McAfee vs. Bitdefender | Which One is Better in 2021?

McAfee vs. Bitdefender
McAfee vs. Bitdefender

Without adequate security, it’s undoubtedly that users’ assets on the internet will be greatly exposed. Several antivirus clients protect your computer and the web you browse, and McAfee and Bitdefender are two of those. So, how both fight against malware and virus? The article explores McAfee vs. Bitdefender.

Quick comparison: McAfee vs. Bitdefender

Protection tests6/66/6
Web protection
Scan time test8 hours (1.4 million files)1 hour (8 million)
Storage space1.2 GB600 MB
Initial price$79.99$79.99
Quick comparison table


Both McAfee and Bitdefender have features that are unique from each other. These features facilitate the functioning capacity of either of the two. These are the features offered by each of the software:


  • The multiple scanning option comes with quick, selectable, vulnerability, and full scan options.
  • Online security is an extension to check for bad websites and pages
  • Web boost can help you boost the web while browsing
  • The Password manager tool is for storing and generating passwords
  • App booster is an option to boost apps’ startup
  • Identity theft protection
  • Encrypted storage is to save files away from everyone
  • VPN is offered if auto-renew is turned on
  • The Parental control feature lets you take control of other devices


  • Multiple scanning system offers quick, full, selectable, and vulnerability scan options.
  • Optimization of performance
  • Microphone protection checks if the microphone is being used
  • Webcam protection checks if an app is using the webcam
  • Online security is for protecting yourself while browsing the internet
  • Monitoring active applications option is to make sure that none of the apps
  • The password manager feature is for storing and generating passwords
  • VPN is offered in multiple plans
  • Safepay is a browser for online transactions.

Protection tests

How do we determine that an antivirus is working? Well, thanks to AMTSO, we can test antiviruses againt six types of malware. Those tests include:

  • Malware download test
  • Unwanted applications test
  • Drive-by downloads check
  • Checking phishing webpages
  • Compressed file malware
  • Cloud-based connection test

We check both on all the above tests and see how both perform.


McAfee Protection Tests

From the video above, McAfee did a good job. In a couple of tests, it allowed the download of malware, but it quickly removed the virus as soon as I opened the folder.

Realted: McAfee vs. Kaspersky | The Antivirus Battle


Bitdefender Protection Tests

The opponent also performed excellently. It passed all the tests. It even removed the virus after forcing the browser to download it. Watch the video to see it in action.

System scan time

The next topic of McAfee vs. Bitdefender is the system scan time. McAfee has a bit of a bad reputation because it is slower. In McAfee vs. Kaspersky comparison, we saw something similar. Anyway, as I tested all antiviruses simultaneously, McAfee scanned 1.4 million files in about 8 hours.

Bitdifender, on the contrary, scanned over 8 million files, which is quite high and took around 1 hour to complete the scan.

Performance Impact

In this round, we will test the impact on the performance while scanning the system. Many factors contribute to the performance impact, so I will not conduct the test by myself. Instead, I’m using data from the AV-Test website where developers have already checked the performance.

Related: VyprVPN vs. Private Internet Access | A Battle of 6 Tests

According to the website, McAfee did not slow down the system while scanning. It recieved a total of 6 out of 6 score.

A similar score was found in the latest Bitdefender test. It got the same score. Hence, this round is a tie.

User interface

Both are fairly easy to navigate and use. McAfee comes with navigational tabs on the top, and you get data and updates on the first “home” tab. You can also manage your account and subscription in the app settings.

Bitdefender, on the other hand, comes with navigational tabs on the left. The main tab is “dashboard” where you can customise the tool to your needs. In each tab, you get different features to explore.


As you can see, the prices of two software tools vary according to the devices one wants to protect. However, there is one thing that they have in common. Users are likely to get discounts for the subscription fee of the first year.

Also, they both offer free trials to users. The free trials last for 30days. It’s important to check whether there are discounts for either of them while purchasing to take advantage of it.

The price depends on the number of devices that you would want to protect and the features of each product. Here is the breakdown of the pricing variation for the two depending on the number of devices.

The red colour suggests the opponent’s same plan is cost-effective.


  • 1 device $79.99 annually
  • 5 devices $99.99 annually
  • 10 devices $119.99 annually
  • Unlimited devices $119 annually


  • 3 devices $79.99 annually
  • 5 devices $89.99 annually
  • 10 devices $149.99 annually
  • Unlimited devices $199.99

Which one should you choose?

The final section of McAfee vs. Bitdefender is about suggesting you the right antivirus. In terms of protection and performance, both did a great job. Bitdefender took less than to scan the whole system, and it is cost-effective. I will suggest choosing Bitdefender over McAfee in 2021.


The bottom line

The bottom line is that both McAfee and Bitdefender are valuable when it comes to the protection of your computer from internet threats. You need them to make sure that you’re well protected and that your sensitive files are safe.

They have unique features and pricing packages, which means that you have to choose the one that answers your needs well. Anyway, the article comes to an end. Let’s discuss about the two in the comments and help others.

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Malware is a software program developed to harm a computer device, weaken it, or steal information. New types of malware are recorded every day, so antivirus tools keep records of the viruses to protect computers. You can read more about malware on the CSO Online website.