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8 of the best web hosting solutions for your personal webpage or business site — 11/30/2018

8 of the best web hosting solutions for your personal webpage or business site

Once the domain of the geeky or forward-thinking business owner, having your own website is now seen as an exciting and realistic prospect for many of us. You can use that website as a springboard for a burgeoning freelance career in your chosen field, to advertise homemade wares, to provide directions for your wedding, or simply to write down your thoughts and feelings as part of a blog. Having your own web space is wonderfully open ended like that, and a great way to get your name out there in whatever way you wish to be seen. 

That’s why there are hundreds of different web hosting companies out there, keen to grab your attention and provide a quicker way of setting you up than the last web hosting site. So, where do you begin with knowing what you need from your web hosting provider? Well, there are some key things to consider before we delve into suggestions of the best hosting companies out there. 

Your needs

First of all, what do you actually need? Do you know your way around website design or are you planning on hiring someone to develop a website for you? In which case, you don’t need to worry about web hosting packages that include a website builder. Alternatively, if you’re doing it all yourself and you’re a novice, a web hosting site that offers quick WordPress installations along with extensive customer support is important for you. 

Sharing resources

Shared web hosting is one cost effective way of launching your site because it has your site hosted alongside other people’s businesses or blogs. By sharing resources, you save money but it can also slow down the performance of your site. People are used to sites loading pretty much instantly nowadays and if your site is sluggish, it may put them off waiting around or clicking through links. Shared web hosting is fine if you’re running a personal blog, but a bad idea if you have a growing business to develop online. First impressions count.

Bandwidth 

Another thing to consider is bandwidth and storage constraints. If you’re launching a business site and expecting it to grow quickly, you want a package that offers a substantial amount of bandwidth. Most of the time, storage isn’t as big a concern though, unless you’re uploading many high resolution images to advertise your products. Don’t get enticed by a service that offers more than you could ever possibly need. It might be a false economy. 

Cost

Similarly, keep an eye on pricing. Many sites offer attractive introductory offers for the first year, but the price can ramp up significantly in later years. You can move your website over to a different web hosting company but this can be awkward to do if you’re not overly experienced with website development. Sometimes, it’s easier to stick with what you know, with one that doesn’t have any sneaky loopholes or caveats. 

Now that you’ve had time to think about what exactly you need from your web hosting plan, we’ve taken a look at some key scenarios and determined the best web hosting sites for every situation. 

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The Good

Unlimited storage • Varied WordPress package options • Curated plug-ins

The Bad

Limited tech support

The Bottom Line

It’s everything a WordPress blogger could want, right down to easy transfer options

TMDHosting

It’s everything a WordPress blogger could want, right down to easy transfer options.

  • Shared hosting:
    £2.31/month
  • Cloud sites:
    £4.65/month
  • VPS hosting:
    £15.61/month
  • Dedicated servers:
    £62.52/month
Wordpress is a massively flexible content management system that powers far more of the internet than you’d expect. That’s because it’s just as good for a quick and basic blog as it is for a complex business infrastructure. It’s the perfect foundation for any content creation ambitions you may have, so a dedicated WordPress hosting package is all the more convenient. 
TMDHosting is the best option out there for WordPress hosting. It offers three different packages for WordPress users, each of which match the shared web hosting package equivalents but with some neat WordPress friendly extras. 
It’s the little things that add up fast for TMDHosting. There’s live malware protection, for instance, circumventing one of the key issues for an unsecured WordPress build. 
Elsewhere, WordPress has been preconfigured to be as speedy as possible, with curated management plugins that have been adapted to make the process virtually hassle-free for you. It’s a well-designed system to ensure that novices can feel supported while those who know the ins and outs of WordPress don’t feel constrained. 
The only real issue here is that tech support is a little limited, depending on how you like to communicate your issues. Support via ticket or live chat is available 24/7 but if you want to call and speak to someone, the hours are limited to typical business hours. That’s not always convenient, but if a helping hand isn’t an essential for you, it’s fine.  

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The Good

Loads of storage • 25 databases • 500 email accounts • Free domain name

The Bad

Cluttered control panel • Not as cheap after a year

The Bottom Line

Easy of use and most of the features you need make 1&1 a great starter pack for the majority of users

1&1

A cheap and flexible solution for those who want a starter package for their business or blog.

