Surfshark is still a relatively young VPN compared to the most established players, and has never rested on it laurels. New features and improvements to the service have been added regularly, and recently it added antivirus to its wider security package, Surfshark One.
We’ve not had a chance to try out the antivirus protection yet, but already there’s another big announcement: Surfshark Nexus. This includes a few new features in the main VPN service and they’ll be available to all subscribers when they begin to roll out this year.
Nexus needs a bit of explaining, but it certainly looks to be a very good thing for existing Surfshark users, and another reason to choose this over
other VPN services.
Put simply, instead of connecting to one specific VPN server which then routes you to the website you want to visit, with Nexus you’re connecting to Surfshark’s entire network.
In the app, you’ll still pick a country or location so you’ll still be able to unblock specific websites and streaming services. But instead of the traditional VPN route from your device to one server and then to the final destination, your connection could be routed through various servers on the ‘Nexus network’ before leaving it via a server in your chosen location.
There are a few different benefits of this approach, which is unique among consumer VPN services.
Surfshark says Nexus will mean faster connection speeds, a more stable connection and increased privacy and security. The diagram below illustrates how Nexus works compared to a traditional VPN.
Essentially, instead of a single server between your device and ‘the internet’, connecting via Surfshark Nexus means the route could go via multiple severs, exiting the network via a server in the location you chose in the app. The company hasn’t said how much faster connections could be, though.
As part of Nexus, Surfshark is introducing a few new features including IP Rotator and IP Randomizer.
The first regularly changes your IP address (every five to 10 minutes), which makes it even harder for websites and companies to track you around the web. Unlike similar features offered by other VPN services – such as
AtlasVPN‘s SafeSwap servers – IP Rotator doesn’t disconnect the VPN connection each time the address is changed as the switching is all done within the network.
Plus, where others only offer this feature on a select number of servers in a few locations, you’ll get this benefit for all the locations that Surfshark covers.
IP Randomizer is similar but subtly different. It assigns you multiple IP addresses and assigns one of them every time you visit a different website or any other service online. Again, the benefit is the same: it’s much, much harder to track someone’s browsing habits when they have a different IP address on each website they visit.
The third feature is Dynamic MultiHop. Existing Surfshark users will already know MultiHop as a list of ‘double VPN’ servers. Currently, there are a little over a dozen options in the list which route your connection through two servers in different countries, such as Germany > UK and Canada > United States in order to provide another layer of privacy and security.
While some VPNs including Hide.me allow you to customise which two servers you use, Surfshark doesn’t. But with Nexus, that will all change and you will be able to choose any entry and exit location from Surfshark’s network, as well as another point in between those two.
The company says all three features should be available before the end of the year, but Dynamic MultiHop will be the last to appear, and IP Rotator the first.
“Since the very first days of Surfshark, we were on a mission to provide our users with the best and the most humanized VPN option on the market,” said Donatas Budvytis, Surfshark’s CTO. “Each traditional consumer VPN functions more like a list of separate virtual private servers and not a network. Knowing this, we put our minds and resources into creating a solution that would put N (network) into a VPN. By introducing Surfshark Nexus, we will be able to greatly improve users’ online privacy and revolutionize the consumer VPN industry.”
You can read our
full Surfshark review for details on other aspects of the VPN service.