Norton vs. BitDefender 2014With the recent release of the 2014 versions of these two Internet security software giants, you’re probably wondering whether Norton Internet Security 2014 or BitDefender Internet Security is the smartest purchase. While both are definitely top performers, there are some key differences that are worth noting before you make a decision.

Price

Norton's got BitDefender beat hands down in this category. With the NextAdvisor discount, you can install Norton on up to 3 PCs for just $49.99, while BitDefender is charging $69.95 for the same without a discount. If you're looking to save, Norton is the obvious choice.

Protection

While a top performer in the past, BitDefender's score in the latest AV-Comparatives Real-World Protection test fell to 2 out of 3 stars. Norton hasn't been included in these independent tests for the past couple of years, making it difficult to compare. Both suites offer a slew of protective features and high performance when it comes to thwarting viruses and malware, as proven by our in-house tests – which both passed with flying colors. No matter what, both programs will do a great job keeping your PC safe.

Features

BitDefender offers an impressive array of slick features to enhance your online security, from Wallet where you can store all of your personal and financial information to extensive Parental Control monitoring. Norton's got some similar offerings, such as Identity Safe to store banking and personal information as well as a new Windows 8 App Remediation feature that those with an upgraded operating system will appreciate. Both programs have also integrated features for staying safe while social networking.

Usability

Norton and BitDefender both feature stylish, easy-to-navigate interfaces. Norton does a great job with explaining its many features through text boxes that appear when you hover over text with your cursor and has organized its features intuitively. But BitDefender takes things a step beyond by allowing complete customization of the home screen with feature shortcuts of your choosing – allowing users to modify the program to suit their individual needs. BitDefender also offers a unique AutoPilot option that lets the program run silently in the background without annoying you constantly through constant pop-ups and notifications.

Ultimately, when it comes to Norton vs. BitDefender 2014, both are strong picks. If you want a top-rated security program with all the bells and whistles at a great price, Norton is your best bet. But if you'd like a customizable interface and a program that will run silently in the background without providing too much disruption, BitDefender is your best choice. To read our full reviews of Norton and BitDefender, check out our Internet security software reviews.

Internet Security Software, Norton