Will VPN Bypass Throttling?

You may have heard of the term ‘throttling’ before, but if you haven’t, then here’s a little context. Throttling is when an Internet Service Provider (or an ISP) delays its internet on purpose, based on what you’re trying to look at.

Video streaming sites like YouTube, Netflix, and so on do this when there are too many users on their sites at once. They claim that the reason for this is to reduce congestion, but ExpressVPN say that it’s more complicated than that.

internet throttle

With technology moving forward so quickly, some ISP’s can handle large amounts of traffic, but still throttle other content providers traffic. The reason for this could be because other providers content competes with their own content.

ExpressVPN say that the best way to bypass throttling is to use a VPN. Because of the way that VPN encrypts your own internet traffic, your service provider isn’t aware that you’re even using the video streaming site. This means that they would be unable to throttle your internet based on your actions, because they’re not aware of your actions.

Fossbytes refer to VPNs as “your trusty privacy companion” because of it’s encryption role. They agree with ExpressVPN in that when your traffic goes through VPN, your service provider doesn’t know what sites your visiting, to know to slow down internet. By this logic, then, using a VPN will not increase internet speed, however it will prevent the slowing down of your internet, so it is a positive step.

Commonly, you will find that VPN’s are blocked at school, work, some countries (China, Iran) and some public WiFi’s. This means that if you’re trying to stream videos at peak times in any of these places, then unfortunately, VPNs can’t be your trusty companion.

More recently, throttling has been banned in the United States, however Pixel Privacy claim that it is making a “big, unwelcome comeback in the near future”. This could mean that it might be a good time to get a VPN, to prevent your own internet suffering the burden of throttling if it were to make a major comeback. You should be aware though, although a VPN can stop your ISP from figuring out that you’re streaming or torrenting, it won’t stop throttling that takes place when you start to use too much of your data allowance. So, keep an eye on your data usage, and with a good VPN, you can avoid throttling.

Look out for the following features of a VPN to get the best service:
No-Logs Policy
Deep Packet Inspection Prevention
Kill Switch Data-Leak Protection
Shared IP Addresses
Multiple Protocols

If you’d like more information as to exactly what these features are, then there’s plenty of information available. This is the short version, for if you’re simply looking for a quick-fix or prevention tactic to keep your internet speeds from slowing down.

We recommend ExpressVPN, IPVanish, or Private Internet Access VPN, as some good VPN services that with bypass throttling when video streaming.

Will VPN Hide my Data Usage?

Using a VPN keeps your internet searches encrypted. VPN services are a great way to get around ISP throttling, and a way to watch US Netflix even if you’re not in the country. It keeps your data private. So, this poses a question for a lot of people, a sensible question, that makes logical sense: Can I use a VPN to hide my browsing and data usage, to get around data caps?

vpn data

Well, the simple answer is, no. Using a VPN will still contribute to your data usage, even though the content of the data is encrypted, it still has to flow through your internet provider before it reaches your VPN.

A surprising fact that a lot of people don’t know, is that VPN servers actually increase your data usage by 5-15%. This is down to the fact that encryption is used to protect the data. The process of encryption involves scrambling up the data to make it unidentifiable to anyone other than your computer and your VPN. This ‘scrambled’ file takes up more space than its unscrambled predecessor.

If you’re looking for some VPNs that use slightly less data than the others, then we would recommend the following:
1. OpenVPN
2. PPTP VPNs (Point to Point Tuneling Protocol)
3. L2TP (Layer 2 Tunneling Protocol)

Generally, if you use a lot of data and don’t want to get capped when you reach your limit, you should opt for a ‘soft’ cap plan from your internet provider. These are plans advertised as unlimited, whereby after you exceed a set cap (generally 20GB), your internet is slowed down rather than prohibited.

In certain situations, such as throttling video, then your VPN might dodge your data cap. If you have a soft data cap, VPN could prevent the slowing down of your internet speeds once you surpass the set limit, so it could protect torrenting.

Here’s an analogy to help create a better understanding of how VPNs work, and why they can’t bypass your data caps:

If you were to put 10 gifts in the post to your friend, and your friends letterbox could only fit in one at a time, then only one gift can be delivered each time. Using a ‘VPN’, essentially means that you have put each of those gifts in to a padlocked box that cannot be broken into. This means you’ve protected the contents from being seen, but the letterbox remains the same size.

So, there you have it, VPN’s are the saving grace for a lot; internet speed, private browsing, and torrenting. Nothing is perfect, and unfortunately this is something that most VPN services have not yet found a loophole for. Because of this, we would advise that any VPN services that do advertise an ability to bypass data caps, you investigate further. If they don’t check out, move on to a more well-established, named brand VPN service.

Maybe one day we’ll all have uncapped data, but just not today.