Having been around since 2001 and originally known as Iniquinet, the company “A2 Hosting” was reborn in 2003 with the new name being in recognition of Ann Arbour, Michigan (did you notice the two A’s there?). A2 Hosting - Best Web Hosting Service Provider ReviewFor those interested in the why of it, Ann Arbour is the hometown of the founder of A2 Hosting.

The company’s data centres are located strategically in Amsterdam, Singapore, Arizona and, of course, Michigan. This gives them a good global spread covering all equal segments of the globe. Unlike most of the other web host providers, A2 Hosting has all of its own web servers. Combining this fact with their fast working machines and you get a high quality service.

Performance – Speed & Uptime

Speed is the name of the game for A2. There’s no denying that A2 Hosting offers some of the fastest speeds on the internet today. According to their website, the average performance of their platform is up to 17.6 times that of their top competitors. Verifying that exact claim is challenging, but A2 Hosting’s performance is considerably very fast.

And when it comes to gaining visibility on the internet, either for small blogs or small business websites, speed is perhaps the most critical factor. If your webpages don’t load fast enough, visitors will be inclined to close their browser tab and move onto a different option. Maintaining high performance on your cloud systems will ensure you keep your users happy.

A2 Hosting understands this very well and they’ve done their homework, using a slick combination of software and latest technology to keep sites light and speedy! They manage this by ensuring that the majority of A2’s plans come with Turbo servers which are said to increase page loads 20x faster.

Along with super-fast servers, you receive Memcached, Turbo Cache, and OpCache/APC resources that are easily enabled in your hosting account. Not only that, you have access to more resources with less server strain, improved performance over Apache servers, fewer users per server despite being a shared hosting plan, free Railgun Optimizer for up to 143% faster HTML load times, and free SSDs.

In addition, you can subscribe to A2 Hosting’ exclusive Performance Plus service and have extra GB of RAM added to your account for when your site experiences a huge surge in traffic. Users can also decide to stick with A2’s SwiftServer features, which include the choice of four data centre locations, Cloudflare CDN and the choice to upgrade to Cloudflare’s Railgun Optimiser and A2’s Performance Plus.

Higher tiered plans, inevitably, offer more advanced server features such as HTTP/2, Cloudflare Plus and A2 Optimised Site Accelerator for even better website speed. Nonetheless, with speed comes reliability and with A2, networks are monitored 24/7, and quadruple redundant network support is available to keep your site connected during downtime.

With robust facilities and uninterrupted networks, A2Hosting is confident to its hosting reliability and guarantee a minimum of 99.9% uptime for each user regardless the plan and billing cycle that they have chosen.

They are so confident and transparent with thier 99.9% uptime guarantee that as a great move to support confidence, they offer service credit of 5% paid fees for the month, for each hour your site is unreachable.

However, despite these impressive uptime, be sure to read A2’s Server Maintenance Policy which states that servers and related hardware may be brought down for service or maintenance management and does not contribute to their uptime commitment.

Security and Backup

A2 Hosting provides perpetual security with their free, dual firewall, brute force defense, virus scanning, and security monitoring. Offering some preventive, helpful measures like HackScan, a hack protection scanner for Perpetual Security and Free KernelCare, which run rebootless kernel updates automatically, to keep hackers away from your website.

A2 Hosting offers you a number of security measures to ensure your website data is protected, as well as the personal information of those making payments on your website.

1-Time Site Cleanup. If your site has been hacked, their support team will fix your site for you. This includes hack cleanup, blacklist warning removal, and SEO spam repair. In addition to bringing you back online, they will add enhanced security measures to prevent another hack from happening.

Server Rewind. The Server Rewind feature is like your standard “Undo” button but instead of just undoing changes made to a text or image, it saves your account to help you restore any file, database or user account you may have accidentally removed. This is made possible since the feature takes regular snapshots of your files as back-up. It’s free to use and can be accessed quickly through the control panel.

