Which of these two VPNs is better? That sure is a pretty broad question. “Better” will be decided by a dozen factors, 12 to be exact as far as this comparison goes.
Now, I’ve personally used both VPNs. And let me be honest, I did like one more than the other.
However, this piece isn’t about my personal opinions or experiences. It’s more about objective review & comparison between the VPNs.
Hence, for each section on this piece, you’ll find a “verdict” which will tell you which of the two won and why.
Let’s get started then?
Factors we’re comparing in HideMyAss vs. ExpressVPN
So, here’s everything I’ll be comparing and contrasting for both the VPNs:
- Verified “no logs” policy
- of countries & servers
- Simultaneous connections
- Split Tunnelling
- IP Shuffle
- Server security
- HMA vs. ExpressVPN Pricing plans, payment, and refund policies.
Let’s get started then?
The Big Shock!
Before we start, there’s something you should know. I’m generally unbiased, neutral, and honest in my reviews and comparisons.
While it holds true here as well, I do have a major leaning toward ExpressVPN as compared to HideMyAss.
I’ll tell you why.
About 12 years back, HideMyAss was caught logging and sharing data with the FBI! It actually led to a hacker’s arrest and a complete media fiasco.
Now, HMA has come a long way. It has all the advanced features, speed, security, etc.
However, given its history, I just find it really hard to ever trust HMA again!
Considering how this is a “comparison”, ExpressVPN has never done anything this extreme.
Verdict: ExpressVPN wins when it comes to history or track record, doesn’t it?
Verified “No logs” Policies
I run away from VPNs that do not have an independently verified “no logs” policies now.
Fortunately, both HMA and ExpressVPN got themselves audited by third-party agencies.
VerSpite has audited HMA. ExpressVPN on the other hand has been audited by KPMG, Cure53, and PwC Switzerland.
The level of control any govt. would have over the VPNs would depend on their jurisdiction, wouldn’t it?
HideMyAss is based out of London! One of the worst countries if privacy is your primary concern.
ExpressVPN on the other hand is based out of the British Virgin Islands. It’s any day much better than London.
Verdict: ExpressVPN clearly has a more privacy-friendly jurisdiction.
If you’ve ever used a VPN or have read on one, I’m sure you know what this is.
The kill-switch is basically a feature that terminates your internet connection should your VPN connection drop.
This makes sure that you do not have to check your VPN connection’s status every minute manually!
If you’re connected to the internet, it means your VPN is working.
Both ExpresVPN and HideMyAss have the kill-switch feature.
Number of Countries & Servers
No VPN comparison can be complete without comparing the exact number of countries & servers each provides, can it?
HMA lets you connect to over 290 locations in about 210 countries and has about 1100 servers. ExpressVPN has servers in 94 countries. HMA sure is a winner if we only look at the number of countries.
ExpressVPN does have more than 1100 server though. This means there’s less bottleneck, faster speeds, and just overall better performance.
Verdict: HMA is you look at the “no. of countries”. But, it’s ExpressVPN if “no. of servers” is counted, which ultimately matters for server speed and bandwidth.
One of the primary features I pay attention to when choosing a VPN? The no. of allowed simultaneous connections.
This decides how many devices in my home can use the same account without having to pay extra.
Both ExpressVPN and HideMyAss offer exactly 5 simultaneous connections.
Now, in my opinion 5 sure is a low number. Most VPNs offer more connections and some even allow unlimited devices.
However, because this is a comparison between ExpressVPN and HideMyAss, I’d say it’s a tie.
Verdict: Tie, they both allow 5 devices.
Imagine you want to access your bank account, but you also wish to access a website that needs a VPN, at the same time.
Split Tunnelling let’s you do that! You can choose which websites/browsers/apps will use the VPN and which will skip the VPN and use your normal connection.
Now, while both ExpressVPN and HideMyAss offer the feature, there’s a difference.
HideMyAss only offers Split Tunnelling on Android devices. ExpressVPN on the other hand offers the feature on Windows, Android and macOS!
Verdict: ExpressVPN because it supports Split Tunnelling on more devices/OS.
This is a feature that does give HMA an edge over ExpressVPN.
IP Shuffle is an amazing feature that changes your IP address “while” you’re browsing the web.
This ensures that whatever IP you connect to doesn’t remain the same for the entire session. It adds a pretty serious anonymity/privacy layer to your connection.
The new IP is always chosen from the same region/country you are connected to.
Do note that for this to function properly, you must have the kill switch turned on. It’s not mandatory but the VPN connection drops slightly during the change. The kill switch would protect you in this case.
ExpressVPN doesn’t have the feature.
