Best proxy services

Proxies underpin much of the digital world. They power some of the best-known web applications and tools around, providing users with everything from competitor and SEO analysis to marketing insights, price monitoring, and geo-targeted testing.

While proxies are used for a wide variety of applications, it can be very difficult to know if the proxies you’re buying will meet your needs. The reality is that providing a large proxy network with the IP diversity necessary to ensure quality of service requires a huge amount of infrastructure and investment. Most proxy providers you’ll come across are either resellers or resellers of resellers. This can lead to a degradation in performance and leave you with a lack of support. The worst-case scenario is that the provider sells you IPs it has no right to sell. That’s why you must choose a proxy provider that has an ethically sourced network of IPs and is trustworthy.

The very best proxy providers also offer a suite of value-added services, making it much easier to get your applications and scripts up and running. So whether you’re a freelancer looking to understand how well your clients perform in Search or training business intelligence algorithms for an enterprise-grade application, this article will walk you through the best proxy services available in 2024. We’ll explain why we chose them, walk you through some of their standout features, and break down the pricing models.

Comparitech does not condone breaching the Terms of Service (ToS) of any website, service, or application. We recommend users thoroughly review the relevant ToS if they intend to scrape/store any data that falls outside their direct ownership.

If you want a quick overview, here is a summary of the best proxy providers at the time of testing:

What is the best Proxy in 2024:

  1. Bright Data: The best proxy provider in 2024. With access to over 72 million + IPs and a great range of features and value-added services, Bright Data is a one-stop-shop for all your proxy needs.
  2. Smartproxy: With over 55 million residential IPs, this is a very solid service with competitive prices.
  3. Oxylabs: The largest proxy pool available with over 102 million IPs. Provides excellent performance but it comes at a cost.
  4. IPRoyal: With over 32 million residential rotating IPs, IPRoyal is a great entry-level option with some of the cheapest prices around. 
  5. NetNut: With over 52 million IPs, NetNut has a strong residential network but is let down by a lack of value-added services and no PAYG option.

The best proxy services in 2024

You might think that choosing the best proxy provider is as simple as looking for the one with the largest pool of IPs, but it’s not as straightforward as that. A proxy must work for your use case and offer a failsafe when it doesn’t. The best proxy services provide a host of additional features and APIs, rapidly accelerating the development process and reducing the need to maintain your scripts or applications.

Here’s an in-depth analysis of the best proxies in 2024:

1. Bright Data

With over 72 million IPs and a plethora of out-of-the-box solutions, Bright Data won our vote for the best proxy provider. While Oxylabs has more residential IPs available, we liked that Bright Data’s made the process of integrating proxies into our scripts and applications as seamless as possible.

Features

Bright Data has a solution for just about every use case you can think of and a few you may not have considered! From its open source, locally run Proxy Manager, allowing you to customize and manage all your proxy operations from one central location to its APIs and Scraping Browser, Bright Data has you covered.

On top of standard residential, mobile, and data center IPs, Bright Data offers ISP IPs. These are residential IPs hosted on a data center. This combination means you get the best of both worlds – the fast response time of a data center but with the reputation of residential IPs. You also get to keep the IPs for as long as you pay for them if maintaining a static IP is important to your use case.

Bright Data’s dashboard is simple enough to move around quickly, and every feature and function has supporting documentation, dynamic code integration examples, and even a quick walkthrough video to help you get up and running. Thanks to the thorough documentation and code examples, we created a Python script for checking search engine results in a matter of minutes.

Pricing

Bright Data isn’t the most expensive option on the list, but it’s not the cheapest. They offer a pay-as-you-go option, which is becoming increasingly common and something we love to see because not every user needs thousands of dollars worth of data every month. PAYG starts at $10.50 per GB.

bright data pricing

If you decide to build your application on Bright Data, the $500 a month package brings this down to $8.92/GB or $7.87/GB if you go with the $1,000 a month package. A further 10 percent is knocked off if you pay annually.

