ProtonVPN vs Windscribe

You can literally find hundreds of VPNs on the market. Unfortunately, not all of them are worth your time or money! We know it’s not practical for you to test each and each one for yourself. We also understand that there may be confusing aspects related to configuration and security.

With this in mind, we are comparing ProtonVPN and Windscribe, two popular VPN providers, and each with unique pros and cons. We break them down by exploring everything from pricing to features to quality of customer service. At the end of this post, we’ll determine a winner based on our findings. With any luck, this will make your decision that little bit easier.

ProtonVPN vs Windscribe highlights


  • Good speeds for streaming and online gaming
  • Works with Netflix, BBC iPlayer, and more
  • Strong security with Double VPN servers
  • Privacy protection through a strict no-logs policy


  • Has a free plan
  • Unlimited simultaneous connections
  • Security includes an ad and tracker blocker
  • Beginner-friendly apps for major operating systems

ProtonVPN vs Windscribe pricing

Subscription periodsOne monthOne month
One yearOne year
Two year
Special offerGet 50 percent off the two-year plan and pay just $4.99 (£4.17) a monthSave 36 percent and pay $5.75 a month with the Windscribe annual plan
Highest price per month$9.99 (£8.36)$9.00 (£7.54)
Lowest price per month$4.99 (£4.17) although there’s also a free plan$5.75 (£4.81) although there’s also a free plan
One-year price$71.88 (£60.12), currently 40 percent off, a $48 saving$69.00 (£57.71)
Money-back guarantee30 days3 days

ProtonVPN and Windscribe both offer monthly and one-year plans. However, ProtonVPN also has the option of a two-year plan. This makes ProtonVPN the most affordable option long-term. Indeed, if you subscribe for two years, you’ll get 50 percent off and pay just $4.99 a month, saving $120 in the process.

When it comes to the annual plans of these VPNs, ProtonVPN is actually the more expensive of the two. This is despite the 48 percent discount on the one-year plan that’s currently available, allowing you to pay $5.99 a month ($71.88 for the first year). Windscribe is billed at just $69 a year, working out at $5.75 a month.

As is usually the case with VPN subscriptions, the month-to-month plans work out the most expensive on average. The ProtonVPN monthly plan will set you back $9.99 while Windscribe is again slightly cheaper at $9.00. So while ProtonVPN offers you the chance to save the most with its two-year subscription, Windscribe’s monthly and one-year plans are marginally more affordable.

We should also point out that ProtonVPN comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee. This offers you the chance to try the VPN out risk-free and receive a full refund if not fully satisfied. While Windscribe also has a money-back guarantee, it only lasts three days. Finally, both VPNs have free versions, although these are understandably more limited.

Best Deal for ProtonVPN:Save 50% and pay just $4.99 a month (a $120 saving) with the ProtonVPN 2-year plan.

Best Deal for Windscribe:Pay just $5.75 a month when you choose the Windscribe annual plan, a saving of 36 percent.


Simultaneous connectionsUp to 10Unlimited
Operating system appsWindows, Mac, Android, iOS, Linux, Android TVWindows, Mac, Android, iOS, Amazon Fire TV
Manual install devicesSet-top boxes, routersLinux, set-top boxes, routers
Split tunnelingYes (Windows and Android)Yes (Windows and Mac)
Free extrasDouble VPN servers, ad blockerChrome and Firefox browser extensions, Double VPN servers, ad blocker

Like most VPNs, you’ll be able to use ProtonVPN and Windscribe on your desktop and mobile devices. Apps are available for WindowsMacAndroid, and iOS. While ProtonVPN also offers an app for Linux, Windscribe doesn’t have a native app for it. You can also find an app for Android TV with ProtonVPN and an app for Amazon Fire TV through Windscribe. To use either VPN with your wi-fi router, you’ll need to manually configure a connection.

As of yet, ProtonVPN doesn’t offer browser extensions. However, you can find extensions for both Chrome and Firefox with Windscribe. Indeed, both VPNs offer a number of extras, such as Double VPN servers for an extra layer of security, and an ad blocker. Split tunnelling is also available — this allows you to select which app or device traffic uses the VPN connection and which bypasses it.

Both VPNs have a very generous connection allowance. In ProtonVPN’s case, you can secure 10 devices at once. Windscribe permits unlimited simultaneous connections.

Streaming and unblocking

NetflixYes, multiple including the US, UK, Australia, Canada, France, and GermanyYes, multiple countries including the US, UK, Canada, and Japan.
Amazon Prime VideoYesNo
BBC iPlayerYesNo
HBO MaxYesNo
Sky GoYesNo
YouTube TVYesNo

Both VPNs have made great efforts to continue to work with Netflix. This is one of the more difficult to access streaming services. ProtonVPN and Windscribe are both compatible with its USUK, and Canada versions, among others. If you’re looking to use a particular library, note that ProtonVPN is your best bet for Netflix Australia while Windscribe is the only one of the two that works with Netflix Japan.

