You’ve probably heard about Namecheap before, as this is a popular Web hosting and domain name provider. Being a supporter of the ‘Electronic Frontier Foundation’ and ‘Fight for The Future’ organizations, this company is trying to build an image around protecting the privacy of its customers. Therefore, it’s not surprising to know that Namecheap VPN saw the light of day not too long ago. We understand that you must have plenty of questions about this VPN solution. Is it trustworthy? Where does it come from? Does it collect any data? Can Namecheap VPN unblock Netflix? Well, allow us to answer all those questions and plenty more. So, welcome to our Namecheap VPN review!
Let’s begin by introducing you to the most important information about Namecheap VPN. Check out the following table to learn some of its most prominent points of comparison, so you can easily see how it ranks amongst today’s top-rated VPNs.
|Jurisdiction||The USA (14-Eyes Alliance).|
|Logs||Collects ‘access attempts’ to its servers.|
|Number of Servers||50 countries / 1,000+ servers.|
|Encryption Standards||AES-256; OpenVPN, IKEv2.|
|Speed Reduction||64% on average.|
|Live Chat Support||YES|
|Supported Platforms||Windows, macOS, Android, iOS, routers.|
|Price||Starts at $1.88/month.|
Next, we’re sure that many of you are into media streaming. Therefore, we want to be of help to our readers who use Netflix or any of its popular competitors. With this said, here’s what kind of performance you can expect from Namecheap VPN in terms of unblocking media streaming websites.
Media Streaming Support
|Amazon Prime Video||NO|
Lastly, we won’t forget those who are in a rush to learn about this VPN. As our reviews can be quite lengthy, here’s one final table. Check it out to see the highlights of using this VPN service, including its pros and cons.
The Bottom Line
|Pros||Great for complete beginners; Simple to install; Unblocks Netflix; Affordable.|
|Cons||Not the fastest performance; Based in the US; Missing advanced features.|
|The Final Verdict||Namecheap VPN has come a long way during the last year, but it still has some weak points that prevent us from recommending it to our readers.|
And now we’re ready to dive into our full review of Namecheap VPN. Make sure to keep on reading and, by the end of this article, you’ll know exactly what to expect from this VPN.
Namecheap VPN – TechNadu’s Hands-On Review
No matter if we’re testing big-name VPNs or lesser-known ones, we have the same approach to all our reviews. We systematically test different aspects of the VPN in question and compare it with all our previously reviewed VPN services. To learn more about this, here’s how we review VPNs.
Background, Jurisdiction & Reputation
Namecheap VPN comes from the USA, which can be worrisome. However, there’s no reason not to trust this company, as there are no reports that could point to data leaks in the past. Our Score: 6/10.
When choosing a VPN, it’s imperative to know where it comes from. That’s because VPNs deal with private and personal information, and you want to make sure that no one is forcing the VPN to collect any data. So, here’s what you need to know about Namecheap.
Jurisdiction & Applicable Laws
To try and persuade you into subscribing, Namecheap VPN is trying to be frank about its data logging. The company is clearly saying that your personal information is never collected. However, some data is collected, so that the company can analyze and improve their software. In general, this is nothing to be worried about. Many VPNs (including those that call themselves ‘no-logs VPNs’) do this, and this shouldn’t be a problem unless your personal data gets collected along the way.
Now, the problem is that Namecheap comes from the USA. This country is a member of the 5/9/14-Eyes Alliance, which is a group of countries collecting and exchanging all kinds of intelligence data. That’s precisely why VPNs are usually based in exotic locations with no data retention laws such as the British Virgin Islands, Seychelles, and similar. In other words, it’s always a better idea to use a VPN in a country without a record of collecting data or forcing data processors to log any kind of information.
Previous Data Leaks
We’re happy to report that Namecheap VPN comes with no data leaks in the past. In all fairness, this is still a relatively new VPN, and we believe that it isn’t used by a large number of individuals around the globe. However, it’s good to know that this VPN’s reputation is still intact.
All in all, we have no reason not to trust Namecheap VPN. It says what kinds of data it collects and has no previous data leaks. However, it is worrying that it comes from the USA. Those of you who are truly concerned about their privacy should look for another solution.
Supported Platforms & Devices
Namecheap VPN currently covers all of the major desktop and mobile platforms. In addition, you can use it on VPN-compatible routers as well. Our Score: 6/10.
In general, VPNs allow you to connect to secure servers from several devices at once. This means that you need to know which platforms are supported and whether you’ll be able to protect yourself at home and on-the-go. Here’s how Namecheap VPN ranks in this aspect.
|Desktop Platforms||Windows, macOS.|
|Mobile Platforms||Android, iOS.|
|Routers||DD-WRT (v2, v3), Tomato routers.|
When it comes to desktop platforms, you can find native apps made by Namecheap VPN for Windows and macOS. Both of these come with user-friendly interfaces and are easy to use. In terms of mobile platforms, Namecheap VPN is available on Android and iOS. Aside from these platforms, you can also use Namecheap VPN on routers, such as DD-WRT and Tomato. This is a recently introduced feature, which certainly increases the overall value of this VPN.
