Updated on: March 1, 2023
Short on time? Here’s the best VPN for Android in 2023:
🥇 ExpressVPN: User-friendly Android app with top-notch security features, fast speeds, and a strict no-logs policy. Works with tons of streaming services, allows 5 simultaneous connections, and backs all subscriptions with a 30-day money-back guarantee. Get the best VPN for Android in 2023 here.
I tested all of the most popular Android VPNs in the Google Play Store to find the best ones for both my smartphone and tablet.
Unfortunately, a lot of VPNs for Android are pretty bad — lacking important security features, drastically reducing internet speeds, or even logging user data to make a profit. Some Android VPNs are also unable to access streaming services like Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime, and some are too difficult to use or don’t offer a good value.
However, I managed to find a few VPNs for Android that are better than the rest. All of the VPNs on this list include excellent security features, have intuitive Android apps, maintain fast connection speeds, access tons of streaming sites, and offer affordable payment plans.
Quick summary of the best VPNs for Android:
- 1.🥇 ExpressVPN — Best VPN for Android users in 2023.
- 2.🥈 Proton VPN — Excellent security for Androids with a good free plan.
- 3.🥉 Private Internet Access (PIA) — Highly customizable Android app with fast speeds.
- 4. NordVPN — Reliable with great security & fast speeds on all servers.
- 5. Surfshark — Good for large families (with cheap plans).
🥇 1. ExpressVPN — Best VPN for Android in 2023
ExpressVPN is my favorite Android VPN in 2023 — it maintains blazing-fast speeds, provides good streaming and torrenting support, includes excellent security features, and offers a very user-friendly Android app.
During my tests, I had an average speed decrease of only 18%, so I was able to watch videos, download files, and play games as if I wasn’t connected to a VPN. Because ExpressVPN is the fastest VPN on this list, you can engage in virtually any online activity with minimal speed loss.
ExpressVPN is also my top choice for Netflix and other streaming services, it supports P2P traffic on all of its 3,000+ servers, and it successfully bypasses firewalls in restrictive countries.
The ExpressVPN Android app also has top-notch security features, like:
- TrustedServer Technology — ExpressVPN’s servers only save data to the RAM memory, and all your information is wiped clean each time the server gets rebooted.
- Perfect forward secrecy — Regularly changes your encryption key each time you connect to a server to make sure hackers can’t compromise your data on past or future encryption keys.
- Split-tunneling — Allows you to route some apps through the VPN tunnel and some apps through your internet service provider’s network.
As far as ease of use is concerned, ExpressVPN is definitely one of the most intuitive Android VPNs on the market. I love how ExpressVPN allows you to connect to a server with one or two clicks — you can use the Smart Location feature to connect to the fastest VPN server with one tap, or you can manually connect to a server by choosing a location that works best for you. All of ExpressVPN’s additional security features are also very easy to find, understand, and use, and I’m confident that even beginner users won’t have any problem navigating the app.
ExpressVPN’s plans are a little expensive, but it still offers the best overall value — it starts at $6.67 / month, provides up to 5 simultaneous connections, and backs each purchase with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
ExpressVPN’s Android app is user-friendly, maintains blazing-fast speeds for streaming and torrenting, and offers excellent security features, including RAM-only servers and perfect forward secrecy. ExpressVPN works with all popular streaming services and supports P2P traffic on all 3,000+ servers. ExpressVPN allows 5 connections and backs each purchase with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Read the full ExpressVPN review
🥈 2. Proton VPN — Excellent Security Features & Best Free Plan for Android
Proton VPN has top-notch security features, excellent speeds, an intuitive Android app, and it offers the best free plan out there.
I love the extra security features you get on Proton VPN’s Android app. In addition to perfect forward secrecy and split-tunneling, Proton VPN also has an excellent ad and malware blocker (NetShield) and Secure Core servers, which route your data through two VPN servers instead of one server. Plus, I really like that the Android app is open-source, meaning anyone can inspect the code for holes in security — and Proton VPN has also conducted an independent audit for its Android app.
