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Choosing the best VPN for Android in 2020

Last updated: July 13 2020 By Dean Chester

A VPN compatible with Android makes the use of a smartphone and tablet secure and private in any conditions. Besides, it allows one to effortlessly bypass website blocking or gain access to geo-restricted entertainment content of the world’s leading streaming services.

 

We have tested more than 40 VPN services. Here are our Top 5 best & Top 5 free VPNs

Best VPN for Android devicesMost VPN services offer specialized apps for Android. Not all of them, however, are worthy of our attention.

First of all, the Android platform is not 100% safe as of yet. VPN apps the development process of which didn’t include a full test cycle can become a security hole for the entire device because they have access to all of its important system functions.

Second of all, many services underestimate the growth rates of the VPN usage on Android and make software that is extremely limited in its functionality and can drastically differ from the fully-fledged PC versions in terms of features.

Third of all, the power of smartphones is still lacking compared to that of desktops, despite its steady increase. Thus, some VPN functions that require large volumes of mathematical calculations (such as watching videos in high quality) can drain the battery too much. That’s why it’s very important for a VPN to support efficient protocols on Android.

Fourth of all, there are dozens of VPN providers that build ads into their mobile apps. Because of certain technicalities of how they are displayed, it presents an additional privacy risk.

Thus, it’s not an easy task to choose a VPN that can work really well, effectively, and safely on Android, and one that requires experience and technical knowledge.

  • In this article, I will describe the peculiarities of using a VPN on Android-running devices and provide 10 best VPNs according to the test results of their work on the old and new versions of the platform.

This list is divided into two parts: 5 paid VPN services that offer the best VPN apps and 5 free VPNs with the smallest number of flaws.


10 best VPNs tested on Android

 

 
VPN apps for Android
  1. ExpressVPN: The best solution for the platform. Unmatched speed, great security and stability of operation. Consistent Netflix support.
  2. NordVPN: A large universal VPN service with expanded functionality of the Android app.
  3. Surfshark: The cheapest professional-grade VPN that has powerful apps for mobile devices. Pay only $1.99 monthly.
  4. CyberGhost VPN: The largest VPN offering servers in 90 countries. Has all the common features; optimized for streaming and torrenting.
  5. Mullvad: Combines the ease of use with expanded functionality for privacy assurance. No Netflix support.
 
Free VPNs (with restrictions)
  1. hide.me: High speeds but only 2 Gb per month for free. 3 countries.
  2. Windscribe: A high-quality VPN that has a free subscription offering 10 Gb of traffic per month and selection of 10 countries. Low speeds.
  3. ProtonVPN: No traffic limits but only 3 countries available.
  4. TunnelBear: 500 Mb for free monthly. Nice vibrant GUI.
  5. Opera VPN: 3 proxy locations. Only protects browser traffic. Slow speeds, “dirty” IP addresses.
  • My advice. When choosing between a paid and free VPN, keep in mind how often you’re going to use it. Free VPN apps have a lot of restrictions, the most essential of which is their low speed. In my more than 10-year experience of VPN testing, I haven’t seen a single free provider that could be used on a permanent basis. The very reason for free subscriptions to exist is to be as difficult to use as possible and drive the user to buy a paid one.

 


The best VPN for Android based on our test results

 

According to the results of my 6-month test, ExpressVPN is the VPN service most suited for Android.

ExpressVPN is the most all-purpose provider and it offers top-level reliability, security, speed, streaming and torrenting support. Its technological infrastructure is one of the world’s largest.

NordVPN, Surfshark, CyberGhost VPN, and Mullvad also possess some outstanding qualities. Each of them has certain unique features and can be the best fit for your specific purposes. Further in the article, I’ll provide you with brief reviews of their functions to help you make the most educated and best choice.

 

The best VPN for Android: Features comparison

 

Service Ranking (out of 10) Speed, Mbps Country selection Power efficiency Price (monthly)
ExpressVPN 10 More than 100 94 9 $6.67-12.95
NordVPN 10 60-80 58 9 $3.49-11.95
Surfshark 10 50-80 61 10 $1.99-11.95
CyberGhost VPN 8 40-70 90 8 $2.75-12.99
Mullvad 8 60-80 38 10 €5

ExpressVPN is the world’s most technologically advanced VPN service. It combines security and speed with the in-demand functionality for 2020. It’s also one of the best VPN services for unblocking geo-restricted Netflix content.

ExpressVPN is the perfect solution for constantly protected Internet access on Android and any other platform.

 

  Main advantages:
Very high speeds
Locations in 94 countries
Perfect software
Netflix and Hulu support
     Main characteristics of the provider:
  • Versatile
  • Support of all platforms including TV and gaming consoles
  • Speeds faster than 100 Mbps
  • Has passed all security tests
  • Incredible number of positive user reviews
  • 5 simultaneous device connections.

