This article will explain the process that I went through to find the best VPN for Kodi. When I first started creating tutorials and writing articles about Kodi, this is a question that surfaced at least a dozen times per day.
At that time, I hadn’t produced any tutorials about using a VPN in conjunction with Kodi. But, I knew that I had to provide some guides due to the frequent questions that I kept receiving on this topic.
It was important to find a quality VPN provider because I was planning on producing dozens of tutorials surrounding this technology. The last thing that I wanted, was to create all of the videos and articles, and then switch to another service because things didn’t work well. Whichever VPN application I was going to choose must be dependable and work well on the most popular Kodi devices. It was important for me to research this topic extensively so that I wouldn’t waste time down the road in re-creating my VPN tutorials if things didn’t go well.
Due to the complex nature of loading some of these applications onto various streaming devices, I would only provide tutorials for one VPN service. It would not be practical to offer guides for every popular VPN on the market. I had to choose one and it had to be the best according to my criteria outlined below.
Most importantly, I have a large email newsletter subscriber base with over 180,000 people and nearly 2 million page-views on my Website per month. My subscribers and readers depend on me to provide them with the best technology information and tutorials. My reputation is on the line whenever I use a product exclusively, like I was planning for my VPN articles and videos.
I set out on a quest to find the best VPN for Kodi and I came up with a list of requirements that most users would be looking for. Keep in mind that there are hundreds of services available and it was impossible for me to test every application. So, I scoured the Internet and read hundreds of VPN reviews. I narrowed the long list down to approximately 20 services that I would thoroughly test. Some of the most notable services that I tested were IPVanish, Express VPN, Nord VPN, PUREVPN, Private Internet Access (PIA), vyprvpn, Hide My Ass, TunnelBear, and KeepSolid VPN Unlimited.
After a full month of testing the most popular VPN applications with various Kodi boxes, I came to the conclusion that IPVanish VPN was the best choice. After all of my testing and research this was an easy decision when comparing the important features that Kodi users would want.
You will find how I came to this decision by reading the important requirements below.
Why I Chose IPVanish As The Best VPN For Kodi
The most popular VPN services have many features in common such as zero traffic logs, unlimited bandwidth, 24/7 customer support, etc. The following list of requirements are specifically geared toward Kodi users.
VPN Remote Control Friendly User Interface
As of this writing, the most popular Kodi device is the Fire TV and Fire TV Stick. Due to its low price-point and quality components, this is a great choice for those who want to use Kodi. Other popular devices include generic Android TV Boxes, Nvidia Shield, and the Mi Box. It is important to recommend a VPN application that works well out of the box with the remote control for each of these devices.
Most of the applications that I tested did not work well or at all with a remote control. In order to use their service, you had to side-load the installation file (.apk) to the device and then use an external keyboard to navigate the application. I knew that my users would want a VPN that would work flawlessly out of the box without messing with external keyboards, air mouses, etc.
The IPVanish app has always been remote-friendly but in late June, 2017, they rolled out their new version and it is better than ever (see screenshot below). You can find links to my various VPN installation tutorials at the bottom of this page.
When using a VPN with Kodi, one of the most important features is download speed. A VPN application will always reduce your download speed for two reasons. The first is that it takes processing power on your device to run the VPN simultaneous with everything else. The VPN is running in the background when connected so this required processing power on the part of the device. The second is due to the fact that your Internet traffic is routed through another server once connected to the VPN as this is how your device is assigned a new IP address.
So, with that being said, Kodi devices with a strong processor will always work better with a VPN. The next determining factor on speed is how fast the VPN server that you are connecting to is performing.
The IPVanish servers were the fastest that I tested when reviewing each of the various top Kodi VPN applications.
In thinking back to the research that I did, the download speed is where IPVanish stood head and shoulders above its competitors. No other service could even sniff the download speeds that IPVanish could achieve.
In the Internet speed test below, you will notice that I am getting 124 Mbps download and 24 Mbps upload when connected to IPVanish. As time goes on and 4K video streams become more prevalent, Kodi users will definitely need this download speed to support higher quality media.
IPVanish Speed Test Video
Numerous Servers Worldwide
IPVanish is one of few true top tier VPN services in the world. The IPVanish network consists of over 40,000 different ip addresses residing on over 850 servers in 60 different countries. This provides Kodi users all over the world with fast download speeds and the ability to circumvent geo-blocked streams by connecting from different location locations around the globe.
