Saturday, July 20, 2024

ExpressVPN, Surfshark & more are the best Android VPNs right now


Investing in one of the best Android VPN apps could end up being a really smart idea. Odds are that by now you’ve heard of a Virtual Private Network, or VPN, but may not have signed up for one just yet. It keeps your info, like IP address, location, and personal data hidden so cookies and internet trackers can’t log your browser or app use history. VPNs are also helpful when trying to connect to TV streaming apps while you are traveling outside of your come country.

Best Android VPN apps

  • ExpressVPN: Best option for most people
  • Surfshark: The cheapest option
  • NordVPN: Well-known and affordable
  • Private Internet Access: Based in the United States
  • PureVPN: Great for streaming
  • TunnelBear: Simple and privacy focused
  • Hotspot Shield: Free plan available
  • ProtonVPN: Security focused company

1. ExpressVPN: The absolute best VPN option for most people


This is our top pick for anyone looking to get started with a VPN. It offers a great mix of speed, reliability, outstanding customer service, and affordability. There is a 30-day money-back guarantee, so give it a shot today.

From $6.67/mo at ExpressVPN

2. Surfshark VPN: The best cheap VPN out there


From $2.49/mo at Surfshark

With plans starting out at about 8 cents per day, it’s really hard to skip over Surfshark. It offers a ton of great features that you’d expect from a VPN provider, and is super simple to use.

3. NordVPN: Well-known and affordable


From $3.67/mo at NordVPN

NordVPN offers an insane amount of server locations that you can pick from and is one of the best services for unblocking streaming services. It’s definitely the most well-known brand in the VPN space right now.

Overall, the best Android VPN is ExpressVPN. It has the most servers in the most locations worldwide but has 100Mbps download speeds, the fastest available of any VPN service. You get unmatched customer support, easy-to-use apps, and more as well.


1. ExpressVPN

Best Android VPN for most users

Compatible with: Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, Linux | Streaming services unblocked: Netflix, Hulu, BBC iPlayer, Amazon, YouTube | Servers: 3,000+ | Server Locations: 160 in 94 countries | Trial Period: 30 days


  • Servers in 94 countries
  • Fast download speed
  • Great customer support
  • Easy to use Android app


  • More expensive than some competitors
  • Limited to five devices simultaneously

ExpressVPN has over 3,000 servers in 94 countries. This is the most servers and locations than any other VPN service. Plus, when connected you will have access to download speeds of up to 100Mbps. This is over 40 percent faster than other VPNs and is fast enough to support TV and movie watching without experiencing buffering or slowdown on your device. On top of protecting your online identity, ExpressVPN also ensures your texts and instant messages are kept secure from being intercepted by encrypting all outgoing information from your device. You can tunnel the VPN service on your device to designate which apps use the VPN and which you’re comfortable using without the added VPN protection.

All information sent from your device and through ExpressVPN is encrypted using the highest encryption code available. There is an automatic kill switch with this VPN that will block your personal information when either your internet or VPN connection goes down. My only complaint is that ExpressVPN is much more expensive compared to other VPN services I checked out. Even with the discount for paying a year in advance rather than month-to-month is pricier than other programs. However, with unlimited bandwidth and no cap on how many devices can be connected at once, the cost may be ultimately worth it.

Be sure to check out our full ExpressVPN review and get started with the service today.



  • From $6.67 per month at ExpressVPN

ExpressVPN has more servers in more countries to help you tap into any information you need while keeping your online activity secure and private.

The rest of the best Android VPN options

There are a lot of VPN providers out there, each of them offering something a little different in an attempt to stand out above the others. While ExpressVPN is our best Android VPN pick for most people, that doesn’t mean it ticks every box for every person. It’s not the cheapest, not quite the fastest, may not have the most servers, but that’s where you need to decide what the most important part to you is. Each service offers some good and some sacrifice.

Luckily, we’ve taken the guesswork out of finding another VPN provider beyond ExpressVPN. Here are the rest of the best Android VPN options that you can sign up for now. We also highlighted all the best free Android VPNs in case you are looking to get started without spending any money.


2. Surfshark

The best affordable Android VPN option

Compatible with: Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, Linux | Streaming services unblocked: Netflix, Hulu, YouTube, BBC iPlayer, Amazon | Servers: 3,200+ | Server Locations: 100+ in 65 countries | Trial Period: 30 days


  • Over 3,200 servers available
  • Company based in British Virgin Islands
  • 30-day money-back guarantee
  • Unlimited device connections
  • One of the most affordable options


  • Privacy policy wording is vague
  • Android app is less reliable than other versions

Surfshark’s download speeds vary between 68Mbps and 70Mbps, but that is fast and consistent enough to not experience a slowdown or buffering while using this VPN. Plus, you get unlimited device connects with a single account, so everyone in your family can use Surfshark on their cellphones, tablets, and even home computers.