 


NordVPN is the largest VPN service in the world. At the same time, it has affordable pricing and a huge variety of features. This provider is highly praised by the Reddit community and is one of the three most dynamically developing VPNs.

This service is equally good at bypassing blocks, private data protection, safe use of torrents and streaming. It also can efficiently bypass censorship in the UAE and China.

 

  Main advantages:
More than 5600 servers
Very convenient apps
Double VPN
Servers with obfuscation
     Main characteristics of the provider:
  • Support of all platforms including routers, FireTV, etc.
  • Has passed all tests on Android
  • Maximum security level even on the default settings
  • Widely used to bypass geo-restrictions
  • Double VPN
  • 6 simultaneous device connections
  • 30-day money-back guarantee

 


Surfshark has the optimal quality-to-price ratio when used on mobile platforms. Although it is up there with the most powerful VPN services (and even higher than them in terms of extra functionality), this provider has managed to offer one of the lowest prices in the market without compromising its quality.

Surfshark VPN is ideal for beginner users.

 

  Main advantages:
Extremely versatile functionality
Very low price (starting at $1.99)
Low battery load
Netflix support
     Main characteristics of the provider:
  • Support of all platforms including web browsers
  • Has passed all security tests
  • Double VPN, Dedicated IP, streaming, torrenting
  • Energy efficient
  • Unlimited simultaneous device connections
  • 30-day refund guarantee on the 2-year subscription.

 


#4. CyberGhost VPN

CyberGhost VPN is the main NordVPN’s rival in terms of the technological infrastructure size while in terms of the number of supported countries, it actually exceeds NordVPN. As to CyberGhost VPN’s number of features, it is slightly lower. The provider’s distinguishing feature is that it has server lists for streaming. It allows unblocking any of more than 15 video service for the required region almost 100% of the time.

 

  Main advantages:
Special servers for streaming
Locations in 90 countries
Kill switch permanently activated
Many new IP addresses
     Main characteristics of the provider:
  • Support of all platforms including TV and gaming consoles
  • Servers for streaming and torrenting
  • Split tunneling
  • Adblocker
  • 7 simultaneous device connections.

 


#5. Mullvad

Mullvad combines the high quality of its software with top-level anonymity at signup. It is the only VPN on our Top 10 list that doesn’t even require an email.

I should also note that it supports the advanced WireGuard protocol that uses the CPU resources most efficiently, which makes it invaluable on mobile devices.

 

  Main advantages:
High speeds
WireGuard support
Precision of operation
No-email-required registration
     Main characteristics of the provider:
  • Support of all OSs
  • Has passed all security tests
  • WireGuard
  • 30-day money-back guarantee

 


 

1. ExpressVPN

 

Pros Cons
High speed Can't choose a specific serverithin a location
Proven security  
Proven No-Logs police  

 

Overview

ExpressVPN is the best VPN to be used regularly on Android. It is confirmed by our security, speed, and streaming support tests.

During the hardiness tests, the ExpressVPN app provided full traffic protection in all situations. The test included sudden disconnections and reconnections to the internet and switching between different access points as well as between Wi-Fi and cellular internet.

 

 

Features

  • Military-grade encryption. The traffic transferred through the VPN channel is reliably encrypted according to the AES-256 standard which is officially used by the US government.
  • Reliable IP address hiding. The provider hides the real location of the user with maximum efficiency. Our tests showed that there is no way to learn the IP address of a user by any direct means as well as via the DNS server or WebRTC. Besides, all the visited websites’ addresses are encrypted alongside the traffic and can’t be seen by the ISP.
  • High speeds. Our speed tests yielded phenomenal results. Most servers run on speeds higher than 70-80 Mbps, which is very fast for a VPN.
  • Access to locations in 94 countries. ExpressVPN is the second-largest VPN in terms of the number of countries. At the same time, it surpasses its competitor in general service quality and the number of IP addresses.
  • Support of Netflix, Hulu, etc. ExpressVPN has been the best VPN for Netflix for more than a year already. It can successfully unblock Hulu, HBO, Amazon Prime, and other services, too. The provider’s high speed also makes for comfortable viewing of video content in the highest quality available.
  • Safe torrenting. We don’t know a single case when an ExpressVPN user had any problems with the authorities over torrenting on Android. The app reliably protects the P2P traffic even in the most extreme conditions.
  • 7-day free trial period. Available only on Android. No credit card is required to activate it.

