Best VPN for Android

best vpn for android

What is the best VPN for Android? We’ve broken it all down for you in our comprehensive Android VPN Guide.

Minimum criteria for the best Android VPN list

If you don’t want to read our full analyses, our best pick for Android is NordVPN. All other VPNs in the list are matching these minimum criteria:

  • Native Android App, which is easy to install from Google Play Store
  • Free trial trough Google Play Store account
  • Trusted and audited VPN service provider
  • Kill Switch Feature
  • Reliable for streaming and torrenting
  • Works on your other devices too
  • Fair price

If you are looking for two alternative options, there are ExpressVPN and Surfshark.

Avoid free unknown VPNs from Play Store

Before you purchase or download any VPN service, there are a few things you should know. First, you need to be aware that while there are both free and paid VPN services out there, free services aren’t on par with the paid ones.

It’s best to avoid free VPNs in the Google Play Store as they don’t properly secure your data and they throttle your Internet speeds. Even worse, some of them can potentially exploit your device and data. While you might be getting a VPN to secure your data, some of the free VPNs simply track your data and sell it to third parties!

If you’re looking at using a VPN for a short period and don’t want to spend the money on a paid service, many paid services offer a 7-day or 14-day free trial that you can use without submitting any credit card information.

From there, most paid services offer some sort of money back guarantee too! From the providers we reviewed, the moneyback guarantees ranged from 14-days to 45-days. You’ll get a secured connection and can always cancel it within the moneyback window and not pay a dime!

Protocols & Features for Android VPN

You’re getting a VPN for one of two reasons: you either want to access geo-restricted content, or you want to secure your information. But to know how your VPN does that for you, you need to understand some of the basic principles and protocols that make VPNs work.

Kill Switch

All the best VPN services have a killswitch. It’s the first line of defense. If your connection drops with a VPN service and you don’t have a killswitch, your data can leak straight to the web. It’s the exact reason you have a VPN, and if it drops, it stops working.

A killswitch automatically shuts off your internet connection if the VPN server drops. Killswitches mean no leaked data and foolproof protection.

WebRTC Protection

Whether it’s a top rated VPN for Android or not, one of the primary functions of a VPN is to mask your location. That way, companies can’t link your Internet history directly to you. It does this by masking your current IP address and displaying the server’s IP address instead.

But if there is a WebRTC leak, you’re not getting that protection. The top VPN services protect against this – some of the free services don’t.

Encrypting Data

It’s one of the essential features of a VPN. Before your data leaves your device, it gets encrypted. This is especially important if you’re using a public Wi-Fi network. If your data isn’t encrypted, a hacker can steal it before or after it reaches the router.

Credit card information, routing numbers, social media logins, and more are all vulnerable.

Private Servers

VPNs work by directing all of your information through private servers located around the globe. These servers protect your data before sending it to its final destination. It’s the lynchpin for VPN services, and the servers need to remain private and secured, or else your data is vulnerable.

Paid VPN servers do an outstanding job, while free services don’t always have the most secure servers.  

Data Tracking and Data Logs

Most VPN services will track your data usage to some degree, but there are a few that don’t track anything. More importantly, your VPN shouldn’t be keeping data logs.

If your VPN keeps data logs, there is a record of your activity that a hacker can get. Those logs would contain records of your online banking information and more. Just because you’re not doing something illegal doesn’t mean data logs don’t matter.

Some free VPNs will keep data logs, the paid services that we looked into do not.

What Makes A Good VPN for Android

It’s all about what you’re looking for! Of course, a good VPN needs to encrypt and secure your data correctly, but it’s about more than that.

More servers mean fewer people are bogging down each one, and more locations mean that you can easily access a server closer to you for faster speeds.

Another nifty feature that some VPNs offer is ad blocking. This keeps annoying ads at bay, but it also prevents potential malware or phishing attacks from taking over your device.

Look for Cross Compatibility

Chances are you have more than one device, and that they’re not Androids! If you’re purchasing a subscription, you should check to see if they can secure all of your devices.