What’s clear is that beyond Netflix, Windscribe struggled to access the streaming services we tested. An increasing number of platforms are employing anti-VPN measures. However, ProtonVPN is far more consistent in this respect, and able to access the likes of Amazon Prime VideoBBC iPlayer, and HBO Max.


Many VPNs don’t work in China due to censorship and restrictions within the country. Some of the tools employed by the Chinese government include DNS filtering and deep packet inspection. Another is URL filtering.

For example, the websites of both ProtonVPN and Windscribe are blocked in China — as are most of the websites belonging to mainstream VPNs. However, even if you already have the ProtonVPN or Windscribe app installed on your device prior to entering the country it won’t do you much good: the traffic of both providers is blocked. This is despite both providers having a stealth feature designed to bypass such restrictions.

We regularly test which VPNs work in China, so check our results first if you’re planning on travelling to the country and need a VPN.

Setup and interface

Automatic setup wizardWindows, Mac, Android, iOSWindows, Mac, Android, iOS
Main location selectionList-basedList-based
Extra settings pageYesYes

It’s quick and easy to get started with ProtonVPN and Windscribe, both of which have automatic setup wizards for their desktop and mobile apps. Installation only takes a minute or two and once you open the respective apps, you’ll be able to connect to a server in a matter of seconds. That’s because both providers have a quick connect option which, with a single click, automatically connects you to the best (fastest) available server.

Of the two VPNs, ProtonVPN has the better apps. While Windscribe’s desktop and mobile apps are easy enough to use, they’re a little clunky. There’s a lot of information packed in on the main window which may be somewhat confusing if you’re a novice VPN user. In contrast, ProtonVPN’s apps are a little less overwhelming and have a layout and structure that’s easier to navigate around.

Whether you choose ProtonVPN or Windscribe, selecting and connecting to a server is much the same. Both present a list of countries (although ProtonVPN also offers a map view) from which you can further select a specific server or location from a dropdown menu.

With Windscribe, there’s the option to favorite servers so you can find them faster in future. The desktop and mobile versions of both VPNs allow you to see server load and thus find a server that’s likely to offer better performance.

You can access the settings of ProtonVPN easily enough. The desktop app has extra space for tabs including its Secure Core, NetShield, and kill switch features. The settings page of Windscribe is accessible via a hamburger menu in the top left-hand corner. In both cases, various settings can be quickly toggled on and off.

Servers and performance

Server countries~60~70
Total number of servers1,800+200+

Server speed66 Mbps55 Mbps

When it comes to server locations, ProtonVPN and Windscribe are very similarly matched. At the time of writing, ProtonVPN has servers in 71+ countries while Windscribe servers can be found in approximately 62 countries. Both VPNs have servers in countries including the US, UK, Canada, Australia, and Japan. However, if you’re looking for a server in a country such as Albania, Ecuador, or Panama, Windscribe is your best bet. In contrast, only ProtonVPN has servers in Costa Rica and Puerto Rico.

In terms of server quantity, it’s clear that ProtonVPN is the winner. It has more than 3,000 servers worldwide compared to the few hundred offered by Windscribe. ProtonVPN is certainly the faster of the two. Indeed, ProtonVPN ranks second in our list of the fastest VPNs on the market. Our speed tests found it averaged 320 Mbps, which is more than fast enough for streaming content in 4K, all without lag or buffering. Windscribe averaged 55 Mbps which pales in comparison. Both VPNs offer unlimited bandwidth.

ProtonVPN and Windscribe offer servers in the following countries:

Bosnia & Herzegovina
Costa Rica
Czech Republic
Hong Kong
New Zealand
North Macedonia
Puerto Rico
South Africa
South Korea
Sri Lanka
United Arab Emirates
United Kingdom
United States


VPN protocolsWireGuard, OpenVPN, IKEv2WireGuard, OpenVPN, IKEv2
OpenVPN data encryptionAES-256AES-256
OpenVPN control channel encryptionRSA-4096RSA-4096
Cloaking technologyNoneYes (stealth protocol)
App securityKill switch, MultiHop, ad blockerKill switch, MultiHop, ad blocker
DNS statusPrivate DNSPrivate DNS

Whether you use ProtonVPN or Windscribe, your internet traffic will be secured with 256-bit AES encryption. This renders it unreadable and effectively uncrackable. DNS leak protection prevents your ISP from seeing web page requests, while a kill switch intervenes and cuts your traffic should the VPN connection drop. This prevents any of your data being exposed to hackers or snoopers. In the case of Windscribe, the stealth protocol can disguise your VPN traffic as regular traffic. This is useful for bypassing censorship restrictions in some countries (though not China).

