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Best free VPNs for iPhone and iPad in 2022


It is widely known that Apple iOS is truly secure. However, personal data is one of the most valuable assets today and unfortunately – highly targeted by cybercriminals and even some governments. Thus, putting an extra layer of security, like a VPN, is a wise decision if you want to increase your privacy and prevent data tracking.

Additionally, a reliable VPN for iPhone and iPad can do much more than just keeping you protected. It opens up ways to achieve Internet freedom where you can access all restricted and censored content, including websites, streaming platforms, and other media services. But the question is – can a free VPN do all of that?

Definitely! But only trustworthy VPN service providers should be considered, as most of the free VPNs earn money by selling user data to third parties. Or they simply spam you with bothersome ads. Not to mention the huge list of “free VPNs” offered on the App Store which end up costing more than regular VPNs.

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That being said, we have curated a list of the best free VPNs for iPhone and iOS devices in 2022 that are truly safe so that you could find the best provider stress-free. Continue reading to find out which are the good ones.

Top 5 best free VPNs for iPhone:

  1. NordVPN – best free VPN for iPhone
  2. Surfshark – top free iPhone VPN with unlimited connections
  3. Atlas VPN – trustworthy free VPN service
  4. IPVanish – very fast VPN for iPhone and iPad
  5. PureVPN – secure VPN for iOS devices

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Is it worth having a free VPN on iPhone?

The worth of a free VPN depends on your needs. Firstly, a free VPN for iOS can cover only basic needs as most of the free providers have very limited suites of security. You may lose a chance to pick a preferred server and location, or have a short and dull list of features that won’t even help you to bypass geo-restrictions.

Secondly, free VPNs are always looking for a way to make their users subscribe to paid services. Usually, a free version is only a commercial product that is meant to seduce you for a premium product. Therefore, all the limitations and constantly seen reminders to upgrade your plan might bring you more anxiety than security.

All in all, a free VPN is more like a short-term solution for taking care of your online security and anonymity. On the other hand, premium services allow you to have an unrestricted, unlimited, and safe browsing experience. With them, you can secure your identity even when a VPN connection drops, get rid of annoying ads, or access Netflix and other worldwide streaming services.

Pro tip

Looking for a good free VPN? If you want trustworthy services and a feature-rich package, we suggest using the free trials or the 30-day money-back guarantees of premium providers, like NordVPN or Surfshark.

Best free VPNs for iPhone and iPad – our detailed list

We absolutely have seen how many free VPNs there are waiting for your attention on the Apple App Store. And getting confused at that point is completely understandable.

To ease your way to getting a trustworthy free VPN, we have tested and picked these 7 free VPNs for your iOS device. For finding out whether they are actually the best, we have based on criteria that start with personalization for iOS, continue with safety, and end with features.

So, take a look and see if there’s The One that you were looking for.

1. NordVPN – overall best free VPN choice for iPhone

NordVPN banner
Based in:Panama
Unlimited data:Yes
Unblocks Netflix:Yes
Current deal:🔥 Get NordVPN with 68% OFF + 3 months FREE 🔥

NordVPN is the best free VPN for iPhones. It has a modern and user-friendly iOS app. You can easily select from 5500+ servers in 59 locations from a map/country list on your Apple device.

The app itself is extremely simple to navigate. You can connect through the main window and find features under other dedicated tabs. The new NordVPN iOS version even allows you to connect or disconnect through the widget on the Home screen.

Apart from that, NordVPN’s iOS app allows you to pick from different tunneling protocols. That includes IKEv2 and OpenVPN (TCP/UDP), but for the best speeds, we recommend the revolutionary NordLynx protocol.

Furthermore, this VPN includes additional security features, and it’s not something you usually get with iOS apps. For example, you can use a kill switch and the dark web monitoring features to protect your sensitive information.

Also, check this out: NordVPN works with Netflix and other streaming platforms, such as Hulu, BBC iPlayer, etc. You can use it to watch global content from anywhere.

Even though paid subscriptions cost from $2.99/month, you can try it risk-free with a 30-day money-back guarantee. For that, you’ll need to claim NordVPN’s free trial. If you do change your mind and want to get a paid plan, make sure to check NordVPN deals for discounts.

Read our full NordVPN review to find out more about this provider.