If you’re interested in the SERP API or any of the other features mentioned below, these all come with their own custom pricing. Again, cheaper options exist, but as is always the case, you get what you pay for.

Web Scraper IDE

This hosted integrated development environment (IDE) takes much of the pain out of building custom solutions, getting you from concept to actionable intelligence as quickly as possible. There are pre-built code templates and functions covering a wide range of sites, services, and social platforms, which should help cut down development time.

IDE

Web Unlocker

Anyone attempting to scrape publicly available data will inevitably run into various roadblocks, whether it’s protection in the form of CAPTCHAs or more sophisticated fingerprinting techniques. However, Bright Data’s Web Unlocker is undoubtedly one of the most powerful we’ve tested.

With the Web Unlocker, you’ll never have to worry about blocks, restrictions, or CAPTCHAs. The Unlocker fully emulates a real user and works completely in the background, allowing you to send unlimited numbers of concurrent requests and fetch a response without ever being blocked.

We set up some simple scripts to test this, which worked beautifully.

Scraping Browser

If you’re a developer, you probably understand the distinction between headless and GUI browsers, but let’s just quickly recap. A headless browser operates without a visible user interface, making it a popular choice for data scraping in tandem with proxies. It’s fast and scalable. However, it’s also pretty basic by today’s standards, and even simplistic detection systems often flag this method, posing challenges for large-scale data extraction.

That’s where Bright Data’s Scraping Browser comes in. It is a GUI (Graphical User Interface) browser called a ‘headfull’ browser. It operates with a visible interface and can be managed using the Puppeteer (Python) or the Playwright (Node.js) APIs. This makes it much less prone to detection by bot-protection mechanisms. Additionally, the Scraping Browser comes with integrated features to sidestep website restrictions. Because it runs on Bright Data’s servers, these browsers are perfect for large-scale web scraping tasks. Users can launch multiple Scraping Browsers without needing a vast internal setup.

Use your preferred browser automation API to spin up and control as many Scraping Browser sessions as you need. Save time and resources with unlocking built into the browser, including CAPTCHA solving, browser fingerprinting, and proxy management, and control it easily via Puppeteer (Python), Playwright (Node.js), or Selenium. Enjoy seamless integration with your existing scrapers. It’s a great option for scraping projects that need website interactions, like hovering over an element, clicking buttons, scrolling, adding text, etc.

You might be a bit confused about the difference between Scraping Browser and Web Unlocker. Put simply, Web Unlocker works with one-step requests, whereas Scraping Browser is designed for when you need to interact with a website to retrieve data. Think JS-heavy sites or anything that might require clicking, hovering, etc.

Bright data integration examples

SERP API

Whether you’re building an in-house SEO platform, looking to bring an application to market, conducting PPC research, or trying to understand how you and your competitors appear in search, Bright Data’s SERP API is a great solution. APIs can take much of the guesswork and maintenance out of scraping data. An API means you don’t need to develop or maintain your parsers. You don’t need to change anything if something changes on the target’s end. You can focus on getting the data you need to make better business decisions. The SERP API supports:

  • Google Search
  • Bing Search
  • DuckDuckGo Search
  • Yandex Search
  • Baidu Search
  • Yahoo Search
  • Naver Search

Output can be structured as either JSON or HTML.

We built a basic Python script (feel free to contact us if you want a copy) to test the functionality and can confirm it works very well indeed!

Dataset Marketplace and custom datasets

Suppose you want actionable insights but don’t have the appetite for building your own solution. Bright Data has attempted to address these users by skipping straight to the final act, providing premade and regularly updated datasets for a growing number of industries and verticals. They deliver parsed and ready-to-use company data in a format that suits you.

custom datasets

Records cost $0.001 each but as some of the datasets are quite expansive, this has the potential to get expensive quickly. For example, the full LinkedIn database includes 418m records, so full access would cost $418,202. Thankfully, you can select from specific subsets of data although the minimum order value is $500.

