Webroot vs McAfee: A Head-to-Head Comparison

by Hashir Zuniga

Webroot vs McAfee: Which One Is Better?

Webroot and McAfee are among the big players in the antivirus market. Both products have been in the industry for decades, protecting millions of devices against viruses, malware, spyware, and threats. When it comes to Webroot vs McAfee comparison, which one gives better protection?

Both software offers security suites that give not only virus protection but also identity and privacy protection. In this guide, you will find a head-to-head comparison between Webroot and McAfee from various sides, such as features, protection, performance, user interface, and pricing.

Webroot at a Glance

Webroot at a Glance

Webroot Internet Security Essentials is the first security suite launched by Webroot Inc. Firstly released in 2008, this antivirus software protects your device against online threats such as ransomware, viruses, phishing, and even identity theft.

This product mainly consists of two versions: For Home and Home Office and For Business and Partners. Built for different purposes, the flexibility allows consumers to choose a version that meets their needs and preferences.

Compared to McAfee, Webroot is the new kid on the block but it has worked its way to the top. The award-winning suite has guarded more than 95 million devices from all over the world across home uses and businesses.

McAfee in Brief

McAfee in Brief

McAfee is one of the oldest antivirus programs available on the market. Since its initial release in 1988, it offers online protection with a long list of features, such as real-time scanning, personal firewall, and safe browser. With a full-featured protection, it offers some peace of mind when you are going online.

To meet different needs of consumers and give personal protection, McAfee offers several tiers including Family, Single Device, Individual, and Ultimate. On top of that, this product boasts free trial that lets you experience a full-featured 30-day protection.

As a cross-platform program, McAfee supports major operating systems like Windows, Mac, and Linux. It is also compatible with mobile OS, including Android and iOS. This means you can give extra protection for both desktop computer and mobile devices.

Webroot vs McAfee Comparisons

Choosing the best antivirus that meets your personal needs becomes essential, considering thousands of new malware are found every day. And if you are wondering which one is better between Webroot and McAfee, the comparisons below should get this clear.

1. Webroot vs McAfee Features

Just as with most antivirus products, both Webroot and McAfee offers a variety of tiers with different pricing and features. Since the features vary depending on the tier you are using, we are going to compare the features only from the lowest and highest tiers of both programs.

Webroot Features

From the lowest tier, Webroot features real-time antivirus, auto virus scanning, protection against various threat types, and identity theft protection. Meanwhile, McAfee comes packed with more features like secure VPN, password manager, safe web browsing, and performance optimization.

Let’s move on to the highest tier. Webroot’s most expensive plan provides all the features included in the lower tiers, added with benefits such as system optimizer and trace elimination. Using this tier, you can protect up to 5 devices.

McAfee Features

On the other hand, McAfee’s Ultimate plan allows you to protect unlimited devices and enjoy much more features like McAfee Shredder, encrypted storage, and identity theft protection. Although the price is nearly twice as much as Webroot, all the plan offers is worth it.

2. Protection


Both Webroot and McAfee security suites work well to provide malware protection. But if you want to see which product is better in securing your device, evaluating the protection measure will give a little help.

According to the lab test conducted by AV-TEST, McAfee achieved 6 out of 6 rating. It means this program is able to detect all the malware samples during the test. Unfortunately, Webroot didn’t join in the evaluation so it is unlikely to make a comparison in terms of AV-Test’s protection measure.

But according to some reviews, Webroot has done well in their malware protection tests. Unlike Norton that prevents malware from getting into the system and avoids infection, Webroot tends to identify and handle threats that are already inside the system.

Once Webroot identifies malware, it will ask permission to scan the system and remove malware. After the scan is completed, it will ask permission for another scan just to make sure there is no malware left on the system.

3. Webroot vs McAfee Performance

Another important point of Webroot vs McAfee comparison is their performance. Like most computer programs, both software take some resources of the system. Of course, this will put impact the system and somehow affects the whole performance of the computer.