2. Surfshark – free VPN with unlimited connections for iPhone

Surfshark banner
Based in:The Netherlands
Unlimited data:Yes
Unblocks Netflix:Yes
Current deal:🔥 Get 84% OFF Surfshark + 2 months FREE 🔥

Surfshark is another top contender on our list of the best free VPNs for iPhone. You can enjoy an intuitive iOS app that allows you to select from over 3200 servers in 100 locations. Additionally, you get unlimited simultaneous connections, so your family can use it on their iPhones as well.

Surfshark’s iOS app is the definition of user-friendliness. Everything you need is available on the main screen, while settings and Surfshark One features are distributed under separate tabs. The VPN also has apps for Windows, Android, Linux, and macOS.

What’s also worth mentioning is that its iOS app is rich in features for a mobile app. You get a kill switch to stop all Internet traffic if the VPN connection drops. Additionally, there’s WireGuard support, so you can enjoy fast speeds and a stable connection.

When it comes to entertainment, you won’t be disappointed either. Surfshark works with Netflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime Video, and many other streaming platforms. So, you can watch any global shows on your iPhone while on the go.

The prices of paid subscriptions start from $2.05/month but there are also amazing Surfshark discounts. Alternatively, there’s an option to get a free Sufshark trial for 7 days and use the 30-day money-back guarantee for a longer trial period.

Learn more about this provider in our detailed Surfshark VPN review.

3. Atlas VPN – a trustworthy VPN companion for an iPhone

Atlas VPN banner
Based in:United States
Unlimited data:Yes
Unblocks Netflix:Yes (paid-only)
Current deal:🔥 Get Atlas VPN, now 85% OFF + 6 months FREE! 🔥

One more free VPN for Apple devices that we would vote for is Atlas VPN that is a mobile-focused provider. Besides being a decently personalized VPN for iOS, this provider also uses AES 256-bit encryption and claims not to collect user data. Meaning, your privacy remains safe and sound.

The Android and iOS apps of Atlas VPN are basically identical. One slightly uncomfortable aspect is that you have to scroll through locations to find which ones are free. However, if you don’t care about server location, you can simply click the main connect button.

You also get 5GB of data with a free plan. But if you decide to go for a premium plan with unlimited data, you won’t have to worry about spending too much money. Atlas VPN’s price starts from $1.64 per month.

Hopping on a free Atlas VPN’s deck would provide you with features like a kill switch, safe browsing, and P2P file sharing. So, you would stay protected from malicious websites and the danger of the VPN connection dropping off. Also, torrenting could fulfill your weekends.

But, truth be told, that’s not a lot and you would get more by subscribing to a paid version. For example, you could unblock streaming sites and detect data breaches.

Moving further, aside from IPSec/IKEv2, you can choose the speedy WireGuard protocol even with the free version. Well, here we won’t come across anything surprising, as Atlas VPN offers only three locations to choose from. But it claims to add new locations on a regular basis, so we can hope for better days to come.

For all the information you need, read our detailed Atlas VPN review.

4. IPVanish – very fast VPN for iPhone and iPad

IPVanish banner
Based in:United States
Unlimited data:Yes
Unblocks Netflix:Yes (paid-only)
Current deal:🔥 Get 71% OFF IPVanish + 3 months FREE!🔥

Another option for the best VPNs for iOS devices is the fast and reliable IPVanish. There isn’t a free version of this provider, but you can try it out risk-free with a 30-day money-back guarantee. So you have the time to try out all the great features IPVanish has.

The iPhone app delivers a very convenient and simple to use interface. Everything is neatly sectioned on the bottom of the screen, and you won’t have trouble figuring out how to use it.

There’s no need to be worried about your security with IPVanish since it encrypts your data with reliable AES-256 encryption. Additionally, the provider offers different tunneling protocols, one of which is the fastest and safest WireGuard. And IPVanish servers, while not specialized for torrenting, still support it.

If you’re interested in streaming – you’re in luck. IPVanish unblocks all the most popular streaming sites, like Netflix or Hulu. Additionally, you can pick from a massive fleet of 2000+ servers in 50 countries, so the global content libraries are at your fingertips.

Now the iOS app is user-friendly and the settings have several customization options. Also, it offers on demand connections, Siri shortcuts, and alternate connection mode features.

You can get IPVanish for the budget-friendly price of $3.19/month and cover up to 10 devices.

To learn more, head over to our IPVanish review.

