Apify, the service that helps you automate your tasks on the Internet, also does have a proxy service you can use. If you want to find out if their proxies are the best for you or not, then read the Apify proxy service review below to learn about the pros and cons of Apify proxies.
Apify is the go-to service for those that want to automate their web tasks. The service claims to be able to automate all of the tasks you can do manually on a web browser, and if you browse through their actors (automation tools), you will know they mean it. They have got some top technology companies on their customers’ list.
One service they do offer is a proxy service which they do offer either as free or paid depending on the type of proxies you want. In this review, we would provide you an honest review of the Apify proxy service. Before doing that, let take a look at an overview of Apify proxy.
Apify Proxy Overview
The Apify proxy service is a proxy service that has been designed to improve the performance of web scrapers and crawlers by providing its users IPs that are being smartly rotated to ensure unrestricted access to web content.
While it is part of the Apify range of services and integrates well with the Apify actors, it is actually a standalone service, and you can buy proxies from them to use with your own custom web scraper or crawler. The service offers both residential and datacenter proxies, and the pricing can be said to be affordable, especially for small marketers.
They regularly check their proxy pool and remove dead proxies. Instead of offering you a bunch of proxy lists, this service offers you an endpoint. It has support for a few locations, has tens of thousands of IPs in its pool, allows you to choose proxies from a few selected locations, and also offers session IPs together with rotating proxies.
However, it is not all rosy, and the service has a good number of downsides you need to be aware of. We would first look at the pros of Apify proxies before discussing the cons, after which we would provide you our verdict.
|IP Type||Datacenter and Residential IPs|
|Price Charged||Proxies and Bandwidth|
|Price Sample||$1 per IP (Datacenter) / $12.5 per GB (residential)|
|IP Locations||A few countries|
|support||Email + Live chat + Discord|
|Refund Policy||No refund|
Apify Proxy Pros
This service has got a good number of users on its customers’ list, and the list s growing. This is not unconnected to its pros, otherwise known as its strengths. Let take a look at the major Apify pros below.
High Performing Paid Proxies
The Apify proxy service offers paid proxies for their customers, which can either in the dedicated datacenter proxy category or residential proxy category. These two have their strengths and weaknesses and the area you should use them. Generally, datacenter proxies are fast and cheaper; but do not work on some websites with smart anti-spam systems. On the other hand, residential proxies can evade detection but can be slow and expensive. Your specific project requirement would determine the proxies you should use.
Whichever of the proxies you consider, just know that they are high performers and do not easily get detected and banned. You could even combine the two and have the system rotate them intelligently to help you find a good balance between performance and saving cost. The proxy service is reliable, has excellent uptime, secure, and compatible with the most popular websites. The service has been built for evading anti-bot systems, and as such, it integrates systems and techniques that would help you evade detection and ban. It is quite fast too.
Intelligent IP Rotation Support and Pool Monitoring
The Apify platform being an automation platform, it is expected that the proxy service they offer has support for automatic IP rotation, and yes, they do. It does not have support for high rotating proxies that changes IP address after every request.
Its IP rotation is time-based and done every 1 minute. You will agree with me that except you abuse a proxy server by sending too many requests through it to a site, you wouldn’t get blocked within a minute. Another thing you will come to like about this service is that they have got support for session management.
If you want to maintain an IP address for a long period of time and avoid getting it changed after every one minute, then you should send a request with it after every 20 seconds, and you should keep the IP for a long period of time. The service regularly removes dead IPs from their pool.
What this means is that they run checks to see IPs that are no longer active and remove them from the pool. This does not mean they remove banned IP addresses. This is because the IP ban, in most cases,is site-specific, and the ban is lifted after a while.
Offers Free Proxies
An overwhelming number of Apify proxy service users are using the service because of its free proxies. If you do not have a proxy budget and you want to make use of proxies, then this service is one of the services you should take a look at, especially if you are using the automation tools provided by Apify.
If you create a free account, you are given access to 30 shared datacenter proxies. I will advise you shouldn’t expect much from these proxies, and if they do not work, it is better you ditch them for better and high-quality proxies that you will pay for.
The free proxies, as stated, are shared proxies, and as such, performance is bound to be affected negatively. You might be lucky to get assigned shared proxies that you could use for your tasks, especially if you want to access websites with relaxed anti-proxy systems in place.