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In this aspect, Webroot takes the lead since it comes with tiny file size. This incredibly small size gives only two processes on Task Manager while McAfee has 16 active processes. Not surprisingly, Webroot is considered the smallest antivirus that doesn’t eat a lot of processing power.

Meanwhile, McAfee is also friendly to both standard and higher-end PC. It is worth noting that the number of processes doesn’t necessarily mean it uses more system resources. Despite the number of processes it has, McAfee puts low impact on the system.

According to the most recent performance test, McAfee achieved the highest Advanced+ award due to its incredibly low impact. This means the program doesn’t cause significant slowdown on standard and high-end PC.

4. User Experience

Webroot vs McAfee User Experience

When it comes to interface, McAfee that used to have a slightly old-fashioned interface has undergone a major facelift. The new appearance gives a simple and modern look with a domination of white, grey and light blue.

It comes with five modules at the top, giving easier access to their menu. With a clean interface, navigating to each menu and control options won’t be a big deal. This new look is suitable for consumers who love simplicity.

On the other hand, dark base with green accent dominates Webroot antivirus. Some sections look busy with too much information but some others are clean. If you are a newcomer, it might take extra time to understand how the interface works.

5. Mobile Apps

Both Webroot and McAfee offer mobile security apps to protect your smartphones. Webroot for mobile ensures your security when shopping, browsing, and banking on Android or iOS. Featuring automatic scans for malware and viruses, install and let the app do its job.

McAfee is also dependable to keep your mobile activity secure. Thanks to an award-winning security scan that detects not only malicious apps but also risky websites and unsafe Wi-Fi. It also comes packed with anti-theft feature and privacy protection.

When it comes to the user interface, both services come with the similar appearance as the desktop version. Webroot consistently presents its dark base with greenish accent while McAfee has a clean and simple interface with a white base.

6. Webroot vs McAfee Pricing

Webroot vs McAfee Pricing

Webroot claims itself as a low-cost antivirus program for home use and business. There are several tiers to choose from, starting at $39.99. Webroot provides additional products for most of its package, such as protection layers and secured devices with extra charge.

For Webroot vs McAfee price comparison, McAfee offers a range of attractive plans especially for new users. The normal price might cost a few extra bucks but they offer introductory pricing with huge discounts. Family plan, for instance, is priced at only $39.99 from $119.99.

McAfee’s highest tier is Ultimate that is priced at $109.99 from $159.99/1 year subscription. This plan offers excellent features such as unlimited covered devices, secure VPN, identity theft protection, encrypted storage, and much more. This tier has more features than Webroot

McAfee is also more attractive with a 30-day free trial. During this trial, you will be able to enjoy a full protection. And if you are not satisfied with the service, you will be eligible for a refund.

7. Customer Support

Customer Support

Webroot and McAfee has excellent customer support. Whenever you need help, Webroot’s team will be ready to answer your questions and solve problems. You can either make a call or chat with Webroot agent right from their support page.

A 24/7 security experts are also provided to you by McAfee. The company enables you to get assistance from friendly experts, thanks to dedicated security teams who are ready to help you 24/7.

Webroot vs McAfee: Which One Is Better?

Which One Is Better

Overall, Webroot and McAfee are great antivirus programs to give a full protection to your device, both desktop and mobile. But when looking back at the comparison above, McAfee takes the gold. Not only does it have more experience on the market, it also has a lot more features.

McAfee may take a few extra bucks and is slightly slower than Webroot but it has everything you need to keep you secure when going online. The software is value for money, not to mention it has a simple and clean interface for easier access.

However, Webroot is also a reliable program for protecting devices. It comes with a boast of fast performance and it puts low impact in the system resources. On top of that, Webroot is a low-cost antivirus that won’t break your savings.

Based on Webroot vs McAfee comparisons, which one should you choose? It heavily depends on your preferences. If you are thinking about protection, McAfee is a good name to mention. But if you are looking for an affordable program, Webroot is the one to run for.

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