VPN Usage and Trends Around the World in 2019

Brian Burns / December 21,2019


VPNs have become increasingly popular, with more people than ever using a VPN in 2019. This article will discuss the use of a VPN, how it may benefit you and an extensive list of trends around the world in 2019 for VPN usage.

What actually is a VPN?

Virtual private network (VPN) is a tool used to allow safe and private access to the internet whilst hiding your actions online. There are many different reasons as to why people may choose to use a VPN, however, there is a general trend of accessing information which is unavailable without the use of a VPN. For example, accessing blocked sites at work, watching television shows only available in different countries and interacting with friends and family through social media who are located above. Currently, 25% of internet users have used a VPN within the last month (this is represented within our infographic), with devices used including desktops (17% of users), smartphones (7% of users), androids (15% of users) and even television boxes to access channels previously not available within a specific country.

Uses of VPNs 

  •     50% access better entertainment content
  •     34% access social networks or news services
  •     31% Keep anonymity whilst browsing
  •     30% To access sites, files and services whilst at work
  •     27% to access restricted torrent sites
  •     25% to communicate with friends/family abroad
  •     18% to hide web-browsing from the government
  •     17% access a torrent browser

Who uses VPNs? 

Now that we know VPNs are used for a wide variety of different reasons, let’s get into the statistics. According to our infographic, 62% of VPN users are reportedly male and 38% female. Of these users, 45% are included within the middle-range income bracket, 24% located as top earners and a further 23% in the lower income bracket. In terms of ages, 34% of users are between 16-24, 34% between 25-34 and then a decrease in VPN use as you get progressively older. 

How does a VPN work?

VPNs are able to create enhanced privacy and encryption for your data, this works by creating a fake location based on different internet signals to allow untraceable internet access which can be used to mask a specific country or location. For example, if you are currently in the UK accessing a VPN can allow your location to be seen as the USA, this allows access to American Netflix, American Amazon Video and other services, providing an extensive range of entertainment purposes. According to our infographic 40% of VPN users are more likely to be viewing subscription services on a weekly basis. A further 77% of VPN users, however, purchase their digital content, a number which is surprisingly high considering the use of VPNs. 

Contacting to the internet (no matter where you are) without a VPN will allow people to see what you are looking at, for example, the ISP providers and even the business owners in some instances. Using a VPN provides encryption from both ends, therefore, meaning the ISP cannot view what you are looking at. This is especially useful for business, for example, bank transfers, confidential emails and passwords being shared online. Without the use of a VPN, there is an increased risk of your device being hacked and this data accessed, therefore, compromising the security of your business.  This is a popular use of VPNs as you can imagine with security being a top priority in the current day. 

Are VPNs legal?

In short, yes. As long as the motivator behind why you are using the VPN in the first place is legal then it is not frowned upon. If, however, you are using a VPN to access illegal content then this is illegal. It is important to note that although VPN’s are able to mask your location, information can still be obtained on what is being viewed by the likes of the government and further third parties if it is regarded as a security risk or an illegal activity.

Where can I get a VPN?

There are many different VPN options available. Doing a simple internet search for VPNs or using a vpn comparison site like Bestvpn.ie will reveal a wide plethora of options. In terms of pricing, a VPN usually should not cost any more than $5, some cost just shy of $10, however, any more and you are wasting money. The majority of VPNs will perform the same functions are the higher priced VPNs, so save your money and stick to what you know.

There are also free VPNs. These can be accessed online or through the use of the app store for smartphone and Android users. Free VPN’s however are not as reliable as the paid alternative and are greater prone to crashing and leaking data. If you require the full experience it is recommended to purchase a paid VPN for the best experience, protecting your data and keeping you safe across the internet.

What can I use my VPN with (devices)? 

VPN’s work wide many different devices, these include desktops, laptops, tablets and mobile phones to name a few. VPN’s can be downloaded through the app store or google play store allowing ease of access to your mobile phone needs. VPN’s can sometimes make your connection slower due to the advanced connection being established between various signals, the use of a VPN may not be advised if a fast connection is required. Obtaining a high-quality VPN, however, may increase bandwidth due to the enhanced signal, it is ultimately dependant on the VPN itself the provider of this.

To summarise

VPNs are a tool which allows enhanced security and browsing on the internet, frequently used to access entertainment purposes, contact with friends or view sites/social media in locations such as work in which they cannot originally be accessed. With VPNs available on a wide variety of different devices, it is easier than ever to set one up, with the extensive list of benefits widely available at your fingertips.

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