NewsDemon is yet another premium Usenet service vying for your attention and indeed money. The company provides high-speed access to newsgroup servers right around the world, and it’s among the Usenet services with the highest completion and retention rates on the market.
There are some caveats in that there are soft caps in place on its unlimited plans. This means that if you download a certain amount of data volume, your account will be paused until there is a manual review of your account, which you will need to submit a request for.
There are no soft caps for the NewsDemon service any more. The soft cap stood at 40TB per month before its removal. Less than 0.00004% of its users ever hit this cap and the ones who did were normally abusing the terms of service by using the system for commercial purposes.
The provider also discontinued providing a free newsreader to its customers, although there are quite a few newsreader options out there that you can configure with your NewsDemon account.
Retention rates – the amount of days that posts are kept for on a provider’s servers – play an important role in the overall performance of Usenet services. NewsDemon doesn’t disappoint on this count, offering 4,209 days of binary retention and the same for text retention. That’s impressive, especially considering that many companies limit their retention capacity to much less than this.
In total, you get access to more than 107,000 newsgroups, which seems to be around the norm these days. Of course, some firms offer more, but this is a pretty sizeable selection. It’s also good to see that NewsDemon boasts a 99.9% completion rate, meaning that you’re unlikely to come across a situation where you can’t finish a download because a bit of data has been lost somewhere.
Previously, NewsDemon provided a free newsreader software called NewsRover, which was automatically configured with your account. This has since been discontinued, meaning you will need to find your own newsreader after signing up, then configure it with your NewsDemon account. Depending on what newsreader software you choose, you may need to spend some additional money to get fully up and running with your account.
Speed and security
As mentioned earlier, NewsDemon provides high-speed access to server farms in both the US and Europe. You will be connected to a server that is closest to you, so regardless of location, you should be able to max out your broadband connection. NewsDemon engineers constantly monitor services and requests too, helping to find and address outages and other issues as soon as possible.
As ever with a Usenet service, it’s always important to consider security and privacy. NewsDemon isn’t much different than the rest of the competition in that all accounts, with the exception of block accounts in which case you will have to pay more, come with 256-bit secure connections. The company also makes it clear that it won’t share user information with third-parties. It’s also good to see a free VPN service available (SlickVPN) with all subscription plans, adding a further layer of protection. Block accounts include the VPN access for your first 30 days.
Pricing and support
NewsDemon prides itself on a strong customer support operation. You are able to get help via email from specialists to address account issues and potential faults affecting performance. Email support is available seven days a week, 24 hours a day. The company also runs a blog where it posts deals and customer announcements, although it isn’t updated all that often. Still, it’s a handy way to find out about price and product changes.
Speaking of pricing, sadly, it’s a rather fragmented affair. In all, there are 25 different membership plans to choose from, offering different GB allotments, security options, and membership types.
The cheapest monthly option costs £2.30 ($3.00, €2.70), and for that, you get 50GB of access, but you can opt for unlimited if you’re willing to pay a bit more. Block accounts start at £3.12 ($4.00, AU$5.86), giving you 10GB of data.
All accounts come with 50 connections, unlimited speed, 24/7 support, free headers, free posting, header compression and a free VPN tool (available for the first 30 days only with block accounts). With the block plans, you can opt to set up a sharing agreement with other accounts. Also note that if you’re undecided about whether to sign up for the service, it’s possible to give it a whirl with a free 7 day trial with up to 15GB of access.
NewsDemon is the lowest price Omicron backbone site with access to full retention. $6/month is the stock price for unlimited access.
NewsDemon also offers an account "pause" feature that allows monthly subscribers to pause their billing and account access for up to three months in case of extended vacation, financial difficulties, or whatever reason they like. Users can simply click pause in the members area.
Additionally, Newsdemon also offers a price march guarantee as well as being able to work with bitcoin, iDeal, and SEPA, which most providers do not.
NewsDemon offers good performance in terms of speed, retention, and server locations, and heavy users should be advised that there no longer any caps in place on the unlimited plans. The free newsreader is also no longer included, although subscription plans do come with a free VPN.