Code integration examples & API Playground

Another thing we liked about Bright Data was its code integration examples and the ability to test the APIs out within the ‘Playground’ (an online environment that lets you see what results you can expect with a few clicks). This might not sound like a big deal, but if you’re just getting started in proxy integration or are unsure how to leverage the power of proxies for your use cases, these sample scripts and the Playground are a fantastic springboard. Bright Data even populates the examples with your usernames, passwords, and preferences, so it’s literally as simple as copying and pasting the code into your IDE of choice. It’s not a game-changer, but a very nice touch.

Bright Data playground

Bright Insights: A dedicated eCommerce platform

Bright Data offers a standalone eCommerce platform, allowing you to track competitor products across thousands of categories. You can quickly identify when products are added, sold, unlisted, or out of stock.

We couldn’t fully test the platform, but it is a powerful feature for eCommerce users, allowing you to align your products and pricing with market trends and demand. You can also track competitor promotions and ad spend across multiple platforms.

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2. Smartproxy

Smartproxy is a great option if you’re looking for high-performance proxies with the bells and whistles mentioned above at a reasonable entry price. With over 55 million residential IPs, the pool isn’t quite as diverse as Bright Data and Oxylabs, but our testing found the shared IPs to perform on par for most tasks we could think to throw at it. Better still, every residential plan comes with a three-day free trial (though there is a 100 MB data cap) so you can see if Smartproxy is a good fit for you.

As well as residential IPs, Smartproxy also offers the prerequisite Data Center, Mobile, and Dedicated Data Center proxies. Like Bright Data, Smartproxy also recently introduced an ISP offering, which gives you the speed of data center proxies and the reliability and trust of residential IPs.

And like Oxyabs, Smartproxy really is a joy to use. You can find the proxies, tools, and data you need in just a few clicks. Let’s say it’s on par with Oxylabs.

It also includes an easy-to-use Endpoint Generator if all you need is a txt or CSV of proxies to load into your program.

Pricing

Smartproxy is the only provider on the list to unashamedly offer smaller Pay As You Go plans for non-enterprise users. PAYG plans start at $8.50 per GB. Subscriptions start from $14 per month for 2GB of data ($7 per GB). This quickly drops without the need for massive upfront investment:

  • 2GB = $7/GB
  • 8GB = $6.50/GB
  • 25GB = $6/GB
  • 50GB = $5.60/GB
  • 100GB = $5.20/GB

And that’s just the ‘Consumer’ pricing. Enterprise plans bring the price down further:

  • 250GB = $4.80/GB
  • 500GB = $4.40/GB
  • 1000GB = $4/GB

This new and aggressive pricing strategy firmly blows a lot of the top-tier competition out of the water and reduces the barrier to entry significantly. Even buying 2GB of data means you will pay less than half the price of Oxylabs. We can only hope other providers take note and follow suit.

Site Unblocker

Like the offerings from Bright Data and Oxylabs, Smartproxy has recently introduced its all-singing, all-dancing Site Unblocker. This is designed to take the headaches out of scraping by offering a single endpoint to integrate into your code.

The feature offers ‘Intelligent Proxy Selection’ to choose the right proxy type for the site you’re targeting. Any blocked IPs are automatically retired and replaced in order to ensure a 100% success rate (our tests weren’t 100% successful, but this is likely down to user error). We tested this using a Cloudflare-protected site (that we own), and it could scrape even javascript-heavy pages successfully.

A good selection of APIs

Like other top-tier providers, Smartproxy offers a range of APIs to take the hassle out of scraping. Notably, Smartproxy includes a Social Media API, and while this functionality is achievable via methods using Bright Data or Oxylabs, this is the only provider to offer this as an ‘off-the-shelf’ API.

Smartproxy also offers SERP and eCommerce APIs.