Prices and plans

ExpressVPN offers 3 tariff plans with identical features:

  • $6.67 per month on the 12-month subscription
  • $9.99 per month on the 6-month subscription
  • $12.95 per month on a 1-month subscription

New users get additional 3 months free of charge when subscribing for one year

       Payment methods accepted:

Credit cards

PayPal

Bitcoin

 

       Others:

AliPay

UnionPay

Mint

OneCard

WebMoney

etc

How does the price of ExpressVPN compare to other services?

(the comparison is drawn with the subscriptions of the other VPNs on our Top 5 ranking that are of the same lengths)

Provider 12 month (monthly) 6-month (monthly) 1 month
ExpressVPN $6.67 $9.99 $12.95
NordVPN $6.99 - $11.95
Surfshark $5.99 - $11.95
CyberGhost VPN $5.99 - $12.99
Mullvad €5 €5 €5

 

I’d like to note that during our long tests of ExpressVPN on Android 9 and 10 running smartphones, it showed impeccable connection stability. This fact speaks to the app quality as well as to a good technological equipment of the servers.

It has also come into our attention that the provider now uses diskless servers. What it means is that it doesn’t simply claim that it keeps no logs (which was, by the way, confirmed at least twice) but also that user data cannot physically be logged anywhere because diskless servers don’t support the function of long-term logging.

Combined with the safe jurisdiction in the BVI offshore zone and the proven security of the software, it makes the service the best solution for help in providing 100% internet privacy.

ExpressVPN has been a long-standing leader of the VPN industry. We can confirm that its characteristics are only getting better.

 

ExpressVPN Preview
ExpressVPN helps you to be 100% private on the Internet

 

ExpressVPN - “Premium” VPN

 

 


 

2. NordVPN

 

Pros Cons
5600+ servers in 58 countries Slow speed on some servers
100% security  
No-Logs policy  

 

Overview

NordVPN is the world’s largest VPN service. It has more than 5600 servers and allows connecting to any of them (while other VPNs choose the server within a location only automatically).

VPN-Review has thoroughly tested this provider’s performance in terms of security and we can confirm that on Android devices, NordVPN offers 100% protection of private data and traffic.

 

Features

  • Military-grade encryption. Just like ExpressVPN, the VPN channel here is reliably encrypted according to the AES-256 standard.
  • Efficient hiding of the IP address. We have conducted a series of tests and confirm that without hacking into a NordVPN server, it’s impossible to determine the user’s real location as there are no IP address leaks.
  • High speed. The speed of NordVPN is slightly slower than that of ExpressVPN but still remains one of the fastest.
  • Access to any server. You can not only choose the country and city you wish to connect to but also a specific server. It allows using the same IP address more than once.
  • Support of Netflix, Hulu, etc. NordVPN is great at unblocking geo-restricted content of such well-known services as Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, and others. The speed of the US locations is a bit slower than with ExpressVPN but still is enough to watch videos in high quality.
  • Double VPN. This option is great for those who want to double their protection. Also, if for any reason you can’t connect to the needed country directly, you can do that through another location.
  • 7-day free trial period. Available only on mobile devices. Requires a credit card to be activated.

Prices and plans

NordVPN has 4 tariff plans with identical functionality:

  • $3.49 per month on the 3-year subscription
  • $4.99 per month on the 2-year subscription
  • $6.99 per month on the 12-month subscription
  • $11.95 on the 1-month subscription

The provider offers a constant 70% discount.

You can pay with:

       Payment methods accepted:

Credit cards

3 cryptocurrencies

3 cryptocurrencies

 

  Other methods:

Amazon Pay

Amazon Pay

AliPay

UnionPay

How does the price of NordVPN compare to the other services?

(the comparison is drawn with the subscriptions of the other VPNs on the top 10 that are of the same lengths)

Provider 3 year (monthly) 2 year (monthly) 12 month (monthly) 12 month (monthly)
NordVPN $3.49 $4.99 $6.99 $11.95
ExpressVPN - - $6.67 $12.95
Surfshark - $1.99 $5.99 $11.95
CyberGhost VPN $2.75 $3.69 $5.99 $12.99
Mullvad €5 €5 €5 €5

I’d like to note that I use NordVPN for personal purposes on an Android smartphone as well as other devices. I’ve chosen this service for its combination of an affordable price with a wide range of functions. Besides, I value the ability to connect to the same server every time a lot.

At the same time, NordVPN is great at bypassing the geo-restrictions of American Netflix.

I also perform regular analyses of the user reviews of NordVPN on Reddit. The majority of customers are satisfied by the provider’s performance not only in terms of streaming but also safe torrenting, block bypassing, etc.

Another plus is the fact that the service doesn’t keep user activity logs and has safe Panamanian jurisdiction.

I should also note that NordVPN is even capable of bypassing VPN blocking, which is useful in the UAE, China, and other countries with censorship.