This VPN doesn’t work well with streaming apps. It better designed to work with devices like the Amazon Fire Stick and Roku. It does work if you log into your TV streaming service through a web browser. The biggest caution with Surfshark, however, is its no-log policy. While Surfshark is located outside of the U.S. and has a no-log policy, it’s worded strangely and isn’t clear at all. It sounds and feels like there are loopholes in the policy that may allow some logs to be kept. Surfshark may not be aware of how confusing its official policy is, and it may not keep any user information at all. I wish it was a bit more clearly written out it Surfshark’s official policy.


  • From $2.49 per month at Surfshark

Surfshark has impressive download speeds and automatically connects to the fastest available server. Also, connect unlimited devices at once.


3. NordVPN

Top-notch security from well-known brand

Compatible with: Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, Linux | Streaming services unblocked: Hulu, Netflix, YouTube, iPlayer, Amazon | Servers: 5,500+ | Server Locations: 80+ in 60 countries | Trial Period: 30 days


  • Over 5,500 servers
  • Dual encryption
  • Multiple plan options


  • Security breach in 2018
  • Slightly slower than others

No VPN is as secure as NordVPN. While every VPN service encrypts your data, NordVPN sends it through a second server and encrypts it again, just to make sure if it is intercepted your information can’t be stolen. Because of this double encryption, it does cause some slowdown to your connection, especially during the initial startup or when downloading large files. But the average download speeds for NordVPN is still 70Mbps, which is still really impressive and fast.

NordVPN has over 5,500 servers in 60 countries. This isn’t the most servers or locations, but it’s up there in the top five. Each time you log in with this VPN service, you are given the choice of being assigned a random IP address or to have a dedicated IP address. In both cases, your information is encrypted as it leaves your computer making it hard for adware, trackers, and snoops to figure out your location and IP address. However, it’s a little easier to break through when using a dedicated IP address.



  • From $3.67 per month at NordVPN

NordVPN passes your info through one server then sends the encrypted data through a second server to ensure it’s hard to decipher.


4. Private Internet Access

Easy to use and get started with

Compatible with: Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, Linux | Streaming services unblocked: Netflix, Hulu, BBC iPlayer, Amazon, YouTube | Servers: 35,000+ | Server Locations: 65+ in 75+ countries | Trial Period: 30 days


  • Easy to use apps
  • No data limits
  • Supports 10 devices at once
  • Military-grade encryption
  • Over 35,000 servers


  • Based in the U.S.

Private Internet Access connects quickly to one of its 35,000+ servers in more than 75 countries and encrypts all outgoing and incoming information to keep your online identity private and secure. It has an average download speed of 25Mbps, which is fast enough for use with TV streaming services and allows up to 10 devices to be connected at one time before requiring you to purchase another account. And you get unlimited bandwidth, so you don’t’ have to worry about your connection slowing down after reaching a monthly data cap.

Private Internet Access includes a firewall to monitor and block unwanted internet communications with your computer and internet connection. This is especially helpful when connected to public WiFi. This VPN service is based in the U.S., however. Because of this, there may be personal information and some activity logs kept by Private Internet Access. Usually, this information isn’t held for very long when a VPN service does collect information, 30 days max.

Private Internet Access


  • From $2.08 per month at Private Internet Access

This VPN service will never throttle or stop your service because it doesn’t place usage restrictions on your VPN account.


5. PureVPN

Great for those who stream a lot of media

Compatible with: Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, Linux | Streaming services unblocked: Netflix, Hulu, BBC iPlayer, Amazon, YouTube | Servers: 6,500+ | Server Locations: 160 in 140 countries | Trial Period: 31 days


  • Good for TV streaming
  • 300,000 IP addresses
  • Automatic kill switch


  • Only works on five devices at once
  • Few servers and locations

PureVPN is one of our favorite services. It’s easy to use, secure, quick to connect to, and stays connected without a problem. You can get it for a decent price, it allows five devices to connect at once, and has an impressive download speed average of 60Mbps. This is fast enough to support streaming services and devices, including AndroidTV. Plus, PureVPN is one of the few services that will give you a dedicated IP address. This is helpful when streaming some live TV services, like Hulu, that rely on a static IP address.

You can choose to connect to any of PureVPN’s over 6,500 servers. And since it has more than 300,000 IP addresses, it will be very hard for any website, cookies, trackers, etc., to monitor your online activity. Plus, it has an automatic kill switch that will block personal information, including your physical IP address, if your connection drops. The only reason PureVPN doesn’t make it to the top is that it has fewer servers and locations than my number one choice. Its download speeds are also slower by 40Mbps. But PureVPN is still a solid choice for keeping your online identity safe and is excellent for tapping into tv streaming services.



  • From $2.91 at PureVPN

PureVPN protects you as you stream TV apps. It’s compatible with most viewing apps, devices, and browser accounts.


6. TunnelBear

Best Android VPN for beginners

Compatible with: Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, Linux | Streaming services unblocked: Netflix, Hulu, BBC iPlayer, Amazon, YouTube | Servers: 2,600+ | Server Locations: 41+ | Trial Period: 30 days


  • App is super simple to use
  • Uses independent specialists to conduct audits
  • Apps available for major platforms


  • Limited server locations
  • No torrent support
  • No automatic kill switch

If you want to try out a VPN without providing a credit card or other personal information, we suggest looking at TunnelBear. Its free version caps access at 500MB per month, which goes quickly, but it’s enough to get a feel and idea of how a VPN works. You can always upgrade to a paid account to get unlimited access or downgrade back to the free service. With a paid subscription, you will always be connected to the TunnelBear VPN when your cell phone is on. If it detects an unsafe network attempting to connect to your phone, or if something happens to your internet connection, TunnelBear automatically blocks sensitive files and information on your device from being swiped.

