Choosing the best VPN for your Android device

Best VPN for Android

There are several good VPNs that you can use on your Android device. Using a VPN on your smartphone or tablet has multiple advantages. Safe Internet browsing, maintaining your anonymity online, and bypassing Internet censorship are some of the things that can be done with a VPN. Our top 3 of the best VPNs for Android are as follows:

  1. Surfshark
  2. ExpressVPN
  3. PIA

If you want to get started quickly with a good VPN for your Android device that also works on other operating systems, we recommend Surfshark.

If you’re curious about other VPN providers that work fine on Android too, read our full article below.

If you have an Android smartphone or tablet, you may want to consider using a VPN. A VPN allows you to better protect your connection on public Wi-Fi networks and even watch Netflix America from anywhere in the world

Whatever the reason, there are a plethora of Android VPN providers. This can make it difficult to choose the VPN that best suits your needs. Some Android VPNs are slow, some are fast but insecure, and some are actually not VPNs, but proxy servers. In this article, we will help you choose the best Android VPN for you.

What should you look for when choosing the best VPN for Android?

If you want a great Android VPN provider, make sure you choose a fast and secure VPN with servers in the most suitable locations. Depending on what is important to you, some VPNs may be more suitable than others. 

Do you use streaming services a lot? Then go for a fast VPN. Do you want your data to remain safe? Well, choose a secure VPN. Do you want to unblock a certain website from another country? 

Well, check if the VPN you want to choose has servers in that country. Also, of course useful if the VPN has an Android app.

When choosing a VPN, it might be helpful to keep a few important things about VPNs in mind. When determining our top 3 VPN providers for Android, we considered the following:

  • Security and privacy: We mainly observe the logging policy and encryption protocols of a VPN. For privacy reasons, it is important that a VPN provider does not keep any logs, otherwise your data will continue to be stored by the VPN company, something you definitely do not want when using a VPN. The encryption protocols of a VPN often determine how difficult it is to break an encrypted file. Most VPNs use OpenVPN, but there are some that don’t. We recommend that you choose a VPN provider that uses OpenVPN.
  • Speed ​​- Speed ​​can be very important for a VPN, especially for streaming, downloading, and day-to-day use. VPNs can slow your connection speed slightly, but with some VPNs, you won’t even notice it, while with others you definitely will. We only recommend VPN providers that affect your speed as little as possible.
  • Ease of use – Some VPNs require technical knowledge, some do not. When selecting the best VPN providers for Android, we’ve focused on VPNs that are appropriate for everyone. In other words, all the VPNs in our top 3 can be easily used by people of all ages.
  • Servers: If you use a VPN to unblock websites, having a wide variety of servers is very useful. For example, if you have a VPN that only has servers in France, you won’t be able to use it to unblock Netflix America. Also, a VPN will impact your speed less if the VPN server you use is close to you.
  • Additional Features: VPNs sometimes offer additional options to make it easier for the user to safely browse or view faster streaming platforms. Sometimes in the form of an emergency button, sometimes in the form of a dedicated IP. Although this is usually a less important factor, it may be good to pay attention to it if you have any special needs.
  • Price: In addition to the actual quality of the VPN service, it is also good to see if the VPN subscription fits your budget. You most likely want a good VPN, but don’t want to pay too much for it. That is why we have included the price as an aspect to take into account in our top 3.

The best VPNs for Android: our top 3

Based on the criteria mentioned above, we have selected the following three VPN providers that we think are the best VPNs for Android at the moment:

1. Surfshark

Surfshark is one of the best and cheapest VPNs. In almost every aspect, this VPN scores very well. The servers are fast, you have a wide variety of server locations in a large number of countries, the VPN is easy to use, and also this VPN is very cheap for the quality it provides. 

All this means that you can stream on your Android devices at a very low price without any problem. This is useful if you watch many movies or series on your Android phone or tablet.

2. ExpressVPN

ExpressVPN is a great VPN for Android. The VPN is extremely fast, has many servers, and is very easy to install and configure on Android devices. The app automatically sees which language the device is set to and adjusts accordingly. 

In addition to its high speed, ExpressVPN also has extremely good encryption. You can’t go wrong with ExpressVPN. Compared to Surfshark, we would say that ExpressVPN is a bit better in terms of quality, but also a lot more expensive. 

That is why, as far as we are concerned, it has earned second place on this list.

3. Private Internet Access – PIA

Private Internet Access (PIA) is a great VPN alternative for users looking for a highly secure and privacy-oriented VPN. PIA is very focused on online security and still maintains excellent speeds. 

PIA is a bit slower than ExpressVPN and a bit more expensive than Surfshark, but this VPN is a great option for Android. We especially like the security and encryption that this provider provides.

Free VPNs vs. paid for Android

In addition to paid VPN services, you also have the option of opting for a free VPN. Although there are some good free VPN services, most will not be suitable for long-term use. Many free VPN services have limitations on speed, the amount of data you can use per month, or server locations. 

Often times the data limit won’t even allow you to watch a full movie. Free VPNs with no data cap or very high cap will often be slow or unsafe. This is why we generally recommend going for a paid VPN.

Free Android VPN Apps That Are Not Actually VPNs

If we talk about free VPN apps for Android, it is also good to briefly mention proxy servers. These are apps that are often free and advertise themselves as a VPN. Generally, however, these are proxies: services that change your IP address but do not encrypt the data. 

An example of this is Hello. This service advertises itself as a VPN, but it only changes the IP address to that of another Hola user. If you use Hola, your connection will also be used by other Hola users. This is really very unsafe because other users use your connection and who knows what they use it for.

Why a VPN for Android?

Everyone has different reasons for using a VPN. The most common reasons are as follows:

SecurityBecause your internet traffic is encrypted with a VPN, others will not be able to access your data. For example, hackers, governments, and Internet providers cannot see what you do online. This is especially important for Android devices because you often connect to public Wi-Fi networks with your smartphone or tablet.
PrivacyThanks to a VPN, your own IP address is hidden and you get a different IP address from one of the VPN servers. As a result, what you do online cannot be traced to your device or to you as a natural person. This is often used in conjunction with torrenting to avoid fines. Privacy and legislation are also the reason why journalists, who live in countries with a lot of censorship, use a VPN to express their opinions in anonymous forums.
To unlockSome sites and services block their content based on your location. For example, Netflix has a greater supply of movies and series in the United States than in most other countries. With the help of a VPN, you can bypass this type of geo-blocking to watch movies and series from other countries. This is also why a VPN is often used in China, where sites like YouTube and Facebook are blocked.

How to install a VPN on Android

There are several ways to install a VPN on an Android device. The easiest thing is, probably, through an application from the Play Store:

  1. Subscribe to a VPN provider;
  2. Download the VPN application from the Play Store;
  3. Open the application;
  4. Adjust settings if necessary;
  5. Connect the VPN (your Android device will probably ask you to change the configuration of the VPN connections in “networks”, give the permission).

In short: the best VPN for Android, our top 3

Based on the criteria we mentioned above, we recommend the following VPNs for Android:

  1. Surfshark
  2. ExpressVPN
  3. PIA

All of these providers have excellent Android software and are good regarding price, speed, and security. Surfshark is the most affordable premium VPN, ExpressVPN may be a bit better, but it’s also a lot more expensive, and PIA is taking extra steps when it comes to security. 

If none of these providers appeal to you, you can always take a look at our overview of all the VPNs we reviewed: