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Norton vs Avast vs McAfee [2022]

When shopping for the best and most reliable internet security for your devices and privacy, there’s an abundance of efficient and effective antivirus suites available in the market.

The importance of antivirus software cannot be overemphasized, especially if you connect your PC, Mac, or smartphone to the internet. As it stands today, there’s a high rate of internet users, either through mobile or web, more than in the last five years. 

Norton vs Avast vs McAfee – Which is Better?

Although cyber security and antivirus software have pros and cons, the benefits far outweigh the adverse effects. All antivirus suites come with various features and tools to protect your data and devices from cyber threats. These tools and features may include a password manager, a virtual private network (VPN), parental control, identity protection and more. 

Regardless of your preferred choice, a good and quality antivirus program should effectively identify, prevent, detect, and neutralize viruses, malware, spyware, and other related threats.

Having an antivirus, whether free or paid, assures you of safety to shopping online, open or send an email, download files and more without worrying about the safety of your information and devices.

This piece will juxtapose and analyze the three of the most reliable and well-known global antivirus security tools among Canadian internet users. These are Norton, Avast, and McAfee. 

Norton Lifelock

Computer security products from Norton are some of the best and most sought out among internet users. Norton is an antivirus, antimalware, and internet security software that uses signatures and heuristics to detect viruses.

It offers 100 percent protection against viruses, malware, spamming, phishing, and other cyber threats. 

As technology and cyber threats evolve, Norton Lifelock also emerges with technological solutions to keep cyberspace safe. From its 2021 online survey report of 10,030 adults, there were about ten victims of online cybercrime per second.

Norton, therefore, strives to eliminate cyber-related threats and protect its consumers across all devices. Norton’s compatibility with PC, Mac, Linux, and mobile devices makes it an ideal solution for online and offline security technology.

Norton Products

  • Norton antivirus plus
  • Norton 360 standard
  • Norton 360 deluxe
  • Norton360 premium
  • Norton360 for gamers
  • Norton Secure VPN
  • Norton family
  • Norton mobile security for iOS
  • Norton mobile security for Android
  • Norton utilities premium
  • Norton utilities ultimate
  • Norton small business

Norton Product Features 

  • Norton antivirus
  • Virus removal
  • Malware protection
  • Cloud backup
  • Safe web
  • Safe search
  • Password manager
  • Secure VPN
  • Parental control
  • Smart firewall
  • Dark web monitoring


If you require antivirus or antimalware software for your computer or smartphone, Avast is one of the best products to consider. It provides a high level of security and real-time antimalware protection against new and existing cyber threats.

Whether you’re online or offline, you can rest assured of adequate coverage on your computer and other devices. Avast detects and eliminates viruses, malware, spyware, outdated apps, and malicious programs. 

Apart from its priced products, the software security company also offers free-to-use antivirus products with a complete suite of protection features. Avast is compatible with PC, Mac, iOS, and Android devices to ensure your device’s high performance.

Avast Products – Personal and Business

  • Avast free antivirus
  • Avast premium security
  • Avast one
  • Avast Secureline VPN
  • Auto track
  • Secure browser
  • Breach Guard
  • Driver updates
  • Cleaning premium
  • Battery saver
  • Small office protection
  • Mobile security
  • Avast smart life
  • Threat intelligence
  • VPN

Avast Product Features

  • Avast free antivirus
  • Device cleanup
  • Ransomware protection
  • Antiphishing
  • Safe banking
  • Safe shopping
  • Secure VPN
  • PC Optimiser
  • Smart scan
  • Avast premium security
  • Business antivirus


McAfee is an award-winning global antivirus that secures your devices against viruses, malware, spyware, phishing, and other cyber threats. It protects your data, privacy, and devices both offline and online.

McAfee antivirus offers a full suite of security that keeps your computer and smartphones safe from viruses, malware, spyware, Trojans, and other online threats. The antivirus offers online and offline protection for PC, Mac, Android and iOS devices.

McAfee Products

  • McAfee total protection 
  • McAfee identity protection service
  • McAfee web advisor
  • McAfee techmaster concierge
  • McAfee virus removal service

McAfee Product Features

  • McAfee antivirus
  • Parental controls
  • Firewall
  • Malware
  • VPN
  • Web protection
  • Password manager
  • File encryption
  • Identity theft protection 
  • McAfee mobile security
  • McAfee total protection
  • Darkweb monitoring

Norton Antivirus vs Avast Antivirus vs McAfee Antivirus

Generally, most internet users tend to lean towards an antivirus solution for their cyber security issues.