TunnelBear doesn’t have as many servers or locations compared to our top pick. It has servers in over 40 countries. It also doesn’t support torrenting, which is a person-to-person file sharing technique. TunnelBear also isn’t the best VPN to use if you’re trying to use one to stream TV. However, if you’re just starting out in the VPN world and want to test the waters, TunnelBear is a great way to do it.



  • From $3.33 per month at TunnelBear

This is a good app to get your feet wet using a VPN with its free service and easy-to-use interface.


7. Hotspot Shield

Compatible with: Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, Linux | Streaming services unblocked: Netflix, Hulu, BBC iPlayer, YouTube | Servers: 3,200+ | Server Locations: 115+ in 70+ countries | Trial Period: 45 days


  • Unlimited bandwidth each month
  • Over 3,200 servers
  • Great free plan available


  • No longer supports OpenVPN protocol
  • No direct app protection
  • Reps hard to connect with

Hotspot Shield is a neat little VPN app that looks closely at your connection and information leaving and coming into your device, especially when connected to public Wi-Fi. Hotspot Shield encrypts all of your outgoing information using AES 256-bit encryption, the same level used by military organizations and financial institutions to secure their data. Hotspot Shield has over 3,200 servers in more than 70 countries to ensure you can connect quickly and easily to its service. You can set this VPN to automatically connect each time to open a browser or when you start your phone, so you don’t have to remember to do it manually.

This VPN service doesn’t work well to secure individual apps. This isn’t a problem normally since apps are technically covered and secured when the VPN is enabled on the device itself. However, it does interfere with TV streaming apps, like Hulu, Netflix, and others. The workaround to watch these programs is through a browser.

Hotspot Shield

  • From $2.49 at Hotspot Shield

It doesn’t take much for Hotspot Shield to automatically enable its VPN protections and secure all your data with military-grade encryption.


8. ProtonVPN

The most secure VPN for Android users

Compatible with: Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, Linux | Streaming services unblocked: Netflix, Hulu, BBC iPlayer, Amazon, YouTube | Servers: 1,300+ | Server Locations: 50+ | Trial Period: 30 days


  • Based in Switzerland
  • Many servers utilize 10 Gbps connections
  • Has great free plan with unlimited bandwidth


  • Free customers get lower speeds during peak times

Odds are that you’ve heard of ProtonMail before, the ultra-secure email service that offers full encryption. Well, the same company offers a VPN service that brings the same level of security-focus to your Android device. There are free and paid plans, which is awesome since you can get started with a free plan and then upgrade if you want more features. The free plan doesn’t require a payment method, but does have some limitations like you can only use it on a single device at a time and you’ll notice slower speeds during peak hours.

The company is Swiss-based so you don’t have to worry about logging laws or anything silly like that. If you are unsure about a VPN or the benefits that it could bring to you, we highly recommend checking this one out.



  • From $0 per month at ProtonVPN

ProtonVPN offers a free VPN connection for a single device with no data limits, but the company does offer lower speeds to free customers during peak times.

Bottom Line

Using a (VPN) when you’re online is becoming increasingly important these days. While the internet is a public space, a VPN adds an extra layer of privacy to all your connections. Not everyone out there has bad intentions, but do you want to leave all of your personal banking information, passwords, and more unsecured in hopes that everyone around is minding their own business? We think not.

We have already looked at and tested the best VPN services across all platforms, and ExpressVPN is the top pick for anyone looking for an Android VPN. It handles encrypting your data, securing your connection and keeping download speed fast so you can’t even tell your internet connection is filtering through a VPN. It has over 3,000 servers in nearly 100 countries and offers excellent customer service.

If you happen to be looking for more options, be sure to consider our selection of best cheap VPNs or best free VPN to see if those meet your needs a bit better.

Android VPN FAQs

Now that we’ve gone over all the best Android VPN provider options, you may be a little confused still about why you need a VPN or what it could do to improve your life. Let’s take a look at some of the basics about VPNs and help you in the right direction.

Should you get a free or paid Android VPN?

Whether you use a free VPN or paid VPN is a bit of a personal preference, but there are things that you’ll need to consider. There are a few great VPN providers that offer free services, but it’s worth noting that these companies often have some restrictions in place or fewer features than a paid counterpart. Sometimes companies will only offer 500MB of data for each month, or 2GB per month, which means that you won’t be able to protect as much data through the service each month.

Can you leave an Android VPN connected at all times?

Short answer: yes. You can opt to leave your Android device connected to a VPN at all times without worry, as long as you pick the provider. You will need to make sure that the service that you sign up for does not have a limited bandwidth option for each month. Some of them only offer 5GB per month while others offer an unlimited amount of bandwidth per month.

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