From laptops and PCs to your family member’s iOS device, why not get a VPN service that can secure them all? Fortunately for you, all the paid services that we reviewed have apps for just about everything. However, keep in mind the number of devices that each service supports under a single subscription.

Best VPNs for Android

If you’re serious about securing your data and gaining a little extra privacy, a paid VPN service is precisely what you need. They offer superior protection, more servers, faster speeds, more compatibility, and so much more! But what’s the best VPN for Android? Keep reading and decide for yourself!

Surfshark – A+

surfshark

It’s not the perfect VPN for Android – but it’s not far off. It comes at a great price, has tons of servers and locations to choose from, and runs on RAM-only servers.

Cost

Surfshark offers three competitive pricing options that you can choose from. Their monthly plan is comparable to other VPN options at $12.95 a month. But from there, the rates drop drastically.

Their 6-month plan is $38.94, and they have an annual plan for $59.76. However, if you purchase the yearly plan, Surfshark automatically gives you another 12-months for FREE! So, for the first two years, you’re only paying $59.76.

All of their plans come with a 30-day money-back guarantee. If you’re not happy with their service for any reason, you can cancel your subscription and get all of your money back! 

Data Security

If you’re looking at using a VPN, you don’t want to sacrifice data security. Surfshark gives you everything you could want. They don’t keep any activity logs, and they run on RAM-only servers network. It’s everything you could want with a VPN.

Servers

Surfshark doesn’t have the most locations or servers compared to other VPN services, but they offer more than enough for the everyday user.

They have over 1,700 servers located in 63 different countries. Whether you’re looking to region jump to get around geo-restricted content or want the fastest possible connection by connecting to a server close to you, Surfshark has plenty of options for you to choose from.

Ad Blocking

Surshark is one of the few VPN services with comprehensive ad blockers built into all of their plans. This might not seem like it matters much, but it helps protect you from phishing and malware strikes before they ever get a chance to take root. It’s a nice perk that you can’t get from every service.

Number of Devices

It’s by far the most significant selling point of Surfshark. With only one account, you can use Surfshark on an unlimited number of devices.

Want to install a VPN on every mobile device for your family of five? Not a problem. The laptops and computers in the house too? Go right ahead! It doesn’t matter how many devices you have. You can protect them all with one subscription.

Ease of Use

Surfshark is available straight through the Google Play Store, and all you need to do to get started is to download the app and select a plan. Surfshark works with Android TV, all Android devices, Apple devices, Chrome, and more!  

ExpressVPN – A

expressvpn

While ExpressVPN comes with a ton of features and is among the easiest VPNs to use, it comes with a price. In this case, it’s the literal price tag. ExpressVPN is the most expensive VPN that we reviewed, but it’s also worth every penny.  

Cost

ExpressVPN’s monthly subscription is similar to other VPNs at $12.95 a month. From there, they offer a 6-month subscription that costs $60. However, their 12-month plan is $100, and they don’t provide any cheaper or longer options.

This makes their best deal far more expensive than their competitors’ best prices. While they offer a hassle-free Android VPN and easy-to-use platform, you’re paying for the convenience. 

Data Security

ExpressVPN doesn’t compromise on security. They don’t keep activity logs and always mask your IP address. It’s the gold standard of protection, and ExpressVPN easily clears the bar.

Moreover, ExpressVPN has a killswitch built into all of their platforms for enhanced security every time you activate your VPN.

Servers

While you’ll find VPNs with more servers, you won’t find one with servers in more countries. ExpressVPN has over 3,000 servers in 160 different countries. No matter where you’re at, you’ll have access to a server close to you.

Furthermore, with over 3,000 servers total, speed is rarely a concern.

Ad Blocking – N/A

While ExpressVPN offers a hassle-free installation and utilization process, they’ve yet to integrate any adblockers into their service. While there are free ad blockers out there that can get the job done, it’d be nice if they could turn it into an all-in-one service.

Number of Devices

ExpressVPN allows you to connect up to 5 devices simultaneously with a single subscription. While this is usually enough for most people, it’s on the lower end of what paid VPN services offer.

Ease of Use

ExpressVPN’s main selling point is that it’s insanely simple to install and use. They have options for Android TV, computers, mobile devices, and more! Moreover, it couldn’t get easier to use.