  • Shared:
    £1.00/month
  • WordPress:
    £1.00/month
  • Virtual Private Server:
    £5.00/month
  • Dedicated Servers:
    £60.00/month
1&1 IONOS  is an ultra popular web hosting provider that routinely shows up on lists in both the US and Europe — and it’s not surprising how it got there. It’s well priced, offers plenty of features, and is pretty straight forward. When it comes to shared hosting, the Basic package starts at only £1 per month for a year with that price rising per month after the first year. For that tiny sum, you get 100GB of storage, one website, 25 databases, 500 email accounts, a free domain name, SSL certification, and 24/7 customer support. 
Pay a little more at £5 per month and everything switches to unlimited. In both cases, there’s automated installation options for popular software like WordPress and Joomla so, in theory, you’re only moments away from launching a simple blog or site setup. There’s access to the  1&1 IONOS  Website Builder too, which enables you to choose from a series of site templates to set up your own website that also includes social media fields and comment boxes. We’d be inclined to suggest you stick with something more WordPress-based if you’re new to website design though. It’s much more flexible. 
Whichever package you choose, 1&1 IONOS is a solid choice for anyone after a shared hosting package. It’s easy to use for a small business startup or as a personal blog launching pad. It’s flexible enough to grow alongside your business needs too, which is always good when looking at the long-term. 
The only issue here is that the 1&1 IONOS Control Panel is a little clunky and prone to sending you to outdated information. Fortunately, its 24/7 support is a lot more reliable. That reinforces its position as a solid starting place for a business website that needs a little guidance along the way.  

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The Good

Solid customer service • Great security features • Speedy performance

The Bad

Not the cheapest • Limited storage and bandwidth

The Bottom Line

SiteGround might not offer unlimited everything like some competitors, but it makes up for it with useful features

SiteGround

SiteGround might not offer unlimited everything like some competitors, but it makes up for it with useful features.

  • StartUp:
    £2.95/month
  • GrowBig:
    £4.95/month
  • GoGeek:
    £8.95/month
It’s easy to be overwhelmed by security needs but SiteGround goes some way to simply giving you everything you need without having to think about it. Much of that is thanks to its integration with CloudFlare, a content delivery network that provides better performance and security. It’s something you could do elsewhere but this way, you don’t have to think about it. It keeps your site and data safe while boosting the performance of your site.
Other security features include the SG Site Scanner that lets you know if your site is under attack, anti-spam tools like SpamAssassin and SpamExperts, IP address blacklists, Leech Protect to stop passwords being publicly posted, and SiteCheck to scan for malware. 
Convenient features like being able to choose where in the world your site is based is great when you want to tailor speed and performance according to your main user base. Uptime is solid, and tech support is available via tickets, live chat or telephone, all of which are available 24/7. 
The downside to SiteGround is its packages offer less storage and bandwidth than others, with the starter package costing £2.95 per month for a mere 10GB of webspace. However, if security is a big concern, you really can’t go wrong with SiteGround. It’s welcoming to webmasters who are new to the importance of security concerns, and takes some important worries off your mind.  

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The Good

Easy to use • Long money-back guarantee • Good for transferring between hosts

The Bad

More expensive than others

The Bottom Line

InMotion isn’t as cheap as some but it’s thoroughly robust and offers great customer support for the rare times you have an issue

InMotion Hosting

A robust service that offers a 90-day money back guarantee, extensive options, and great security features.

  • Business hosting:
    £3.12/month
  • VPS hosting:
    £15.63/month
  • Reseller hosting:
    £23.99/month
Most web hosting sites also offer reseller packages, so you can start out as a web host yourself while using someone else’s servers. InMotion is a solid all-around choice when it comes to all the packages it offers, but its reseller packages are particularly worthwhile to check out.
That’s partly because of its wealth of reseller options. If you tie yourself into a 2-year contract, you can start with the beginner package (known as R-1000S) for £10.94 a month. That offers 80 GB of storage, 800 GB of bandwidth, a free dedicated IP, and unlimited cPanels. There are six different reseller packages available so there’s plenty of flexibility depending on your ambitions. The ability to switch between packages is certainly a massive help when you’re working your way up within the field. 
Organisational tools are also included, such as free billing software and free domain reselling too, so you’re good to go with your business right from the get go. It’s not as cheap as some competitors but uptime is high and customer support is speedy and knowledgeable, while not being too intimidating. The 90-day money back guarantee is suitably reassuring too.
InMotion promises great uptime as well as comprehensive tech support, both phone and online based, so it’s a dependable name to use as part of your plan to become a reseller wizard. Just expect to pay a little more than other hosts, given its quality reputation.  

