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Best VPNs for mobile in 2023


Having a mobile VPN app is an ideal solution to protect your device from third parties. This includes hackers on public networks trying to steal your data or ISPs collecting your information.

A VPN for your smartphone encrypts your data, so you wouldn’t be susceptible to phishing attacks or other types of social engineering. This way, you’re safe everywhere, no matter if it’s a public or private network. Plus, a VPN can even help you access geo-restricted streaming platforms or content libraries.

But how to choose the right service? To help you out, we researched and tested the best mobile VPN services based on speeds, security, price, streaming capabilities. Continue reading to find out the top VPN recommendations for mobile devices in 2023.

Top 5 best VPN apps for mobile

  1. Surfshark – best VPN for mobile overall
  2. NordVPN – fast and secure VPN for mobile devices
  3. Atlas VPN – affordable mobile VPN with a free version
  4. ExpressVPN – security-oriented smartphone VPN
  5. CyberGhost – speedy and suitable for streaming VPN

What makes the best mobile VPN?

The best VPN should ensure advanced measures to keep you safe online, whether at home or on public wifi networks. Here are all things that make the best mobile VPN:

  • Security. Mobile devices are susceptible to hacks over public networks. That’s why ensuring advanced security features is a must. This can include a kill switch for preventing data leaks if your VPN connection drops. Threat protection is another useful addition for preventing malicious contents.
  • Privacy. A clear no-logging policy is a must – a VPN mustn’t gather any of your data. Even better if the policy is audited by an independent auditing firm.
  • Speeds. VPNs that don’t compromise device speeds for the sake of security are what . It’s better to choose services that don’t reduce your internet connection too much and are some of the fastest VPNs.
  • Streaming capabilities. If you’re looking for an Android or iOS VPN for streaming, this factor is also important to consider. Make sure the VPN of your choice is capable of unblocking geo-restricted services.
  • Price. Even the top VPNs shouldn’t be overpriced. The best picks are services that give you your money’s worth.

The best VPNs for mobile – our detailed list:

Below you’ll find the list of the best mobile VPN providers we’ve tested out and deemed worthy. These providers meet our main criteria of encrypting your data from leaks and hacks, include a no-log policy, and have a variety of server locations to choose from.

1. Surfshark – the best mobile VPN in 2023

Surfshark banner
Based in:The Netherlands
Servers:3200+ in 100 countries
Simultaneous connections:Unlimited
Current deal:🔥Get 82% OFF Surfshark + 2 months FREE🔥

Surfshark is the best mobile VPN available on the market. It has well-developed apps for both Android and iOS, 3200+ servers in 100 countries to choose from, and a vast list of attractive features to satisfy all your needs.

User experience. The setup went as easy as usual with mobile apps – all we had to do was get the app from the dedicated app store and create an account. The application is eye candy that isn’t only nice to look at but it’s also very intuitive and easy to use.

Security. Surfshark apps include a functional kill switch that won’t let your data leak in case the VPN drops. There’s also the CleanWeb freebie that blocks malicious content so you’d be able to browse stress-free.

Privacy. We read Surfshark’s privacy policy and it’s clear that it’s truly a no-logs VPN. The only data they keep is for improving their services, yet you have a choice to opt out. Plus, it has recently been audited by the Deloitte firm, proving it doesn't collect your data.

Speeds. Surfshark uses the WireGuard protocol, which is considered one of the fastest protocols on the market. Thanks to it, the VPN retained 90% of initial internet speeds on average. That’s enough speed for both streaming and casual browsing!

Streaming. This VPN managed to unblock loads of streaming services, including Netflix libraries, Hulu, HBO Max, Disney Plus, and more.

Surfshark comes with attractive prices starting from $2.30/month! Plus, you can claim the 7-day free trial, and there’s also a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Get to know more details in the Surfshark VPN review.

2. NordVPN – fast and secure mobile VPN

NordVPN banner
Based in:Panama
Servers:5500+ in 60 countries
Simultaneous connections:
6
Current deal:🔥Get NordVPN with 63% OFF + 3 months FREE!🔥

NordVPN is one of the most popular mobile VPN providers due to its great harmony between good security features and blazing fast speeds. The VPN offers more than 5500 servers in 60 countries, letting you unlock content from all around the world.

User experience. NordVPN mobile apps are sleek and very easy to use. Everything is organized so well that you hardly ever get to question the comfort of the application.

Security. NordVPN has a reliable kill switch that will help you keep your data safe in case the VPN disconnects by accident. There’s also threat protection that protects you from malicious activity and is one of the best ad blockers on the market.

Privacy. After reading NordVPN’s policy, we found that it’s a zero-logs provider. That’s because it collects crash error and application diagnostic related data which you can opt out of.

