ZenMate VPN Review

ZenMate is a VPN made in Germany (specifically Berlin.) Initially, ZenMate VPN was a proxy service that operated as a browser extension. Nowadays,  Zen Mate has become one of the best VPN on the market even though very simple to use. Our ZenMate review will bring to your attention the pros and cons of this VPN that is currently focused on improving, even more, its service and expand its global presence.

As far as today, Zen Mate can ensure a strict no-logs policy, compatibility with the top operating systems, excellent speed, and dedicated  servers to unlock Netflix, BBC iPlayer as well as many geo-restricted websites.

The VPN is operated by a company known as ZenGuard. Interestingly, the team behind this VPN is the same one that runs CyberGhost, one of the best VPNs currently available. That’s why we’ve recently seen this VPN turn from a mid-level service into a very interesting VPN.

Those who are familiar with CyberGhost will not fail to notice that the new ZenMate 5.0 software is completely similar to the CyberGhost app. Later in the review, we will also talk in detail about the new app.

This is one of the few VPNs in the market that offer their app in various languages. The app can be customized to show text in;

  • English
  • German
  • Turkish
  • Korean
  • Spanish and
  • Russian

Their website is also available in various languages but will determine the language according to your location. You can then change the language if you wish.

Zen Mate VPN is in itself not the most sophisticated VPN with granular controls for the most tech-savvy users. However, its simplicity coupled with the ability to unlock some of the most notorious sites is very welcome.

Here, I’ll walk you through a detailed ZenMate Review to help determine whether it’s the VPN for you.

The Best Cheap VPN $ 1.75

Summary

ZenMate is a cheap VPN but offers features pretty similar to the best VPN. Security, speed, and flexibility are just some of the things that ZenMate offers.

  • Speed
  • Security
  • No-Logs
  • Streaming
  • Torrent/P2P
  • Customer Support
  • Price
Overall
4.5

ZenMate Review

Overview

  • Extremely easy to use
  • No-logs policy
  • Kill Switch, DNS Leak Protection
  • Excellent speed
  • 35+global server locations
  • Over 2200 Worldwide servers
  • Optimized servers for streaming
  • Apps for all your devices
  • Made in Germany
  • Dedicated servers for Netflix US
  • Dedicated servers for BBC iPlayer
  • Allowance of 5 simultaneous connections
  • 7-day free trial for Premium service
  • 30-day money-back guarantee

ZenMate Review – Pros

Is ZenMate Safe? Privacy & Logging Policy

From our tests, we didn’t find anything of major concern when it comes to ZenMate’s privacy policies. First, the VPN is located in Germany which has some of the most strict laws to guard an individuals privacy.

Then, just like most other VPNs, ZenMate promises that 
“No personal data is collected, processed or permanently stored.”

However, they do log meta-data just to help them plan for the capacity and expansion of their service.

The data they collect includes;

  • Server usage statistics
  • Which accounts login to which servers
  • When an account contacts customer support
  • Subscription information for their newsletter

This is a common practice among VPN providers and it will not affect your privacy as stated in the ZenMate privacy policy that reads “The above-mentioned Personal Data is not, at any point, associated with any kind of activity done by the user inside the ZenMate VPN tunnel, which is NOT recorded, logged or stored at all.”

Therefore, it should raise no alarm and we can say that this is a “strict” no-logs VPN.

They also claim to store an incoming connection’s IP address to temporarily
“Prevent attacks against ZenMate.”

With it being only temporary, then there won’t be any proof of identity even if someone tries to track you. However, it is always good to know that there is a tiny fraction of your data that is collected even though for a short time.

ZenMate VPN Security

One thing we appreciated is that finally with the launch of ZenMate 5.0 you can now select the protocol you want. The lack of this option was not really tolerable!

The VPN uses AES 256 CBC with 2048 RSA to encrypt traffic and you can choose between OpenVPN, 1Kev2, and L2TP protocols.

Zen Mate VPN Servers

ZenMate Review servers network

The service is catching up with big names in the VPN industry. At the time of our ZenMate review,  over 2200 servers in 35+ countries across the globe are available. This is quite a good number of option to use the Internet in total freedom.

ZenMate has servers in traditional countries like US, Canada, Australia, etc. The American servers are on the east and west of the United States to make connections to it faster from both Europe and Asia. Most of their servers are however found in Europe.

The strategic location of servers helps people who want to access geo-restricted content, and we were happy with the speeds offered by the servers.

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Dedicated Servers to Unlock Netflix US and BBC iPlayer

If you want to have unlimited access to otherwise blocked contents, you can easily do it with ZenMate. Netflix US and BBC iPlayer are among the most important website that unlocks. As regard Netflix US and BBC iPlayer, ZenMate VPN has dedicated servers optimized to bypass the geo-restrictions imposed by these services.

However, on the app is not highlighted which are the  servers optimized for Netflix and BBC iPlayer. For your reference, all the UK servers are optimized for BBC iPlayer, and all the US servers are optimized for ZenMate to unlock Netflix US.

Streaming and Downloading

There are several servers available that are optimized for streaming and downloading. These dedicated servers give you the best performance to watch streaming content online or to download content.

Accessing these servers is now very simple as in the 5.0 software there are dedicated menus that group the servers you can use for this purpose.

ZenMate streaming VPN servers

5 simultaneous connections

Despite the plan you buy, you will be allowed to connect up to 5 devices simultaneously. This is in line with the top VPNs on the market. This is a good option if you want to secure your whole family or you want to split the cost with your friends.