In addition to a kill switch, ProtonVPN and Windscribe both have Double VPN servers (known as Secure Core in the case of ProtonVPN and Double Hop with Windscribe). With this feature, your internet traffic is routed through multiple servers for even better protection. Note that you can also find an ad blocker in both VPNs.


Connection logsNoneSome
Activity logsNoneNone
User details for signupEmail addressNone (email optional)
Anonymous payment optionsBitcoin, cashBitcoin

First thing’s first: ProtonVPN and Windscribe don’t keep any logs by which you can be identified. The combination of the no-logs policies of the two VPNs with their use of encryption makes for anonymous browsing. ProtonVPN doesn’t keep any logs whatsoever although it should be noted that Windscribe does store the information of when you last used the VPN. However, this is not unusual for a VPN service.

Neither VPN requires much in the way of your personal information in the signup process. Indeed, ProtonVPN only asks for your email address (such as a ProtonMail address). Windscribe sets itself apart from most VPNs in that providing an email address is optional (however, it does make recovering an account that much easier).

Anonymous payment is possible with ProtonVPN and Windscribe. Both let you pay in Bitcoin although ProtonVPN goes one step further with the option to pay in cash. While this is slower and a little more expensive with postage involved, it’s the best way to pay if you’re looking for total anonymity.


Address allocationSharedShared
Dedicated/static IP address possibleNoYes, static
DDoS protectionNoNo
NAT firewallYesYes

ProtonVPN and Windscribe use shared address allocation. That is to say that when you connect to a server, you share an IP address with multiple other users. This is advantageous for privacy reasons because all user activity becomes mixed up, making it that much harder to know who is doing what online.

While ProtonVPN doesn’t offer dedicated or static IP addresses, there is the option of getting a static IP with Windscribe. This optional add-on costs $2 (USD) a month if it’s a data centre IP while a residential IP (one that appears to be a home IP assigned by an ISP) sets you back $8 per month. An advantage of using a static IP address is that there’s less chance of it being blacklisted. You’re also less likely to be plagued by CAPTCHAs.

Note that while neither VPN offers DDoS protection as such, the fact that you’re using a VPN means you’ll be protected. Any DDos attack while connected will only affect the IP address of the server you’re using. You would then simply switch servers and continue your online activities as normal.

Customer Service

Live chatNoNo
Ticket supportYesYes
Email supportYesYes
Phone supportNoNo
Average email response time45 hours35 hours
Searchable knowledge baseYesYes
Video guidesNoYes

Unfortunately, we found the quality of customer support lacking with both ProtonVPN and Windscribe. Neither have live chat support, which is something that most major VPN providers offer. Furthermore, their email support was slow to reply (although Windscribe was marginally quicker on average). While you’re unlikely to encounter too many problems with either VPN, this doesn’t fill us with confidence.

On the plus side, both VPNs have searchable knowledge bases so you can troubleshoot issues for yourself. This includes setup guides and FAQs. Windscribe offers a little extra however. You’ll find a YouTube channel with various videos on how to get started via various operating systems. ProtonVPN offers no such resource.

QuestionResponse timeNumber of emailsQuestion answered
Does ProtonVPN work in China?No reply receivedN/AN/A
Will ProtonVPN slow down my internet speed?3 days1Yes
How do I install ProtonVPN on my router?19 hours1Yes
QuestionResponse timeNumber of emailsQuestion answered
Does Windscribe work in China?9 hours1Yes
Will Windscribe slow down my internet speed?2 days1Yes
How do I install Windscribe on my router?2 days1Yes

The Winner: ProtonVPN

ProtonVPN and Windscribe both have a number of advantages that make them attractive options as your next VPN. They’re relatively affordable, have a generous connection allowance, and are quick and easy to set up and use. Both also provide strong security and privacy protection.

However, there can only be one winner and it’s ProtonVPN. It has far more servers overall (3,000+ to the 200+ of Windscribe). It’s also much, much faster and far better at accessing geo-restricted content from popular streaming platforms. While the two VPNs both offer robust online security, Windscribe is headquartered in Canada, which is a member of the Five Eyes spying alliance.

It’s also worth knowing that ProtonVPN includes a 30-day money-back guarantee, providing you with plenty of time to test it for yourself, risk-free. In contrast, Windscribe only offers three days.

ProtonVPN Coupon
Up to 64% off a 2-year plan
Get Deal >
Coupon applied automatically