Softonic review

Reliable VPN alternative

With the rise of the internet, it is not surprising that VPNs are growing in popularity. Nowadays, more and more security apps are being released, offering various features that aim to protect your digital data. TunnelBear is among those. It is a high-speed VPN that operates servers in more than 20 locations. It offers some of the best security features today, including high-end encryption and an automatic kill switch. This software comes with a limited free and two premium subscriptions. 

VPN for novices

TunnelBear aims to make VPN usage easy for everyone. And looking at its interface, they’ve certainly done that. The app is sleek and subtle, built around a central map of the world, displaying the company’s server locations. To connect to any of the servers, you only need to choose one from the menu above, switch the protection button.

TunnelBear didn’t have many servers to choose from. It only has 22 server locations. Also, it doesn’t have a location search box and lacks a list of servers with some basic information, such as load and ping time.

However, should you find a server that you trust, you can configure the app setting to connect or disconnect to that server automatically. Don’t worry about changing the server, as doing so is also simple. All you need to do is click on the location you want to tunnel to on the map, and the app will do the rest.

Among the popular VPNs today, TunnelBear is one of the easiest to use. It is recommended for beginners. A word of warning, though, installing the app takes ages to complete. More so, it does not work on devices running an older operating system.

Smart advanced features

While TunnelBear comes with limited servers, it does include some advanced features. Among those is the Trusted Networks, which is basically a whitelist of Wi-Fi networks that you trust. Another important feature is the Vigilant mode, which prevents data from slipping through your internet connection when your device gets disconnected.

There is also the GhostBear function, which avoids VPN blocking by disguising VPN traffics as normal HTTPS traffic. However, you should use this function sparingly as it reduces the app’s performance.

Strong security, lackluster speed

As mentioned, TunnelBear offers both free and premium subscriptions. However, the free version is only limited to 500 MB of bandwidth per month. To get unlimited data and enjoy other features, like multiple simultaneous connections, you need to pay for either the monthly or annual subscription. The annual subscription is advisable as it offers the overall best deal. It is also heavily discounted.

TunnelBear uses the industry standard, OpenVPN protocol, and the 256-bit AES encryption to ensure your privacy while you surf online. With this, all the digital data you have are safe from snoopers. Additionally, the app has a strict no-logging policy and is leak-free for your peace of mind.

However, while the app uses stronger encryption and higher security protocols, it lags when it comes to speed. Sure, it is not the worst. But they’re bad when you put it against reliable VPNs, like NordVPN and ExpressVPN. The app also cannot bypass geo-restrictions from streaming sites.

Protect your privacy

TunnelBear is a great choice if you just want something to protect your privacy while you browse. The app provides one of the strongest digital protection without complicated options and interfaces. You might suffer a bit on the speed site, and there is a limited choice of servers available. The bottom line, there is no disputing that it is very easy to use and provides solid security. However, due to its lackluster speed, this app cannot be a recommended go-to app for everyone.


  • Beginner-friendly
  • Strong security protocol
  • Allows torrenting and TOR
  • Smart advanced features


  • Lackluster speed
  • Limited servers available
  • No router installation
  • Does not work with Netflix and other streaming services

Also available in other platforms

Program available in other languages

User reviews about TunnelBear

  • Anonymous

    by Anonymous

    Beary happy customer!.
    Awesome app - does exactly what it's supposed to do. Cute, easy to use, bear-themed interface. Allows me to access my fav More

  • Anonymous

    by Anonymous

    Works OK but no tech support.
    No problems with speed or reliability but is annoying in Windows Vista as the program hasn't been digitally signed More


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Laws concerning the use of this software vary from country to country. We do not encourage or condone the use of this program if it is in violation of these laws. The regulation about the use of VPN services varies per country; If the Law of your country forbids or limits its usage, don’t download. Any unlawful behaviour of this software is not permitted. You are solely responsible for any use of the service.Softonic may receive a referral fee if you click or buy any of the products featured here.