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Windows Defender Vs Avast: Who Wins and Why?

The world is crowded with loads of Antivirus software and therefore, it can be a lot of work to make an informed decision for the best-fit antivirus for the data protection of their highly valuable (or sensitive) information residing on their system (devices). After all, there are dozens of choices - fortunately for you we're here with this epic article on Windows Defender vs Avast. We also did a separate - 'Is Avast antivirus good for Windows users?'review.

A little mistake can lead to an enormous digital disaster because, as a beginner, you may not have knowledge about the viruses or how they work as a knowledgeable person (an expert) does. And, believe us, your tiny mistake (which we believe is a blunder if committed) can make you compromise on data and security breaches, digital attack like spyware, malware, ransomware, and others, which will be a huge loss for you.

Though it may seem to you that all of the antiviruses are the same, they’re not as you may think they are – they’re worlds apart with regard to the services (features) they offer, the real-time protection they provide you with, and the impact they put on the operating systems of yours. With that in mind, you will need data-driven research to decide on the best antivirus to meet your needs without having to break the bank. That’s why we’ve already done a deep research for you on the ins and outs of these antivirus / security  programs as far as this battle matters.

Freemium Vs Paid Options

First, you also need to understand the difference between a freeware (freemium software) and a trial version. Well, the free version is the software offered by the company to meet your particular need and you can make use of it without having to pay a penny – this free program can be used completely free for good . As far as the trial version is considered, it is also free, but forever – i.e. you can only use it for 30 days (or other given time).  Once you have used it for 30 days, you will have to pay to use it further and if you don’t do that, the services will be terminated.

The Risk of Malware

Malware attacks, in this day and age, are so common that statistics state that more than 10.52 billion malware attacks were spread by the hackers in 2018. And, this is not all – an increase of 117% for ransomware was noticed in the same year which put an immense number of systems at risk and more and more people became the victims of these attacks.

Investing in quality antivirus programs actually cuts your likelihood of getting hacked by 98 percent. “Quality” is fairly subjective so we will be going over the nuts and bolts of Avast and Windows Defender (a.k.a. Windows Security Center) so that you could make your mind up for the ultimate antivirus selection.

Our recommendation: McAfee

With so many antivirus products in the market, there is none that’s like McAfee. With over 18.9 billion devices protected on a consistent basis, McAfee’s ability to deal with malware attacks come unmatched! McAfee has a dedicated database that is adept to deal with all sorts of virus attacks whether they may be online or offline. To browse their programs, check out their programs here!

However, for more comparisons we have the following:

Avast vs Windows Defender: A Short Comparison

We’ll go over each category to get our head around the score that each software scores and then we will announce the “Winner” on the basis of this concise antivirus comparison.

  1. Features

The very first thing that a customer goes after is “Features” and if the software does not offer much of the substantial characteristics, it won’t have the attention of the customer.

Comparing Windows Defender and Avast, we realized that it’s “Avast” that offers more and advanced security features with its password management system, network security, and more.

Winner: Avast

Avast Internet Security logo

  1. Protection

Avast definitely wins out here over the Windows Defender – you can see below in the AV test how they compare. Its great protection from ransomware, malware, spyware, viruses, and other digital threats. Windows Defender offers some protection, but not as much as Avast and it takes it longer to update its database.

Winner: Avast

Avast Internet Security logo

  1. Performance

Does the antivirus have a significant impact on system performance? If so, that’s a major issue as you don’t want to be bothered by the antivirus programs as you use your device.

A good antivirus should still allow your computer to have top-notch system performance while it is running. In this category, again, Avast has been the winner since Windows Defender can slow down your Windows Operating system quite a bit.

Winner: Avast

Avast Internet Security logo

  1. Usability

Which software is more user-friendly? Is it Avast or Windows Defender? While the user-interface of Windows Defender (WD) might need a little bit of improvement, when it comes to Avast, its UI is as good as it gets while Windows Defender seems a bit dated and clunky.