Lastly, let’s not forget to mention that you can use Namecheap VPN on up to 5 devices at the same time. This is on par with what other VPNs offer, so no surprises there. Of course, using this VPN on a single router counts as a single device, no matter how many computers or smartphones you connect to your router.
Installation & Initial Configuration
Luckily, installing Namecheap’s VPN software is quite simple. Download the app from its official website, install it, and then sign-in using your credentials. Our Score: 10/10.
Before you get to use this VPN, you first need to get a subscription to Namecheap VPN. For this to happen, you need to sign-up, select your preferred subscription model, and finalize the payment. Then, you’ll receive your user credentials via email, which you need to use back on the official website of this VPN (if you want to access your account to check your subscription information). By accessing your user control panel, you can review all your services purchased from Namecheap. As this company is selling Web hosting plans and domain names, you’ll get to see those here as well.
To download Namecheap VPN, you need to visit its official website. You’ll find four apps there (for Windows, macOS, iOS, and Android), so the process is quite simple. Also, you can access these applications and various installation guides by accessing your account dashboard on the Namecheap VPN website.
On desktop platforms, open the installation file and go through the needed procedure. On mobile devices, download the app from the respective App Store. Use your credentials to sign-in and that’s about it.
We have to say that installing this VPN is a piece of cake. You won’t find anything suspicious here, and there are no bundled offers or anything similar. With this said, even complete beginners shouldn’t have a hard time.
Namecheap VPN is a fairly basic VPN solution. However, it has recently started to grow by introducing a kill-switch, which is a welcome feature. Our Score: 5.5/10.
Now, it’s time to check what kinds of features this VPN brings. We’ll be checking the basic features, and we’ll inspect whether there are any advanced ones as well.
VPN Features Checklist
|DNS Leak Protection||YES|
|IPv6 Leak Protection||NO|
|Unlimited Server Switches||YES|
To make sure your data stays within the secure VPN tunnel, Namecheap VPN offers DNS leak protection. This is considered to be the most basic feature of any VPN, as their primary role is to prevent data leaks. Sadly, there’s no IPv6 here (you’ll need to disable this protocol on your system manually), which means that you can count on IPv4 instead.
It’s also worth mentioning that until recently, this VPN came without a kill-switch. As you can imagine, this was highly limiting for its users. However, we’re glad to see Namecheap introducing this feature to Windows users, and we hope to see it being introduced to other platforms as well. Windows users can also take advantage of a new ‘Auto-Connect’ feature, which automatically starts this VPN when you go online.
When it comes to more advanced options, you won’t find them here. This means that split-tunneling, anti-malware, or ad-blocking can’t be found in this VPN. Luckily, Namecheap VPN doesn’t impose any restrictions, which means that you’ll get unlimited server switches, bandwidth, and data.
When it comes to its server count (1,000+ servers), Namecheap VPN falls somewhere in the middle in comparison to other VPNs. Our Score: 5/10.
You want to be able to connect to any part of the world. And for this to happen, you need a VPN with plenty of servers scattered across the planet. Here’s what this VPN offers.
Server Count Info
|Number of Servers||1,000+|
|Number of Locations||75|
|Number of Countries||50|
|Specific Cities Selection||YES|
We weren’t able to verify how many servers this VPN offers, so we’ll use the official information we got from Namecheap’s customer support. We were told that there are over 1,000 servers across the world. However, as we started to use this VPN service, we saw that there are 50 countries on offer, along with 75 locations in total. This means that Namecheap VPN has groups of servers around the planet, with a number of servers for each of its locations.
Now, let put this information into perspective. Top-rated VPNs offer from 3,000 up to 5,500 servers and some of them have servers in 100+ countries. This means that Namecheap VPN is somewhere in the middle, as there are many VPNs offering less than 1,000 servers. Lastly, you need to know that you can connect to specific locations (cities) and you get unlimited switching as well.
Ease of Use
Namecheap VPN has been rapidly improving its applications across the board. There are still some inconsistencies between different versions, but the situation is much better than before. Our Score: 7/10.
First of all, you should know that Namecheap has been updated recently and now comes with fully-featured desktop applications. You’ll now see a redesigned UI and an application that can be your primary VPN. The home screen lets you select a server, change between the available protocols, and more – all while using a nicely designed UI.