While Proton VPN is not as fast as ExpressVPN, it’s still able to maintain really good speeds on most servers — during my tests, I only experienced a 22% slowdown, which is much better than the industry average. I also really like that Proton VPN’s Android app displays the server load percentage (how many active users are connected to a server), which helps you find fast servers, and it includes the VPN Accelerator feature, which is enabled by default and improve speeds on distant servers. Proton VPN’s Android app also provides dedicated streaming, torrenting, and Tor servers, so users can get the fastest speeds for each online activity.
However, Proton VPN doesn’t work in restrictive countries, and Proton VPN’s Android app is missing an in-app kill switch — but you can easily enable a similar feature on your Android device (and Proton VPN conveniently provides simple instructions on how to do it).
Proton VPN is one of the rare VPNs to offer a free plan that includes unlimited data. The free plan also has good speeds, allows access to 3 server locations, and lets you connect 1 device. However, the free plan doesn’t support streaming or torrenting.
In addition to the free plan, Proton VPN has several premium subscription plans, which start at $3.99 / month. The premium plans adds 10 connections, access to servers located in 60+ countries, NetShield, Secure Core, and Plus servers for streaming and torrenting. Proton VPN has a prorated 30-day refund for all plans.
Proton VPN’s Android app is very secure, very fast, and it offers a very good free plan. All of Proton VPN’s apps are open-source, and the Android app comes with extra features like an ad blocker, split-tunneling, and Secure Core servers. Proton VPN supports torrenting and is able to access the top streaming services. Proton VPN’s premium payment plans allow up to 10 connections, and all of them are covered by a prorated 30-day money-back guarantee.
Read the full Proton VPN review
🥉 3. Private Internet Access (PIA) — Customizable Android App & Fast Speeds
Private Internet Access (PIA) has an easy-to-use Android app, very fast speeds, and great security and privacy features. In my tests, I only had an average decrease in speed of about 24% (slower than ExpressVPN but similar to CyberGhost VPN) — HD videos loaded in less than 5 seconds on both nearby and distant servers.
My favorite thing about PIA is that there are so many options to customize the app. For example, you can choose the level of encryption (256-bit or 128-bit), set the Android app to automatically connect to a VPN server when you use mobile data, change the color of the app’s background, and so much more. Also, I really like how all of the features have a detailed explanation.
In addition to 256-bit AES encryption, PIA comes with a kill switch, a strict no-logs policy (that has been proven multiple times in court documents), and built-in DNS and WebRTC leak protection. PIA’s Android app is open-source and includes cool extra features like split-tunneling and PIA MACE (an ad and malware blocker).
PIA works with all of the popular streaming services, including Netflix, Amazon Prime, Disney+, and BBC iPlayer. And PIA allows P2P traffic on all servers and offers port forwarding, which connects you to more peers to get faster speeds. PIA’s Android app also works in China and other restrictive countries.
Private Internet Access allows 10 simultaneous connections, has multiple payment plans (you can get PIA for as low as $2.11 / month), and provides a 30-day money-back guarantee.
PIA has a user-friendly and highly customizable Android app, maintains very fast speeds, and provides excellent security and privacy. PIA’s Android app is fully open-source and also includes extra features like an ad blocker and split-tunneling. PIA has access to all of the top streaming apps and allows P2P traffic on all of its servers, and it’s also able to bypass firewalls in countries with internet censorship. PIA offers 10 simultaneous connections and all plans are covered by a 30-day money-back guarantee
Download Private Internet Access Now
4. NordVPN — Reliable With Great Security Features & Fast Speeds
NordVPN provides access to multiple security features that keep your data safe online — like Threat Protection, which is one of the best VPN ad blockers on the market and which also gets rid of malicious ads, blocks connections to shady sites, and protects your device from malware-infected downloads. Even better, Threat Protection remains active even if you’re not connected to a VPN server, which is really convenient.
In addition, there’s Dark Web Monitor, which scans the dark web and alerts you if the login associated with your NordVPN account has been leaked. I’m happy to see this, as this is one of the only VPNs on the market that comes with a dark web monitoring feature.
On top of that, NordVPN also comes with other great security features — it has double VPN servers, which add an extra layer of encryption, and it also comes with obfuscation. Plus, the VPN has its own protocol called NordLynx, which is designed to provide strong security and really fast speeds.