Sucuri Website Monitoring. For continuous website monitoring, you can invest in Sucuri Website Monitoring for $5/month. With this you will receive continuous scans and alerts, remote and server side scans, website application firewall protection, and prevention of hackers and DDoS attacks.

A2 Hosting - Overview
  • Ease of use
    (5)
  • Features
    (5)
  • Speed
    (5)
  • Uptime
    (5)
  • Pricing
    (4)
  • Customer support
    (5)

Summary

If you’re looking for a blazing fast and reliable web host that offers excellent customer support, A2 Hosting could be the best bet for your needs.

Overall
4.8

Pros

  • Excellent Hardware + Modern Technology
  • Free SSL, Free HackScan and Enhanced Security
  • Free Backups Offsite Goodies
  • Free Migrations for new customer
  • Hosting Optimized for popular CMS
  • Website Staging
  • Green Company
  • Money Back Guarantee… Anytime!

Cons

  • Intro Plan Is Limited
  • Turbo Booster Only In Biggest Plan
  • Site migration is chargeable when downgrading

Sucuri Account Firewall. For an additional $15/month, you can really protect your site from intrusions by receiving DDoS/brute force/malware protection, virtual patching and hardening of your site, and SQL injection blocking along with software and cross site scripting vulnerability blocking.

A2 Hosting makes automatic backups for free. Now, free automatic backups are not that unique to A2 Hosting, but this host takes file recovery a step further. With a simple plugin, you can automate the process of creating local backups. i.e., copies of your website and its databases on to your personal computer. This is an awesome and much-needed feature that hope to be seen in all web hosting providers. The more backups you have, the safer your data is. You cannot have too many backups and having an off-site restoration point is a fabulous insurance for the longevity of your site.

Admittedly, the feature is a paid add-on, but once your site starts growing you will appreciate its utility. All the same, if you don’t want to burden your budget, the automatic backups got you covered.

Control Panel

A2 Hosting comes with a simple user interface, and its very easy to use. It integrates cPanel as its control panel, which makes it easy to manage the domains, software, databases and emails accounts.
A2 Hosting Control Panel - A2 Hosting Review
Besides, customers can also get access to Softa culous in cPanel so that they can install most popular applications like WordPress, Drupal, PrestaShop, and OpenCart to their account with 1-click.

A2Hosting also provides A2 SiteBuilder to walks customers through 3 simple website building steps. And things cannot be easier and faster to select the website theme until publish it to the web.

Website Staging

A2 includes website staging for WordPress and Joomla sites. With staging, you can create a copy of your live site and test out changes on the staging site—without affecting your production site. Then, when you’re satisfied that your new changes are working properly and everything is okay, you can push these changes out to your live website.

Staging is usually only included in more expensive managed hosting plans, so it’s great to see A2 including it at no additional cost.

A2 Optimized Software

A2 Hosting punches above its weight with this optimized feature, with software settings pre-tuned for maximum security and top performance. As of now, this optimization option can be applied to popular software like WordPress, PrestaShop, Drupal, and Joomla, which means that we don’t have to worry about page load speeds – in their own words A2 “takes the guesswork out of how to get the fastest page loads and most secure settings”, leaving us to run the business without any worries.

Just to give you a rough idea of how much better the software is with A2’s Optimized Software, Optimized WordPress runs up to 6 times faster compared to non-optimized sites!

They’ve even thrown in their A2 Optimized Site Accelerator for users with the Turbo plan, which has pre-configured caching options that’ll help your site load faster. You’ve got 3 caching options:

  • Turbo Cache – for up to 20x faster load speeds
  • OPcache/APC – cuts php page response times in half
  • Memcached – keeps your data in memory for quick retrieval

Green Web Hosting

A2 Hosting supports the environment, so you can feel good about choosing them as a web host.