Generally speaking, the provider takes the well-deserved second spot because it is slightly slower than ExpressVPN and has fewer countries.

 

NordVPN

 

nordVPN Preview
NordVPN will help you get fully anonymous on the Internet.

 

 


 

3. Surfshark

 

Pros Cons
Torrenting on every server Isn't suitable for Linux
Proven security  
No-Logs police  

 

Overview

Surfshark is a VPN service with the best quality-to-price ratio in the market. While its features are on the same level as those of its competitors, its prices start as lowly as at $1.99 per month.

Additionally, the provider is distinguished by the incredible growth dynamics of its Android app. If only two years ago it could only connect to a chosen location, today it is a real bastion of security that has a set of the most advanced features.

 

Features

  • AES-256 encryption. The most powerful of the current encryption standards is used. It is impossible to break in real-time.
  • Effectively hides the IP address. The tests showed its high level of privacy protection in any circumstances.
  • Expanded functionality. The app supports Double VPN, Dedicated IP, Shadowsocks, protection against tracking, etc.
  • Netflix support. Our tests showed that Surfshark supports all of the regions of this video service except for DE.
  • Safe torrenting. The provider is perfectly suited for torrenting on mobile devices thanks to its built-in kill switch and confirmed immunity to unstable internet connections.
  • 7-day free trial period. Available on mobile apps and doesn’t require a card.

Prices and plans

Surfshark VPN offers 3 tariff plans with identical functionality as well as two extra features:

  • $1.99 per month on the 2-year subscription
  • $5.99 per month on the 12-month subscription
  • $11.95 on the 1-month subscription
  • + 0.99 per month for optional HackLock and BlindSearch functions for email protection and the most private search.

Surfshark’s two-year subscription is the cheapest among the top-quality providers. It also has a 30-day money-back guarantee.

You can pay for it with:

       Payment methods accepted:

Credit cards

PayPal

Google Pay

Google Pay

 

       Others:

3 cryptocurrencies

3 cryptocurrencies

Amazon Pay

Amazon Pay

How do the prices of Surfshark compare to the other services?

(the comparison is drawn with the subscriptions of the other VPNs on our Top 5 ranking that are of the same lengths)

Provider 2 year (monthly) 12 month (monthly) 1 month
Surfshark $1.99 $5.99 $11.95
ExpressVPN - $6.67 $12.95
NordVPN $4.99 $6.99 $11.95
CyberGhost VPN $3.69 $5.99 $12.99
Mullvad €5 €5 €5

During our long tests, the Surfshark app worked without trouble 100% of the time, displayed good energy consumption parameters and, subjectively, did not affect the performance of the tested devices running Android version 10 as well as 9 and 6.

Recently, the provider added Shadowsocks, the most modern protocol that allows bypassing censorship to all its apps including the mobile ones. It makes them effective in bypassing censorship that uses blocking of VPN protocols.

Generally, the app gets the highest mark. Our analysis of customer reviews also speaks about the rapid increase in interest in this service on all the platforms.

I should also note that, like ExpressVPN, Surfshark doesn’t keep logs and is legally located in the BVI offshore.

 

Surfshark
Surfshark makes privacy affordable for everyone

 

More about Surfshark:

 


 

4. CyberGhost VPN

 

Pros Cons
Special servers for streaming 3 Netflix regions available
App Split Tunneling  
No-Logs police  

 

Overview

CyberGhost VPN, despite its relative obscurity, provides access to more than 5500 servers in 90 countries.

The provider supports all the platforms including Android. Our tests showed a high level of traffic and DNS data protection. At the same time, it consistently supports US and UK Netflix. All of this makes it convenient for regular use.

 

Features

  • AES-256 encryption.
  • Efficiently hides the IP address. The tests have found no IP address or visited websites’ addresses leak.
  • Expanded functionality. There is a possibility of turning the VPN off for selected apps, anti-tracking protection, and an ad blocker.
  • Netflix support. CyberGhost VPN allows accessing geo-restricted US, UK, and FR Netflix content.
  • Safe torrenting. Unlike the apps for other platforms, the Android one doesn’t have a server list for P2P. However, you can see what locations are suited for torrenting on other OSs.
  • 1-day free trial period. Available on all the OSs with a credit card.

Prices and plans

CyberGhost VPN has 4 subscriptions of varying lengths as well as extra dedicated IP addresses:

  • $2.75 per month with the 3-year subscription
  • $3.69 per month with the 2-year subscription
  • $5.99 per month with the 12-month subscription
  • + $5 per month for every dedicated IP address (optional)

New customers get 2 extra months free of charge when subscribing for 3 years.

  You can pay with:

Credit cards

PayPal

Bitcoin

 

How do the prices of CyberGhost VPN compare to the other services?