Verdict: HMA wins the round, as ExpressVPN doesn’t offer the feature.
Of course, you can’t choose a VPN without considering their impact on your overall speed, can you?
Now, both HMA and ExpressVPN have been in the industry long enough, offering impressive speeds.
However, ExpressVPN recently launched this new “Lightway Protocol”. It’s makes ExpressVPN one of the fastest VPNs in the industry.
HMA doesn’t disappoint as well, however, it always has been slower than ExpressVPN in all my experiences.
Verdict: The speed is pretty good on both. ExpressVPN does have a few technological benefits over HMA though.
This is more of a back-end feature but does require some discussion for this comparison.
So, ExpressVPN uses a RAM-only server. These servers do not use a “hard disk” so nothing is saved permanently. All data is wiped each time the server is restarted.
HMA on the other hand uses encrypted servers. Data is stored but it’s encrypted.
Verdict: I’d prefer my data not exit at all, rather than be kept in an encrypted form. Hence, I’d say ExpressVPN is the winner here.
This one is a clear winner for ExpressVPN.
As soon as you land on the ExpressVPN site, you can use their live chat. It’s available 24X7 and is pretty responsive.
HMA on the other hand doesn’t have a live chat. For a company that’s been in the game for 15 long years, that’s not very good, is it?
Verdict: ExpressVPN clearly offers better, faster, and easier support than HMA.
HMA vs. ExpressVPN Pricing Plans, Payment and Refund Policies
At the end of the day, it all comes down to the pricing, doesn’t it?
So, ExpressVPN plans start at $6.67/month. This is the cheapest plan you can get.
HMA on the other hand has a much lower entry point. You can get HMA for a low $2.99/month.
Both companies offer a generous 30-day refund policy. This means, with either (or both) VPN if you get a full refund if you cancel within the first 30 days!
A major drawback with HMA however is that it doesn’t accept Cryptocurrencies! It’s almost surprising to see a VPN, a privacy app, not accept a private mode of payment.
Now, coupled with the previous FBI-buddy history of HMA, the lack of Crypto payment is clearly a deal-breaker for me.
Verdict: If cheap VPN is your primary and sole concern, HMA wins. But if you need Cryptocurrency payment, HMA loses out, big.
HMA 7-Day Free Trial
This is a massive edge that HMA has over ExpressVPN.
It offers an outright free trial plan! It’s different from the “30-day refund policy”. On the free trial, you do not have to pay to try it out!
There are very few (actually, just 1 more VPN- AtlasVPN that I’ve seen do this).
Verdict: Of course, only HMA offers the free trial, which means it’s immediately the winner here.
So, what devices/OS are both VPNs compatible with?
HMA is compatible with Android, Windows, macOS, iOS, a well as Android TV. It also has browser extensions.
ExpressVPN too is compatible with everything that HMA is compatible with.
Verdict: Tie, they both offer almost the same level of compatibility.
So, which of these two is the better VPN?
In my opinion, it’s clearly ExpressVPN. Of course, I’d not make a statement void of points. So, let’s make the points?
ExpressVPN is faster, has more servers, better Split tunneling compatibility, much better server security, and even support.
More importantly, ExpressVPN accepts Cryptocurrency payments, but HideMyAss doesn’t.
And then finally, there’s the HideMyAss history that I just can’t ever be okay with.
The only major advantage HMA has over ExpressVPN is that it offers IP shuffling. Yes, it’s an amazing feature, however, it’s just one feature.
HMA also is cheaper than ExpressVPN. However, as a golden rule of VPN selection, never let money takes the driving seat, it may be fatal.
So all in all, ExpressVPN clearly comes out on top as far as this HideMyAss vs. ExpressVPN comparison goes.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Here are a few questions that you may have when confused between HideMyAss and ExpressVPN.
Is ExpressVPN better than HideMyAss?
Yes. In terms of security, speed and overall features, it’s better than HideMyAss.
Is ExpresVPN faster than HideMyAss?
Certainly. Due to ExpressVPN’s “Lightway protocol”, you get much faster speeds than most other VPNs out there.
Is ExpressVPN really the best VPN?
I wouldn’t say it’s the “best”. There are better VPNs than ExpressVPN. However, when compared to HideMyAss it’s the better option.
Can police track ExpressVPN?
No. The police may be able to track an IP address to ExpressVPN. However, who used the IP, which websites were visited etc. can’t be known. It’s because ExpressVPN doesn’t keep logs and this has been proven.
Can I use HMA VPN for free?
Yes. HMA does have a 7-day free trial.
Is HMA a good VPN?
It’s a good VPN in terms of features and pricing. However, it lacks trust and doesn’t accept Cryptocurrency which are major blows.