If your target is actively fighting the use of proxies, then you will need to ditch their shared proxies and invest in high-quality dedicated datacenter proxies or their residential counterparts. This is because shared datacenter proxies are easily detected and blocked.
Supports Google SERPs Scraping and Geo-location Targeting
Are you looking forward to scraping keyword and ranking-based data from Google’s Search Engine Result Pages (SERPs)? Then you can use the Apify service as it has been designed to make scraping Google SERPs easy and stress-free. Aside from keyword and ranking data, you can also scrap Google Shopping. One thing you will come to like about using their service for Google SERPs scraping is that they have got a Google Search Scraper actor that you can start using instantly. You can try it out before committing to a paid plan.
The service has got support for geo-location targeting, which makes it possible for you to access geo-location content. The Internet is becoming localized, and the data or content you have access to is determined by your location or, more specifically, the geo-location of your IP address. The Apify proxy service has got support for a good number of countries that you can choose proxies from, especially if you are using their residential proxies.
Easy to Use and Helpful Customer Service
If you are looking for an easy-to-use proxy service, then the Apify service should be on the list you would make a choice from. The service has been developed to be easy to use and integrate well with the Apify platform. As a standalone service, you can also use it for your custom automation bot. Instead of providing you proxy list, it offers you an endpoint, taking care of IP rotation in an intelligent manner for you. The dashboard is also easy to browse through which overall, makes it beginner-friendly.
Another thing related to the ease of use is the helpful content on their website. The service has got a documentation page that will help you understand their service better. And this is not all; they have got a customer service that is responsively and helpful. They use the www.intercom.help service for their customer service relation. You can also contact them via email, on Discord, and via their social media handles.
Apify Proxy Cons
While their proxies work, there are some downsides you need to be aware of. These cons are also the reason some proxy users wouldn’t want to use them.
In the pros section, we stated that the service is a high performer provided you use the correct proxies (datacenter or residential) for your task. What you need to know is that high performance is not without a price, and that price you need to pay is high. Already, you have been told to ditch their free proxies for serious projects.
For the paid proxies, the pricing is at a premium level. the price for their shared datacenter proxies starts at $1, which makes it one of the most shared datacenter providers in the market. What if you want to buy their dedicated datacenter proxies? The price starts at $7 per IP address, which is considered expensive again.
For their residential proxies, the price can be said to be competitive when compared to the other premium residential proxy services out there. The price per GB starts from $12.5. The only advantage is that they do not set huge minimum order requirements that would get you to pay for the bandwidth you wouldn’t make use of.
Small Pool and Limited Location Coverage
Another area that Apify flops that might not look like a big deal is in the number of IP addresses they have in their pool. The number is not publicly displayed, but from some sources, they have tens of thousands. Now here is why it is a big deal and why you should worry.
The IP source for their residential proxy service is P2P networks, and for services like this, the actual number of IPs active and available for use is quite smaller than the total number of IPs in the pool. What this now leads to is that during IP rotation, you do not get a lot of unique IPs – already assigned IPs to you are reassigned again. Also, in terms of location coverage, they need to add more locations and not just countries but also states and cities as other premium residential proxies do.
Only The HTTPS Protocol is supported
Apify proxy service follows the simple model and wants to avoid packing it service with too many features that you might not want. Being a web scraping-based proxy service, it only has support for the HTTPS protocol.
This isn’t a problem, and in fact, most customers would not have a problem or even notice this, but for a few customers, this can be an issue. Some automation bots only work with SOCKS proxies. If you are dealing with one, then this service is not for you as they do not offer SOCKS proxies – only HTTPS proxies.
Do We Recommend the Apify Proxy Service?
Apify proxy service is no doubt one of the proxy services with a focus on web scraping and automation in general. From the above, you can see that it is described as high performance, reliable, secure, and compatible with most web services. It does not only rotate proxies but also provides session IPs if you need to login to maintain a session.
However, just like every other provider, it has its downsides, and this includes the fact that it is quite expensive compared to other providers in its league. It also does not have support for SOCKS proxies and the IP authentication method.
Even though it has these weaknesses, we still recommend them as they have proven to be reliable. You only need to make sure the cons are not very important to your project; else, look for an alternative.
Our Expert's Review
Scaping Performance - 9.6/10
Proxy Network - 9.4/10
Proxy Functions - 9.2/10
Customer support - 9.6/10
Read other user reviews