(the comparison is drawn with the subscriptions of the other VPNs on our Top 5 ranking that are of the same lengths)

Provider 3 year (monthly) 2 year (monthly) 12 month (monthly) 1 month
CyberGhost VPN $2.75 $3.69 $5.99 $12.99
ExpressVPN - - $6.67 $12.95
NordVPN $3.49 $4.99 $6.99 $11.95
Surfshark - $1.99 $5.99 $11.95
Mullvad €5 €5 €5 €5

 

The employees of VPN-Review.com have personally confirmed that the provider’s stable level of quality not only on smartphones but also on desktops. The announced features indeed allow fine-tuning the connection itself as well as general security and privacy.

The server performance speed is mostly good. Thanks to their large number, the user-generated load on them is well-distributed. Thus, there are no speed fluctuations on the locations of the service.

The service itself is legally based in Romania. It’s a safe jurisdiction with laws that restrict outside access to private information. There are also no known cases of surrendering users’ private data to third parties with vested interests.

 

More about CyberGhost:

 


 

5. Mullvad

 

Pros Cons
WireGuard protocol No Netflix support
Anonymous signup No manual settings on Android
Confirmed security  

 

Overview

 

Mullvad is one of the few VPN services that use WireGuard as their main tunneling protocol.

Thanks to it, the minimal loss of speed is achieved along with the almost instant connection to a server, lowest possible CPU and battery load. The same level of security and privacy as with the classical protocols are provided still

 

Features

  • AES-256 encryption
  • Efficiently hides the IP address. We have made sure that the app doesn’t leak private data and traffic.
  • Safe torrenting. The provider allows torrenting on its servers.
  • Has its own servers. A user can choose whether they want to connect to a rented server or a company-owned one.

Prices and plans

Mullvad has only one tariff that doesn’t depend on the term of the subscription:

  • €5 per month

It’s caused by the fact that you don’t provide your email during the signup and there’s no way to identify users and their subscription.

During the registration, a user gets a coupon they must clear and enter its number into the app.

     You can pay with:

Credit cards

PayPal

Bitcoin

 

       Other methods:

bank wire

bank wire

Swish

Swish

cash

cash

 

How do the prices of Mullvad compare to the other services?

(the comparison is drawn with the subscriptions of the other VPNs on our Top 5 ranking that are of the same lengths)

Provider 1 month
Mullvad €5
CyberGhost VPN $12.99
ExpressVPN $12.95
NordVPN $11.95
Surfshark $11.95

 

I’ve analyzed the specifics of the signup and the privacy policy of Mullvad and concluded that it’s the most anonymous VPN out of the professional-level services. It also claims it doesn’t keep logs on its servers.

It’s worth noting that the Android app doesn’t support the Bridge mode (connection to a VPN server through Shadowsocks) available on Windows and Mac.

Another sizeable flaw is that Mullvad doesn’t allow bypassing the geo-restrictions of the popular video services and TV channels.

Other than that, it’s a safe modern provider with good connection speeds that do not overload the CPU and, therefore, the battery.

 

More about Mullvad:

 


 

Peculiarities and quirks of VPN apps for Android

The main characteristic of the modern mobile platforms is that they have standalone visualized apps. It is both good and bad:

+ You can find and install a VPN directly from the Google Market without visiting any website.

- There is a lot of low-quality “best” VPNs that attract users with their ostensibly free services and other unverified claims.

This flaw makes searching for a really efficient and beneficial service so much harder that the advantage of using Google Play is practically nullified. Even customer reviews don’t help because dishonest services now inflate their ratings by forcing their customers to give them the highest score in a variety of ways.

  • I don’t recommend using the Google Play Market to search for a suitable VPN app. A good service doesn’t claim to be free, inflate its ratings, etc. When you finish this article, you’ll be able to choose a really powerful and multifunctional professional-grade VPN.

So, what should you pay attention to when choosing a VPN that is efficient on Android in 2020?

  • The size of its technological infrastructure. There is a direct correlation between the number of servers and countries that a provider has and the quality of its services. Most VPNs usually have 5 to 20 servers while large ones can have up to 5000-6000 in 60 to countries and more.
  • Functionality. The modern VPN has far exceeded the boundaries of a simple IP change. Today, by using the virtual private network technology, you can not only improve your privacy but also fully protect your traffic, employ a multi-level IP address protection, bypass censorship, access the geo-blocked video content even of the services that resist the use of IP address changing, protect yourself from tracking, and much more.
  • App quality. This is an extremely important criterion because it directly affects security. Only a professionally made app that auto-updates regularly and has constant support will work to its fullest extent and support all the OS updates.
  • No log keeping. There are providers that have been confirmed (proven) to not keep user activity logs, then there are those who claim they don’t keep logs and those who keep them. Only the first two groups should be trusted.
  • The rating of the service. Its reputation and real customer reviews are important. You can find an article about Redditor reviews here on VPN Review.