5. PureVPN – secure VPN for iOS devices

purevpn
Based in:British Virgin Islands
Unlimited data:Yes
Unblocks Netflix:Yes (paid-only)
Current deal:🔥 Get PureVPN, now 87% OFF🔥

PureVPN is another option for iOS users that can be downloaded free. This provider has an extensive list of servers – 6500+ in 78 countries. And while there’s no free version or trial, you can try PureVPN risk-free with the 31-day money-back guarantee.

iPhone users may find it useful that the app displays server recommendations. Plus, you can place servers into favorites. This way, you can always access the server you need without scrolling through the whole list.

When it comes to security, PureVPN doesn’t play around. They use reliable AES-256 encryption to ensure top-notch security. So your data will be unhackable.

For performance review, you should be more than satisfied. You can pick between WireGuard, OpenVPN, and IKEv2 tunneling protocols for quick connection speeds and a smooth user experience.

Streaming also won’t be an issue, PureVPN successfully unblocks the libraries of all your favorite streaming sites, like Netflix, Hulu, or BBC iPlayer.

And you can get all of that for relatively cheap. PureVPN subscription prices start at $1.49/month, and you can cover up to 10 devices at once. Additionally, for higher security measures, you can pay not only by credit card, but they accept cryptocurrency payments as well.

If you’d like to learn more, check the full PureVPN review.

6. Ivacy VPN – underdog VPN for iPhone and iPad

Ivacy VPN banner
Based in:Singapore
Unlimited data:Yes
Unblocks Netflix:Yes (paid-only)
Current deal:🔥Get Ivacy VPN, now 90% OFF + gift!🔥

Ivacy VPN is a great option for VPN for iPhone and iPad, but it’s not too well known. This provider offers impressive 5700+ servers in 68 countries, so you’ll always find good connections. However, there’s no free version. But you can get a single-day trial and try out all the premium features.

The iOS app is very similar to the Android version, however, the former has less features. Plus, you can navigate through servers that are organized according to their purpose, like streaming or torrenting. And since you can connect 10 devices simultaneously, you can get it on Windows or macOS as well.

Now when it comes to speed, this isn’t one of the fastest VPNs. There’s no WireGuard protocol, but you can select the pretty fast and reliable IKEv2 protocol for iOS. Additionally, Ivacy VPN has P2P servers, so torrenting is also supported.

Next is security details, and Ivacy VPN protects your data with AES-256 encryption. The reliable no-logs policy is a required addition, so you can be certain that Ivacy VPN isn’t storing your data for future use.

If you’re interested in streaming, then the basics are covered – Ivacy VPN unblocks Netflix, BBC iPlayes, and YouTube.

The iOS app, while easy to use, cannot offer additional features. So do keep it in mind.

You can get Ivacy VPN for as low as $1.00/month on top of a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Check out the Ivacy VPN review for more information.

7. Proton VPN – a speedy and secure free VPN

ProtonVPN banner
Based in:Switzerland
Unlimited data:Yes
Unblocks Netflix:Yes (paid-only)
Current deal:🔥 Get up to 50% OFF Proton VPN + 6 months FREE! 🔥

Proton VPN is our top choice as a free VPN for iPhones and iPads. That’s because it offers unlimited data. But that’s not all, as it has also implemented military-grade encryption and has a no-logs policy.

Usually, the iOS version of a VPN app is quite behind the Android one. Not the case here. You’ll get to enjoy the kill switch feature, VPN accelerator, and DNS leaking prevention. The only features that are excluded are split tunneling.

Plus, you can even add the Proton VPN app widget to your screen. This lets you connect to the VPN without having to look for or open the app.

Also, Proton VPN allows you to choose between various tunneling protocols, which is a rare case in a free VPN. This includes WireGuard, OpenVPN (UDP and TCP), IKEv2/IPSec tunneling protocols.

If you stay with a free version instead of a premium one, you would get to pick from only 3 countries and their servers. But if you are worried about overcrowded servers, then you might get happier by knowing that Proton VPN has implemented a tool that shows the current server load.

The only downside of Proton VPN’s free version is that you won’t get an opportunity to access Netflix or any other big streaming platform. To get that privilege, you would have to upgrade your plan to a premium one. Its prices start at $3.99/month.

If you’re still not convinced, have a look at our in-depth ProtonVPN review.

