In order for new VPN companies to compete with already-trusted VPN providers, they often offer free trial accounts for a limited time so that users can test out the service, and if they like it, they are more likely to recommend it to others. Thus, more people would get to discover the new VPN service provider.
In the case of FrootVPN, its initial strategy was to offer its services for free with no limitations, no restrictions and no expiration date. The company, however, admitted that it might start charging a fee if they can no longer handle the operating expenses and the means of expanding the said VPN service. So today, FrootVPN is already charging a small amount to those who are interested in using the VPN service.
FrootVPN Before It Became a Paid VPN Service
Upon launching, the service raised a few eyebrows over how the service was run. FrootVPN went as far as advertising the free VPN on The Pirate Bay (TPB) – the torrent giant even replaced its home page logo to promote the new VPN service. When TPB started advertising FrootVPN, VPN users, torrent downloaders and security experts weren’t really ecstatic about the said VPN service. FrootVPN is offering a completely free VPN service, which is why many doubt its reliability and the company’s true motives.
On Reddit for instance, many are questioning why anybody would offer a free service without getting anything in return? Why is FrootVPN being so generous? But the biggest question of all is why is TPB advertising a new VPN service that hasn’t proven its credibility yet?
Meanwhile, TorrentFreak contacted The Pirate Bay to inquire about the partnership with FrootVPN. According to TPB, FrootVPN is not a paid ad but rather a friendly promotion for some guys they know that are running the startup VPN service.
FrootVPN for their part told TorrentFreak that they are just a bunch of guys who support freedom of speech. Thanks to TPB, FrootVPN now has 100,000 users in less than a week.
“The word has spread rapidly and we thank all our promoters including TPB for supporting us. We got 100,000 users within a week, which we never expected. However, this does indicate that we will be forced to charge something for the service in order to maintain it,” FrootVPN says.
Unfortunately for those who are interested in using the service, the free trial phase is over. FrootVPN needed to start charging for its VPN services in order to accommodate their growing number of users. Early adopters are still able to use the VPN service for free though. But it is not known if early adopters are already given a grace period of time to upgrade to the paid version or if their use of the service is now very limited.
Here’s an overview of what FrootVPN is offering:
Availability and Compatibility
FrootVPN’s servers are located in Sweden and operate under Swedish law which it says offers high Internet privacy features for users’ safety. The Sweden server is intended for those who are still using the free version. For new subscribers, they can connect to the US server.
FrootVPN will work on almost any platform. The VPN service is compatible with Windows, Mac OSX, Linux, Android, iOS and even on wireless routers that support VPN.
FrootVPN supports OpenVPN, L2TP and PPTP with a 2048-bit encryption. There are also no limitations on bandwidth usage as the servers are said to be connected to a 180Gbit backbone network. Torrents and P2P downloading activities are also allowed.
From only having one way of contacting support via email to providing a live chat feature, FrootVPN sure has gone a long way already. Surprisingly, both email and live chat support platforms are reliable and responses were quick.
In terms of logging policy, FrootVPN said it does not keep any logs. The company promises truly anonymous service to ensure clients’ safety and privacy. No traffic logs, no IP addresses and no Internet habits are stored on the system.
FrootVPN’s plans and packages are cheaper compared to its competition. For a month of FrootVPN accesses, interested subscribers can purchase a VPN plan for only $4.00. Multi-month subscription terms are also available to avail certain discounts. Three month of FrootVPN plan costs $10.00 and a year of FrootVPN plan only costs $35.00. All plans and packages are subjected to a 30 day money back guarantee.
FrootVPN surely made headlines when it was advertised as a free VPN service on The Pirate Bay months ago. But with its sudden success, and with hundreds of thousands of users already using it, FrootVPN had to begin charging for its services to sustain its operations. If FrootVPN stay true to their goal of offering cheap but reliable VPN connections, the VPN service could beat odds and become a reputed and trusted VPN service provider.