Since my TROYPOINT subscriber base spans the world, I wanted to ensure that I picked a provider that offered a large number of servers. Again, I am only creating tutorials for one VPN application so it is important that I find one that will support Kodi users around the world, not just the United States.
Multiple Connections Allowed On Same Account
Since most people have Kodi boxes connected to more than one television within their home, it was important to find a service that allows multiple connections from one account. IPVanish allows you to use one account on up to five different devices at the same time.
If you have more than five devices that you need to run through a VPN, I have created a tutorial that will show you how to install a VPN on a router. When you do this, every device that connects to the Internet through your router will be protected. This is a technical process and I still suggest loading the VPN application onto the actual device itself for easier setup.
Multiple Applications for Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Windows Phone, Linux, Fire TV/Stick, Chromebook
Kodi can be installed on Windows, Linux, Mac, Android, iOS, Raspberry Pi, and some other non-traditional operating systems such as BSD and Freescale. Most of my readers tend to use Android-powered devices for their Kodi boxes but who’s not to say that won’t change in the future?
Since IPVanish provides applications for multiple platforms, there will always be an application for us regardless of which device we are running Kodi on.
Due to the fact that IPVanish allows for up to five connections at the same time under one account, we can use the service on other devices. One recommendation that you will see me touting constantly on the TROYPOINT Website is that you should always be using a VPN when traveling. Yes, that is right, a VPN has other uses besides just Kodi!
Think about how many public WiFi hot-spots we connect to when we are traveling or are away from home. If you are like me, your phone, tablet, and computer have sensitive information on it that you would never want someone to access. You should never connect to a public WiFi hot-spot unless you first connect to a VPN service. Hackers can easily intercept your keystrokes through these insecure networks and steal your private information.
Due to the fact that IPVanish provides apps for Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, Fire TV/Stick, Windows Phone, Linux, and Chromebook, you have the option of using your account on any of these devices so you are always protected.
Protect All Applications On Kodi Device
Now that various 3rd party Kodi addons have come under scrutiny and lawsuits have been filed, it is important that a VPN service protects all applications on the device, not just Kodi itself. The reason for this is due to the fact that there are new Android applications emerging such as Terrarium TV that should also be routed through an encrypted connection when being used.
As more 3rd party Kodi addons shut down, people will be turning to the Android .apks that provide movies, TV shows, etc. It is important that your entire device is protected so your streaming logs on apps like these aren’t accessible by your Internet Service Provider.
Some services are only setup within Kodi but that leaves the other applications on the Kodi device unprotected.
IPVanish is installed on the unit itself which means that all applications that run will be protected. Rather than simply protecting the Kodi application, we want to ensure that the other apps are secure as well.
IPVanish Features At A Glance
The above features were the cornerstone of my VPN Kodi research but there are other benefits that IPVanish provides, which you will see with the list below.
- User-friendly apps
- Access to world’s fastest VPN
- 40,000+ shared ip addresses, 850+ VPN servers in 60+ countries
- Unlimited bandwidth provided for each account
- 256-bit AES encryption
- IPVanish retains no traffic logs
- SOCKS5 web proxy available for all accounts
- Access to censored applications and websites
- OpenVPN, PPTP and L2TP/IPsec VPN protocols available
- Unlimited server switching
- 5 simultaneous connections on multiple devices
- 24/7 customer support
- 7-day money-back guarantee
Free Trial Or Money-Back Guarantee
It was important for me to find a service that would offer a free trial or money-back guarantee for my subscribers and readers. In reality, when looking at the VPN services, most who tout a free trial still require payment upfront and then you must cancel before the grace-period ends.
IPVanish provides a 7-day money-back guarantee which should provide ample time to test whether you like the service or not. If not happy, simply send an email to their support department at firstname.lastname@example.org and request a refund.
One of the most frequently asked questions is “Where can I find a free VPN service?” I strongly suggest staying away from offers such as these because companies like this are making money somewhere. My guess is that they are selling your data to a 3rd party or installing malware onto your device. If you do use a free service, you better make sure that you know the exact details of what you are getting yourself into. In my opinion, you get what you pay for in this space.
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Once you have setup your IPVanish account, you are ready to get started with the installation tutorial and you can find your respective Kodi device in the list below.
Ease of Installation
The IPVanish installation process is simple and I have created the following tutorials to have you up and running in a matter of minutes.
Important Note: It is not necessary to install anything on your router when using the IPVanish application. The instructions below will guide you through installing the VPN application onto your respective Kodi device itself. No need to mess with any router settings.