Hot Spot Shield Elite Review

Hotspot Shield Elite VPN

Hotspot Shield Elite Feature:

– $4.99/month
– Virtual Locations in 3 Countries
– Multi Devices Supported (up to 5 devices at same time)
– Works on PC, Mac and iOS
– No Free trial, 30-Day Moneyback

Hot Spot Shield Elite Review

Hot Spot Shield is an established and trusted name in the field of VPN (virtual private network) service providers. This service provider was founded in 2005 and is currently offered by Anchorfree Incorporated. It is based in California’s Silicon Valley. With downloads of its VPN software exceeding 100 million, Hotspot shield remains one of the leading VPN services in the competitive Virtual Private Network market.

Privacy While Browsing

When using this VPN service, encrypted data is routed through Anchorfree servers. When the user turns on the Hotspot shield, Anchorfree assigns the computer a unique IP address on its network. This makes any attempts- by any other website- trying to look up the user’s geographic IP address or location, futile as it only receives information about the Anchorfree servers. All data is encrypted; making it impossible for others to track one’s browsing history.

The users are assured of anonymous web surfing as well as access to many websites since allows unblocking of websites. Geographical barriers, thus, do not serve as hindrances to surfing when one is using hot spot shield. Making of the IP also enables web surfers to surf safely.

Countries Supported

Hot spot shield elite VPN has servers in 3 countries US,UK and Australia but supports over 50 countries. Countries in the Middle East, China and other countries- whose governments censor/ restrict access to some websites- benefit a lot from hotspot shield VPN since it can help them access those blocked sites.

Traffic & Bandwidth

The traffic is sent using 128-bit encryption techniques. By protecting one’s IP address, hackers cannot access the user’s data and by unblocking websites, hotspot shield enables the user bypass Internet filters and access any website. In countries where governments impose restrictions through censoring, Hotspot shield is an invaluable asset. While using WI-FI connection at public places or hotspots (hotels, airports, etc), hotspot shield VPN encrypts data to ensure maximum security on passwords and bank information among other sensitive information.


This service supports common VPN protocols like: L2TP (Layer 2 Transfer Protocol), PPTP (Point-to-Point Transfer Protocol) and IP sec (Internet Protocol Security).

The service can even convert HTTP traffic to HTTPS traffic; rendering the network near impregnable. Additionally, the company provides advanced protection from mal-ware; to give increased security during browsing or chatting. Mal-ware protection is based on data retrieved from a cloud database holding over 3.5 million website domains known to or suspected of injecting mal-ware. This database is regularly updated.


Hotspot shield boasts of an extensive network of VPN servers in the U.S and, as such, it is one of the best service providers for accessing sites such as: Twitter, Facebook, Pandora, Gmail and Skype, among others. It is very useful in countries which censor most sites such as: China and the Middle East. There are also servers in UK and Australia.


For the paid Hotspot shield Elite service, users get ad free fast connections. These are ideal for: downloading content, streaming movies and using VOIP (Voice over Internet protocol) applications. There are no bandwidth restrictions and as such, one can use several programs such as you tube (watching movies), Pandora (listening to music) and live web casts without speed decrease on either.

Supported Browser

The service is compatible with popular browsers such as: Internet Explorer, Firefox, Opera, safari and Google chrome

Supported OS & Devices

A wide range of devices- inclusive of, but not limited to: smart phones, laptops, computers and tablets- can use this service. Services offered include proprietary applications such as VPN for MAC and VPN for WINDOWS (Windows 8, 7, Vista, XP). There are also android and iOS based apps for mobile devices.

Customer Support

Hotspot shield offers support using: Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ), Elite help desk, live chat and an expansive knowledge base. There are also: phone services, instructional videos and a blog. The FAQ and knowledge base are for those who need quick troubleshooting while live chat and the help desk are for more specific queries.


Hotspot shield VPN has the following plans:

  • An Elite Plan costs only $29.95 a year
  • A one moth subscription costs $4.99
  • A pay-as-you-go plan for this VPN service- which is valid for only a day- costs $0.5
  • A pay-as-you-go plan- which is valid for 20 days- costs $10

Payment for the service can be done through: Discover card, Visa, American Express, Master card, Credit card and PayPal. One can also use premium SMS mobile phone payment.

Free Trial

The service offers a 7 day free trial. Before subscribing to any of the plans, one can use the ad supported free VPN software.

Money Back Guarantee

A 30 day money back guarantee is included with all sign ups.


When installing, one is given the option of installing a hotspot shield toolbar. Anchorfree has the toolbar option switched off by default. During installation, a plug-in for internet explorer and Mozilla Firefox- for handling VPN activity on these browsers- is needed. The installation process installs 3 services: the routing, tray and monitoring service; three icons are thus created- on the desktop, in the system tray and on the top bar of the browsers in the machine-.

After installation, a green shield icon appears on the system tray and on top of the browser, showing active. The shield appears red when inactive. On clicking on the hotspot shield icon, a window opens showing status of the connection- protected or unprotected- together with information on the number of packets received and sent. One can click on the properties option to set up options such as whether or not to display the shield icon on the browser top bar, automatic start on booting, default language and what to do when the connection to a wireless network is unknown.


Anchor free hotspot shield secures web surfing, accesses censored websites, curbs identity theft, encrypts data transmission and guards against hackers. It, in some instances, speed up things for those with annoying slow wireless network. It is an invaluable service in today’s world where data security and privacy is vital. Mobile device users also save on data and money.