No-Code Scraper

Plenty of businesses and users want to gather data from the web but have no idea where to start. Smartproxy has taken a big step toward meeting the needs of this growing user base by offering a ‘no-code’ solution. You pick a predefined template (Google or Amazon), feed it some parameters through the point-and-click interface, and you’ll be up and running in no time.

Smartproxy also offers a universal no-code solution that comes in the form of a browser extension. Simply click on the elements within a webpage you want to scrape, and Smartproxy will do the heavy lifting.

In our experience, these extension scrapers can be a bit hit-and-miss, and you end up spending more time messing about than scraping, but if your requirements are basic and you don’t have the resources to develop a custom solution, it’s a great way to get actionable insights quickly. In this new world of AI, where people increasingly expect to feed a prompt to a chatbot and get the data they need, we hope proxy providers will continue to build on these offerings.

It’s a shame the templates are limited to only a few sites, but this will likely grow with time.

X Browser

This is a nifty application, available for both Windows and Mac, that allows you to juggle multiple ”identities” at the same time. Say you want to visit the same page daily, using 10 (or 100) different profiles. X Browser allows you to juggle multiple browser profiles with unique fingerprints. It prevents websites from linking these profiles to one another or your device, MAC address, IP, etc.

Smart Fingerprint Checker

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3. Oxylabs

Oxylabs is the largest and best-known provider around. It provides access to the largest proxy pool of any provider, with over 102 million IPs. They go toe to toe with every other provider on the list in terms of performance and features, but it’s worth noting that the entry cost is higher than others on the list.

Pricing

Oxylabs is another provider that has recently started offering pay-as-you-go pricing for its residential pool. PAYG is a great option if you want to dip your toes in or don’t require much data. It’s $15 per GB, though, which makes it the most expensive entry price of any of our top recommendations.

Packages start at $300 per month, bringing the price down to $12/GB. Committing to $600 a month will drop the price to $10/GB, and $800 a month will see the price fall to $8/GB. Crucially, you can top these up if you run out of data, but only up to an extra 50GB per month (at $10/GB). If you plan on using a lot of bandwidth regularly, there are custom plans that’ll drive the price even lower, plus you can save another 10 percent off by paying annually.

All in all, Oxylabs is one of the most expensive providers of residential proxies on the list. One could argue that the price is worth it because the quality and diversity of IPs on offer are undeniably excellent.

Features

As the apex predator of the proxy space, Oxylabs has all the bells and whistles that one would expect. It has more stock APIs than any other provider, an easy-to-use endpoint generator (if you just need a handful of resis to plug into your app), and the new crossbreed ‘ISP proxies’ that a growing number of providers offer.

Quite frankly, the dashboard is in a different league compared to most other providers. It’s a joy to move around and use; it gets you the information you need. Sort of like an iPhone; the UX just ‘makes sense.’

oxylabs dashboard

Another thing we like about the Oxylabs dash is the ‘Endpoint generator’. A lot of people using proxies aren’t necessarily developers or IT experts but are perhaps marketers or researchers and simply need a list of proxies to plug into their SaaS application. The Endpoint Generator does just that. Select location and session type parameters, and export the list of endpoints in CSV, JSON, or TXT formats. Super simple, and we wish more providers would include this feature.

APIs

As well as the usual resi, DCs, and mobile proxies, Oxylabs probably has the largest choice of stock APIs available of any provider we’ve tested. It offers oven-ready APIs for:

  • SERPs (search engine results page)
  • e-Commerce
  • Real estate
  • Web scraper (general purpose)

As mentioned above, APIs take much of the pain out of automated data harvesting because you don’t need to worry about building and maintaining your own parsers. If the target website makes a tweak, it’s not on you to adapt to said tweak… sit back and let the API do its thing. Oxylabs uses a machine learning parser that can adjust to different layouts, dynamic fingerprint browsing, and JavaScript rendering.

