Hidester VPN is a Honk Kong based VPN service that has been released in Summer 2017. The provider is a new player in the VPN world, but it has introduced itself with some innovative solutions that we’ve never seen before.
We’ve got curious about this new VPN provider, and we decided to test the service. In this Hidester VPN review, we will highlight the pros and cons of the service, and we will explain why we have good reason to believe that this VPN provider will quickly rise from a beginner to be among the best VPN connections.
What you will appreciate about Hidester is its innovative and super simple interface and its capability to quickly bypass censorship thanks to brand new VPN protocols created by the Hidester team. They managed to combine strong encryption with excellent speed that makes this VPN perfect for BitTorrent download, P2P file sharing, streaming and gaming.
But let’s dive into the features of Hidester and explore its innovative service.
Hidester Main Features
- Protocols: OpenVPN, CamoWeb, CamoVPN
- Encryption: AES-256-CBC TLS 2048 bits Encryption Level
- Server Switches: Unlimited
- Smart DNS: No
- Speed Test: Yes
- Data Traffic: Unlimited
- Kill Switch: Yes
- Compatible Devices: Windows, Mac, iOS, iPhone, iPad, iPod, Android, Linux
- Customer Care: 24/7 through email support
- Login: Up to 5 devices simultaneously
Despite being a new VPN provider, Hidester offers great features. The encryption quality is excellent, and the proprietary VPN protocols make this VPN connection very flexible.
As you will see in the course of this review, besides ensuring high security, Hidester VPN is an excellent solution for users that need to bypass censorship and for P2P file sharing lovers. Even online gamers will find this VPN connection interesting.
Plans And Pricing
Before even talking about the features of this VPN, we will get into one of the most sensitive topics when choosing a VPN connection which is the price.
Of course, when it comes to our privacy and safety, the price should never be a primary factor leading our decision. However, we understand that most of the time this is how things work.
We are quite glad to inform you that Hidester VPN is an economical provider despite offering you top level service.
At the moment Hidester is available as a beta version, and you will pay only $3.90 per month.
The company made an excellent choice to provide a 30-day money back guarantee. That’s way you can test Hidester VPV risk-free. If the service is not working fine, or you are experiencing technical issues on your device, you will get all your money back in 3 days.
For your subscription you may pay using:
- Credit Cards
- Union Pay
The fact that Bitcoins are accepted is a big plus for privacy. Bitcoin is an excellent option for users that want to keep even their subscription to Hidester VPN anonymous. Additionally, you may even take advantage of the temporary email service available on the Hidester official website. Signing up with a disposable email there will not be any trace at all of your subscription to the service.
Privacy & Security
Hidester VPN employs AES-256-CBC TLS 2048 bits, which is a very secure encryption protocol. This level of encryption is good enough to protect your digital life.
All your data will be hidden from prying eyes, cyber criminals, hackers, government agencies and whoever has no right to know about your personal life. That means that Hidester VPN makes your activity online safe and guarantees a high level of anonymity hence avoiding the annoyances of having your account hacked or your identity stolen.
In addition to that, security and privacy are enhanced by a strict no-logs policy. Since the company is based in Honk Kong, Hidester VPN doesn’t keep any record of your activity online. Your original IP address or the one the VPN server assigns you, all your DNS request or any other sensitive information about your Internet usage will never be recorded by Hidester.
That may sound like a minor factor, but it will make a huge difference in the case of a legal investigation or other problems. Even if the authorities want to know what you did on the Internet recently or in the past, that would be just impossible because there is no record they can have access to. In simple words, you have become anonymous and difficult to be tracked down.
Hidester VPN Protocols
Hidester supports three VPN protocols.
The first one is, of course, OpenVPN which is the most secure protocol available at the moment.
In addition to that, Hidester team has developed 2 new protocols that are kind of interesting. They represent an innovative solution to bypass censorship.
Hidester’s founders live in Countries with a strong censorship and every day they are confronted with the problem of surfing the net freely. They well know even the limitations of many VPN services.
That’s why they dedicated themselves to find a better solution to these problems and make the life of people living in those countries easier. As a result, the 2 proprietary VPN protocols CamoWeb and CamoVPN were born.
- CamoWeb is designed for web browsing. It doesn’t actually work as a VPN, but it is an integrated proxy server. When you connect to the Internet using CamoWeb, you will have some advantages like bypass censorship and higher speed for streaming contents. However, you cannot use this protocol for torrenting and gaming online.
