Ed: Dashlane has announced it is partnering with Hotspot shield to provide premium and family users with access to one of the more popular VPNs as part of their Dashlane subscription. Please note that this offer is not available for free or essentials plans. In a statement to GadgetMasti Pro, they said: When we first researched a VPN in our Dashlane 6 release, we were excited to partner with Hotspot Shield (then by Anchor Free) to provide VPN service within our app. As our product evolved, we re-evaluated that relationship and found that our customers would have a better experience if they received VPN directly from Hotspot Shield rather than relying on using an API.
Dashlane is an advanced password management platform that comes with a free built-in VPN (opens in new tab). Like many security products, it offers this VPN through third-party technology, in this case Pango’s Hotspot Shield. In this review, we’ll analyze the VPN separately from the password manager feature, which in itself is among the best in the field. If such a platform is not what you need and you prefer just the VPN then you should check out one of the best VPN (opens in new tab) services that provide high quality standalone products.
The entire Dashlane platform can be purchased for $3.33/month ($39.99 billed annually) for an individual account or $4.99/month ($59.99 billed annually) for a family account, which is free. is cheap as you get both a password manager (opens in new tab) service and a VPN. The only subscription option available is the annual. Payments are made with PayPal or a credit/debit card. Dashlane does not limit the number of devices you can connect the VPN to at the same time.
There is also a free tier that does not come with the VPN service, but offers a 30-day free trial of the Premium account. Unfortunately, this free trial does not include a VPN. Premium users get a 30-day money-back guarantee if they’re not happy with their purchase for any reason.
If you think Dashlane’s password management platform isn’t right for you and you want to have a standalone VPN service, we recommend checking out NordVPN (opens in new tab)Cyber Ghost (opens in new tab)or Surfshark (opens in new tab), all robust platforms for all types of VPN users. However, if you want the ultimate VPN experience money can buy, ExpressVPN (opens in new tab) is the way to go.
While Hotspot Shield itself offers easy access to major streaming services such as Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Hulu, Disney+ and others that are often blocked in certain regions, Dashlane’s VPN service does not, as it is just the addition to the main platform – the password manager .
About the company
Dashlane is a Paris-based startup, but Pango, the company whose technology it uses to deliver VPN services to its users, is based in Silicon Valley, with offices in Ukraine and Russia. Pango’s Hotspot Shield has 3,200+ servers in over 80 countries, but we couldn’t get any information on how many of those servers are available to Dashlane’s customers because of, as we were told by customer support, “security purposes”. We only learned that these servers are located in 26 countries, including Mexico, Australia, Hong Kong, Russia, and Singapore.
Privacy and Encryption
Dashlane’s VPN can be used for peer-to-peer sharing, although port forwarding is not supported. The VPN protocols it implements depend on the platform you use it on, therefore OpenVPN (opens in new tab) is used on Windows and Android, IPSec on Mac, while Catapult Hydra – Pango’s proprietary protocol – is used on iOS. There are no additional features commonly seen in other services, such as split tunneling or kill switch.
The company claims that it does not keep a history of your browsing through the VPN, nor does it provide any identifiable information about its users to Pango. Pango, for its part, does not collect or store any personal information from Dashlane users, so there is no data to share with third parties. According to Dashlane, “the only information kept is technical information related to your VPN connection, to maintain performance and stability.”
We have no choice but to trust both providers, as neither has exposed their VPN platforms to independent auditors who would verify these claims and report on their findings.
Dashlane has apps that you can download and install on Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS devices. The Android app has been awarded 4.5 stars (out of 5) from 112,029 users. It has been downloaded over 1,000,000 times and was last updated on August 10, 2020. As for the iOS app, it has a slightly better score – 4.7 from as rated by 36,400 people. The app was last updated on August 7, 2020.
There’s a pretty decent amount of information available on Dashlane’s website about its platform and VPN, broken down into several thematic categories such as Install & Get Started, Account & Security, and Passwords & Data.
If you can’t find the answer you’re looking for, you can contact customer service directly. The fast and responsive customer service representatives are available via live chat or email.
Speed and experience
The Dashlane app can be easily downloaded from the website and installed in seconds. It’s also very user-friendly and easy to navigate, and the VPN can be activated in the app’s toolbar. It also switches between servers here. That said, you must first disconnect from the VPN server before you can switch to another one.
Once we enabled the VPN, we were amazed at how fast the download speeds were, at least for the server in Germany – 45 Mbps on a test connection of 70 Mbps, which is not often seen in the VPN industry. This was the server that was automatically chosen for us based on our current physical location. A server in the UK was slower but still good, at 21.30 Mbps.
Then we decided to see how the VPN would deal with more distant places, such as Mexico. Unfortunately, the results were much worse for this location – only 6.77 Mbps (we’ve seen worse though). We also tried a server in Australia, which had a similar result: 6.73 Mbps. Finally it was the turn of the US, with a usable 13.72 Mbps.
Like all other services of its kind, Dashlane’s VPN allows you to hide your identity on the Internet, increase your online privacy, and securely browse and torrent from an unsecured network. That’s as far as the offering goes though, as it doesn’t unblock popular VOD services and has no advanced features other than Pango’s proprietary and innovative Catapult Hydra protocol. This makes sense, as Dashlane is primarily a (very good) password manager and the VPN is just an additional feature that completes the platform. If you’d rather have the best standalone VPN service money can buy then one of the top names in the industry, like ExpressVPN (opens in new tab)is for you.