8. Hotspot Shield – feature rich VPN for iPhone and iPad

Hotspot Shield banner
Based in:United States
Unlimited data:No
Unblocks Netflix:Yes (paid-only)
Current deal:🔥Save up to 40% OFF Hotspot Shield!🔥

Hotspot Shield is a free VPN for iPhone without subscription, and additionally, it’s one of the few providers whose mobile app is pretty close to the desktop versions. While there is a free version, it is really limited.

You get a dark-themed iOS app that is simple to navigate. That’s because all you get is the main window with the ability to choose limited speed servers for free. If you want to release the VPN’s full potential, you’ll have to upgrade.

The performance with premium plans won’t disappoint you thanks to the extremely fast Catapult Hydra tunneling protocol. So your connection speeds will not drop noticeably, and your streaming experience will be lag-free. For protection, you’ll also get to enjoy extremely secure AES-128 encryption.

As for streaming, it’s possible to unlock content only with Hotspot Shield Premium subscription. With it, you’ll unlock content from Netflix, BBC iPlayer, and YouTube. And with the expensive list of 3200+ servers in 80 locations, geo-locked content will be right at your fingertips.

The iOS app specifically comes with an identity scan, password manager, and spam-call blocker, however, you need to buy the premium subscription. Since the free version is rather lacking in security and features.

Learn more in our Hotspot Shield review.

9. Windscribe – solid VPN option for iOS

Windscribe banner
Based in: Canada
Unlimited data:No
Unblocks Netflix: Yes
Current deal:🔥 Get 55% OFF with a 1-year plan! 🔥

Windscribe might get you jumping around from happiness, as it unblocks Netflix even for free users. Just keep in mind that you only get to use up to 10GB of VPN-protected data, so there will only be a few episodes available per month.

Moreover, to get that 10GB, you would have to provide Windscribe with your email address. Yet, if you seek to stay as anonymous as possible, there will be only 2GB available for you.

Nevertheless, even by providing your email address, you would remain pretty secure as Windscribe uses AES-256 cipher and it has a no-logs policy (even though they are located in a 5-Eyes alliance country).

The iPhone app comes with a neat design, letting you easily find everything you need on the main screen. While it’s quite loaded, everything is very organized, so it didn’t appear to become an issue.

The thing we adore about Windscribe is the wide range of tunneling protocols you can pick from: IKEv2, OpenVPN (both UDP and TCP), Stealth, and WStunnel. That’s a great security benefit that you can rarely see in free VPNs.

Windscribe is also decently filled with features. With its free version, you receive a kill switch, SOCKS5 proxy, an ad blocker, and a secure hotspot function. Moreover, torrenting is also possible and you get to pick from 11 countries, which is outstanding as for a free VPN.

If you wish to have even more than all of this, then subscribing to a paid Windscribe plan would be a smart move to make. Not to mention the fact that you would also be safer.

If you want more information, read our in-depth Windscribe VPN review.

How we tested these free VPNs for iOS

It’s not easy for iOS users to choose the best free VPN. There are a bunch of important details that you have to pay attention to for picking it. Hence, below you will find a list that we have based on for finding the best free iPhone VPN.

  • Security. Look for AES-256 encryption and secure tunneling protocols as OpenVPN or WireGuard. We don’t fall for a VPN easily that doesn’t use these tools.
  • Unlimited data. The bigger the limitation is, the smaller amount of protected network you will have.
  • Speed. No one likes it when the network connection starts buffering. Hence, the faster a VPN is, the better browsing experience you will get.
  • Features. Free VPNs are already quite poor with features, so looking for feature-rich provider is a must.
  • Tolerance for iOS. Plenty of VPN providers leave iOS behind Android’s back. Thus, we look for those VPNs that still offer valuable features for iOS.

How do I set up a VPN on my iPhone for free?

Signing up and setting your iOS device for a free VPN is an easy and quick task to do. Below you will find a short guide on how to do that with NordVPN. So, grab your iPhone or iPad and follow the instructions:

  1. Head to the Apple App Store, search for and download the NordVPN app.
  2. After the installation is completed, open it and Sign Up.
  3. Select the subscription plan. You'll be able to use a 30-day money-back guarantee.
  4. Launch the app and click on the Settings icon in your account section. There, you’ll find the VPN connection tab where you can choose one of the tunneling protocols, including NordLynx, IKEv2, or OpenVPN (UDP or TCP variant).
  5. Connect to a server and start browsing safely!