The various APIs on offer have a refreshingly straightforward pricing structure. Starting at $49 a month for approximately 17,500 results ($2.80 / 1K results) and going up to $249 per month for 104,000 ($2.40 / 1K results). It would be nice to see the price per request come down a little more as you scale through the plans, but it’s a reasonable price at both ends of the spectrum, considering how well the APIs worked in our testing.

Web Crawler

Web Crawler is an add-on to Oxylabs Scraper APIs that allows you to leverage the API’s scraping and parsing functions to crawl websites at scale. You simply form an input that determines the crawling scope, specify the scraping parameters, and submit a request to the endpoint. Web Crawler acts much like a spider and moves through the pages until it finds no more new URLs that match the patterns specified by the user. Web Crawler then aggregates the result files and provides them in a format of your choosing or uploads them to cloud storage.

Oxylabs web crawl diagram

Datasets

Much like Bright Data, Oxylabs offers its own datasets for a variety of sources. These include:

  • AngelList startup data
  • CrunchBase data
  • Craft.co data
  • Product hunt data

This is quite an expensive option, starting at $1,000 per month, and is only useful if your use case fits neatly into the predefined scope of the dataset (they do offer a custom service for any public domain), but if it happens to be what you need, the cost could be negligible compared to building and maintaining your own solution.

Built-in Scheduler feature

This is a small but valuable feature. If you have identical scraping jobs that you execute regularly, OxyLab’s built-in Scheduler feature can be a bit of God send. You can create multiple jobs using the Cron expression to set the time intervals and get automatic data updates sent to your chosen cloud.

oxylabs scheduler

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4. IPRoyal

IPRoyal used to be quite a small provider but it’s recently made efforts to catch up. For instance, it now has 32m residential proxies, quadruple what it offered last year. Not only that, but it punches well above its weight in terms of performance and even more so when it comes to price.

As usual, the pricing model for pay-as-you-go residential IPs is that the more you buy, the less you pay. IPRoyal’s model can be quite tricky to understand, but this is only because the UX needs some work. Let’s break it down using their Royal Residential Proxies (their main offering) as an example:

  • 1GB will set you back $7
  • 2GB = $5.95/GB
  • 10-50GB = $5.25/GB
  • 50-100GB = $4.90/GB
  • 100-250GB = $4.55/GB
  • 250-500GB = $4.20/GB
  • 500-1,000GB = $3.50/GB
  • 1000-3,000GB = $3.15/GB
  • 3000-50,00GB = $2.80/GB
  • 5000-10,000GB = $2.45/GB
  • 10,000+ = $1.75/GB

Of course, by the time you hit the $1.75 mark, you’ve spent $17,500 on proxies, but you can see the economies of scale in action. Even at the more expensive end, the price is very competitive. In fact, it’s the cheapest option on this list, and we found the proxies themselves to perform well for a wide range of services.

Unlike other providers, IPRoyal is quite open about how it sources its residential IPs. Initially, it offered a ‘pawn’ service that allows users to rent (for lack of a better word) some of their unused bandwidth to consumers of IPRoyal. They have since rebranded this business wing to a standalone service called pawns.app. 

Their growth has been slow and steady, but they have a way to go before competing with the abovementioned providers.

Features

The service is very much ‘what you see is what you get.’ No fancy APIs or custom scraping solutions… just IPs. But if IPs are all you need and you don’t want to sell your left kidney to be able to afford them, IPRoyal might be right up your street.

They offer the usual Residential, Data Center, Mobile, and Private/Dedicated options. However, unlike some other providers on the list, their data center offerings have no bandwidth or traffic limitations, which is nice to see.

When we started this review, the IPRoyal dashboard left a lot to be desired. Nothing was quite where you think it should be.

However, in the last few days, IPRoyal has just launched a brand new dash, and we’re happy to report it’s much more user-friendly and is another step in the right direction for this fledgling proxy provider.

iproyal dash

In fact, if you’re looking to plug your proxies directly into a third-party service that requires a standard ‘hostname:port:username:password’ format, it’s one of the easiest to use. Feed it the type of proxy you need, the location, static or rotating, and how many you need, and it will automatically generate a list for you to copy and paste into your platform of choice. Other providers offer similar functionality, but it’s usually hidden behind a layer of jargon, which means you need to come to the table with an element of knowledge.