Speeds. NordVPN is an extremely fast VPN – you won’t notice it working at all. Thanks to its proprietary tunneling protocol called NordLynx, it retains around 94% of initial internet speeds on average.

Streaming. If streaming is what you want a VPN for, NordVPN can effortlessly bypass restrictions on Netflix, HBO Max, BBC iPlayer, Hulu, and more.

The prices of NordVPN start from $3.29/month. You can also make use of the 7-day free trial on Android and a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Get to know more details in the NordVPN review.

3. Atlas VPN – a simplistic and affordable VPN

Atlas VPN banner
Based in:United States
Servers:750+ in 38 countries
Simultaneous connections:
Unlimited
Current deal:🔥Get Atlas VPN, now 83% OFF + 3 months FREE!🔥

Atlas VPN is a solid choice as a mobile VPN. It’s a simplistic but secure VPN provider that offers low prices. Not to mention that it also offers a free version. While there are only 750+ servers in 38 countries to choose from, there’s more than enough to find the best possible speeds.

User experience. Both OS apps have a clean design and are easy to navigate. So, whether you’re a VPN newbie or an advanced user, Atlas VPN is a great choice.

Security. With Atlas VPN, you get a market-standard kill switch that ensures protection of your data. Additionally, you can make use of the SafeBrowse feature that blocks malicious sites.

Privacy. Atlas VPN privacy policy says they don’t retain, collect, or log any of your data, including your browsing activities. While the policy isn’t audited and the VPN is based in the US (which belongs to the 5-eyes alliance), they don’t have any prior reputational issues.

Speeds. This VPN uses the WireGuard protocol. That’s part of the reason why it retains around 80% of your initial connection speeds on average.

Streaming. Atlas VPN can let you access geo-restricted content on YouTube TV, Netflix, Hulu, BBC iPlayer, Netflix, and HBO Max.

Premium pricing of Atlas VPN starts from $1.82/month. You can also connect as many devices as you want. A 30-day money-back guarantee applies as well.

Get to know more details in the Atlas VPN review.

4. ExpressVPN – mobile VPN for advanced security

ExpressVPN banner
Based in:British Virgin Islands
Servers:3000+ in 94 countries
Simultaneous connections:
5
Current deal:🔥Get ExpressVPN, now 49% OFF the 1-year plan!🔥

ExpressVPN is an excellent VPN for smartphone devices with good security features. It covers both Android and iOS systems and has more than 3000 servers in 94 countries to choose from.

User experience. ExpressVPN interface is very organized and minimalistic, so you won’t get lost no matter what you’re looking for.

Security. With this VPN, you’re getting a functional kill switch to prevent data theft if the VPN disconnects. A threat manager is also available, and it prevents not only malicious activity but trackers as well.

Privacy. ExpressVPN doesn’t log your online activities, IP address, or anything related to it. To prove it, they’ve even done independent audits of the policy.

Speeds. With this VPN, you won’t have trouble with slow performance. During our tests, it retained up to 77% of initial connection speeds. The tests were performed with its proprietary Lightway protocol.

Streaming. ExpressVPN speeds will help you have a buffering-free streaming experience. You can use it to watch geo-blocked Netflix libraries, HBO Max, YouTube TV, Hulu, Disney Plus, and more.

You can get ExpressVPN for $6.67/month. While it’s more expensive than NordVPN or Surfshark, it does let you connect up to 5 devices on the same account. A 30-day money-back guarantee is available as well.

Get to know more details in the ExpressVPN review.

5. CyberGhost – speedy smartphone VPN for streaming

CyberGhost VPN banner
Based in:Romania
Servers:9700+ in 91 countries
Simultaneous connections:
7
Current deal:🔥Get CyberGhost VPN, now 83% OFF + 2 months FREE🔥

CyberGhost is one of the fastest mobile VPNs that you can use for both security and streaming. It can unblock plenty of streaming platforms, offers great security features as well as more than 9700 servers in 91 countries to choose from.

User experience: CyberGhost apps are intuitive and very simple to set up. The apps look very modern and provide you with all the information you may need.

Security. Unlike all other VPNs on this list, CyberGhost lacks a kill switch on iOS. Yet, it does provide an ad blocker for exactly what the name implies. There’s also NoSpy servers managed by CyberGhost that ensure extra privacy for you.

Privacy. After reading the privacy policy, it’s clear that CyberGhost doesn’t collect any data regarding your online activities or other. It has even been audited, so it further demonstrates reliability..

Speeds. In terms of performance, CyberGhost is even faster than Atlas VPN or ExpressVPN. It retained 84% of initial connection speeds during our testing, so you’re guaranteed a buffering-free streaming and lagging-free browsing experience.

Streaming. Whether you want to access geo-blocked content on Netflix, YouTube TV, Hulu, Apple TV, BBC iPlayer, or any other streaming site, this VPN can do it all.