Free iPhone VPN apps compared

To find out how flexible you’ll be with a free iPhone VPN, you should pay attention to several details. They include bandwidth and data limits, rating, extra supported devices, possibilities regarding streaming services, and, of course, privacy policy. And to ease your research on them, we have put this information into a table below.

VPN serviceData capApp Store ratingWorks with Apple TVUnblocks NetflixLogging
NordVPNUnlimited4.7YesYesNo-logs policy
SurfsharkUnlimited4.9YesYesNo-logs policy
Atlas VPN5GB4.8NoYes (paid-only)No-logs policy
IPVanishUnlimited4.2YesYes (paid-only)No-logs policy
PureVPNUnlimited3.9YesYes (paid-only)No-logs policy
Ivacy VPNUnlimited5YesYes (paid-only)No-logs policy
ProtonVPNUnlimited3.9YesYes (paid-only)No-logs policy
Hotspot Shield VPN500MB daily4.2NoYes (paid-only)No-logs policy not audited
Windscribe10GB4.6YesYesNo-logs policy

Why free VPNs might be dangerous

Despite certain restrictions that come along with a free VPN, there are additional disadvantages. And those are the ones that might be a threat to your Mac or another iOS device.

  • Free VPNs might allow the government to collect user data. Some free VPNs let the government sniff around so that a VPN could work in some heavily restricted countries. For example, China. As a result, the promised privacy with a VPN vanishes.
  • Free VPNs intend to plant a tracker for unspecified reasons. The reasons behind that can vary. For instance, targeting you with commercial content based on your location and activity. Additionally, it can be an extra source of money as it allows the provider to track every step you make while you are connected.
  • A free VPN might be a source of malware infection. Since free VPNs make money by bothering their users with pop-up ads from third parties, malware gets into your Mac through an ad.
  • A free VPN invites unwanted ads. As free VPNs don’t earn directly from you, they do the devil’s job and allow third parties to interfere with your browsing experience. Consequently, by connecting to a free VPN, you might receive more pop-ads or video ads than you did before.
  • With a free VPN, you might get your browser hijacked. As soon as your browser gets hijacked, you might be redirected to websites that you didn’t intend to visit. And often mentioned websites are malicious ones that you know aren’t healthy for your iOS device and your privacy.
  • Freebies are likely to offer you compromised security. With a free VPN, you are more likely to have an extremely limited list of tunneling protocols. One of them might be the PPTP protocol which is outdated and doesn’t encrypt your traffic. Therefore, you come across security gaps and leave your online privacy behind your back.

As you can already assume, free VPNs must make money somehow to maintain their services (although, they are momentary solutions). So, from here, you become a product that guarantees an income. You might sacrifice your own safety instead of the money that you would pay for a premium VPN. That being said, paying for a VPN causes you much fewer problems.

Read our detailed guide to learn more about the differences between free and paid VPNs.

Free iPhone VPNs to avoid

We shall all agree that there are some free VPNs that are trustworthy enough to have access to your real IP address. But let's agree on one more thing – you won’t fall for a VPN that’s included on a blacklist that you will find below.

  1. Betternet – although this provider is seen as one of the top free VPNs for iOS, its actions regarding your security say different things. What we mean by that is that with Betternet, you might have your IP address leaked or get infected with malware.
  2. Hotspot Shield – if you seek to stay as anonymous as possible, then just bypass Hotspot Shield. This free VPN provider was found to use trackers in its application. Oh, and DNS leaking was also detected.
  3. Opera VPN – well, you probably know Opera as a browser. But it also claims to have a free VPN which occurs to be only a browser proxy that can help you to stay anonymous but nothing else. Yet, Opera VPN isn’t successful at this as it broadly collects user data and is owned by a Chinese company.

Conclusion

Indeed, a free VPN might come as a useful security tool in cases such as protecting your privacy while connected to a public wifi or finding a feature that fits your needs. But are these benefits worth selling your personal data instead?

While you are connected to a free VPN, your browsing history and personal information might be in danger. Conversely, subscribing to a paid VPN for iPhone requires you to empty your wallet a bit but saves you plenty of nerves and guarantees strong protection.

All in all, you should always weigh a VPN provider before diving into its services all in.


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