IPRoyal also offers its own installed proxy tester. While you can find these elsewhere, it’s a nice little feature to throw in. You can quickly upload a list of proxies and discard those that are failing before transferring them to your tool of choice.

IPRoyal Proxy Tester

All in all, IPRoyal is a great choice for end users who need cheap proxies to throw into a program, but if you’re looking to integrate them into an application, we’d suggest looking at one of our top recommendations.

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5. NetNut

NetNut is a proxy provider based in Tel Aviv, Israel. It has a respectable 52m+ IPs, and performance for most tasks is up there, with some providers at the top of this list. Sadly, it’s pricing models and UX are both a little dated.

Pricing

One of the things we don’t like here is the barrier to entry. Prices start at $800 a month for a 100GB plan ($8 per GB) and go up to $4,000 per month for a 1TB plan ($4 per GB). It’s not the price per GB we take issue with; it’s the fact that you have to commit to a minimum monthly spend. This model is becoming increasingly dated as a growing number of users want to be able to use proxies on an ad hoc basis. Consumers, even those at the enterprise end of the spectrum, expect to sign up and consume services in a manner that suits them.

Netnut pricing

Features

There aren’t many (at the moment…). Like IPRoyal, it’s a stripped-back service. If you want bells and whistles that make your developer’s life easier, look at one of the providers at the top. If you want proxies that perform well and don’t mind stumping up a monthly payment, NetNut remains a solid choice. In fact, our tests using a basic proxy tester to visit https:///bbc.com had some of the fastest response times of any residential proxy provider. “It does what it says on the tin,” as we say in the UK, and that’s not an insult.
Until very recently, you did not get city or state-level targeting options unless you subscribe to the semi-pro plan or above. In other words, you had to spend $1,625 pm or more every to define state or city-level IPs. Netnut seems to have recently had a change of heart, and now all plans include city and state targeting.

Upcoming Features

It looks like the squirrel-themed provider is about to up its game with an Unblocker and SERP and Social APIs recently added to the site. However, these seem to be a phased release because you have to join a waiting list at the time of writing. Once we’ve had a chance to test them, we will update this review.

netnut api

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Best Proxies: Our testing methodology

Every proxy on our list is put through the same rigorous testing process. We assess speed, success rates, and geo-specific content access. We also test the capabilities of specific features native to that proxy provider. For example, if the provider offers a custom SERP API for analyzing search engine results, we create a basic script to test the performance and reliability of that feature.

Here is a basic overview of our methodology:

  1. Determine the type of proxy to be tested (e.g., residential, data center, mobile).
  2. Ensure a controlled testing environment and turn off all other network services that might interfere with the testing process.
  3. Get a baseline by testing the network without a proxy to get standard metrics.
  4. Anonymity Testing: Check if the proxy reveals the original IP address.
  5. Speed and Performance Testing: Measure the connection speed through the proxy. We use a combination of custom scripts as well as FOGLDN Proxy Tester. We use the same countries for each test: UK, USA, Hong Kong, France & Germany. We run 300 residential proxies to access the same sites: https://bbc.com and https://www.comparitech.com. We then take an average of these results.
  6. Geo-Location Testing: We use a simple extension like BP Proxy Switcher to test the access to geo-restricted websites or services to verify if the proxy represents the claimed location.
  7. If the proxy offers additional features (like browsers, APIs, playgrounds, or native scraping tools), we test each of them to get a reasonable understanding of their capabilities and test the effectiveness of these features.
  8. Documentation & Support: Even for a seasoned developer, every proxy service is different; therefore, thorough documentation and support are essential. We read through the documentation as part of the testing process and ask support at least two technical questions to see how quickly they can resolve any issues.

