Hotspot Shield Vs NordVPN: Which Is Better in 2023?

If you’re trying to pick the best service between NordVPN and Hotspot Shield, you’ve come to the right place. Here, we know that you have difficulty choosing, mainly because it is difficult to distinguish between these two VPN services. 

In comparison, Hotspot Shield is a VPN service that offers anonymity while surfing. Meanwhile, NordVPN has some of the fastest speeds in the industry. Hotspot Shield is known for its unlimited bandwidth, no-logs policy, and easy connectivity on five different devices. 

Keep reading to find out more interesting Hotspot Shield Vs. NordVPN comparisons.

Hotspot Shield Vs NordVPN: Side-by-Side Comparison

Hotspot Shield Vs NordVPN Side-by-Side Comparison

We ran side-by-side tests on these VPNs to see which could perform our tasks fastest and most securely. Below are more detailed breakdowns by classification.


NordVPNHotspot Shield
Current Offer68% OFF40% OFF
Money back guarantee30 days45 days
Servers5500+ servers in 59+ countries1800+ servers in 99+ countries
StreamingNetflix, Amazon Prime Video, HBO Max, BBC iPlayer Disney+, and moreNetflix, HBO Max, Amazon Prime Video, Disney+, BBC iPlayer, and more
VPN protocolsNordLynx, IKEv2, OpenVPNHydra, IKEv2
No-logs policyIndependently-auditedNot audited


Average SpeedDownloadUpload Download averageUpload average
NordVPN190 Mbps131 Mbps215 Mbps51 Mbps
Hotspot Shield261 Mbps50 Mbps262 Mbps45 Mbps

In most VPN comparisons, NordVPN comes out on top in terms of speed. However, we discovered a few shocks this time, maybe because, like NordVPN, Hotspot Shield provides a unique protocol that prioritizes speed.

In this case, Hotspot Shield’s Hydra takes the lead regarding download speed. The speed drops were often as little as 2%, which is an astonishing performance for a VPN.

Meanwhile, NordLynx’s download speeds are excellent, although not as fast as Catapult Hydra’s.

However, although impressive, Hydra’s upload speed left me wanting more. It was a lot slower than NordLynx, which is unfortunate if you want a reliable VPN for gaming or streaming.

IKEv2 is another tunneling protocol shared by NordVPN and Hotspot Shield. Hotspot Shield once again outperformed NordVPN in terms of download speed. Hotspot Shield upload speeds, on the other hand, were disappointing.

Overall, due to the disparity in download and upload speeds, it’s tough to identify a clear victor in this area.


NordVPN Servers

It’s fascinating to observe how these two services have taken different methods. With over 5,400 servers in almost 60 locations, NordVPN has one of the most extensive networks of any significant service. 

On the other hand, Hotspot Shield offers fewer servers but more places to select from.

Although NordVPN provides access to servers in several regions, Hotspot Shield goes a step further. 

It also employs virtual servers to provide you with an IP address from countries such as China, Russia, and Egypt. There is no chance of government meddling since they are not physically based in their respective nations.

However, NordVPN does have a few areas that its competitor does not. Surprisingly, they are countries such as Slovenia, Serbia, and Cyprus. While some regions aren’t as popular as others, it’s odd for a VPN that covers 80+ countries to leave them out.

Plans And Pricing

Hotspot Shield Plans And Pricing

Monthly members may typically expect to pay extra for VPN coverage, and both providers are no exception.

Free Trials & Money-Back Policy

When comparing the prices of NordVPN and Hotspot Shield, it’s clear which is less expensive. While both services employ the same subscription strategy – the longer your commitment, the cheaper your monthly cost – NordVPN has the lower pricing.

Of course, we can’t forget Hotspot Shield’s free plan, which NordVPN lacks. However, remember that the free membership is restricted to 500 MB per month, which is adequate for occasional searching.

In some ways, Hotspot Shield’s increased price is warranted. That’s because you receive Aura antivirus, a spam-call filter for cell-phones, and the 1Password password manager in addition to the VPN.