Since 2007, the company has partnered with Carbonfund to battle climate change. If caring for the environment is something you’re passionate about, you can save the planet just by having an A2 Hosting account. All of their servers are “carbon neutral” because they purchase carbon offsets. When you purchase carbon offsets, you’re funding projects that reduce the emission of greenhouse gases.

These kinds of projects are responsible for restoring forests, increasing the energy efficiency of buildings or transportation, or upgrading power plants to create less pollution. For every amount of energy A2 Hosting uses, they’re buying carbon offsets to make the world a greener, cleaner place. In addition to fighting climate change, the company also allows employees to telecommute to prevent unnecessary CO2 emissions.

They also recycle older servers rather than throwing out old hardware, plant trees during special promotions, and reduce trash by using coffee mugs instead of disposable coffee cups. The company was also one of the first providers that offered Solid State Disk Drives (SSDs). These drives use much less energy than traditional HDDs.

Developer Features

The A2 hosting provider is unique as it offers a lot for developers as well. So, if you are a programmer or like coding, you will enjoy the kind of support that A2 offers for various programming languages or tools. Your A2 account will always be loaded with the current versions of the most popular developer software. For example, A2 was also one of the first PHP7 hosting providers (apart from the PHP5 one in 2004). Moreover, you get performance tuned databases, such as MySQL, along with several hosting frameworks for Perl, Ruby, and Python. The good news for developers is far from over as Git, CVS, Subversion & Mercurial are also available.

Money Back Guarantee… Anytime!

A2 Hosting employs the standard 30-day money back guarantee, which promises full refund should you cancel your services within the first month of using them. However, if you wish to cancel a long-term plan before its expiry date you will be entitled to receive a prorated refund for the remainder of the hosting period.

This is something unique among the best web hosting providers. In the vast majority of cases, once the money back guarantee period is over, you are not entitled to any refunds for premature termination of services. A2 is very transparent and open about its practices and charges only for services that have been rendered.

Support and knowledge base

The company has been growing ever since its inception, but the growth is steady and not forced. As a result, the hosting provider handles adequately the increasing number of customers without compromising its services and integrity.

In a nutshell, A2 Hosting’s customer support team, dubbed the Guru Crew, is some of the best you’ll get in the business. That’s all good and dandy, but the truth is that you might not even need the A2 support team, as long as you have some time and desire to learn. The A2 Hosting knowledge base is a wonderful collection of helpful articles and tutorials, and it is constantly updated and expanded. Lastly, there are regular blog entries that contain very useful information for new webmasters.

Various Plans and Pricing

A2 Hosting offers a wide selection of high-powered web hosting plans designed for specific needs. With A2 Hosting, you have room to grow which is a major plus when it comes to choosing the right hosting provider. If you’re looking to just host a personal website or you want to set-up your company’s website, A2 Hosting has a corresponding plan that will give you what you need to help you achieve that goal.

A2 Hosting offers shared, VPS and dedicated hosting services. There are also Windows plans available for shared and managed VPS hosting. Besides these plans they offer Reseller hosting and WordPress hosting option.