When choosing between different servers, you’ll get to pick a country manually, or you can search for something specific. Just click on any server and you’ll be connected in an instant. Then, you’ll be returned to the home screen where you’ll see your virtual IP, the chosen VPN protocol, and the duration of your session. Also, each time you connect or disconnect, Namecheap VPN will let you know via a nicely designed notification in the bottom-right corner of your screen.
Also, you can now choose between two protocols (on Windows): OpenVPN (TCP/UDP) and IKEv2 (chosen by default). When using OpenVPN, you can also decide to ‘scramble’ your traffic, which means that you might overcome some more complicated Web roadblocks as well. All in all, Namecheap is now much more usable than before, even though it’s still a work in progress.
Now, let’s check the iOS app. Once you open it and log-in, you will see a nicely designed UI with a prominent map of the world in the background. You can easily connect to any of those countries (servers) and disconnect at any moment. The application also gives you a nice list of servers, allowing you to see their country of origin and ping values. There’s also a settings panel that lets you choose whether to protect cellular and/or Wi-Fi networks. You can also create lists of trusted and blacklisted Wi-Fi networks, so you can easily use Namecheap VPN to protect you in different situations, automatically. All in all, the application is nicely designed and it’s suitable for complete beginners as well.
Everything we said about the iOS app stands for Namecheap’s Android app as well. It opens with a prominent map of the world, letting you pick a server and connect to it. There’s also a hamburger button in the top-right corner, which gives you a list of countries. However, we were surprised to see that the Android app comes with a barebones settings panel. You can choose to automatically re-connect, switch between two types of OpenVPN protocols, and choose a VPN port number.
All in all, this VPN’s mobile apps are fully functional, even though the Android app looks like it needs further development to be on par with what top-rated VPNs offer. When it comes to Windows, Namecheap VPN is rapidly improving its app – and you now get to see a really nicely designed UI.
Media Streaming & Torrenting Support
Namecheap can help you unblock and watch Netflix, and it also supports downloading and uploading P2P files. Other streaming services remain blocked. Our Score: 3/10.
These days, many of us rely on VPNs while traveling abroad, to access websites available only in our native countries. That’s why we test each VPN with a number of popular media streaming websites, so check out the table found below.
Media Streaming & Torrenting Support
|Amazon Prime Video||NO|
We were able to unblock and watch Netflix by connecting to servers in New York, Los Angeles, and Dallas. All three of these server locations can be used to access the American version of Netflix and stream without any problems. However, we didn’t have the same luck with BBC iPlayer, Hulu, and Amazon Prime Video. We tried using different platforms and different protocols, but the situation is the same across the board.
Luckily, Namecheap VPN supports torrenting. This means that you can engage in P2P Web traffic by both downloading, uploading, and sharing files. However, keep in mind that this is an American company, and we all know that the US is after digital pirates. No matter if this VPN collects personal data or not, you should stick to legal torrents only.
Security & Privacy
Let’s not forget the primary purpose of VPN applications. They need to protect your online identity and make sure your private data doesn’t leak. So, let’s inspect Namecheap VPN for security- and privacy-related features.
Support Encryption Protocols
You will be happy to know that Namecheap VPN comes with the highest level of encryption (AES-256). By encrypting your data, you’re basically making it unreadable to anyone else. With this said, you need to have the highest level of encryption, which means that you’re safe even if someone gets to your data (as it will be uncrackable). So, Namecheap VPN delivers on this promise.
Next, we also have VPN protocols that dictate the way your data is being sent and received through the secure VPN tunnel. There are two protocols available, OpenVPN and IKEv2. Now, it’s important to understand that you’ll get a certain VPN protocol based on the OS you use. On Android, that’s OpenVPN. On Windows, macOS, and iOS – that’s IKEv2. Unfortunately, you can’t switch between different protocols. However, both OpenVPN and IKEv2 are thought to be highly secure.
Namecheap VPN’s Terms of Service is a lengthy document, mostly focused on actions you’re forbidden from taking. A large part of that document is reserved for listing actions that can lead to Namecheap terminating your account. However, there’s nothing overly worrying here, as the set of forbidden actions is related to criminalized activities like spreading malicious software, harassing someone via email, running pyramid schemes, and other hoaxes.
In general, VPNs rely on their Terms of Service as well as Privacy Policies to tell you what kind of information is collected, and in which way. So, according to these documents, Namecheap VPN doesn’t collect your Web browsing data. However, this VPN reserves its right to collect data for troubleshooting purposes. The company’s ToS reads: “We do not log any user activity (i.e., sites visited, DNS lookups, emails, etc.). For security and troubleshooting purposes, we do, however, monitor and collect errors so that we can improve the stability of the app.”
The question remains – how are these errors identified? How can a user know exactly what kind of data is being collected? In precisely what instances is this data being collected? As you can see, this document is somewhat vague. And even if Namecheap VPN comes with the best of intentions, it needs to be more transparent and show its commitment to its users.