The prices of CyberGhost start from just $2.19/month. Plus, its money-back guarantee extends to 45 days.

Get to know more details in the CyberGhost review.

How we selected and tested these mobile VPNs

Listed below are the requirements we have for a good mobile VPN application. So you’d know what to really pay attention to when choosing the best mobile VPN provider.

  • Supported systems. We made sure that all of the providers on this list offer support for both Android and iOS devices.
  • Encryption and fast protocols. All VPNs on this list ensure one of the strongest – AES – encryptions on the market, making your data safe and lessening the dangers of data leaks. Also, fast protocols, such as WireGuard or OpenVPN, can ensure that your internet speed doesn’t drop too much.
  • Additional features. Mobile VPN apps are typically not as feature-rich as, for instance, the Windows one. We looked at VPNs that at least provide some features like a kill switch, split tunneling, GPS spoofing, or other, to maximize your safety online.
  • Servers. The more servers in different countries a VPN provider has the easier it is to bypass geo-restrictions.
  • No-logs policy. One of the main purposes of a VPN is to secure your online activity, and a no-logs policy assures that. So, even if you’re in trouble with the government, they can’t ask the VPN provider to give up your personal information as there’s nothing stored in the first place.
  • Simultaneous connections. The more simultaneous devices you can connect to a singular VPN account, the better deal you get for your money.
  • Interface ease of use. To enjoy using the mobile VPN app, the interface should be clear, appealing, and easy to use no matter whether you're tech savvy or a complete beginner.

Why use a VPN on your mobile?

It might be even more important to use a VPN on your phone than on your computer. The reason you should use a VPN on your mobile is because we carry our phones with us constantly and often don’t even consider the dangers our information is exposed to. So a VPN can prevent a lot of those threats.

  1. Identity protection. With a VPN, your personal information and data are encrypted, so you can’t experience phishing attacks or other types of social engineering. Especially if you connect to public wifi connections that are extremely susceptible to hacks and data leaks.
  2. Secure your browsing activity. Whenever you’re browsing online, your internet provider, the government, or social media platforms are collecting information about you. Then that information can be sold to third parties. A VPN secures your connection, so your activity online can’t be followed. Also, it prevents targeted ads.
  3. Bypassing geo-restrictions. With a VPN, you can access different server locations and unlock global content that otherwise would be unavailable to you. For example, you can change Netflix region to access content libraries from different countries. Or, if you enjoy gaming on your phone, then a VPN can help you to connect to other game servers. Additionally, some governments restrict access to certain websites or programs, and a VPN can help you work around those regulations.

How to set up a VPN on mobile

Installing a VPN app on your phone is really easy. All it takes is a couple of clicks and there you have it – your online activity is secure, and your identity is protected.

So this is how you set up a VPN on your mobile:

  1. Go to your app store and search for the VPN of your choice. We suggest NordVPN, now 63% OFF! NordVPN on Google Play
  2. Download the app to your phone.
  3. Launch the app and log into your account. If you don't have an account, it's really easy to register to one through the app as well. Start with Nord on mobile
  4. Connect to the wanted server location, and check if all the needed features are enabled. Connected to Nord on mobile
  5. Enjoy browsing freely and securely. If some websites are still geo-blocked, delete cache and cookies, or try another server in the selected country.

Can I use a free mobile VPN?

In theory, you could use a free VPN for mobile, but we strongly suggest against that. A free VPN can, in some cases, just be a disguised malicious app. Or it can also not perform as a VPN is supposed to – it may not secure your data or even log it and sell it. But in case you would like to give free VPN a go, we recommend checking out our list of hand-picked VPNs tailored specifically for Android or iPhone.

A safer alternative to a free VPN is a freemium VPN, such as Atlas VPN and Proton VPN. These VPNs have been tested by us and they are safe to use but just minimize your expectations for them.

The freemium VPNs will not have many additional features, nor will they be the fastest, but if you can’t pay for a premium VPN, then these freemium versions work perfectly.

Conclusion

It’s important to secure your mobile devices from online threats with a mobile VPN, since it is the device that is always closest to us and we use it daily. And when you’re surfing online in your favorite café or at the airport, you’re usually using an unsafe public wifi connection. This poses security risks, such as data leaks, hacking, or your data being collected and sold to third parties are high.

To protect yourself from online threats with the best VPN for mobile, you need to know what to look for. Just because the VPN provider is the most popular or the most expensive doesn’t mean that it’s the best fit for you. Same with their features – you need to pick a VPN that offers not only the basics, but some additionalities as well.

Our top pick for the best mobile VPN is Surfshark. It offers the best protection for the lowest prices, as well as support for both Android and iOS apps, which are mostly equal in value. Additionally, this VPN comes with a wide range of features to sweeten the deal and assure you of safety.


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