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The Good

Great shared and dedicated web hosting plans • Good customer service • High uptime

The Bad

Not the cheapest out there • No speedy WordPress import feature

The Bottom Line

HostGator does everything fairly well and if you just need a one stop solution, they can offer it

HostGator

A one-stop solution that will fit a variety of needs, plus there’s excellent customer support.

  • Hatchling plan:
    £2.16/month
  • Baby plan:
    £3.10/month
  • Business plan:
    £4.67/month
Whether you need shared hosting, cloud hosting, a WordPress plan, reseller account, dedicated hosting, or VPS, HostGator has something for you. The site would be intimidating if it wasn’t for the fact that HostGator loves to throw in dinosaur-based cuteness via its plan names alongside the cuddly looking dinosaur that adorns its logo. 
The most basic shared hosting plan starts at £2.16 per month with that price giving you unlimited storage, bandwidth, and email addresses. Things steadily ramp up depending on your needs with cloud hosting of a similar quality starting at £3.89, and a WordPress optimised solution at £4.67 per month. All those prices are dependent on you tying yourself into a three-year plan though, so be aware if you only have short term aims. 
For the more tech-minded user, a dedicated server starts at £93 per month. Reseller accounts start at £15.66 per month with VPS hosting priced the same. If you’ve kept up with pricing conventions, you’ll notice that HostGator isn’t the cheapest at everything it offers but it does remain highly competitive given its unlimited offerings. 
Where things get even more appealing for the service is with its wealth of features. It has its own website builder that produces attractive results, one stop automated installations of popular CMS platforms including Joomla and WordPress, and its file manager tool is far easier to use than FTP software. 
Perhaps most importantly for anyone considering taking the plunge, its uptime is almost flawless, and the same can be said for its customer service. It offers 24/7 telephone support as well as online web chat so you can easily get in touch if there’s a problem or you simply have a tricky question. 
It’s a strong, multifaceted effort for the dinosaur themed company, with its only failing being that it doesn’t offer a quick import function if you have an existing WordPress setup elsewhere. Also, it is a little cheeky during purchase, since prices are based upon signing up for three years. Additional services such as HostGator’s SiteLock monitoring service are also automatically ticked, so be aware when making a purchase. 
Despite that, if you just want something straightforward while you figure out what specific needs you require, HostGator is a really dependable starting place.  

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The Good

Fairly priced • Highly configurable • Speedy customer support

The Bad

Only has US data centres

The Bottom Line

Hostwinds is a powerful solution aimed at those who know exactly what they’re doing

Hostwinds

Speedy and powerful for business owners who know what they’re doing.

  • Hostwinds UK:
    £2.50/month
If your business is highly dependent on an internet presence, you need a dedicated hosting solution. Anything less than that just isn’t going to cut it since any downtime or slowdown will be detrimental to your operation. Hostwinds is a remarkably flexible dedicated hosting solution. 
That’s apparent right from the moment you check out their servers. It’s possible to outfit them extensively. There’s the choice of operating system, hard drive type and size, and RAM, as well as how many IP addresses you require and how much outbound bandwidth should be taken into consideration. That does mean it’s a little intimidating for those who are completely new to the dedicated hosting game, but it’s worth taking the time to figure out. 
Numerous options with Hostwinds just aren’t available elsewhere so it’s a huge boon if you have specific needs in mind. For example, if you just need a server, their price is competitive within the field.
You probably won’t be using it, but there’s Hostwinds’ Trendy Tools website builder thrown in too, as well as the option of automated installation of various other packages. If you’re spending this kind of money though, you should almost certainly already have a website design ready to upload anyhow. 
More importantly for a business, customer support is pretty much flawless and very quick to reply whether via an online chat or phone call. Each server is fully managed so you don’t have to worry about basic maintenance tasks either, with Hostwinds also monitoring your server for any problems along the way. 
The downside? Well, it depends on your customer base. Hostwinds’ data centres are solely based within America with expansion plans underway. That’s not going to be an issue for US-based businesses, but is something to consider if you’re further afield.  