 

When you choose a VPN to use it on Android 10 or an older version, pay attention to whether it supports Netflix and other streaming services. Not all providers manage to bypass geo-restrictions and give you access to the content of any country. If this aspect is important to you, my advice is to read the constantly updated list of VPNs for Netflix. Any of them is suitable for Android, too.

 


The top 5 of free Android VPNs

  • Freemium VPNs;
  • Absolutely free VPNs.

The first ones are regular paid services with a free limited plan. They are in the absolute majority.

The second ones are actually the real free VPNs. There are only a few of them in the world.

Attention! Most of the VPNs which declare themselves free ones and which you can easily find on the Google Play Market are paid providers that offer a short free trial period. When the period exceeds, you have to either pay for a subscription or delete an application. 

Just a few words about the two types of free VPN.

100% free VPNs do not offer applications. They make money on advertising, so they cannot afford good software, high-speed servers, and do not allow streaming. Their use implies outdated manual settings or installation and configuration of additional software.

In real life, it’s convenient to install only freemium VPN on Android. They offer software, have a wide range of countries, and even support Netflix, but ...

But the only purpose of their development is to attract users and convince them to switch to a paid subscription. The implication is that the capabilities of such free VPNs are strongly limited.

In practice, the following restrictions are taken place (moreover, as a rule, they are combined or happen all at once):

  Freemium VPN Free VPN
Speed 0-20Mbps 0-0.1Mbps
Bandwidth 0.2-10Gb per month* Uncommon
Choice of location 1-22 1-5
Streaming Uncommon -
Safety Good Bad
Anonymity Good Bad
Applications Frequent -

*- Free plans that are not limited by traffic also exist. But they are often restricted by speed or do not support torrenting and streaming.

Thus, there are no “handy” free VPNs. Something is missing all the time. Otherwise, it is not a Virtual Private Network at all.

Nevertheless, I offer you 5 least limited services with good security levels provided.

Each of them has its pros and cons.

1. Free Hide.me VPN for Android

Hide.me VPN for Android

In my opinion, the Malaysian service Hide.me is the most convenient free VPN for smartphones.

There are the main advantages and disadvantages of this free VPN:

+ relatively fast servers

+ 2Gb of traffic per month

+ Kill Switch
+ Split Tunneling

+ the activation without email or credit card

- 4 available countries

- Netflix doesn’t work

Of course, 2 Gb of traffic per month is not so much. But you can hardly find free VPNs without restrictions. If you want more traffic with a good speed, security and privacy, so you need to use paid VPNs for Android.

Check Hide.me review

 

2. Free Windscribe VPN for Android

Windscribe VPN for Android

Canadian VPN Windscribe offers from 2 to 10Gb of traffic per month.

2Gb – if you register anonymously.

10 Gb – if you leave your e-mail.

Pros and cons of Windscribe VPN:

+ 2-10Gb of traffic
+ Firewall (Kill Switch)
+ 11 countries

- low speed (measurements showed from 0.6 to 6 Mbit/s)

The version for Android doesn’t include any additional opportunities.

Windscribe is good for unblocking websites without video content.
A free version offered by this provider is not appropriate for multi-purpose use on the Internet.

Check Windscribe VPN review

 

3. Free ProtonVPN for Android

ProtonVPN for Android

The Swiss VPN provider ProtonVPN highlights two directions:

  1. A high-quality free plan
  2. The best standards of security

The first 7 days of using a free version is a trial of a “Plus” plan. That’s why, starting with ProtonVPN, you may appreciate a high-speed VPN for free without any restrictions.

Besides basic capabilities, you will be able to:

  • Unblock Netflix;
  • Use torrents anonymously;
  • Use a VPN in cooperation with TOR;
  • 33 countries are available;
  • The possibility to use specially protected servers located in a special bunker at a depth of 1 km.

On the eighth day you will get the message about the transition to a free plan:

The message about the end of a trial period

After this message, only 3 countries (the US, NL, JP) will remain and other restrictions from the message will enter. I tested the ProtonVPN application for both regimes, so everything is true. I must add that the speed on accessible locations decreased significantly, but it remained enough for comfortable web-surfing. So, after the end of a free trial you will have only basic opportunities, but with unlimited traffic. ProtonVPN restricts only the speed.

Overall, free ProtonVPN may function the first 7 days for everything, and then you may use it for solving the tasks with the VPN servers in the US, NL or JP at a low speed, but with a high level of privacy.

Check ProtonVPN review

 

4. Free TunnelBear for Android

TunnelBear for Android

There is one more amazing VPN, which offers to learn more about a paid version during a free trial, but with a traffic restriction. TunnelBear provides from 500 to 1000 Mb of traffic per month for free.