Regardless of the tech device you use, such as PC, Mac, or smartphone, you cannot shy away from the threat posed by cybercriminals or hackers. These threats include viruses, malware, spyware, ransomware, and other cyber threats.

As a result, it’s essential to get high-quality, comprehensive and reliable security software for your online and offline activities.

While there are several options of antivirus software available, some antivirus products stand out from the rest. Norton, Avast, and McAfee are leaders among cyber security and antivirus products.

But which of these products has the best features, protection, performance, and ease of use?

Here’s an unbiased and comprehensive comparison of Norton vs Avast vs McAfee antivirus:

Free VersionNoYesYes
Device CompatibilityWindows, Mac,
Android, and iOS
Windows, Mac,
Linux, Android, and iOS
Windows, Mac,
Android, and iOS
Lowest PriceC$19.99C$49.99C$34.99
Ease of UseYesYesYes

Pricing Overview

While the affordability of an antivirus product is essential, it’s also important to consider what value the user stands to benefit from each package. Here are the pricing plans for the featured antivirus.

Norton, Avast, and McAfee have several antivirus plans for Canadian users, including comprehensive plans, device security plans, and online privacy. Here are some of the plans and prices.


PlansPrice per yearCoverage
Norton antivirus plusC$19.991 Device
Norton 360 standardC$29.991 Device
Norton 360 deluxeC$39.995 Devices
Norton 360 premiumC$49.9910 Devices
Norton mobile securityC$14.991 Device


ProductPrice per yearCoverage
Avast premium security (PC and Mac)C$49.991 Device
Avast premium (Android and iOS)C$59.9910 Devices
Avast on individualC$59.885 Devices
Avast one familyC$83.8830 Devices
Avast one essentialFreeAll Devices


ProductPrice per yearCoverage
McAfee single deviceC$34.991 Device
McAfee individual/couplesC$39.995 Devices
McAfee familyC$44.9910 Devices


Usually, a higher price means more features for your devices. Norton 360 and McAfee offer a 30-day free trial. Also, Avast offers an entirely free version on all devices. It’s also important to note that these prices are for first-year subscriptions. Prices may tend to go higher at renewal.

Overall, Norton has a better pricing plan. Canadian antivirus users can conveniently get the Norton antivirus plus for C$19.99 per year (C$59.99 upon renewal). When comparing the pricing plan for coverage on five devices, Norton 36o Deluxe has C$39.99; Avast One Individual plan has C$59.88, while McAfee Individual/Couples has C$39.99. 

As it stands, both Norton and McAfee have a tie in affordability. However, Norton has a more robust overall pricing structure than its competitors.

Free Version and Trial Versions

Before committing to an antivirus program, it’s good to have a glimpse of what it promises to offer you. As a result, all our competing antivirus software allows users to test the products before any long-term commitment. While this varies in features, there’s also a disparity in the length/duration of the free and trial period.

Avast antivirus provides a free version of its antivirus program, which works on all PC, Mac, and Android devices. The Avast free version (Avast One Essential) works for online and offline protection but with limited features, including basic antimalware, antivirus, firewall, secret VPN, password manager, etc.

On the other hand, Norton and McAfee offer a 30 day free trial on their antivirus programs. Norton 360 30-day free trial offers comprehensive device security such as antivirus, VPN, online privacy, password manager, antispyware, and more. You can get this free trial on any Norton 360 package with complete features and protection on up to ten devices.

McAfee’s total protection 30 days free trial gives you protection on up to ten devices, including Windows, MacOS, Android, and iOS. The free trial version comes with complete security features to scan, block, and eliminate viruses, ransomware, malware, spyware, and other security threats. This free trial version comes with a password manager, McAfee shredder, home network security, antivirus, and more.


Norton and McAfee antivirus programs have better options and comprehensive security features in the free trial versions. Unlike Avast free version that offers basic protection, you can get premium options and security on up to 10 devices within 30 days of using either Norton 360 or McAfee antivirus programs. As a result, both Norton and McAfee have a tie in this category.

System Compatibility

Regardless of the device you use, you’ll need to have complete protection on your computer or smartphone. All our featured antivirus programs are compatible with Windows, MacOS, Android, and iOS devices.

The three antivirus software – Norton, Avast, and McAfee – offer protection against all viruses, malware, and other cyber threats.


The three products have high compatibility ratings with Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS devices.