Winner: Avast

Avast Internet Security logo

  1. Pricing

Which antivirus program is less expensive? Who doesn’t consider pricing as a factor?  Windows Defender is a freeware and Avast is a paid software so WD gets the nod here by default. It’s hard to beat free.

Winner: Windows Defender

Windows Defender logo

Short Conclusion!

We know that Windows Defender is a good start to be familiar with the basic understanding of antivirus since it costs you nothing, its protection doesn’t even compare to that of Avast’s. Advanced features matter and you will only get them with paid options like Avast. Avast won  almost all of the rounds of the brief comparison we’ve just wrapped up, and Avast wins by a landslide.

Final Winner: Avast

Avast Internet Security logo

So, do we recommend you to purchase Avast as substitute to Windows Defender? Well, we’d definitely like you to do that as far as “Avast vs. Windows Defender” is concerned, however, if you want the best antivirus in the world, then our suggestion would be “BitDefender” as it is the tip-top antivirus that offers next-level features to meet your requirements.

We Recommend!

Windows Defender Vs Avast: An In-Depth Antivirus Battle

We’ll move to a more detailed comparison battle, we’ll be taking a more complete and comprehensive analysis into consideration to reach the final outcome on the basis of different categories.

windows defender packages

Let’s begin with the Windows Defender (WD) first:

With Windows Defender Security Center, you’re offered essentials features like malware and spyware protection from the hackers or cyberpunks and one-of-its-kind feature like “Find my device” to stay ahead of the hackers (however you’ve to be ready for that like you will need to allow access to your system and the internet should be on if you try to find a lost hand-held device about Windows Defender Vs Avast 2020). However, it doesn’t work great and doesn’t tie into your mobile device. There are better anti virus choices if you have a windows.

Windows Defender (previously known as Microsoft Security Essentials) does an okay job in monitoring your devices from Trojans, malware, spyware, worms, viruses, etc., thanks to a decent advanced firewall feature that keeps track of all suspicious activities happening on your system so as to keep you as safe as possible. But you can only use Windows Defender on Windows and other Windows-specific hand-held devices.

Windows Defender’s protection is decent but Windows Defender is only accessible on Windows-specific computers and hand-held devices, it’s better than having nothing at all.

The best thing about Windows Defender is that it is 100% free forever – i.e. you won’t be asked to get the paid version after 30 days whatsoever, but if you’re serious about keeping your devices and personal data safe you’ll want a better option.

Avast’s Antivirus Suites

Avast Free Antivirus Trial

Avast offers to feature a free trial that gives you the opportunity of being familiar with the software and helps you make up your mind for the final purchase. However, the Avast free Antivirus options surpassed the Avast premium security tiers/suites offered by Avast Antivirus. Downloading the trial version of the software is very simple. All you have to do is click on the “Free Trial” button, run the Installer, confirm the installation and follow some instructions to finally install the free trial on your device, be it your PC or Mobile device.

Speaking of the suites brought to life by Avast, there are three major protection plans: Pro Antivirus, Internet Security, and Premier (the best value). But, there’s more to Avast’s suites than just meets the eye – it also offers complete all-round protection for your Windows PC. Whether you’re after the best-in-the-industry maintenance tools for security, you run a small or medium-sized business and crave for the protection for that, or you want all-inclusive protection for your home, Avast antivirus has got what you need in the first place.

Avast Protection for Home

This is divided into different segments as follows:

  1. Internet SecurityThis is considered as small protection for your Windows PC and will allow you to connect only 1 device at the moment. Click on the link to see what features are offered by this option.
  2. PremierWith this suite, you will be getting an advanced package as compared to the previous one we just discussed above. Again, this package is applicable to a single device and is billed annually. Take a glimpse at the above link to understand what this package has to offer you.
  3. SecureLine VPNIn the aforementioned suites, you’ve been getting the services for one device, however, this suite will keep you satisfied in that area as you can use multiple devices if you consider purchasing this package for your protection.
  4. Avast Security for MacThere needs to be more than just the essential Internet and Antivirus Protection. As the word suggests, this one has been designed with your OS i.e. Mac in mind – only Mac users need to pay attention to this suite. But this plan is limited to a single device only and the good news is that it is reasonably priced. Figure out what is more in this package using the link shown above:
  5. UltimateHere, you will get to save big and play big. The exceptional features of many suites have been added into this ultimate package like Premier, SecureLine VPN Utility, Password Premium, and Cleanup Premium.