However, there is no option to obtain only the VPN, which we find pretty annoying.

Remember that both VPNs include a money-back guarantee. NordVPN provides you with 30 days to decide whether or not to maintain the service, while Hotspot Shield gives you 45 days to decide whether or not to keep the service.

Payment Methods

NordVPN Payment Methods

Hotspot Shield and NordVPN accept Visa, MasterCard, American Express, and Discover credit cards to pay for their services. Hotspot Shield now accepts JCB credit cards and PayPal payments.


Hotspot Shield Vs NordVPN Security

Both VPNs, unsurprisingly, use the standard military-grade AES-256 encryption algorithm. The pair also share the IKEv2 tunneling protocol. 

However, particular distinctions emerge when we examine their unique technology. NordVPN employs NordLynx, which is built on WireGuard. In addition, they support the OpenVPN protocol. 

On the other hand, Hotspot Shield employs its Hydra tunneling mechanism. Fortunately, both providers have internet kill switches.

Unfortunately, Hotspot Shield is limited in terms of extra security capabilities. While NordVPN provides several features, like Split Tunneling, Double VPN, Onion over VPN, Obfuscated servers, and more, Hotspot Shield has much less. 

They feature Smart VPN (available for Windows and Android), which lets you choose which programs or websites should circumvent the VPN tunnel. On mobile platforms, there is also a malware scanner.


According to Hotspot Shield, its patented Hydra tunneling system is one of the most secure solutions on the market. Unfortunately, user complaints indicate that it is untrustworthy when facing hurdles like China’s Great Firewall.

NordVPN, on the other hand, provides a few alternatives for coping with censorship-heavy regions. They have Obfuscated servers bypassing DPI (Deep Packet Inspection) and Onion over VPN as additional protection when using the Tor Browser. Because of these qualities, NordVPN is one of the top VPN alternatives for China.


Hotspot Shield Vs NordVPN Privacy

Each VPN is excellent in terms of privacy, but NordVPN takes the cake. For starters, it is situated in Panama, a jurisdiction that does not compel businesses to record customer data. 

On the other hand, Hotspot Shield is headquartered in the United States, a Five Eyes nation. This implies that your data might be freely transferred across the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, and New Zealand.

This isn’t a deal breaker since neither VPN stores any logs that can be linked to you. In reality, NordVPN does not save any logs, and Hotspot Shield only records aggregate data, making it impossible to identify you individually. 

Furthermore, NordVPN accepts payments in some of the most prominent cryptocurrencies, but Hotspot Shield does not offer anonymous payment methods.

Compatibility With Devices

One area where these two are almost identical is compatibility. They offer applications for all leading platforms (Windows, Mac, Linux, Android, and iOS) as well as Amazon Fire TV, Fire Stick, and Android TV. 

However, regarding available functionality, NordVPN’s non-Windows applications are more similar to its Windows version. Hotspot Shield is not one of them.

Support for browser extensions is similar. Both work with Chrome and Edge, while NordVPN also works with Firefox. Both may also be set up on routers.

It’s virtually a tie. However, NordVPN edges out Hotspot Shield by offering six simultaneous connections instead of 5.

Desktop Apps

NordVPN Desktop Apps

Even though the inventors of NordVPN and Hotspot Shield chose distinct methodologies, the outcomes are similar. Let us start with NordVPN.

As a result, its Windows and macOS programs are remarkably similar. They both offer a map, which is unusual (but useful) for a VPN program. 

If you’re a newbie, you won’t have any problem utilizing these NordVPN applications. On the other hand, the Linux version is completely different so that you’ll operate it via the command line terminal since there is no graphical interface.

In this way, Hotspot Shield is comparable in providing excellent and simple-to-use programs for Windows and macOS while providing no graphical interface for Linux users.

Mobile Apps

Hotspot Shield Mobile Apps

NordVPN’s mobile apps will satisfy you whether you use an Android or an iOS smartphone. Despite the almost same design, there are minor feature changes.