- CamoVPN works well at bypassing censorship. CamoVPN has been created to obfuscate OpenVPN, and therefore it can pass through restrictive firewalls. Thanks to CamoVPN, the firewall cannot detect that a VPN is enabled and therefore it doesn’t block it. CamoVPN works finely even for torrenting and gaming online.
Hidester protects your privacy thanks to the Kill-Switch feature.
The kill-switch prevents your sensitive data from slipping out accidentally in case the VPN connection drops unexpectedly. If that happens, the system instantly cut the connection until the VPN protection is active again.
You will find this feature invaluable if you leave your computer unattended while, for instance, downloading files from the Internet. You will have the peace of mind of knowing that if something should happen, your data will still be safe and protected.
However, at the moment the kill-switch is not implemented in the Mac Beta version, but it will be soon.
P2P and BitTorrent Download
Hidester fully supports P2P and BitTorrent download. Unlike many other VPN connections, Hidester VPN allows torrenting in both directions so you can both download and upload.
As you will see later on in our speed test, this VPN connection guarantees an excellent speed. P2P file sharing is, therefore, a nice experience with Hidester.
Getting Started With Hidester
To subscribe to Hidester is a simple process.
You just need to:
- Go to Hidester website and click on “Get Hidester VPN Now” button
- Insert your email and password
- Choose a form of payment
- Complete the payment
- Download the software you need for your device
- You are now ready to enjoy your brand new VPN connection.
One of the most impressive features of Hidester VPN is its incredible user-friendliness.
In preparing this review, we were asked to test the Mac Beta version, but you will find similar feature and design in the other versions of the software.
As you can see from the screenshot, the interface is simple. There is a big button with the Hidester logo that you have to press to get connected. That’s it.
Before connecting, there are though a few options you can choose from.
For instance, you may well want to choose the VPN server you want to use. Just click on the server name, and you will see the complete list of available servers.
If you click on Best Location, Hidester will pick the best performing website at that very time. Alternatively, you can manually choose a server from the list.
Hidester has implemented a handy feature that helps you check the performances of the different VPN servers. Clicking on the controls menu icon, you can decide to visualize either the speed, ping, connection or score for each VPN server. The score value is a combination of the other three value and is intended to give you a quick reference about the performances. The higher the score and the better the performance is.
This scoring method is pretty unique, and we love it. It is a convenient way to assess in just a few seconds how a particular server is performing. It makes very easy to decide which server to connect to.
Another option you may choose has to do with the VPN protocol you want to use for your connection.
In the center, you will see the “Web All” switch. This is the only function that may be confusing at first, but it is not difficult to sort it out. If you click “All”, the connection will use the CamoVPN protocol. If you prefer to connect with CamoWeb, you just need to select “Web”.
What about if you don’t want to use any of them but you prefer OpenVPN? The only thing you need to do is to click on “Advanced” in the bottom left corner.
The interface will change its appearance, and at the top you will see the all 3 VPN protocol you can choose from. Click on OpenVPN and then activate the VPN connection.
The Hidester interface is innovative even in another way. Using the Advanced interface, you will see at the bottom a real time speed graph and the Lag value.
Why is it good to have the Lag value? If you love playing games online, you will greatly appreciate knowing this value. It is crucial to find a quick responding server that will make your online gaming experience truly enjoyable. As far as we know, Hidester is the only VPN that offer this kind of service.
Quick Mode, Advance Mode, Dock Mode and Reduced Mode
The impression we had using Hidester is that the company pays attention to details, even the small ones. They want to guarantee total protection without being invasive. Plus they give each user the possibility to use the interface they are most comfortable with.
For that reason, you can customize the interface in 4 different ways.
We already mention and see in the screenshots the Quick Mode and the Advanced Mode. The first one is suitable for users that want to use their VPN in total simplicity. The Advanced Mode, instead, is useful if you want to have access to more features that give you the possibility to use the VPN to the full.
In addition to that, you can select even the Dock Mode. This mode allows you to have the software always in sight on your desktop but without using too much space. To activate this mode, you just need to click on the “reduce” icon on the top right and the interface will immediately resize to the deck mode.
If you want to reduce the size of the software even further, you can click on “>” and the software will be placed on the side of your screen. This is the reduced mode.
Clicking on the Settings Icon>Settings you can customize your software.
For instance, you can choose the interface color theme between light and night, you can disable Animation to save the CPU, decide if Hidester has to activate at the startup and if you want to connect to the last used server automatically.
Under the menu VPN, you can then manage the DNS settings.