NordVPN also has advanced security features, including full leak protection, RAM-only servers, and perfect forward secrecy. Its strict no-logs policy has been independently audited, and it’s also been proven true when one of the data centers that housed one of its servers suffered a data breach and no user data was compromised.
The provider is also great for streaming and torrenting — it works with multiple popular streaming services like Netflix and BBC iPlayer, and has a whopping 4,500+ P2P servers. It also provides really good speeds for streaming, torrenting, and other online activities on all of its servers.
I also think NordVPN is a good gaming VPN thanks to its Meshnet feature, which lets you link up to 60 devices over encrypted VPN connections — this helps you host virtual LAN parties securely.
What’s more, this VPN has tons of other perks — it has 5,000+ servers in 55+ countries, comes with split-tunneling, and has really intuitive apps for all major platforms.
NordVPN has budget-friendly plans that start at $4.99 / month. All purchases are backed by a risk-free 30-day money-back guarantee.
NordVPN is highly secure, comes with a ton of features, and maintains good speeds for all online activities. In addition to advanced security features like RAM-only servers and perfect forward secrecy, it also has an ad blocker and dark web monitor. It also works with all streaming services, supports torrenting on more than 4,500 servers, and is also an excellent choice for gaming. NordVPN backs all purchases with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Read the full NordVPN review here
5. Surfshark — Great VPN for Large Families & Very Affordable
Surfshark allows unlimited connections, which means you can use it on as many devices as you want — so it’s a great option if everyone in your family needs a good VPN. I’m also happy to see this because very few VPNs support unlimited connections.
It comes with really good security features, including CleanWeb, which is one of the best VPN ad blockers out there. In addition, it provides obfuscation, double VPN connections for added security, and IP Rotator, which regularly changes your IP address to make it harder for someone to track your location. The provider also has advanced security features like RAM-only servers and perfect forward secrecy — however, it’s missing full leak protection (but I never experienced any leaks in my tests).
You also get pretty good streaming support, as the VPN can access top sites like Netflix, HBO Max, and BBC iPlayer — though it can’t access Disney+. It also supports P2P downloads across all of its servers.
There are 3,200+ servers in 90+ countries, which makes it simple to use nearby servers for fast speeds. Speaking of speeds, the provider has fast connections on most servers, but I did experience significant slowdowns on very distant servers.
Surfshark is also one of the most affordable VPNs on the market, with plans starting at only $2.30 / month — so it’s also a good pick if you’re on a tight budget. All plans come with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Surfshark is one of the rare VPNs to allow unlimited simultaneous connections, so it’s great for multi-device households and large families. It’s also secure, fast, and works with popular streaming services like Netflix. It has affordable plans and provides a 30-day money-back guarantee for all purchases.
Read the full Surfshark review here
6. CyberGhost VPN — Good Security Features & Low-Cost Plans
CyberGhost VPN’s Android app is secure, very easy to use, and pretty cheap. It’s also a good option for non-tech-savvy users, as it has a quick-connect tool, displays the server load percentage to help you find the fastest servers in no time, and provides an intuitive Connection Checker, which tests your internet connectivity and checks if CyberGhost’s servers are reachable from your device.
The CyberGhost VPN Android app includes all of the essential security features like 256-bit AES encryption, a kill switch, and a strict no-logs policy. Plus, it has WireGuard, which provides faster speeds than other VPN protocols — when I tested CyberGhost, I only experienced a 25% slowdown, which is similar to Proton VPN. And because of CyberGhost’s fast speeds, I was able to browse the web, watch videos, and download files with no issues whatsoever.
CyberGhost VPN offers dedicated torrenting and streaming servers — torrenting is allowed on 80+ servers, whereas streaming is supported on specialized servers that are optimized for specific streaming services. This isn’t bad, but I slightly prefer ExpressVPN, as it allows both torrenting and streaming on all servers.
Unfortunately, CyberGhost VPN doesn’t work in restrictive countries, and its ad blocker for the Android app doesn’t block as many ads as Proton VPN’s ad blocker.
CyberGhost VPN starts at $2.11 / month, allows 7 parallel connections with 1 account, and backs all of its yearly payment plans with a generous 45-day money-back guarantee.