The iOS app, for example, provides Dark Web surveillance. It also does not enable you to turn off the death switch. Meanwhile, the Android app has split tunneling, auto-connect settings, and a programmable kill switch.

In the case of Hotspot Shield VPN, the mobile apps are not just similar; they also seem to be smaller versions of the desktop programs. They are also relatively feature-rich, even the iOS version.

Streaming Netflix

Hotspot Shield Vs NordVPN Streaming Netflix

NordVPN and Hotspot Shield may be used to unblock Netflix and its many regional variations. Furthermore, both VPNs have quick speed, allowing HD and 4K streaming. So, who comes out on top in our NordVPN vs. Hotspot Shield comparison?

We must integrate other streaming providers to choose a winner. NordVPN can unblock Hulu, HBO, Amazon Prime Video, BBC iPlayer, and many more websites. Even if it unblocks BBC iPlayer and other services, Hotspot Shield cannot compete. 

And, in the long run, NordVPN, with its army of servers, seems to be a solid option, with a solution for unblocking media streaming websites constantly available. As a consequence, NordVPN is unsurprisingly one of the best VPNs for streaming.

Torrenting And P2P

Although both VPN services allow torrenting, only one is genuinely geared for it. NordVPN offers a SOCKS5 proxy for enhanced protection, split tunneling on Windows and Android, and dedicated P2P servers for faster download rates.

Customer Support

Hotspot Shield Vs NordVPN Customer Support

One significant difference between Hotspot Shield and NordVPN customer support is that Hotspot Shield’s live chat is concealed behind a paywall. You have to be a paying user to receive any wonderful human interaction. On the other hand, free users may at least file a problem or study the troubleshooting tips.

Meanwhile, NordVPN enables anybody to utilize their 24/7 live chat, you may write to them even if you don’t have an account. You may also write an email or read the FAQ section.

Conclusion: NordVPN vs Hotspot Shield – Which Is Better?

Overall, NordVPN and Hotspot Shield both have their advantages and disadvantages. But NordVPN is better than Hotspot Shield because it offers amazing speeds, great customer support, and lightweight services. It will keep your location completely hidden when you access geo-restricted media and websites from anywhere in the world.

FAQs About Hotspot Shield Vs NordVPN

Is NordVPN superior to Hotspot Shield?

Yes, most consumers will choose NordVPN. This is because it is less expensive, unblocks more streaming sites, and provides superior customer service. However, some users may choose Hotspot Shield because of the lightning-fast internet rates.

Is Hotspot Shield faster than NordVPN?

Yes, Hotspot Shield outperforms NordVPN in terms of download speed. The decline might be as little as 2% from your previous pace. NordVPN, on the other hand, offers faster upload speeds.

Is NordVPN a good investment?

NordVPN is unquestionably worthwhile. It boasts a large server network, powerful encryption, high connection speeds, many security and privacy options, and low pricing.

Is Hotspot Shield’s free version secure?

Hotspot Shield’s free version is completely secure. It successfully conceals your IP address and does not leak any data. It is worth mentioning, however, that its no-logging policy has not yet been officially examined.

Do I need antivirus software if I use a VPN?

Not all VPNs will safeguard you against viruses that you download. As a result, if you’re utilizing a VPN and downloading files from unknown sources, you may still benefit from an antivirus application.

Is NordVPN compatible with Netflix?

Yes, NordVPN is Netflix-compatible. It can easily get over geo-restrictions and access numerous Netflix libraries, including those in the US, the UK, and Japan.

Do I need antivirus software if I use a VPN?

Not all VPNs will safeguard you against viruses that you download. As a result, if you’re utilizing a VPN and downloading files from unknown sources, you may still benefit from an antivirus application.

Is NordVPN compatible with Netflix?

Yes, NordVPN is compatible with Netflix. It can efficiently circumvent geo-restrictions and access many Netflix libraries, including those in the United States, the United Kingdom, and Japan.

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