Bitdefender Vs Norton: The Only Comparison You’ll Ever Need

Today as we move a major portion of our lives from photos to videos to office work over the internet, it is extremely crucial that we have proper systems for protecting our data. Data thefts or any damage to our computer or network happens through malware, including Viruses, Trojans, and more. Also, these programs can damage your device, steal your data, or take control of your computer.

Installing a reliable antivirus software on our devices is essential. Usually, an antivirus works by downloading database files from it's cloud servers onto your system. Then it runs a scan to compare your system files with them for a match. If the files in your system match the virus definitions, the antivirus will quarantine or delete it. Also, many antivirus perform application behavioral checks in order to prevent probable attacks.

Bitdefender Vs Norton: Quick Summary

Click To Reveal (Spoiler Alert)

Parameters

Bitdefender

Norton

Product Variations

Features Offered

Protection against Malware

User-friendly Interface

Impact on System Resources

Customer Support

Pricing Schemes & Offers

Winner

Bitdefender

Score: 6/7


In this post, we will review the two most popular antivirus brands: Bitdefender Vs Norton. We dive deep into both of the products and study the features they have to offer. Also, we already know that it is always difficult to select the best between Bitdefender or Norton.

Make sure to read on to the end of the article to understand the best they have to offer and choose the one that best suits your needs.

Bitdefender Vs Norton: Comparison Parameters

  • Product Variations
  • Features offered
  • Protection against Malware
  • User-friendly interface
  • Impact on System Resources
  • Customer Support
  • Pricing Schemes & Offers

Before we move ahead towards the showdown, let us first look at the product packages they have to offer.

Product Variations

Bitdefender

Norton

  • Total Security
  • Internet Security
  • Antivirus Plus
  • Family Pack
  • Norton 360 with LifeLock Ultimate Plus
  • Norton 360 with LifeLock Select
  • Norton 360 Deluxe
  • Norton 360 Standard

* some regions have limited feature Norton Antivirus Plus

So with this, let us come to the actual comparison between Bitdefender Vs. Norton Antivirus.

Bitdefender Vs Norton: Features offered

Let's look at the features that each of these antivirus packages has to offer. Bitdefender also has a free antivirus package with the very basic specifications for Home users. However, for the sake of comparison, we will not be considering the Free antivirus option in this comparison.

We will start from the most basic paid versions and then gradually move to the most advanced versions.

Please note that all the features that an earlier package has been carried forward by default to the next expensive version.

Hence, we will not be repeating the same in our comparison table.

Bitdefender Antivirus Plus

Norton 360 Standard

Protects up to 10 Windows PCs

Protection for 1 Windows, Mac, Android and iOS

Multi-Layer Ransomware Protection

Real-time Threat Protection

Password Manager

Password Manager

Not Available

Smart Firewall

File Shredder

Not Available

Account Privacy

Dark Web Monitoring

Bitdefender Internet Security

Norton 360 Deluxe

Protects up to 10 Windows PCs

Protects up to 5 Windows, Mac, Android and iOS

Parental Control

Parental Control

Privacy Firewall

Smart Firewall

Camera & Microphone Monitor

PC SafeCam

Bitdefender Total Security

Norton 360 LifeLock Select

Protects up to 10 devices: Windows, Mac, Android and iOS

Protects up to 5 Windows, Mac, Android and iOS

Free VPN (200 MB/day/)

Secure VPN access for 5 devices

Device Optimizer (OneClick Optimizer)

Performance

Bitdefender Family Pack

Norton 360 LifeLock Ultimate Plus

Protects up to 10 devices: Windows, Mac, Android and iOS

Protection for unlimited Windows, Mac, Android and iOS (Restrictions apply)

Secure VPN (200 MB/day/)

Secure VPN access for unlimited devices with restrictions

Webcam Protection

PC SafeCam

Safe Online Banking

Bank & Credit Card Activity Alerts

You can find a detailed Bitdefender products comparison. If you wish to check Norton products in details, visit Norton official page.

Bitdefender

Product Package Verdict

With Norton Secure VPN, you get unlimited data which is included in all its plans. The VPN is not an optional add-on but is a mandatory paid inclusion.

Bitdefender VPN is only included as a Free add-on with all the products by default. You get 200 MB per day without the choice to select servers. If you wish you can purchase Bitdefender Premium VPN separately.