An attractive option is found in the menu “CamoWeb”. Here is where you activate the Smart Mode. At the moment, the function is available only for China and it helps to improve the speed of your connection. If you connect to a Chinese website, the system will automatically disconnect the CamoWeb since you don’t need to bypass censorship. As a result, the speed while visiting sites from China will be faster. However, if you then connect to a website blocked by censorship, CamoWeb will automatically activate without you taking any action.
The Hidester official website features a clean design that makes it very easy to navigate. In a matter of seconds, you can find any information you need.
Besides the design, there are a few interesting free tools you will find in Hidester website.
Some of them are:
Proxy Checker: a handy tool to test if a proxy is trustworthy or not. Just type the IP address of the proxy and Hidester will tell you if the website is still active and if it offers adequate protection. I would say this is an essential tool if you plan to use a proxy.
Temporary Email: this feature allows you to generate an email address that will be disposed of in 24 hours unless you decide to extend it. The temporary address keeps no-logs, so after it has been canceled, there is no trace of your messages. You can use a temporary address for several reasons like, for instance, remain anonymous when subscribing to a VPN or any other service, keep your conversations confidential, avoid spam, visit untrusted websites and more.
Password Generator: This tool will create secure passwords you can use for any account. Clicking on Generate Password, you will be provided with as many passwords as you like. This is an easy solution to the problem of always finding new and strong passwords to protect your accounts.
Proxy List: At a fair price of $14.90 you will get a 6 months service leading you to a list of over 3600 proxies that are working. The list is updated and tested on an hourly base.
When it comes to speed performances, Hidester doesn’t let you down. That’s especially true if you use one of the 2 proprietary VPN protocols CamoWeb or CamoVPN.
When we tested this VPN, we were quite surprised by the results. Let’s see first of all the performances of our connection while the VPN was disabled.
In the following screenshot, you can see the connection speed while using CamoWeb and connecting to the best performing site suggests by the system.
As you can see, the difference in speed is minor. That wasn’t a big surprise since the CamoWeb is, in reality, a proxy and not a VPN. However, when we tested the CamoVPN, this is when we were pretty impressed.
As you can see, the speed dropped just a little. That means that you can browse the net fully protected and without annoyances. If you consider that CamoVPN is designed to bypass the censorship through the obfuscation of the OpenVPN, this result is absolutely excellent. For that reason, we are quite sure that Hidester will become a primary choice for P2P, streaming, and gaming online.
The worse result we got was while using the OpenVPN protocol. In this case, the drop in speed was significant. However, since CamoVPN is so well performing, you do not really have reasons to use the OpenVPN protocol.
Hidester VPN has a 24/7 ticket support.
We got in contact with the customer support a couple of time and every time the response was exceptionally quick. However, keep in mind that the 24/7 support works only via email ticket.
Hopefully, Hidester will implement a 24/7 chat soon to make its customer support a top one.
When we were asked to review Hidester we were pretty sure we would have found a brand new VPN service still struggling with stability and security problems.
In reality, despite its very young age, this VPN is already pretty solid. Keep in mind that we tested the service using the Beta version of the Mac software that at the time of this review wasn’t still available to the public for download.
Despite that, we really enjoyed its functionality. We have found the connection pretty stable and extremely fast.
Hidester is a VPN connection that works perfectly for inexperienced users that will find its interface highly intuitive and easy to manage. At the same time, if you know your way around and love to customize your VPN connection, if you like to control the DNS settings manually and so on, all that is possible.
We tried to connect even from China, and the CamoVPN did a fantastic job in bypassing the censorship. We have good reason to believe that if you live in any Country where the internet is not free, Hidester can be your gateway to total freedom.
As we mentioned in our review, the software features a unique real time performance graph. Among the value displayed you can see the Lag, a data that online gamers will find very useful. At the moment, we don’t know of any other VPN provider that has the same feature.
P2P is fully supported and thanks to the strong encryption you can engage in torrenting worry-free. Of course, this is not an encouragement to break the law, but there are a lot of torrenting activities that are perfectly legal but as risky as the illegal one. You just need to protect yourself with a good VPN like Hidester, and the problem is solved.
The only downside we can pinpoint at the moment is the size of the VPN servers’ network. Hidester has VPN servers in several of the most important countries, but the network is still quite limited compared to the big names in the VPN world.
However, we have to keep in mind that Hidester is at its very beginning and the team is strenuously working to keep improving and expanding their service. If it is true that a good beginning makes a good ending, we can expect Hidester to rise to the top VPN providers shortly.