Once you’ve downloaded the app and logged into your account, all you need to do is click a button to turn it on. Switching servers is just as easy.  

NordVPN – A+

nordvpn

NordVPN is right up there with ExpressVPN as one of the biggest names in the industry. They have tons of servers, and it’s insanely easy to use and expertly secures your data. Furthermore, it’s far cheaper than ExpressVPN, earning it slightly better grades overall.

Cost

NordVPN has three different pricing options, and they’re among the most affordable in the industry. Their $11.95 a month option is a smidge cheaper than a few other options, but what really starts to set them apart are their 12-month and 24-month plans.

The 12-month plan costs $59 for the year, and the 24-month plan is an ultra-reasonable $89. You’ll be hard-pressed to find a better deal that isn’t a one time offer.

Data Security

NordVPN takes your security seriously. They don’t keep data tracking logs, and they mask your IP address from the world. This gives you enhanced security and privacy, and it’s the highest level of protection that a VPN can provide. They have a built-in killswitch for added protection too!

Location Warp

While NordVPN doesn’t offer as many servers or countries as some other VPN service, it’s not like they lack options. They have over 5,500 servers located in 59 different countries. No matter where you’re trying to connect from or which region you’re trying to jump to, NordVPN has the server you’re looking for.

Ad Blocking

NordVPN’s ad blocking technology isn’t perfect, but it’s pretty darn good. It blocks all pop-up and auto-play video ads no matter the device you’re using. So, not only will you stop getting ads on your Android device when you’re browsing the web, but you won’t have to deal with them when you hop back on your PC either!

Number of Devices

NordVPN allows you to connect up to six devices simultaneously. This is usually more than enough for most households, and it’s one more than some other VPN services offer. It’s important to note that it’s six devices using the service at one time. So, if you log off your computer and disconnect the VPN, it won’t count against your total number of active devices.

Ease of Use

Like most of the other paid VPN services that we reviewed, NordVPN is incredibly easy to use. They have apps for Android, Android TV, and so much more! All you need to do is download the app, login, and turn on the VPN to get started!

PrivateVPN – A

privatevpn

PrivateVPN is one of the newer VPN services out there, and they’re quickly making their mark as one of the most reliable and affordable. They offer excellent data protection, great prices, and an easy-to-use platform. Their biggest drawback is the number of servers they have available, but they’re routinely adding more as they grow.

Cost

New companies often offer cheaper rates than their more established peers; PrivateVPN fits that category. Their monthly plans only cost $8.10 a month, and they offer 3-month and 12-month plans too.

Their 3-month plan is an affordable $15.08, and their 12-month plan costs $49.68. Furthermore, their 12-month plan gives you an additional 12 months for free. So, all you’ll have to pay for the first two years of service is $49.68.

PrivateVPN also offers a 30-day money back guarantee as long as you don’t use over 100GB of data.

Data Security

PrivateVPN doesn’t keep any tracking information and masks your IP address wherever you go. This keeps your information private no matter where you go.

Servers

While PrivateVPN offers servers in over 60 countries, they only have slightly over 100 servers overall. That might sound like a lot, but other VPN services have over 7,000! The more servers, the less bogged down they get, and the closer you can find a server to your location for faster service.

Ad Blocking – N/A

PrivateVPN does not currently offer any ad blocking services.

Number of Devices

With PrivateVPN, you can use up to six devices on any subscription simultaneously. This is typical for a VPN service and is more than enough for most users.  

Ease of Use

PrivateVPN works on a wide array of applications. Despite its smaller size, their VPN works on Android TV, Firesticks, tablets, mobile devices, and more! Simply download the app, login, and get started!

CyberGhost – B

cyberghost

CyberGhost has more servers than any other VPN service that we reviewed. If you’re looking for fast service for a great price, CyberGhost has you covered. However, they don’t have the most stringent security protocols. While most users will never notice a difference, it is a concern that it’s not as secure as other VPN services.  

