
(99,300 )
Besides its huge server network and its audit-proofed 'no logs policy', Private Internet Access sets itself apart from the competition with its module-based app that can be adjusted to each users' habits.
34,000+ servers in 84 countries
customizable VPN client
wide range of features
independent audit 2022
performance could be better
8.2
good
Data Volume
unlimited
Devices
10
Protocols
2
Contract Period
1 - 36 months
Private Internet Access 3 Years
$2.19
monthly price
Visit Website*

Private Internet Access (PIA), from the US, belongs to the same (somewhat dubious) parent company as ExpressVPN. Its apps are offered for Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, and iOS, with browser extensions for Chrome, Firefox, and Opera.

What we like

PIA's unique app is the reason it features on this list: Its modules can be customized to your individual preferences. With other types of software, this might seem unremarkable, however, it's a true rarity in the world of VPNs. And we couldn't be happier.

The Quick Connect module displays your favorites and recently used servers, while Quick Settings is where you can turn things like port forwarding on or off. In other words, you can choose which features and information should be displayed in the VPN's app.

Beyond that, PIA scores with its large server network and solid streaming performance (we only had trouble with Disney+).

PIA's VPN app can be fully customized to your preferences and needs.

What makes Private Internet Access better than HideMyAss?

PIA offers a much better app and was more reliable in terms of streaming than HMA. Its selection of features is also wider: Split tunneling is available for desktop users, as is Smart DNS. Rounding out the positives, the WireGuard protocol is integrated.

  • Modular, customizable apps

  • Lots of features and settings

  • Includes split tunneling

  • WireGuard is supported

  • Disappointing speed test performance

  • Questionable parent company

Review
8.2
good
Visit Website*
Check Review
Bedienung & Features
10 / 10
Server Network
9.4 / 10
Support
8.0 / 10
Performance
7.4 / 10
Security & Privacy
6.0 / 10

Further Alternatives

Of course, there are more than just 5 alternatives to HideMyAss. In our VPN review series, we thoroughly assessed 27 providers across five categories, "Configuration and Usage", "Server Network", "Performance", "Security and Privacy", and "Customer Support".

Below, we've included our complete ranking as well as links to each individual review:

1.
NordVPN
9.4
Review
excellent
2.
ExpressVPN
9.4
Review
excellent
3.
Proton VPN
9.1
Review
excellent
4.
Surfshark
8.8
Review
good
5.
HideMyAss!
8.6
Review
good
6.
hide.me
8.4
Review
good
7.
Private Internet Access
8.2
Review
good
8.
CyberGhost
7.8
Review
good
9.
PureVPN
7.8
Review
good
10.
Windscribe
7.8
Review
good
11.
Mozilla VPN
7.6
Review
good
12.
VyprVPN
7.6
Review
good
13.
Hotspot Shield
7.5
Review
good
14.
Atlas VPN
7.4
Review
good
15.
IPVanish
7.4
Review
good
16.
Mullvad
7.3
Review
good
17.
VPN Unlimited
7.3
Review
good
18.
Bitdefender
7.2
Review
good
19.
PrivateVPN
7.2
Review
good
20.
TorGuard
7.2
Review
good
21.
TunnelBear
7.1
Review
good
22.
ZenMate
7.0
Review
satisfactory
23.
Avast
6.8
Review
satisfactory
24.
PrivadoVPN
6.8
Review
satisfactory
25.
Perfect Privacy
6.6
Review
satisfactory
26.
Avira
6.4
Review
satisfactory
27.
VeePN
6.1
Review
satisfactory

Conclusion

HideMyAss is a decent VPN, however, it suffers from a few shortcomings. Thankfully, there are a number of good alternatives that are a step ahead of HMA:

NordVPN offers what is likely the best overall VPN package on the market, Surfshark excels in terms of its price-performance ratio, ExpressVPN is a user-friendly, streaming-focused all-arounder, ProtonVPN is all about security and open source, and Private Internet Access serves up a fully customizable app.

Other alternatives to HideMyAss can be found in our comprehensive EXPERTE.com VPN comparison series.

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
Janis von Bleichert studied business informatics at the TU Munich and computer science at the TU Berlin, Germany. He has been self-employed since 2006 and is the founder of EXPERTE.com. He writes about hosting, software and IT security.
* 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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Best Overall 2024
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NordVPN
5,500+ servers, 60 countries
excellent performance
no logs
6 devices simultaneously
affordable 2-year package
9.4
Review
excellent
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