Hence, with Bitdefender you will have a choice to select any dedicated VPN services like Surfshark, Zenmate or CyberGhost. In our opinion, a dedicated VPN service is far advanced than the one included with the Antivirus. For example, Norton VPN does not support P2P traffic. It will not start unless you close your Torrent application. Hence, if you need P2P traffic, Norton VPN will disappoint you.

Though both of the antivirus packages are more or less similar in nature with their offerings, in comparison to the features above, Bitdefender seems to offer a better value proposition and choice than Norton.

Let us move to the next feature comparison.

Bitdefender Vs Norton: Protection against Malware

Bitdefender vs Norton: Malware Protection

When we compare these two top-performing antivirus brands, it is tough to decide the exact differences these two will have. However, although it is very tough for common people to test and judge an antivirus for performance, an organization named 'AV comparatives' & AV-Test consistently run different tests on global antivirus providers and publish reports with winners across different categories.

AV-Comparatives

When they ran tests for Norton 360 and Bitdefender products, Bitdefender performed slight better in the tests from July 2020 to Oct 2020 in the real-world protection test. According to its Malware Protection Test Sept 2020, Bitdefender outperformed Norton based on the number of false positives.

Bitdefender blocked 99.7% of threats in all the tests. Similarly, Norton was marginally behind with blocking 98.7% threats in this duration.

AV-TEST

According to the latest AV-Test.org results conducted in Oct 2020, Bitdefender and Norton both received 6 out of 6.

Hence, please note that both Bitdefender and Norton rival every year. They offer some of the best protection against malware on the internet.

However, defending your computer against ongoing threats is not a static job. The protection will evolve, so will the threats. Moreover, the AV-TEST Institute registers more than 350,000 new malware samples every single day.

Bitdefender

Protection Verdict

It means there will never be a consistent 'best' solution in the antivirus industry. But both Norton, as well as Bitdefender surely top the charts when it comes to malware protection. Bitdefender just has a slight edge at the point of writing this comparison. You can count on the numbers by the independent firms when buying a good antivirus solution.

Bitdefender Vs Norton: User-friendly interface

Bitdefender Vs Norton User Interface

Any software, however perfect it may be in providing a solution to the problem, it is of no use if it isn't user friendly. It is true, especially in the case of an antivirus. With so many different modules, settings, and options in an antivirus package, it is crucial to communicate with the user easily. Moreover, it should be easy to navigate and control for its intended user.

In this section, we check for the user-friendliness of Bitdefender vs. Norton. The user journey starts right from the installation phase and continues through correctly using the software.

Bitdefender

Bitdefender Interface

Bitdefender is fairly simple to install onto your computer in under 15 minutes. The installation process resembles a guided tour. Once installed, the software is pretty simple to use. The dashboard is the most commonly visited page on Bitdefender antivirus. It is clean and well organized to let you view and control the most important functions required.

The main page on the dashboard contains various options:

  • Quick Scan quickly scans your system for viruses and malware.
  • System Scan performs a comprehensive scan of the entire system.
  • Vulnerability Scan lets you check for vulnerabilities in your system.
  • Bitdefender VPN keeps your online activities safe from hackers by allowing you to browse the web anonymously and offers 200MB per day.
  • Bitdefender Safepay is a protected web browser designed to secure online transactions.

The dashboard also hosts 'quick actions' as shortcuts to some more utilized options. Most of the time, if the antivirus finds any issue on your computer, it will alert you through sidebar pop-ups.

One-click prompts in these notifications will resolve most of the issues. Only rarely will you go to the main dashboard for any additional settings required. But that doesn't mean you cannot access detailed settings. An advanced user still has access to an array of micro-settings that can allow the user to decide how the antivirus should perform according to his requirement.
All in all, Bitdefender is straightforward to use for general users and still has more advanced settings to offer for the experts.

Norton

Norton Interface

Similar to Bitdefender, Norton also has a very streamlined installation process. It also guides the user for a successful step by step installation.

Post-installation, you will be greeted with a dashboard. Norton's interface is a bit brighter and comparatively looks a little clean and sleek. The dashboard shows vital information. It confirms whether you're protected or your security is compromised. It also tells you the last time you scanned your system.

The main page on the dashboard contains various options.

  • The security tab lets you access a wide range of options to customize your antivirus settings.
  • Internet Security covers all the privacy-related features.
  • Backup, as the name suggests, helps you copy your important data on the cloud. It ensures that your vital data is safe in case of a security attack on your computer.
  • Performance tool has options that help to boost your computer's performance and operation through system tweaks.
  • My Norton is an online portal that allows users to manage all the subscribed devices online.