Avast for Business

If you’re willing to make use of Avast antivirus software for your business, then your requirements might be different than the needs when you are eager to purchase the license for personal use. That’s why your voice has been heard by the professional team of Avast and this is what lead to the evolution of “Business Antivirus Plans” that is available for businesses.

There are overall 5 packages available for businesses:

  1. Business AntivirusSpeaking of usability, you can get the best of this plan on Windows, Servers, and Macs. This suite is applicable to only one device and keep you safe from prevalent malware threats, offers you a firewall without any obstruction or slow-down in the process. Furthermore, there is a management console equipped with this plan and another cool feature called “Cyber capture” will just make your day.
  2. Business Antivirus ProIf you’re considering antivirus options for your business needs, you can also think of this buying this bundle that comes packed for only 1 device. Since it offers multiplatform protection, you can make use of it on Windows, Mac, or Server. Further enlightening features include “File Shredder”, “Behavioral Shield”, “SharePoint Protection”, “Software Defender”, etc.
  3. Business Antivirus Pro PlusThis is a great suite for the businesses as it offers a wide range of never-seen-before features like VPN, WebCam Protection, Browser Cleanup, etc. On top of that, remember password is a big deal and not everyone is good at it, but why would you worry when you could make use of “Master Password” to handle all of the usernames and passwords of different applications you use.
  4. Avast Business Antivirus for LinuxAvailable for 1 device, this suite is a great choice for the Linux lovers (users). It features “Core Scanner” that offers an on-demand antivirus scan that will come into existence with a command-line utility. Moreover, it boasts a “File Server Shield”. Also, there are distribution packages. To find out more, please click the link above now.
  5. Avast Business Patch ManagementThis is the final package that is listed on the “Business Suites” list. It has the ability to automatically fixes when used on Windows OS and thousands of 3-party applications. The dashboard that is boasted in this package is highly intuitive. There’s also a “Local Patch Agent” included in this suite. This plan is inexpensive and allows it to be consumed on a single device only.

Avast Maintenance Tools

If you are trying to have a next-level experience, you should think about the “Maintenance Tools” brought into life by the world-famous antivirus – Avast. In this area, we have the following maintenance tools and you can get up to 25% to get exceptional speed, tuning, and online freedom:

After purchasing any of the aforementioned products, if you are not satisfied, you can get your refund as you are backed by the “30-day money-back guarantee” and this could be the reason why most of people chose Avast. Avast serves more than 400 million people worldwide.

All Computer Security (Avast)

Purchase Now

avast all suite

Compare Packages (Avast)

Buy Now

Winner: Avast

Avast Internet Security logo

Which Software Offers Excellent Malware Protection?

It’s crystal clear that Avast is a front-runner antivirus when it comes to the advanced features to meet your requirements to protect your system from malicious files and software. What about better malware protection? Does it also beat Windows Defender in that category? Well, let’s find out which one comes out on top.

Avast Antivirus  Score:

avast protection

Windows Defender Score:

Windows Defender AV Test Chart 2020

Winner: Avast

Avast Internet Security logo

Which Antivirus Software has Minimal Impact on System?

While having a good protection from malware is a major concern, you cannot neglect the performance of your system that gets affected when an anti-virus runs either in the foreground or background.

The ideal antivirus is one with smooth and efficient performance. This not only allows you to do work on your device as if nothing is happening, but an anti-virus that doesn’t use much of your computer’s resources will also boost your battery life.

Let’s see what the scores say:

Avast Antivirus Score:

Avast performance in charts

Windows Defender Score:

windows defender performance

Winner: Avast, but barely

Avast Internet Security logo

Which Software is More User-friendly?