DNS Leak Test
As evident from the screenshot above, Namecheap VPN doesn’t leak your data. We’ve done an extended DNS test, and we’re happy to report that third-parties will only see what Namecheap shows them – and that’s your virtual IP, hostname, ISP, and country.
Speed & Performance
Namecheap VPN slowed us down by 64% on average. Your mileage can vary, but this VPN’s performance is below average. Our Score: 4/10.
We’ll now check how well this VPN performs by doing a round of speed tests. Just like we do in our every VPN review, we’ll first test the speed of our ‘naked’ Web connection, and then we’ll connect to both nearby and remote servers. So, let’s begin.
First, we need to establish some baseline data. This is done by running a speed test without the VPN enabled. As you can see from the screenshot, we got 148.01 Mbps for downloads and 9.87 Mbps for uploads.
Then, we’ve connected to a nearby server. For this purpose, we’ve allowed Namecheap VPN to find the most suitable server. As it turns out, there’s one in our country which is the ideal case scenario. This time around, we got 42.91 Mbps for downloads and 9.20 Mbps for uploads. We need to say that we’ve expected a much better result in this case, which means that Namecheap’s performance is disappointing so far.
Finally, we’ve checked the speed of a remote server. We’re located in Europe, and so a remote server in our case would the one located in the USA. During the final round of testing, we got 61.54 Mbps for downloads and 6.67 Mbps for uploads. It’s interesting to note that we’ve gotten a better score with the remote server than we did with the nearby one (which is not what happens usually).
|Download Speed||Upload Speed||Speed Reduction|
|Baseline Speed||148.01 Mbps||9.87 Mbps||0%|
|Nearby Server||42.91 Mbps||9.20 Mbps||71.0%|
|Remote Server||61.54 Mbps||6.67 Mbps||58.4%|
On average, this VPN slowed down the speed of our Web connection by 64%, on average. This isn’t the worst result we’ve seen so far, but it’s below average.
Even though there are various communication channels available, the process of getting help can be a somewhat frustrating one. Our Score: 6.5/10.
Namecheap isn’t a freshly established company – so you can expect a comprehensive customer support system. There are several ways of communicating with the company and having your questions answered.
- Live Chat: A while back, Namecheap was offering live-chat only to registered customers. Luckily, this is no longer the case. Even before you buy this VPN, you can talk to the company’s representatives who will answer your questions. However, we have to express our frustration with this communication method. We approached the company to ask about the supported VPN protocols and whether P2P is allowed. It took 45 minutes and two support agents to come up with a response. Even though this is the fastest way to get help, it can be frustrating.
- Support Tickets: You can also open a support ticket by explaining your problem and providing your name and email address. We’ve noticed that Namecheap uses Google’s CAPTCHA which seems to collect certain data, which definitely seems odd.
- Support Center: Finally, there’s a dedicated support center where you can find frequently asked questions, status updates, the company’s blog page, and other types of self-help material. You can also count on setup guides for all of Namecheap VPN’s applications, and there are handy setup guides for VPN routers as well.
All in all, Namecheap offers a way for you to have your question answered in a timely manner. However, we were surprised by the lack of knowledge of its support agents, who struggled to answer even the most basic questions.
Namecheap VPN is among the most affordable VPNs. In the end, we do have to admit that it brings good value for its price, overall. Our Score: 8/10.
At the moment, Namecheap VPN offers three subscription plans. Let’s see how much they cost, and how much money they can potentially help you save.
|Total Price||Per Month||Savings|
First, let’s check out Namecheap’s monthly plan. It’s priced at $5.88, which is among the most affordable offers right now. In general, top-rated VPNs are priced at $10.00 to $15.00 per month, so it’s clear that Namecheap VPN knows its worth. Also, you pay only $2.99 for the first month, and you’ll be charged $5.88 each subsequent month.
If you’re looking for a way to subscribe to Namecheap VPN and save some money along the way, there are two long-term plans. The annual plan saves you 51% and comes down to $2.88 per month. However, the biggest savings are found in the 3-year plan, using which you can save 68% on Namecheap VPN.
Finally, you should know this VPN comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee. Also, you can only pay via numerous credit cards, PayPal, and even Bitcoin is supported.
Do We Recommend Namecheap VPN?
Even though this VPN comes with strong security-related features, there’s the question of data logging. At the moment, we can only recommend it to those who wish to unblock Netflix at an affordable rate, and who aren’t overly concerned about their digital privacy.
- PROS: Very simple to use; Over 1,000 servers; Unblocks Netflix.
- OUR SCORE: 6.1 out of 10!
In case you think this VPN meets your needs, go ahead and subscribe to Namecheap VPN. And if you’d like to expand your options and search for an alternative, here’s our overview of the best VPNs right now.