DRAW

Interface Verdict

After comparing both of the interfaces, we can safely conclude that both Bitdefender and Norton are pretty simple to use for a general user and provide suitable options for advanced users.

Bitdefender Vs Norton: Impact on System Resources

Bitdefender vs Norton: System Resource consumption

One of the most significant factors to consider when choosing an antivirus is its effect on your computer's regular performance. Antivirus is always 'ON' and running in the background to keep your system secure by running continuous scans. By doing this, it puts out a considerable strain on your system resources. However, the latest antivirus programs have considered this and improved a lot on this front.

If an antivirus is slowing down your system and you aren't able to use it the same way you could earlier, count it as a bad user experience.

Let us run through how Bitdefender & Norton pile up against each other in this avenue.

Bitdefender Antivirus

For the tests we are using Bitdefender Total Security. We then measure the resource consumption with ideal and manual scan scenario.

It is important to note that ideal load is the baseline resource consumption that the antivirus will always reserve from your system.

Bitdefender Total Security idle resource consumption

System Resource Usage: MAX CPU: 0.07% | MAX MEMORY: 610 MB

In general you will initiate a full system scan manually. Hence, these number give you a sense of the system conditions while the scan is running.

Bitdefender Total Security full scan resource usage

System Resource Usage: Max CPU: 47% | MAX MEMORY: 850 MB

Norton Antivirus

Compared to Bitdefender Total Security Norton 360 Deluxe consumes lower system resources when idle.

Norton 360 Deluxe idle resource consumption

System Resource Usage: Max CPU: 0.05% | MAX MEMORY: 300 MB

The Manual full system scan consumes more CPU than Bitdefender Total Security. It spiked up to 90% at times and remained around 75% for most of the time. However, the memory consumption is still 50% lower than that of Bitdefender.

Norton 360 Deluxe Full scan resource consumption

System Resource Usage: Max CPU: 90% | MAX MEMORY: 370 MB

AV-Test Performance Results for Bitdefender Vs Norton

AV test organization tests all the antivirus programs based on performance or impact on system resources. Also, they evaluate the loading speed of Websites, Startup applications.

In the latest AV-TEST organization performance test, Bitdefender scored 5.5 out of 6 metrics. It keeps fluctuating between 5.5 to 6 for Bitdefender. 5.5 means a significantly lower impact on your system resources.

Norton antivirus scored a perfect 6 out of 6 on the AV-Test institute. It means that it also has a very low strain on your system resources, causing no substantial lag for the user.

According to the latest AV-Comparatives Performance Test, Bitdefender received the ADVANCED+ protection award, while Norton received the ADVANCED award.

Norton

Performance Verdict

Norton performs slightly better than Bitdefender on system resources. With the current statistics you may feel lags or other issues with Norton while performing a full system scan. However, since Norton consumes lower Memory while on idle, it add to it's positive points.

Bitdefender Vs Norton: Customer Support

Bitdefender vs norton support comparison

Both advanced as well as basic users require support. This feature is something that can make or break the brand reputation of a company. Usually, in case of a virus or malware attack, which is beyond the user's understanding, you can contact the antivirus provider's support team. The customers expect an immediate and correct response to their query. Let us understand how these two providers stack up against each other on the customer support feature.

Bitdefender

Bitdefender has almost all of the channels that every type of customer would feel comfortable connecting with. You can contact support through:

  • Self-help portals like 'How to' videos, FAQ sections & community support blogs
  • Live Chat
  • Call support
  • Social Media Support over Facebook

Norton

Norton also has similar customer support channels established, and you can contact them through:

  • Video Tutorials, Forums, FAQ sections & community support blogs
  • Live Chat
  • Call support
  • Social Media Support over Facebook & Twitter

Bitdefender

Support Verdict

We observed that Bitdefender's customer support articles and websites are slightly easy to use and well organized against Norton's website. To sum up the customer support parameter, both Bitdefender & Norton are truly approachable for almost all the comfortable communication channels.

Bitdefender Vs Norton: Pricing

bitdefender cheaper than Norton

As we discussed in the first section, Bitdefender and Norton offer different protection packages as per individual needs and requirements. The price varies according to the package selected and the features these packages offer.
Let us take a closer look at the different features both of them offer.

