AVG are big players in the antivirus game, owning their own AVG Free product and recently acquiring Avast. They have marketed it as your one-stop-shop for cleaning, optimising and protecting your PC. But, does it live up to its name? With so many products on the market being so similar, it can be confusing as to what they actually offer. Well, fear not, I have reviewed AVG’s antivirus protection software completely honestly and with no bias.
AVG – What is it?
This malware scanner promises to detect even the latest threats to your computer. By combining both Avast-and-AVG software into one completely robust program, it’s seriously robust. It can not only restore new life to a PC, by increasing disk space. But it also improves battery-life and increases performance.
Coming in two forms, AVG virus protection has paid and free versions. Obviously, these come with significant differences, with a lot more options available when paying. Although if you’re looking for something very-basic, then the free download may work for a while. They don’t offer a 30-day free trial like most companies in this industry, but you do get a grace period. So, if after signing up you’re not happy, you get your money back within 30-days.
The Ultimate way to go
As stated, the paid version of this software does offer a lot more functionality, as you would expect. The free option is not without its benefits, however. At a restricted level, it stops spyware, malware and viruses. It also is able to block unsafe links and downloads – including email attachments. Which a lot of free antivirus software’s do not. The free version of AVG malware scanner gives real-time security updates and scans for problems with it does just enough.
However, its ultimate offering does all of the above and more. It automatically blocks spam or phishing emails and helps you to avoid fake websites that will take payments from you. On top of this, it speeds up your computer by cleaning hidden clutter/files. Performs routine maintenance checks, find duplicate files and improves battery life. You could argue that the paid version of AVG antivirus software comes with everything except the kitchen sink. Plus, it comes at the reasonable price of $79.99 too.
The main dashboard of this program is fairly easy to understand, with bright green-icons showing you the important information. However, surprisingly, it is not fully interactive. In fact, almost nothing on there is clickable, which while not disruptive, can be annoying. Because of this, you have to search through different menus to find what you’re looking for. To find anything I discovered you have to use the menu button in the top-right corner.
Once you get acquainted with the layout, it becomes easier to use. However, it does feel a bit sloppy compared to other antivirus programs out there, such as Avast. If you’re not too fussed about the way, things look then this shouldn’t be a problem.
AVG virus protection runs on Windows 10, 8, 7, Vista and XP. But, be warned it can slow-down older systems considerable once installed. It works best with 7, 8.1, and 10. Although, that is likely due to the overall quality of the newer systems in comparison to the old ones.
AVG recommends that you have at least 512MB of RAM to install and run this software. Anything less and you will have problems when it comes to installing. However, this requirement is below the norm compared to other antivirus programs. Most today require you to have at least 1GB of RAM in place before using them. You are also required to have at least 1.5GB of free disk space. Although, this is a practically tiny amount of space to install, most others are 2.1GB and more. For you, this means you can get ultimate protection, even with lower capacity available on your drive.
Perhaps one of the best features of AVG’s malware scanner is the remote control feature. This tool allows you remotely scan and remove threats, as well as providing tune-ups to all PC’s which are included in this protection. This means that if a device gets lost or stolen, you can back up any data on it and remove it so that thieves can’t get hold of any personal information. This tool is only included in the ultimate version, so if it sounds like something you want, then you may need to consider paying for this virus protection.
Becoming an ultimate user of AVG means that you will also have to option to add an unlimited amount of computers to your protection plan. This is particularly helpful if you’re running a small business, or if you want to keep everyone under the same roof well protected. This is also where the remote control feature comes in handy, as you will be able to remotely scan any PC that is on the plan and keep them safe and protected without them having to worry about it.
Automatic cleaning and scanning
If you’ve chosen to go for the paid version of AVG virus protection, you will be pleased to find that this comes packaged with a built-in PC optimiser. This means that not only will your computer be protected from malware and spyware, but it will also run better and faster. It promises to find hidden clutter and free up space by getting rid of this, as well as notifying you of any duplicate files and images which have a tendency to take up valuable space. It also performs automatic maintenance checks which can find anything that is slowing your PC up and optimising the battery life, so it runs better.
One of the downsides of this software is that there is no ability to turn off the notifications. That means that if you’re using the computer a lot, you may constantly be interrupted by notifications about the scans being performed, threats found and information on what is being done. Unlike many other antivirus programs, AVG does not have the option to switch to gaming mode, meaning that if you use your computer a lot for gaming, then you may have to learn to live with these constant updates.
The full computer scan that AVG virus protection offers is far quicker than most of its competitors at 23 minutes on average. This is also true of the free version, so if you’re looking for a speedy solution to quickly scan your computer, then you may want to consider the free version. The free version also offers a deep scan, which really gets into the nitty-gritty of your computer and really looks through everything. This scan can take up to 45 minutes, which is far longer than any of the other software.
With the paid version, you get full access to AVG customer service team 24/7. If you plan to be using your computer out of office hours, it is worth considering what kind of support you’ll need should you run into trouble. The customer service team can be contacted by phone or via the site’s live chat option. If you decide to go for the free version, all you’ll have access to are the online forums and FAQ pages. If you think you know your way around the program or the problems you run into are fairly straightforward, then this may do, but if you want a more robust support team, then it may be worth paying.
AVG Antivirus Review – Final Thoughts
All in all, AVG virus protection offers a good all-around source of protection for your PC. The paid version means you can add as many devices to the plan as you want, meaning that everyone in one house can be covered under the same protection, without the need for additional costs.
The remote control feature also allows you to protect your whole family from one screen, so no need to keep accessing different PCs. The user interface is fairly basic, it does the job, but there’s nothing that makes it stand-out from competitors like Panda or Vipre. Its overall performance at detecting and eliminating threats is rated very highly. So, it’s worth trying if you want no-frills, complete protection for your PC.
Is AVG Ultimate for you? Give it a try, it’s money back guarantee is perfect if it doesn’t meet your needs.