Malware Protection

It’s not enough for an antivirus program to detect a virus; any antivirus should be able to do that – that is the essence of it being called an antivirus.

Therefore, high-quality antivirus software should detect, block, and eliminate a virus threat conveniently. But, how many antivirus programs can identify and eliminate a malware threat on a device?

The three featured antivirus programs – Norton, Avast, and McAfee- have been tested and adjudged to have malware protection features.

However, we can notice a slight difference in real-time antimalware and anti-spyware tests. According to the German AV-TEST Independent IT-Security Institute report of July 2021, all three products are certified antimalware for Android, MacOS, and Windows devices.


Though it could be difficult to pick a winner in this category, each product slightly outshines one another. This is evident in the number of false warnings on legitimate apps. Overall we can adjudge this category to be a tie.

System Performance

System performance has to do with the impact of the antivirus program on the overall performance of your PC, Mac, or smartphone.

Given that it’s essential to have a good antivirus on your device, such a security program shouldn’t hurt your device speed and performance in daily usage.

From AV-TEST product certification of June 2021, Norton has 6.0/6.0, Avast has 6.0/6.0, while McAfee has 5.5/6.0.


From the above analysis, AV-TEST rates performance on a scale of 6.0, but only McAfee has a lower impact on system performance. McAfee has an overall hedge over its competitors.

A high impact of 6.0 can affect the device’s speed and response to the opening of other programs. McAfee has a lower impact on the usability of the computer or smartphone to give users a better result.

User Friendliness

Norton, Avast, and McAfee have a user-friendly interface on the web and mobile. The signup process for each of these antivirus programs is straightforward and transparent. Similarly, downloading and installing any of these products is easy and simple to use. They all have desktop and mobile apps with exciting features and interfaces.


All three featured antivirus programs have good user-friendly platforms. The only hedge that Norton has over others is the transparency in its pricing structure. Norton has detailed information to let users know that the displayed price is only valid for a one-year subscription, while the price will increase at renewal.

Overall Features

Norton, Avast, and McAfee all offer comprehensive and all-inclusive security features to their users. Depending on the plan you choose, you can get a high level of protection on your devices, both online and offline. As earlier noted, the three antivirus programs are compatible with Windows, MacOS, Android, and iOS devices.

The product features are some of the factors that distinguish one antivirus from the other. While some antivirus products offer premium protection on their basic plans, others provide the best protection to users only on their highest package.

The featured antivirus programs have essential features, including antimalware, firewall, and privacy protection. Here are some of the distinguishing features between Norton, Avast, and McAfee:

Antivirus (virus scan)YesYesYes
Malware protectionYesYesYes
Virtual Private Network (VPN)YesYesYes
Parental controlYesXYes
Password managerYesXYes
Cloud backupYesXX
Secure browserYesYesYes
Dark web monitoringYesXYes
File shredderXXYes
Email protectionYesYesYes

Customer Support

As part of the usability features, users and customers of any reliable platform should get help whenever they’re in need.

To ensure customers satisfaction, most organizations take responsibility for providing 24/7 support via different channels, including email, phone, or FAQs.

You may not necessarily need to speak with a customer care agent if you can find answers on your provider’s platform, such as in the blog or Frequently Asked Questions section.

Norton antivirus provides detailed support services to users on its platform, including ‘How To’ articles on various subjects, including virus removal, subscription renewal, and more.

The Norton antivirus program users can also get support via telephone, live chat, and social media, including Norton’s Facebook page, Twitter, and YouTube channel.

Avast offers multiple channels for users to get help on its platform, including customer support and business support. The Avast blog is equipped with expert articles and tips on various related subjects. Customer support is offered via email, telephone, social media, and online feedback form.

On the other hand, McAfee provides a comprehensive FAQs section with preset answers on various topics, including account updates, auto-renewals, password and account management, and more.

The McAfee antivirus program users can also contact the support desk via telephone, social media, or online feedback/live support.


All three featured antivirus programs offer superb customer support to users on their platforms.

Depending on your preference and device protection requirement, any of the above-reviewed antivirus programs – Norton, Avast, or McAfee – is a good pick.

While these antivirus programs protect users from third-party interference, certain features outlined in this piece make one outshine others.

From the comparison, Norton and McAfee had the closest rivalry in some of the outlined features. However, choosing the best of the three antivirus software is a matter of your choice, as each of the three device security programs offers high quality, satisfactory, and reliable protection across Windows, MacOS, Android, and iOS devices.

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