Private Internet Access vs. TorGuard – Comparison & Test Results 2019

If you’re looking for a value-priced Virtual Private Network (VPN) provider that offers fast connection speeds, top-notch privacy protections and P2P file sharing support, you’ll find Private Internet Access (PIA) to be an attractive option.

PIA mascot

The provider offers app support for all of the major computing platforms, but it lacks wide-ranging global server coverage.

Visit Private Internet Access


If you’re in search of a VPN provider that offers above-average global server coverage, streaming service access and customer support, you’ll find TorGuard to be an attractive option among VPN providers.

TorGuard Logo

The provider also provides excellent encryption, a generous number of simultaneous connections and BitTorrent support.

Visit TorGuard


How to Choose a VPN

It’s time for another faceoff between VPN providers, and this battle will feature Private Internet Access (PIA) and TorGuard.

In this article, I’ll go over the 10 most important categories to consider when making a VPN-buying decision. I will then explain why each category is important, share how well both providers performed in each category, declare a winner in each category, and at the end of the article declare an overall winner.

By the end, you should have enough information to decide which VPN provider best fits your unique needs.

Connection Speed

Have you seen the internet-connected oven? It’s just the latest in what seems to be a never-ending parade of new internet-connected devices.

No matter which connected devices you use, a fast connection is a must-have.

We here at Pixel Privacy use the Speedtest.net app to test each provider’s connection speeds.

We conduct all VPN connection speed tests by following these steps:

  1. We connect to a North America-based server through a gigabit Ethernet connection.
  2. A team of 3 users test the VPNs by connecting to 3 server locations – one in the United Kingdom, one in the United States and one in Hong Kong – at 3 different times of day over the course of 3 days.
  3. Using the Windows version of the provider’s app, we configured it to connect using the OpenVPN protocol over UDP.
  4. We record all of the speed test results and then calculate each provider’s average speed.

Average Connection Speed

Both providers scored well in the download speed category, with Private Internet Access beating out TorGuard by just over 8 Mbps.

Private Internet Access delivers download speeds of just over 84 Mbps, while TorGuard delivers a quite respectable speed of just over 76 Mbps.

Both providers deliver more than enough horsepower for just about any online activity, including viewing video, downloading and sharing large files and much more.

Average Connection Speed Winner: Private Internet Access

Provider

Download Speed Link

Private Internet Access

84.18 Mbps Visit Site
Read Review

TorGuard

76.05 Mbps Visit Site

Pricing

Both of our competitors should prove attractive to users in search of a reasonably-priced VPN provider that still offers an above-average level of service. However, Private Internet Access is definitely the budget-friendly option of the two.

Private Internet Access’ average monthly pricing is in the single digits for both its month-to-month and annual subscription options.

Meanwhile, TorGuard’s month-to-month plan is just short of double digits, dropping to mid-level single digits if you opt for the annual plan.

Pricing Winner: Private Internet Access

Provider

Money-Back Guarantee Period Link

Private Internet Access

7 Days Visit Site

Read Review

TorGuard

7 Days Visit Site

Privacy

When it comes to the internet, there are very few places that can be termed “safe.”

No matter where you go, your ISP is keeping watch, recording your travels to sell them to advertisers – and let’s not even get started about what hackers would like to do with your personal information.

When considering any VPN provider, take a close look at the following privacy-related factors:

  • Does the provider’s home country respect online privacy?
  • Does the provider keep logs recording their users’ online travels?
  • Does the provider accept cryptocurrencies or other types of private payments, such as merchant gift card balances?

Although Private Internet Access is located in the United States, where they could legally save logs related to their users’ online activities, they choose not to. The provider accepts Bitcoin and other types of cryptocurrency, as well as merchant gift card balances, for their fine services.

TorGuard is also based in the U.S., but they too refuse to save logs related to their customers’ activities. TorGuard also happily accepts Bitcoin and merchant gift card balances as privacy-enhancing payments.

Privacy Winner: It’s a Tie!

Provider

Privacy Star Rating Link

Private Internet Access

5.0 Visit Site

Read Review

TorGuard

5.0 Visit Site

Features

Perhaps the best advice I could give to anyone shopping for the best VPN to fit their needs is to not concentrate on just one or two features.

Instead, consider all of the services that a VPN provides in order to get a good overall idea of the advantages and disadvantages of each provider.

In this section of the head-to-head article, I’ll be providing a look at the features that both VPN providers offer, explain how well they perform in each service category, and then announce a winner in each arena.

Security

Users who are looking for a VPN simply to protect their online travels from prying eyes should pay close attention to the encryption any potential VPN provider offers. In addition, take a close look at a provider’s other connection protections.

TorGuard makes use of military-grade encryption and uses OpenVPN with TCP or UDP, PPTP, L2TP/IPsec, SSTP and IKEv2 protocols. Other protections include adware and malware blockers, as well as DNS leak and IPv6 leak protection.

Private Internet Access uses high-level encryption via OpenVPN with L2TP+PSK and PPTP protocols. Additional protections include kill switch, DNS leak and IPv6 leak protections, and tracker, adware and malware blockers.