LiteSwiftTurbo
Price /mo$3.92$4.90$9.31
Websites1UnlimitedUnlimited
Databases5UnlimitedUnlimited
StorageUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited
TransferUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited
Email Addresses25UnlimitedUnlimited
Free SSL
SSD Speed Boost
Turbo Server
Pre-configured Site Caching
HTTP/2
99.9% Uptime Commitment
Anytime Money Back Guarantee
Power+Prestige+Pinnacle+
Price$49.99$69.99$99.99
Email AccountsUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited
Allowed WebsitesUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited
Free SSL & SSD
Transfer2 TB3 TB4 TB
Storage75 GB100 GB150 GB
RAM4 GB6 GB8 GB
vCPUs468
HTTP/2
99.9% Uptime Commitment
Anytime Money Back Guarantee
EntryMidElite
Price$5.00$10.00$15.00
Storage20 GB30 GB50 GB
Cores114
RAM512 MB1 GB1 GB
Transfer2 TB2 TB2 TB
Free SSD
Anytime Money Back Guarantee
SprintExceedMach
Price$169.99$249.99$349.99
Storage2×500 GB2X500 GB2X1000 GB
CPUIntel 3.1+ GHzIntel Xeon 2.4+ GHz2x Intel Xeon 2.1+ GHz
Cores248+
RAM8 GB8 GB16 GB
Transfer10 TB15 TB20 TB
Free SSL
99.9% Uptime Commitment
Anytime Money Back Guarantee
SprintExceedMach
Price$119.99$199.99$299.99
Storage2×500 GB2X500 GB2X1000 GB
CPUIntel 3.1+ GHzIntel Xeon 2.4+ GHz2x Intel Xeon 2.1+ GHz
Cores248+
RAM8 GB8 GB16 GB
Transfer10 TB15 TB20 TB
99.9% Uptime Commitment
Anytime Money Back Guarantee

Plans Summary

Shared hosting

  • Lite, Swift and Turbo plans available
  • Unlimited: Disk Space, Bandwidth
  • Free SSL, SSD Included FREE
  • 1 – Unlimited Databases

  • 1 – Unlimited Websites
  • Turbo (Up To 20X Faster) for Turbo plan
  • 99.9% Uptime Commitment
  • Anytime Money-Back Guarantee

Managed VPS hosting

  • Power+, Prestige+ and Pinnacle+ plans available
  • 75 GB – 150 GB Storage, 4 GB – 8 GB RAM
  • 2 TB – 4 TB Transfer, 4 – 6 vCPUs
  • Free SSL & SSD
  • Unlimited: Email Accounts & Websites
  • With/Without Root Access
  • 99.9% Uptime Commitment
  • Anytime Money-Back Guarantee

Unmanaged VPS hosting

  • Entry, Mid and Elite plans available
  • 20 GB – 50 GB Storage, 512 MB – 1 GB RAM
  • 2 TB Transfer, 1 – 2 Cores
  • Free SSD, Root Access
  • Anytime Money-Back Guarantee

Managed dedicated hosting

  • Sprint, Exceed and Mach plans available
  • 2x500 GB – 2x1000 GB Storage
  • 8 GB – 16 GB RAM, 10 TB – 20 TB Transfer
  • 2 – 8+ Cores, Free SSL, Free cPanel
  • With/Without Root Access
  • Anytime Money-Back Guarantee

Umanaged dedicated hosting

  • Sprint, Exceed and Mach plans available
  • 2x500 GB – 2x1000 GB Storage
  • 8 GB – 16 GB RAM, 10 TB – 20 TB Transfer
  • 2 – 8+ Cores
  • Anytime Money-Back Guarantee

WordPress hosting

  • Lite, Swift, Turbo and Managed plans available
  • Unlimited: Disk Space, Transfer
  • Free SSL, Free SSD
  • 1 – Unlimited Databases, Websites
  • Turbo (Up To 20X Faster) for Turbo and Managed plans
  • 99.9% Uptime Commitment
  • Anytime Money-Back Guarantee

Reseller hosting

  • Bronze, Silver, Gold and Platinum plans available
  • 30 GB – 200 GB Storage, 400 GB – 2000 GB Transfer
  • 40 – 100 Accounts, Free SSL & SSD
  • Free eNom Reseller Account
  • Anytime Money-Back Guarantee

Conclusion

It’s safe to say that A2 Hosting is a solid web hosting brand. If you want to host unlimited websites and email accounts with decent speed, look no further than A2 Hosting. Whether you’re a small website owner, a startup that anticipates growth, or a developer, you’ll find A2 Hosting’s plans immensely helpful. What is noticeable about A2 Hosting is that they provide endless possibilities to choose a customized hosting platform for your individual needs. They also offer the industry’s leading anytime money back guarantee, which gives you peace of mind when subscribing to a hosting plan.