You must admit, this is nothing. Moreover, in order to get 1000 Mb instead of 500, you should tweet it. There is a button in the application:

Upgrade of a free plan

When you still have traffic, all the expanded functions are accessible in the application. There are lots of it:

  • GhostBear (the obfuscation of traffic for the hiding of a VPN)
  • VigilantBear (Kill Switch)
  • SplitBear (It is available only for Android. It allows listing the apps with a disconnected VPN).

Therefore, TunnelBear will be particularly helpful for bypassing the censorship with high requirements for the privacy and local websites with VPN’s restrictions.

When I tested the app for Android, I found out two more significant characteristics:

  1. unblocking Netflix
  2. availability of torrents

It may be effective even with limited traffic when you use the VPN rarely.

The provider is located in Canada with strict copyright laws. So be careful when you use the torrents. Even though there is not a 100% guarantee that it is saved.

Check TunnelBear review

 

5. Opera VPN for Android

Opera VPN for Android

If you need a VPN only for the views on the websites, so you should try Opera VPN.

It is not a real VPN, but a proxy. Strictly speaking, almost all of the VPN services offer enhancements for web-browsers, which are also a proxy with the encryption of traffic. Opera did the same thing, but with simpler functionality.

What opportunities does the Opera VPN present for Android?

  • hiding IP and visited addresses
  • unblocking websites
  • unblocking video streaming

Opera VPN isn’t suitable for:

  • KODI
  • Torrenting
  • VoIP telephony

You may choose 3 locations in three regions of the world. Opera VPN doesn’t have any other configurations or additional opportunities, as well as a paid plan. Everything is free.

The test showed the speed of no more than 20 Mbit/s at all locations, which is less than the best VPN services with the speed up to 80Mbit/s.

There is a particular challenge in initial VPN activation for Android in Opera configurations. Originally, VPN is activated only in private tabs, so you need to create a private tab:

Private tab’s creation

Only after this action, the “VPN” icon will appear, through which you may insert this function for all tabs and choose a location:

VPN indicator for access to the configurations

Opera VPN has a great disadvantage – you need to give up on your accustomed web-browser.

Check Opera VPN review

 


FAQs

🧾 How to use a VPN on Android?

The easiest way to use a VPN on a smartphone or tablet running on Android is to get a specialized app offered by a VPN service.

To protect the entire device including all the other apps, you need to connect to a chosen location (country). The connection button is going to be available to you as soon as you install the app.

💬 How do I choose a good VPN service?

Use the experience of our experts here at VPN-Review.com and real customers’ opinions. Make a list of VPN services you’re interested in and read their reviews and comparisons.

  1. Determine what purposes you need a VPN in.
  2. Make a preliminary list of services.
  3. Research their features, pros and cons.

👎 Why aren’t all the VPNs suitable for Android users?

Some VPN providers don’t offer apps for mobile platforms. Besides, many VPNs limit the functionality of their mobile apps or even don’t give their users the ability to tune the connection parameters.

🕵 Why is it hard to find a good service in the Play Market?

Most VPNs on the top list of the Google Play Market catalog are aimed at users who lack knowledge about how virtual networks operate. You can find exclusively marketing-heavy allure-oriented products among the most popular apps there. For example, some of them offer free access only for it to turn out to be temporary later on.

💪 What is a VPN capable of on Android?

The Virtual Private Network technology offers the same features for all the OSs and platforms:

  • Hiding the real location by changing the IP address
  • Protecting data about the visited resources
  • Encrypting and protecting the transmitted data
  • Bypassing restrictions and blocks
VPN-Review - Chief Editor
Dean Chester
Cybersecurity and online privacy expert and researcher. He's been published on OpenVPN, EC-Council Blog, DevSecOps, AT-T Business, SAP Community, etc. Dean has been testing VPNs for 8 years.

Write a review

8.5 Based on 16 reviews
Unprotected Wi-fi may be dangerous!!
Rating: 
8

Yep, VPN is super necessary on Android and other mobile/portable devices. Maybe there is some argument about desktops because you can make sure your connection is secure on them in other ways but with mobiles there are too many risks. A friend of mine (okay maybe it was me lol) once got her credit card data stolen because she entered them on a site through an unsecure wi-fi. Since then, I came to really appreciate VPN networks. I’ve tried quite a few of them out and in my experience, Express is the fastest VPN on Android. But now I guess it’s not very safe to use until they fix the bug. Oh well, probably will go with Proton for now.