ZenMate Review – Compatibility and Browser Extensions

VPN Zen Mate main features

As already mentioned, ZenMate was initially a browser extension which is still available for various browsers. You have an option to download ZenMate Chrome, ZenMate Firefox, and ZenMate Opera. The ZenMate browser extensions come very handy thanks to the one-click connection function that makes using your VPN super easy and fast.

For the complete VPN service, there are apps for desktops and many other devices like ;

  • Windows
  • Mac
  • Android
  • iOS
  • Linux
  • Apple TV
  • Firestick TV
  • Smart TV
  • Gaming
  • Raspberry Pi
  • Open VPN

ZenMate Cost
ZenMate VPN Review

There are three pricing plans.

  • The 1 Year Plan: $1.75/mo
  • The Monthly Plan: $9.99/mo
  • The 6 months Plan: $3.49/mo

NOTE: Currency changes once you change from the English site.

These plans only differ in the pricing, but not the features offered. All of them allow up to 5 simultaneous devices, something that is quite laudable. They also have no bandwidth caps and come with a 30-day money-back guarantee which is also very welcome.

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Payment Options

ZenMate VPN offers you a number of payment options to subscribe to their service. You can pay with your card or even PayPal. However, we noticed that they do not offer Bitcoin Payment which would allow you to pay anonymously. We would surely like to see that included.

Payments methods to purchase Zen Mate VPN

ZenMate Free – 7-Days Risk-Free Trial Period

During our review, we found that one can also get ZenMate free thanks to the 7-day premium service free trial.

The ZenMate VPN 7-day trial period is entirely risk-free. It doesn’t require any payment information from you to get the premium trial. It will give you a whole week of premium ZenMate free to be able to evaluate the VPN and decide whether it’s the VPN for you. When the 7-day period is over, your account will be automatically reverted back to a limited free VPN service.

If you have been impressed by the VPN, you can then sign up for either of the plans provided. You will still have a 30-day money-back guarantee, which means you will have a total of 3 weeks to evaluate the service.

How to Download ZenMate Free

To activate the ZenMate free trial is very easy and quick. Just click on the button that you can find on almost every page to start the ZenMate download.

Once it has been downloaded and installed on your device, all you have to do is to edit your email, choose a password and confirm your email address. In just a few seconds you can activate your ZenMate free account without getting into your pocket or providing payment details.

ZenMate Review – Cons

ZenMate VPN Customer Support

One downside of this VPN is its customer support. Their customer support is pretty bland. They have no Live Chat, and the Ticketing system that needs to be initiated via mail is mostly responded to by a bot.

First, you will receive a ‘request received’ response. After some hours, you will be answered by Rosa, the ZenMate Bot, not an agent. She will encourage you to try their FAQ if you haven’t yet. 
You will then need to reply to be responded by an agent. This may take quite a while.

Other than that, you can make use of their;

  • FAQs
  • Setup guides
  • Troubleshooting guides

Minimal control of settings

We include this point among the cons even though it all depends on the kind of user you are. This VPN doesn’t give you an option to customize how the VPN works. VPN kill Switch, protocol, DNS protection are automatic.

If you are a beginner and or look for a hassle-free service, this is a very good selling point. However, if you like to have more control over your VPN, ZenMate will not let you.

No Anonymous Payment

At the moment, Zen Mate doesn’t accept payment in Bitcoins or other cryptocurrencies. Therefore, if you are very concerned about keeping yourself completely anonymous even during the payment process, this VPN will not work for you. You must look for other VPNs like CyberGhost or ExpressVPN who accept anonymous payments.

ZenMate Review – The Client

ZenMate 5.0

Zen Mate VPN has one of the most straightforward clients in the VPN industry, and you can’t help but say its mostly aimed at beginners. The client doesn’t have many features of note, with the main features being Eversecure, Kill Switch, DNS Leak Protection and running the VPN automatically on system startup.

The VPN app settings

Eversecure is a feature that appears to force the app to reconnect whenever the connection is lost.

The Kill Switch is a welcome feature that disconnects your device’ internet connection in case connection to the VPN is lost. This protects you from being exposed if for any reason your VPN connection drops.

DNS Protection, on the other hand, keeps you private in case your browser ignores that you have a VPN set up and decides to send a DNS request straight to your ISP.

During our tests, we never noticed any problem with the app. It worked seamlessly, and we didn’t experience any crashes or failures. Neither does it disconnect or change servers without your command.

ZenMate app server list

Further, it is very user-friendly and any novice would be comfortable with it.

With the launch of the new 5.0 software, there have been significant improvements over the previous version. In particular, the software now allows you to:

  • Select the protocol – This option was not present in the previous version
  • Select servers for streaming and downloading – the software now clearly indicates which servers are optimized for streaming and downloading
  • Favorite servers – You can create a custom list of most used servers

Zen Mate VPN Speedtest

Encrypting your traffic is always going to lead to a decline in speed but to some point we weren’t happy with the US servers. Since they are only two, they seem to have already become saturated.

Servers outside the United States, however, have worked much better. In the image below you can see a speed test we did first without the active VPN and then with the connection started.

For correctness, we must point out that ZenMate is working hard to bring the service to high levels and we have seen continuous improvements in performance. We are sure that ZenMate will soon work at levels very close to the best VPNs.

Speed Test ZenMate Review

ZenMate Review – Conclusion

Overall, this VPN looks very good, especially for those who do not care about complicated features that give much control of the VPN.

We would like to give it a positive vote although we recommend improving customer support and providing an option for Bitcoin payment. ZenMate has assured us that they are working in this direction and given the progress made in recent months we are sure that news in this direction will be announced soon.

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