In a bid to support customers unable to afford its full VPN service, Atlas VPN has announced a switch to a ‘Pay-What-You-Want’ model - the first of its kind among VPN providers, according to the firm.
The premium Atlas VPN service (previously available for $9.99/mo or $49.99/year) can now be purchased for as little as $0.99 for the first month, but users are encouraged to pay whatever fee they believe reflects the service’s worth.
As before, a free version of Atlas VPN is also available, but offers users access to fewer servers and does not perform as well as the premium offering from a speed perspective.
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The decision to temporarily tweak the fee structure, according to a recent blog post, was motivated by concern that financial turbulence brought about by the pandemic might see some VPN users priced out of the market.
“The Atlas VPN team believes that no one should sacrifice secure browsing and risk having their information stolen due to uncertain events in the world,” reads the post.
Specifically, the firm cites the steep increase in unemployment rates witnessed in the US, which is at its highest average level (7.9%) since 2013 - and peaked at 14.7% in April.
In mid-June, meanwhile, search surrounding “pandemic unemployment assistance” reached the maximum value of 100 on Google Trends, which measures the popularity of specific search terms.
Note, however, that the Pay-What-You-Want offer is only available for the first month of service and also expires on August 14. Further, existing customers will only be able to claim the offer within 24 hours of receiving an alert via email.
Unfortunately, Atlas VPN wasn’t quite generous enough to implement the policy on a permanent basis.
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