Founded in Budapest in 2013, Buffered is a VPN solution that seeks to help users to enjoy a secure and less restrictive experience on internet. Thanks to the good quality of the service and its easy to use software, Buffered is growing in popularity and it has built a solid reputation as one of the most effective options in the VPN industry. To help you discover more about this Hungarian provider so that you can decide if it is the right option for you, we will discuss the main aspects about Buffered below.
Like other providers, Buffered’s plans become more affordable when you extend the time of the subscription. One month of service costs $12.99 USD, which is slightly more expensive than the average. For six months you pay $59.94, meaning that the monthly price is reduced to $9.99. In order to save more money in the long run, you can opt for the yearly plan. This option costs $99 so you would end up paying $8.25 per month. Buffered may not be the most affordable option, but it offers high quality and great features that justify the price.
It is not possible to check the service before committing to a subscriptions since Buffered doesn’t have a free trial. However, they offer a 30 day money-back guarantee that will give you the possibility to test the service, knowing that you can get a refund if it doesn’t work for you. It is important to keep in mind that this guarantee only covers you if you consume less than 10 GB of bandwidth and don’t exceed 100 sessions or 10 hours of connection. To be eligible for a refund in case you need one, it is important that you test the service on the servers and applications that you want to use, as soon as you set it up. This will allow you to find out if it works for you or if you need to ask for your money back.
You can pay using popular payment methods like major credit cards or PayPal. However, the lack of support for Bitcoin is disappointing, considering that this is the preferred option for users who want to protect their anonymity.
Buffered has desktop clients for Windows and Mac and there is also a Legacy client for Linux. It is good to see a custom solution for Linux as it can make the setting up process much easier and not may providers offer this option. Buffered also works on mobile platforms like Android and iOS, but there are no dedicated apps available at the moment. However, you can find easy to follow guides that will allow you to set up the service on your smartphone or tablet. There are also instructions to get the service running on your router, gaming console, Apple TV and other devices. The desktop clients are straightforward and you can easily connect to the server of your choice.
At the moment, Buffered has servers in 36 countries and new options are regularly added. It is possible to find servers in every continent and you can switch between them as often as needed. In order to bypass firewalls or password protected public WiFi in restaurants, hotels and other places, you can use the port discovery feature. It looks for open ports to run OpenVPN over, allowing you to get secure access to internet, even if the WiFi you are trying to connect to is protected by a password.With Buffered, you can also enjoy unlimited bandwidth and NAT firewall. The latter is a convenient solution to prevent unsolicited traffic from coming through your system. Up to five simultaneous connections are allowed, which would suit most households.
Security is crucial for all VPN providers and to prove its commitment to protect the data of its customers, Buffered has decided to offer support only for OpenVPN, which is the strongest protocol. OpenVPN offers a high level of security that will defend your connection from hackers, eavesdroppers and other threats. Although PPTP is weak and it is better to avoid it, L2TP could be a convenient solution and in some cases, it is the bets alternative if OpenVPN is not available.
The lack of support for this protocol can make things challenging for mobile users, who may need to complete additional steps to run OpenVPN on their devices. Still, OpenVPN is the best solution for security and Buffered uses AES-256 for data encryption, with SHA2 for HMAC authentication and strong RSA 2048 for handshaking. Shared IPs are used, which enhanced your anonymity since identifying a specific user is practically impossible.
Overall, Buffered offers stable connections and the speeds are good, particularly in servers in Europe. While the speed of the service is subject to other factors like your location, the server you connect to and what you do online, Buffered does a good job at offering consistent performance across its network. The service works well for P2P file sharing, streaming and of course, browsing. Additionally, we didn’t come across DNS or IP leaks during our tests. Since Buffered supports up to five simultaneous connections, you will be able to enjoy security and flexibility in different devices, or help your family or housemates to protect their data as well.
The Support section on the website offers an extensive selection of articles and Buffered claims that the content available there covers 95% of the questions that the customer service team receives. The list includes information about different aspects of the service and you can search by category or topic. There are useful guides to get started with the service, as well as tutorials for advanced configuration. If you are unable to find a solution, you can contact them via webform. Although there is no live chat available, Buffered promises to have agents always available to help. In reality, you may need to wait a few hours to receive a response, but they are helpful, polite and highly knowledgeable.
Buffered has many things in its favor, including a fast, reliable network of servers, strong security and professional customer support. While it focuses in offering basic features, the service works well and it allows you to unblock streaming services effectively. There are no logs kept of you online traffic, but unfortunately, they don’t accept anonymous payments solutions like Bitcoin. It would be good to see them adding support for this payment method as it helps users to enhance their privacy. Buffered is one of the few providers that offer a 30-day money back guarantee, although it comes with some conditions. The price is high when compared to other options, but Buffered is a solid service that has a lot of potential to become one of the leading VPNs in the industry.