Cost

CyberGhost offers three different pricing options for you to choose from. Their monthly plan starts at $12.99 a month, which is the standard rate for most VPN services. Their annual plan is $47.88, and you can save a little more money if you opt for a 24-month plan priced at $83.76.

CyberGhost has two different money-back guarantee programs. There is a 14-day money-back guarantee for their monthly subscription, and for their 12-month and 24-month plans, they offer a 45-day money-back guarantee. Cancel the subscription at any time for any reason within those windows, and they’ll refund your purchase completely.

Servers

We’ve yet to find a VPN with more servers than CyberGhost. They offer over 9,000 servers located in over 90 countries. More servers and more locations mean faster speeds for you and access to more geo-restricted content.

Ad Blocking

CyberGhost comes with excellent ad blocking services to help protect you from malware and phishing attacks. Their ad blocking services work on mobile devices and their regular VPN services. It’s a great perk that other VPN services should take note of.

Number of Devices

While CyberGhost does limit the number of devices you can use on a single account, they allow you to use more than most other services. They limit the number of devices that can utilize CyberGhost to seven on a single account. This is the number of devices that run CyberGhost simultaneously, not the number that can have the VPN installed.

Ease of Use

Like all the paid VPN services that we reviewed, CyberGhost is extremely easy to use, no matter your device. They have apps for mobile devices, Android TVs, and more! CyberGhost gives you the ability to protect all of your devices with one easy to use service! Download, login, and turn it on!

PrivateInternetAccess – B+

privateinternetaccess

PrivateInternetAccess is one of the bigger names in the VPN game, and as such, they are also one of the more affordable options. They offer excellent security, more location options than most people need, and optional ad blocking services that protect you from malware and phishing attacks.

Cost

PrivateInternetAccess offers the lowest month-to-month rate of any of the paid VPN services that we reviewed. At only $6.95 a month, if you’re looking to try out a VPN before you commit, this might be the plan for you.

However, if you try their service and like it, they offer an annual package for $39.95, which is also one of the more affordably priced options.

Data Security

Like all the top names in the industry, they don’t have any activity logs, mask your IP address, and come equipped with a killswitch to protect your information further.

Servers

While PrivateInternetAccess gives you access to servers in 28 different countries, they only have 45 servers overall. This means that you’ll have a decent array of options to choose from if you’re looking to circumvent geo-restricted content, but the servers are likely to get bogged down, and you’ll experience slower internet speeds.

Furthermore, if you’re looking for a server closer to your physical location to maximize speed, they have fewer options available for you to choose from.

Ad Blocking

PrivateInternetAccess has one of the best ad blocking features of all the VPN services we reviewed. It’s not that they are better at blocking ads than the other services, but they give you the option to turn off the feature when and if you don’t want to use it.

That means you don’t have to worry about it blocking things you need to access a site fully. Furthermore, they’ve offered this service since 2016, so they’ve had plenty of time to get it right.

Number of Devices

PrivateInternetAccess does limit the number of devices you can use on one subscription. They limit the number of devices to five, which is on the lower end of the spectrum. However, this is still far more devices than most people need.

Ease of Use

Like all the paid services that we looked at, PrivateInternetAccess works on your Android device and Android TV. They have easy to download apps that make setting up and using your new VPN service easier than ever!  

IPVanish – A

ipvanish

IPVanish is an excellent service for those with a lot of devices. You never have to worry about maxing out the number of devices you can use on a single account, but they are slightly more expensive than some other VPN services. Furthermore, they don’t have quite as many servers as the biggest VPN companies.

Cost

While IPVanish has an affordable $10 month-to-month plan among the cheapest in the industry, the discounts aren’t as steep if you purchase longer subscriptions. Their 3-month plan costs $26.99, which is only a $3 savings over the month-to-month option.

They do offer an annual subscription for $77.99, but even this plan is more expensive than most of the competition’s yearlong subscriptions.

Data Security

IPVanish does offer excellent protection for your information. They don’t keep any activity logs, mask your IP address, and come with a killswitch. All of these features ensure that your data stays secure from start to finish.