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The Good

As technical as you want it to be • Expandable RAM and storage • Strong security features

The Bad

May be intimidating for some

The Bottom Line

Powerful and comprehensive, DreamHost is an ideal place for a VPS, providing you know exactly what you’re doing

DreamHost

DreamHost is powerful and comprehensive, making it the ideal place for a VPS.

  • Cloud:
    £3.00/month
  • Shared:
    £3.50/month
  • VPS:
    £10.75/month
  • WordPress:
    £12.50/month
  • Dedicated:
    £126.50/month
If you require a dedicated server but your budget doesn’t quite stretch that far, then a virtual server or VPS is a great alternative. DreamHost’s VPS packages start at £10.75 so they don’t cost much more than a regular hosting package. It’s a good price point for small business that want a little more control over their website and server. 
For £10.75 per month, you get 1GB RAM, 30GB storage, and unlimited bandwidth and hosted domains. It’s a fully managed service so there’s always someone keeping an eye on any potential problems that may arise. The basic package is a little low specs wise compared to some competitors, so you’re more likely to go with the upgraded package that doubles both RAM and storage, leaving your business with a little more breathing room. In all cases, security features are DreamHost’s strong point with extensive means in which to keep your data and business safe from any potential threats. 
Whatever the case, it’s easily possible to upgrade as you go along, making it ideal for a fast growing business. It’s fairly easy to set up too, providing you’re used to a minimalist control panel. In all of DreamHost’s packages, there’s a certain expectation that you know what you’re doing. That’s reflected in DreamHost’s lack of telephone support, although ticket based assistance is typically speedy. 
Still, if you’re keen for a VPS, odds are you do know exactly what you’re doing, and you have a website ready to import directly onto the package. Expert users will revel in the keenly priced and flexible VPS services.  

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The Good

Exceptional customer service • Great uptime • Powerful features

The Bad

Expensive • No shared hosting plans

The Bottom Line

If you’re willing to pay for high end customer service, as well as fantastic uptime, then Liquid Web Hosting is the solution for you

Liquid Web

100% network/power uptime guarantee, advanced features, and high specifications make this service a serious option for serious businesses.

  • Dedicated servers:
    £155.00/month
  • Cloud VPS:
    £46.00/month
  • Managed WordPress hosting:
    £77.00/month
Liquid Web Hosting skips being appealing for personal blogs or casual web users. Geared firmly with business users in mind, it’s not the most welcoming of sites to use but that interface belies some fantastic services. For a price.
Its dedicated servers start at £155 for a single processor and 16 GB of RAM with that price ramping up to £468 per month for a superior dual-core processor and 32 GB of RAM. Speed is the key here rather than finding a bargain, but that means it’s ideal for a business intent on a strong online presence. VPS servers are also available starting at £46 per month for 2 GB of RAM, 40 GB of storage and 5 TB of monthly data transfer, with the high-end option starting at £171 per month for 256 GB of RAM and 1.6 TB of storage. 
Managed WordPress hosting accounts are also available starting at £155 for 5 TB of monthly data transfers, 10 domains, and 100 GB of storage. Even Cloud hosting begins at £46 per month and works its way up to nearly £782 depending on your configuration. Introductory offers are available but for the first three months rather than a full year like with other web hosting sites. 
It’s all suitably heavyweight and expensive services, but that’s because Liquid Web Hosting clearly prides itself on high-end service. It offers extensive security features such as firewalls, VPNs, malware scanning and removal, and nightly backups. 
More importantly though, uptime is near flawless with a guarantee promising 100% uptime. Similarly, its tech support is phenomenal with speedy and thorough explanations to any problem you may come across. That’s available via phone, chat, or online ticket.  
All the best VPNs for the Amazon Fire TV Stick — 11/08/2018

All the best VPNs for the Amazon Fire TV Stick

We know you’re here to find out about the best VPNs for the Amazon Fire TV Stick, but first we should explain that the Fire TV Stick is, well, a little stick that you can plug into your HDTV to stream over 10,000 apps, games, and Alexa skills, including Prime Video, BBC iPlayer, ITV Hub, Netflix, and more. You can also use it to gain access to millions of websites like YouTube, Facebook, and Reddit.