What kind of proxies do I need?

While there are dozens of proxy types out there, for the purposes of data scraping and collection, you can break them down into X categories:

Residential proxies

Residential proxies are by far the most widely used proxies and are suitable for most uses. That’s because they are IP addresses that belong to real, physical devices. You’re essentially piggybacking on someone else’s IP. They appear as average users to the target servers and are usually impossible to detect (unless the proxy user abuses it, which happens a lot and is why choosing a provider with a large and diverse IP pool is important).

Many open source and ‘off-the-shelf’ tools expect a list of proxies in a standard format like host:port:username:password. Some providers make it easier than others to generate proxies in this format (see reviews above for those that do).

Others allow you to connect directly to an API, taking the hassle out of generating and testing your residential proxies.

Residential proxies are almost always billed per gigabyte of data. You’re paying for the traffic that passes through the proxies rather than the number of IPs. This is great because it means you can tap into millions of IPs across hundreds of countries and thousands of cities, and you only pay for the traffic you consume.

The downside of residential proxies is that they can be slow. The host’s network conditions will have a direct impact on the speed of the proxy.

Data Center proxies

These are non-physical IP addresses artificially created within data centers owned or leased by the proxy provider. The obvious upshot of this is that they are fast. Really fast. If your use cases rely on moving quickly, data center proxies can be a great option.

A single server might host thousands of IPs. The downside is that they will all share the server’s IP subnetwork. This means that many data center proxies will look similar, and it’s not uncommon for target servers to automatically ban entire ranges if they detect abuse within that range. Because you’re sharing IPs with other users, ensuring the IP range will remain ‘clean’ is impossible even if you use them responsibly.

Generally, with DC proxies, you ‘rent’ an IP address, which you keep for the duration of that rental period. The upside is that you can appear to originate from the same device and location throughout the period. The downside is that if the IP becomes blocked (and they often do), you’re stuck with it (unless the provider allows you to rotate the proxy).

ISP Proxies

This is a relatively new concept, but the big providers have latched on to the idea, and now each offers their own version of ISP proxy. Essentially, these offer the best of both residential and data center proxies. ISP proxies are hosted on data centers, so you get all the speed. However, they carry real IP addresses allocated by official Internet Service Providers, so they are much less likely to be picked up as data center proxies.

Static vs Rotating proxies

What is a static proxy?

As the name implies, a static proxy (a ‘sticky IP’) allows you to access the Internet from a unique IP address. In most cases, this would be a data center IP that gets assigned to you. You can continue to use the static IP address as you need to continue to pay for it.

This is hugely useful if you need to appear to be a single user over a prolonged period.

You can find ‘static residential proxies,’ but these are often limited to quite a short session duration.

What is a rotating proxy?

Rotating proxies are most commonly associated with Residential proxies and provide access to the entire pool of IP addresses that meet your criteria (country, state, city, etc.). Rotating proxies are swapped out based on your requirements. For example, the IP address might change with every request you make or at a specific time interval. It’s entirely up to you.

Rotating proxies obviously carry a host of benefits. You can make one request from one IP address or a million requests from a million different IP addresses.

Shared vs Dedicated Proxies

What is a shared proxy?

Shared proxies are probably the most common type of proxy, particularly when it comes to Residential Proxies. You are simply sharing the IP address with multiple users at any given time. Shared Proxies rely on sophisticated network architecture and load balancing to ensure everyone gets reasonable performance. Shared proxies are significantly cheaper than other options because you are splitting the cost.

What is a dedicated or private proxy?

A dedicated proxy (also referred to as a ‘private proxy’) is an IP that is reserved for you. The term is most often associated with data center or ISP proxies, where you lease an IP for a specific period of time, but you can also get dedicated residential IPs/

The terms ‘shared’ and ‘dedicated’ are usually interchangeable, although marketing departments sometimes like to attach buzzwords to specific products, so make sure you thoroughly review the features to make sure the product matches your requirements.