AVG is a popular free antivirus software provider, a subsidiary of Avast (which also offers a free antivirus program). The free antivirus software is compatible with Windows, Mac, iOS and Android devices and features unlimited number of downloads if you upgrade to its paid version. It has performed well in independent tests with award recognition from AV Test and CNET Editors’ Rating.
- Free antivirus software with ability to upgrade to reasonably priced paid version for extra security
- Performed well in multiple independent tests judging detection rate on malware and spyware
- Features unlimited number of installs with paid version on variety of different devices (PC, Mac, iOS and Android)
- No extension for secure browser protection
- Scan is slower than typical antivirus software and bogs down computer performance
AVG Protects You From…
AVG provides general protection from viruses, malware and spyware on its free version (more information, below). Additional security measures are provided with the paid subscription, including defenses against online banking and shopping.
AVG stays on top of the latest cyber attacks by automatically updating the antivirus software. The company promises to not make you wait a year for the new release, instead updating the software on a regular basis, free of charge. And, if AVG introduces new features, it promises to also update those automatically.
AVG antivirus helps block unsafe links, downloads or email attachments. It also flags fake websites that want to collect personal information or payments from you.
AVG regularly scans your PC or Mac in order to assess the performance of the device. It helps keep the performance of the device at optimal levels.
Included in the paid version, AVG features an Enhanced Firewall for home network protection. The paid subscription also blocks spam and email scams, along with phishing attempts. Unlimited Antivirus PRO for Android is available with the paid version.
Devices/Operating Systems AVG Supports
AVG antivirus software is compatible with Windows, Mac, iOS and Android devices. Though the range of devices covers the entire spectrum, AVG no longer features browser protection. That is unfortunate because competitor Avira does feature browser support on Chrome and Firefox.
The minimum system requirements for AVG antivirus is an Intel Pentium 1.5 GHz or faster processor and at least 1200 MB of free hard disk space. AVG is compatible with Windows XP (32-bit only), Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8/8.1 and Windows 10. Windows 2000 and older operating systems are not supported.
Customer support is not available with the free version, though 24/7 phone and chat is included with a yearly subscription to AVG Internet Security (more information, below).
Installation & Performance
AVG features automatic downloads on both its free and paid version. The process is a little slower than some of the other antivirus software providers out there but still very reasonable. It works in three steps: 1) click the download button, 2) open the file to install the app and 3) follow the onscreen instructions.
The scan is slower than your typical scan from a paid subscription, but many consider that a small price to pay for an antivirus platform that doesn’t charge a cent. The performance may also lag, especially if you are using a lot of bandwidth at the same time, but again for a free antivirus software that is to be expected.
While AVG does feature an upgrade to a paid, yearly subscription the free version is by far more popular. The AVG Antivirus Free version actually packs a ton of punch considering you do not pay a cent.
It includes free scans to detect viruses, malware, spyware and other online threats. The free version also blocks unsafe links, downloads and email attachments. AVG provides on-demand scans to assist with poor PC performance and real time-security updates.
If that is not enough, users may upgrade to AVG Internet Security which retails at $80 per year, but is often discounted to lure you into the paid version. AVG Internet Security features unlimited downloads for all your home devices.
The paid subscription provides the same virus, malware and spyware defense as the free version along with Enhanced Firewall, online shopping and banking security, payment protection, anti-phishing measures and customer support.
AVG advertises a 30 day money back guarantee for the Internet Security suite if you are not fully satisfied with the purchase.
Similar to Avast and Avira, AVG is a free antivirus software platform that provides basic protection against malware and spyware. You will need to pay extra for personal security features like private online banking and shopping, as well as customer support. While it would be nice if AVG also protected your browser, for the most part it is a very good free antivirus software provider.