As an added bonus, you can launch apps and control your content with the Alexa Voice Remote that comes included with your purchase. Just ask for the content you want and Alexa responds. It’s as easy as that

Amazon Prime members get access to even more content options. They get unlimited access to Prime Video, which features thousands of movies and TV episodes at no additional cost. Plus, Prime members can add over 50 premium channels such as Discovery and Eurosport Player. With all of that content, how could there possibly be a problem? Well, a lot of the shows and movies are just out of reach due to geo-blocking, meaning that certain programmes are only available from a particular location. This can be down to content licensing agreements and broadcast rights, and there doesn’t immediately seem to be anything you can do about it. Well friends, we have a solution to this annoying issue.

An effective way of getting around content blocking is to use a VPN. These services can hide your real location when you’re online, meaning you enjoy everything that the Amazon Fire Stick TV has to offer without any restrictions. 

What is a VPN?

Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) provide protection for your online information by creating a private network that hides your real IP address. All of your activity is untraceable and secure, because all of your online traffic passes through an encrypted tunnel. Nobody can view or access anything within the tunnel, meaning everything is protected against online threats like hackers, viruses, and malware.

What are the benefits of using a VPN?

VPNs are effective security tools that provide protection for your sensitive information. The online world can be a dangerous place, so it’s important to stay safe out there. Investing in a VPN is a quick and easy way of protecting your data and identity. VPNs might be designed for cybersecurity, but there is another reason you might consider subscribing to a service. These tools can be also be used to access blocked sites.

VPNs hide your real IP address and connect you to a server in another country, meaning you can watch all your favourite content from that location. There is so much content out there that can be accessed with the help of a VPN, and it all comes down to bypassing geo-restrictions. VPNs are kind of like keys to the online world, granting you access to more of the shows and films you love. 

What is the best VPN for the Fire TV Stick?

At this point you’re probably sold on the idea of using a VPN with your Fire TV Stick, but which VPN is the best option for you? We have tried to help you out by highlighting a selection of the best VPNs, including popular services like ExpressVPN and PureVPN.

There should be something for every user and every budget in this list, and all you need to do is pick a favourite. Consider all of these options and weigh them up against your set of preferences. The top choice should become clear.

These are the best VPNs for the Amazon Fire TV Stick in 2021.

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Image: expressvpn

The Good

Great speed for apps • Massive range of servers

The Bad

Limited simultaneous connections • Not the cheapest

The Bottom Line

With a really strong presence worldwide and great speeds, ExpressVPN is perfect for using the Fire Stick TV anywhere

ExpressVPN

A great spread of servers and it’s fast. What more do you need?

  • Monthly:
    £9.86/month
  • Six months:
    £7.60/month
  • One year:
    £6.33/month
ExpressVPN now operate across 94 countries so you should be able to find a speedy server wherever your content craving kicks in.
ExpressVPN is well known for its quality apps which include an Android app that works well with Amazon’s Fire TV Stick. The app recommends the location that gives you the best connection speed, taking the fuss out of navigating the VPN.
That’s all well and good but the apps don’t count for much if the speed drops off considerably when using the VPN. Well ExpressVPN delivers on that front too, with strong performance levels across the board. 
Bad news, there’s no free trial with ExpressVPN so you can’t try before you buy, but there is a 30-day money back guarantee so you aren’t stuck if you aren’t happy with the service — but we have a feeling you will be.

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Image: surfshark

The Good

Unlimited number of connections with one plan • Attractive interface • Advanced security features

The Bad

Pricey if you can’t make a commitment

The Bottom Line

One of the best VPNs for the Fire TV Stick, and much cheaper than most of the competition.

Surfshark VPN

Surfshark users get unlimited connections, a number of advanced features, and an attractive interface.