For more details about these features, check out my VPN Security Features article.

TorGuard wins thanks to its larger number of protocols, providing more connection options in overly restrictive countries.

Security Winner: TorGuard

Provider

Overall Security Score Link

TorGuard

5.0 Visit Site

Private Internet Access

4.5 Visit Site

Read Review

Simultaneous Connections

Whether you’re a business owner or the head of a large family, you’re going to appreciate a VPN provider that allows a generous number of devices to connect simultaneously on one login.

PIA allows up to 10 simultaneous connections on the same set of login credentials.

TorGuard allows 5 simultaneous logins using the same account.

Simultaneous Connections Winner: Private Internet Access

Provider

# of Simultaneous Connections Allowed Link

Private Internet Access

10 Visit Site

Read Review

TorGuard

5 Visit Site

Streaming Support

Traveling the globe is a great way to spend your free time. However, no matter where you go, you’ll still long for a bit of home. How about a nice streaming binge while you’re soaking your sore feet after a busy day of sightseeing?

TorGuard does provide access to streaming services. However, if you don’t spring for a $7.99-per-month “dedicated streaming IP” add-on, access is less than reliable.

Private Internet Access doesn’t offer reliable access to any streaming service, although you may be able to randomly select a server and access Netflix in the U.S. on occasion. However, it isn’t reliable, so it counts as zero.

Netflix Access Winner: TorGuard (but only if you buy their streaming IP add-on)

Provider

# of U.S. Streaming Services VPN Unblocks # of International Services VPN Unblocks Link

TorGuard

5+ (with add-on) 5+ (with add-on) Visit Site

Private Internet Access

0 0 Visit Site

Read Review

BitTorrent Support

P2P/BitTorrent is arguably the most popular way to share files on the internet today. P2P is widely used by businesses and individuals to legally share files.

However, some users also employ it to share copyrighted content, such as music and movies. This has led many ISPs to block file sharing on their networks. This makes a VPN that allows P2P activity on its networks a definite plus.

TorGuard allows P2P activity on all of its servers, located in 50+ countries.

Private Internet Access allows P2P activity on every one of their servers, in all 32 countries.

BitTorrent Support Winner: TorGuard

Provider

# of Countries Where VPN Allows BitTorrent Access Link

TorGuard

50+ (all of them) Visit Site

Private Internet Access

32 (all of them) Visit Site

Read Review

Global Server Coverage

Comprehensive global server coverage is the key VPN feature that will unblock content from around the world, which might normally be blocked in your area.

TorGuard has 3,000+ servers stationed in 50+ countries.

Private Internet Access has 3,500+ servers located in 32 countries.

Global Server Coverage Winner: TorGuard

Provider

Server Count Countries Link

TorGuard

3,000+ 50+ Visit Site

Private Internet Access

3,500+ 32 Visit Site

Read Review

Multi-Platform Support

It’s a connected world, and I’m betting that the vast majority of my readers own more than one connected device.

Laptops, smartphones, tablets, gaming consoles and more all mean that the more platforms your VPN provider supports, the better your all-around protection will be.

Private Internet Access offers apps for the Windows, macOS, iOS, Android and Linux platforms. The provider also offers support for a variety of routers. Extensions are available for the Opera, Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox browsers.

TorGuard’s app support includes devices on the Windows, macOS, Android, iOS and Linux platforms, as well as many brands of routers. Extensions for the Firefox and Safari browsers are also available.

Multi-Platform Support Winner: Private Internet Access

Provider

# of Platforms Supported Browser Extensions? Link

Private Internet Access

5 Yes (Chrome, Firefox, Opera) Visit Site

Read Review

TorGuard

5 Yes (Firefox, Safari) Visit Site

Customer Support

Think of customer support as being like your AAA Roadside Assistance membership. Sure, you never want to use it, but you’re darned glad it’s there when you do need it.

TorGuard provides 24/7 live support chat, a trouble ticket tracking system and an easy-to-search knowledge base.

Private Internet Access lacks live support chat. However, the provider does offer a searchable knowledge base, a trouble ticket tracking system and a “Guides” section to, well, guide PIA customers through installing and using their VPN connection.

Customer Support Winner: TorGuard

Provider

Customer Support Star Rating Link

TorGuard

5.0 Visit Site

Private Internet Access

4.0 Visit Site

Read Review

Winner: TorGuard!

TorGuard edged out Private Internet Access this time around. The two providers fought tooth and nail, and the lead changed a few times, but TorGuard pulled ahead late in the race.

TorGuard Logo

TorGuard was tops when it came to security, streaming support, BitTorrent support, global server coverage and customer support.

Private Internet Access fared best in the connection speed, pricing, simultaneous connections and multi-platform support competitions.

The providers tied when it came to privacy.

TorGuard scored a victory this time around, thanks in part to its above-average global server coverage and comprehensive customer support. Users should appreciate its high levels of security and BitTorrent access.

For more information or to purchase a subscription, visit the TorGuard website.