Bitdefender

Product

Platform

Device Support

Price/Year*

Starts at

Total Security

PC, Mac, Android, iOS

Up to 10 devices

$44.99

Internet Security

PC Only

Up to 10 devices

$29.98

Antivirus Plus

PC Only

Up to 10 devices

$19.99

Family Pack

PC, Mac, Android, iOS

Up to 15 devices

$59.99

* For the latest price, refer to Bitdefender Website.

The cheapest package is the Antivirus Plus which supports Windows only. This plan supports up to ten Windows PCs. You can opt-in for a lower or higher number of PCs during checkout.

The mid-tier package, Internet Security, also supports only Windows. Apart from the regular virus protection features, you also get additional features such as a microphone & webcam protection, parental controls, and a network firewall included in the package.

Go for the above two packages if you plan to use them on windows only. Antivirus Plus is the lightest on system resources since it has limited features. Hence, a good choice for older Windows Pcs.

Total Security subscription package provides support for Windows, Android, iOS and Mac. To gain more insights on the features involved in this package, you can read our full Bitdefender Total Security review. Also, you can get rock-solid protection at the best price using Bitdefender coupons.

If you plan to continue with Bitdefender for the long term, you can further get assured discounts with 3-year subscriptions. Also, before you finalize on any package, it is always a good habit to use the 30 days Free trial and check your compatibility before the final purchase.

Norton

Product

Device Support

Price/Year*

Norton 360 with LifeLock Ultimate Plus

Unlimited devices

$259.99

Norton 360 with LifeLock Select

5 devices

$99.99

Norton 360 Deluxe

5 devices

$39.99

Norton 360 Standard

1 device

$34.99

* For the latest price, refer to Norton Website.

In the basic paid Norton Antivirus plan, you're limited to only one PC or Mac device, with standard malware protection, network firewall, password manager, and cloud backup service of 10GB.

Norton Antivirus's next two plans, 360 Deluxe & 360 LifeLock, offer better features and expanded device numbers up to 5 devices each. You get a cloud backup service of 50GB & 100GB with these plans. Basic identity theft and data theft protection are also bundled in these packages. Almost all of the features that a regular user requires are met with one of these two packages.

In order to take trial for the products, you will have to provide Norton with payment details. Norton provides the trial after you have placed an order. Once the trial period is over, they will charge you.

One of the most expensive plans, the Norton 360 with LifeLock Ultimate Plus, adds an array of advanced identity theft protection and data theft modules in the program. It gives a cloud back up service of 500GB. Moreover, you can install it across an unlimited number of devices with certain restrictions. You also get priority support when you choose this module.

With Norton, to get the best of the features, you will have to pay a lot higher than other players, especially Bitdefender.

Bitdefender

Pricing Verdict

We recommend Bitdefender if you want sufficient malware protection with decent added benefits & that gives you an overall value for money. We like the availability of choice for the selection of number of devices and years of protection.

However, if you have advanced online requirements and work with extremely sensitive data, Norton can be a good choice by paying that extra penny for the advanced features. You will feel the lack of flexible device plans with Norton.

As an extra note, We did not like Norton's auto-renewal policy. They do not allow you to turn off auto-renewal during placing the order. In order to turn it off, you have to contact their support.

The Conclusion: What to Buy? Bitdefender Vs Norton

What to buy between Bitdefender and Norton

Through all the comparison and the features that Bitdefender and Norton offer, they both stand neck to neck in the competitive antivirus world. Both of them have their pros & cons. But there is no denying that they deserve being on the top of the charts for the best antivirus software.

However, based on our elaborate comparison and tests conducted by the AV test and AV-Comparatives, Bitdefender has:

  • Fewer false positives in Malware Protection tests.
  • Advanced+ award in Malware protection, Performance, and Real-World Protection.
  • Simple products to choose with optional premium VPN.
  • Available at better pricing scheme and hence is budget friendly.

The choice is yours. If you wish to go with the features offered by Norton, then you can go with it.

In conclusion, considering the protection, features, and value for money, we will choose 'Bitdefender' as our best choice of antivirus.

Bitdefender

Winner Declared

Comparatively, there is nothing specifically wrong with Norton Antivirus. It is also one of the best antivirus solutions available out there in the market. Also, it has been in the top 5 antiviruses in the recent years. 

Simply put, Bitdefender offers more value for money and you get solid protection and advanced features for a comparatively lower price. In addition, they also offer flexible product plans. Hence, giving more choice to users while purchasing a security solution.

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