Location Warp

IPVanish doesn’t lack in servers, but they don’t have the most either. They have over 1,300 servers located in 55 different countries, which is more than enough for most users. Whether you’re looking for a server close to you to maximize speed or you need to get around geo-restricted content, IPVanish is up to the task.

Ad Blocking – N/A

IPVanish currently does not offer any ad blocking services for any of their services.

Number of Devices

IPVanish is one of the few paid VPN services that don’t limit the number of devices you can download and use their services on at one time. No matter how many devices you’re connecting to a single account, IPVanish will cover it.

Ease of Use

Paid services come with ease of use. IPVanish is no different. They have Android mobile apps, an Android TV app, and so much more. No matter what device you’re trying to protect, IPVanish makes it easy.

Best Free VPN for Android

While there are tons of perks to paid VPN services and even more concerns with free ones, sometimes you need a VPN but can’t drop the cash. That’s why we took the time to break down three of the most popular free services.

While some of these services offer paid subscriptions, we are reviewing the free accounts here!  

Proton VPN Free

protonvpn

Even for a free VPN, ProtonVPN is a considarably good choice. Yes, they throttle your speed, and you can’t access any geo-restricted content. But there are no data limits they set in the free version.

Data Security

ProtonVPN is likely the most secure and private service among free VPNs. This Swiss-based company takes a true privacy-centric approach.

Servers

They give you access to servers in three different countries, but they still won’t let you get around any geo-restricted content. You can only have one VPN connection at a time with limited bandwidth.

Ease of Use

Despite being a free VPN service, it’s relatively easy to set up and use. They offer apps for Android devices and Android TV, but with their limited speeds, it’s hard to use effectively. Moreover, you can’t stream any shows through their free account. Netflix, Hulu, Disney+, and more are all blocked.

Hotspot Shield

hotspotshield

If you’re looking for a VPN to secure a few financial transactions, Hotspot Shield Free is a viable option. Anything more than that, and it’s virtually unusable. They cap your connection speed to a miserable 2 Mbps, which is too slow to do much of anything.  

Furthermore, they cap the amount of secured data on their free plans. They only offer one server location, and you can’t circumvent any geo-restricted content either.

Data Security

While Hotspot Shield only gives you 500Mb per day of secured data, for that 500Mb, they do a reasonably good job. Their services include a built-in killswitch, but they track your data usage, even if they aren’t tracking your actual activity.

Servers

Hotspot Shield only gives you one server in one location. While this would already affect your speed, Hotspot Shield intentionally slows it down even more. If you’re looking to region jump, forget about it, and the server won’t unlock any geo-blocked content.

Ad Blocking – N/A

Hotspot Shield does not offer any ad blocking with their free service.

Ease of Use

They have tons of apps to choose from, including apps for Android TV! But since TunnelBear significantly throttles your speed, you won’t be able to stream any shows without constant buffering and low-quality resolution.

TunnelBear

tunnelbear

Like Hotspot Shield, Tunnelbear limits the amount of secured data you can transfer to 500Mb. However, TunnelBear does not limit or throttle your Internet speed during this. TunnelBear designed their free plan to be a trial period, so you’ll get full access to their app, but they won’t secure your data forever. If at the end of the 500Mb trial you still want their service, you’ll have to upgrade. 

Data Security

While TunnelBear does track your data so they can limit you on their free plan, they do an excellent job at protecting your data until you reach 500Mb of data usage.

Location Warp

TunnelBear doesn’t have the most country locations, but you aren’t exactly limited either. You get access to a wide assortment of servers in 22 different countries. This gives you the ability to pick the region closest to you for maximum speed or jump to another country to access new shows and content!

Ad Blocking

TunnelBear offers ad blocking on all of their plans – even the free one! A little extra security from malware and phishing attacks is always a good thing.

Ease of Use

Not only will TunnelBear stop encrypting your information after 500Mb, but they don’t offer any Android TV apps for either their paid or free services. They do have an app for mobile devices, but every other VPN service we reviewed provides more.

Summary

No matter your reason for wanting a VPN for Android, it’s vital to get a good one. Start securing your data today and get access to a ton of geo-restricted content.

FAQ

We know that you have questions about VPNs. That’s why we answered some of the most common questions here.