  • Monthly:
    £9.34/month
  • Six months:
    £4.68/month
  • Two years:
    £1.80/month
Surfshark offers plenty of advanced features and works well with the Amazon Fire TV Stick.
The fact that you can connect an unlimited number of devices under the same plan is also really useful if you have a lot of streaming devices in your home (or a lot of people who are likely to be streaming at the same time). 
Surfshark’s interface is really slick and attractive, which shouldn’t really matter but it does. This makes this VPN a strong option for beginners, as it shouldn’t overwhelm newbies.

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Image: cyberghost

The Good

Good value for lengthy subscriptions • Money-back guarantee • Live chat support

The Bad

The performance dips with some servers

The Bottom Line

An easy to use and aesthetic VPN that doesn’t place data caps on usage

CyberGhost VPN

CyberGhost is really easy to use, meaning you can get online and access your shows with the minimum of fuss.

  • Monthly:
    £10.01/month
  • Six months:
    £7.99/month
  • One year:
    £4.04/month
  • 18 months:
    £2.40/month
CyberGhost hosts 1300 servers in 90 locations across 58 different countries, making it a serious option if you are looking to keep up to speed with your favourite shows on the move. Whether you travel for business or for pleasure, CyberGhost can keep you and your content connected.
CyberGhost, like some other networks on this list, doesn’t place any restrictions on your browsing habits, meaning there is no data caps and no throttling with this service. That means you can watch to your heart’s content, with no nagging fear that your stream will be cut. Nobody wants that when they are 10 episodes deep into a true crime documentary, and you absolutely must know who was guilty. If you sign up to CyberGhost you’ll benefit from unlimited traffic and bandwidth for the entirety of your contract. So if you like to binge, CyberGhost is a valid option.
CyberGhost is one of the best VPNs if you are using the Fire Stick TV because it is able to combine usability, a strong privacy policy, and a host of features that makes accessing movies and apps as easy as possible. CyberGhost does what a VPN should, without overcomplicating things, and that’s all you can ask for really.

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Image: nordvpn

The Good

Security is clearly key • Speed is strong • Good geographical spread of servers

The Bad

There are cheaper options

The Bottom Line

There are cheaper options and probably faster ones too, but NordVPN prioritises online security and that is good to see.

NordVPN

NordVPN is one of the strongest in terms of protection, and should therefore always be a consideration.

  • Monthly:
    £9.68/month
  • One year:
    £5.66/month
  • Two years:
    £4.04/month
NordVPN has over 5100 servers in 62 countries all around the world, so it’s therefore able to supply a connection that isn’t too heavily impacted by reductions in speed. This means you should be able to watch uninterrupted wherever you may be. 
What helps NordVPN to stand out from the crowd is its security profile, with a selection of offerings that boost protection. Traffic passes through two separate VPN servers, you get the option of a dedicated IP, and NordVPN operates a “no logs” policy, meaning your data should be secure. As much as it’s great to make use of the Amazon Fire Stick TV all around the globe, it’s a big bonus to know that your online activity is secure while you watch your favourites.
Monthly billing with NordVPN can be on the pricier side of things, but if you commit for longer, you’ll get much better value for money, and a deal that stands up to the competition.

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Image: purevpn

The Good

Strong network of servers • Dedicated IP

The Bad

Not the absolute fastest

The Bottom Line

Not the fastest service but a solid all-around option for those that want a VPN without any major weaknesses that would get in the way of your movie marathon

PureVPN

PureVPN is a strong option with a diverse selection of servers that should appeal to those that travel far and wide.

  • Monthly:
    £8.33/month
  • One-year:
    £2/month
When looking for a VPN that will keep you connected to all the content that the Fire Stick potentially provides, Pure VPN ticks an awful lot of boxes. 
PureVPN has a strong network of geographically diverse servers, a dedicated IP, and a strong privacy policy. So the key message is that this VPN boasts an outstanding network of international servers so you can keep watching your favourite series wherever you may be. Ideal for those that get around the globe.
It isn’t all perfect. PureVPN is not the fastest VPN out there, but it is faster than most, and is definitely fast enough for most users to stay connected and enjoy the Fire Stick content buffer-free.
Overall, PureVPN is a serious option for anyone wanting to enjoy all of Prime Video, BBC iPlayer, ITV Hub, and Netflix, without being blocked. It’s one of the best VPNs thanks to its mix of competitive performance, polished design, and diverse server locations.

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