User-friendliness plays a vital role in maintaining a good relationship with the customer and to avoid futuristic issues. The problem, however, is that most anti-virus software companies pay no attention to the UI of the software and think that feature is all customers are after. Well, that’s not true. This is because a user can’t use the anti-virus properly if he/she cannot understand the user interface or the theme of the software Windows Defender Vs Avast 2020.

Avast's Interface:

Avast user interface showing icons

Windows Defender's Interface:

windows defender user interface screen

Winner: Avast

Avast Internet Security logo

Which Software is Less Expensive?

Does the antivirus program you’re enthusiastic to purchase require you to break the bank?

Remember, even if you’re considering the high-end suites, it doesn’t always mean that you have to pay more than you actually need. In this category, we cannot Windows Defender with Avast as the former anti-virus is freeware and the latter one is a paid one.

Subsequently, Avast’s free edition is similar to Windows Defender antivirus, which is also free. The problem with freeware is that they do not offer much of the next-level features which we need in this day and age. This is because the hackers are using sophisticated algorithms to inject the victim’s device.

Let’s be more specific by taking a look at the pricing model of Avast.

Avast Antivirus SuitesPrices
Avast Pro AntivirusLatest Price
Avast Internet SecurityLatest Price
Avast PremierLatest Price
Avast UltimateLatest Price
Avast Security for MacLatest Price
Avast Business ProductsLatest Range

Winner: Windows Defender

Windows Defender logo

Windows Defender Vs Avast: Final Thoughts!

After this review, it’s not hard to decide between Avast and Windows Defender. We’ve covered all of the main points that you can think of while choosing the better option for the security of your device and the safety of the data residing in it. Additionally, you may do three sorts of scans for virus detection, namely a smart scan, a full system scan, or a boot scan. Moreover, Avast allows you to use it in conjunction with any other anti-virus application in passive mode. Therefore, the reward goes to “Avast” in this head-to-head anti-virus battle (comparison).

Our recommendation: McAfee

From phishing scams to malware attacks, security threats grow increasingly by the day. Although the products we mentioned are very good, it cannot beat the likes of McAfee. With McAfee it has protection on all sorts of devices ranging from phones to even cars! It’s extensive product line-up has protected over 18.9 billion devices to this day. We are sure that you will come across a package that is perfect for you, to check out their line-up, click here!


1. Is Windows Defender better than Avast?

It's not difficult to choose between Avast and Windows Defender after reading this review. We've covered all of the major points that come to mind when deciding on the best option for the security of your device and the data stored on it. As a result, Avast wins this head-to-head anti-virus battle (comparison).

2. Do I need Avast if I have Windows Defender?

No, you do not need Avast if you have Windows Defender. Windows Defender is a built-in antivirus program that comes with Windows 10. It is a basic program, but it should be enough to protect your computer from most viruses. If you want more protection, you can install a more advanced antivirus program like Avast.

3. Is Avast enough to protect my PC?

Avast Antivirus is a generally excellent antivirus product that will ensure the security of your computer. Its free version provides an enormous amount of security, but usability issues make it difficult to access some of its more advanced features without being bombarded with requests to upgrade.

4. Should I trust Avast?

Yes, you can trust Avast. It is a well-known and respected antivirus software provider that has been in business for over 25 years. Avast has a strong track record of protecting users from malware and other online threats.

5. Does Avast have identity theft protection?

Yes, Avast does offer identity theft protection. In addition to protecting your online identity, the service also helps you keep track of your credit score and provides you with alerts if any changes occur.

6. Is Windows Defender good enough?

Windows Defender is a built-in antivirus solution that comes with Windows 10. It's not the most powerful or comprehensive antivirus solution available, but it's good enough for most users. If you're looking for a more powerful solution, you can try a third-party antivirus program like Avast or Bitdefender.

About Dusan Stanar

I'm the founder of VSS Monitoring. I have been both writing and working in technology in a number of roles for dozens of years and wanted to bring my experience online to make it publicly available. Visit https://www.vssmonitoring.com/about-us/ to read more about myself and the rest of the team.

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