Nord is fantastic!
Rating: 
8

Although there are so many services in the PlayStore, my favorite mobile VPN app is Nord! Apart from super useful features like obfuscation and split tunneling (without which I reckon VPN to be absolutely useless), it offers the richest server network. And what’s more, it constantly grows. Before paying for its subscription, I tried it for free due to a 7-day trial. It’s great I had an opportunity to test the VPN on my Android smartphone before paying for it. Not all VPNs allow it. Apart from other pluses, I would mention the SmartPlay feature. It’s awesome! All streaming services are available! Just love it!!!

Yes, NordVPN is my favorite

Yes, NordVPN is my favorite VPN service as well. Right now, I’m surfing the Internet using it.

free vpns are sucks
Rating: 
9

I love the idea of free stuff but good free vpns are pure fiction. Think, for instance, of ProtonVPN that was listed in your review. The provider is not as a no-log follower as it claims to be and it easily leaks your IPV6 and DNS. I don’t recommend using free vpns at all. Paid ones aren’t so expensive, at least you always can find a promo code. If you want a free VPN, go with TOR. Although I would not trust TOR for sensitive data as far as you never know who is sitting at one of their nodes, it is good for a simple web browsing.

Inmusicwetrust, do you have

Inmusicwetrust, do you have reliable information about ProtonVPN leaks?

feedback
Rating: 
10

Dean, I like your article. At least, I decided to delete Windscibe from my smartphone and install NordVPN instead. I’ve been using Windscribe app as a free mobile vpn for about 1 year and the more I used it the more I understood that this is not the provider I was looking for. I'm not satisfied with their limited amount of traffic and low speed. In fact, I personally turn on a vpn on the phone very occasionally (only when I need to use a free wi-fi hot spot) but with growing threats, I realized that I need more serious protection than Windscribe can bring.

Thanks!
Rating: 
9

Thanks for this review! Nice work, guys! For a start, I’ll try free VPN services. If none of them suits, I’ll check the paid ones. I think I can find the service that would meet my needs.

I like TunnelBear
Rating: 
7

TunnelBear is my choice! It copes with any task easily.

vpn for China
Rating: 
9

Although my best friend always uses a vpn for PC and Android, I didn’t try any of these services before. Leaving in the USA, I do not think it is necessary to have such apps on all possible devices. It’s different if you are going to a highly censored country, where lots of websites and social media are restricted. In this case, I find such apps highly useful. Actually, how can I get a vpn on my Android while already in China? Are vpn services illegal in this country?

John, foreign VPNs are

John, foreign VPNs are outlawed in China. You should use them with caution in this country. Under no circumstances should you visit local website through a VPN. What would I do if I hadn’t taken care of VPN in advance? As a rule, the websites of VPN services are available. I recommend contacting customer service and asking if they work in China and what is the best way to register being in this country. Some VPNs have mirror sites for China. Within one comment I won’t be able to respond in detail. The additional information is in our review dedicated to VPN providers for China.

Windscribe is good for Android
Rating: 
8

You shouldn’t trust free vpns, even if they claim themselves ‘’best free mobile vpns’’. All unlimited free vpns apps neglect out privacy and collect any possible data about users. If one cares about his fucking privacy on the internet, he should use limited plans of paid vpns. At least, they have no-logs policy (but not all of them, of course). I vote for Windscribe, its 2010 Gb are quite enough for my mobile traffic!

private itnernet access is the fastest
Rating: 
8

Been using vpns for what now 8 years I guess and most of that time its been on android cause I move around a lot due to work. I dson’t really need anything super secure just a simple solution that doesn’t screw my internets speed up. So far I think private access was the fastest android vpn I have tried.

Proton is perfect!
Rating: 
9

Totally agree with you man!!! ProtonVPN is a must on this list. But to my mind it’s the best free VPN for Android because it doesn’t have any limits in contrast to other VPNs with free versions. 33 countries are enough for any activity on the Internet! Splitting feature is the function I appreciate in such services. So I can use VPN to unblock Spotify for examples and use my real IP for bank transactions at a time. It’s very convenient.

App from PlayStore
Rating: 
9

It was an uphill struggle for me to find the best VPN application for Android. The number of VPNs in the PlayStore is huge and it’s uneasy to make the choice. But for me ProtonVPN is perfect. In contrast to some other services, it doesn’t keep logs. It has no speed restrictions on any plan.

Don't believe in free VPNs
Rating: 
6

Being a noop in tech-related issues, I’ve downloaded a free VPN on my Android tablet. Some days it was ok. But after 3 or 4 days, I could hardly connect to any server. And even when I’ve managed to do that, I could barely do smth. The speed was too slow, I suppose. I don’t believe a free VPN can be good. But I haven’t tried a paid service as well yet.

Thanks
Rating: 
10

Just a Thank - you to Chester and his Team for all the work they do in making this subject easier to understand