CyberGhost VPN’s Android app has an intuitive interface, provides fast speeds, and is pretty affordable. CyberGhost has dedicated streaming servers, and it allows torrenting on 80+ servers. But CyberGhost VPN is unable to bypass firewalls in restrictive countries, and the ad blocker doesn’t work well. CyberGhost VPN allows 7 simultaneous connections, and it offers a 45-day money-back guarantee for its long-term plans.
Read the full CyberGhost VPN review
7. PrivateVPN — Intuitive Android VPN with Good Streaming Support
PrivateVPN’s Android app is great for people who have never used a VPN — it makes it incredibly simple to connect to a nearby server, it offers fewer functions than most competitors, and it provides brief explanations for all features.
In addition to industry-standard VPN security features, like a kill switch and a no-logs policy, PrivateVPN adds extra tools like obfuscation for accessing the open internet in censor-heavy countries like China and Indonesia. PrivateVPN also maintains decent speeds — my speeds slowed down by about 33%, which is above average but still slower than ExpressVPN, Proton VPN, Private Internet Access, and CyberGhost VPN.
PrivateVPN offers pretty good streaming support — I was able to watch TV shows and movies on Netflix, Amazon Prime, Disney+, and many other top services without any interruptions. Also, PrivateVPN supports P2P traffic on all 200+ servers located in 60+ countries.
Unlike most competitors, PrivateVPN offers a dedicated IP address for free. However, it’s missing useful tools like split-tunneling and an ad blocker.
PrivateVPN allows 10 simultaneous connections and has 3 cheap plans, which start at $2.00 / month and are all backed by a 30-day money-back guarantee.
PrivateVPN’s Android app is very easy to use, has good security features, and works with most streaming services. PrivateVPN supports P2P traffic, is able to bypass firewalls in restrictive countries, and provides free dedicated IPs. PrivateVPN has 3 flexible plans and each one is covered by a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Read the full PrivateVPN review
8. TunnelBear — Fun Android App (with Cute Bears)
TunnelBear has one of the best-looking Android apps out there, and it allows unlimited connections. The design is user-friendly and intuitive, and I really like that there are adorable bears all over the app — one of the things I love the most about TunnelBear is that a bear roars when you connect to a server!
I also like that the TunnelBear Android app comes with extra features like split-tunneling (SplitBear) and obfuscation (GhostBear). During my tests, I had no problems watching TV shows and movies on Netflix and Amazon Prime, but I couldn’t access Disney+ and ESPN+. TunnelBear allows torrenting on all of its servers, and it works in countries with internet restrictions.
TunnelBear has a free plan, but it’s not as good as Proton VPN’s free plan. TunnelBear’s free plan limits you to 2 GB per month, which is just enough to test out the product.
You can get unlimited data by upgrading to one of TunnelBear’s paid plans, which start at $4.16 / month. Unfortunately, TunnelBear doesn’t have a money-back guarantee.
TunnelBear has a well-designed and fun Android app that’s good for streaming and torrenting as well as bypassing internet restrictions in countries with online censorship. TunnelBear allows unlimited device connections, offers a decent free plan, and provides affordable paid plans. Unfortunately, there’s no money-back guarantee.
Read the full TunnelBear review
How I Rated the Best VPNs for Android in 2023:
- Ease of Use. All the VPNs on this list have user-friendly Android apps, with an intuitive design, quick-connect tools, and features that are easy to find, understand, and use.
- Security. All the VPNs I recommend have industry-standard security features, including 256-bit AES encryption, secure protocols (WireGuard, OpenVPN, IKEv2/IPSec), a strict no-logs policy (to prevent the provider from logging the websites you visit and files that you download), and a kill switch (to disable internet traffic if the VPN disconnects).
- Speeds. All VPNs slow down your internet speeds, but I only recommend VPNs that are able to maintain fast speeds for browsing, streaming, torrenting, and gaming — the VPNs here slowed down my speed by no more than 40%.
- Extra features. The VPNs on this list offer “extra” features like obfuscation (to overcome internet censorship in restrictive countries like China and Iran), split-tunneling (to choose which traffic travels through the VPN, and which traffic travels through your local network), ad blockers (that eliminate ads on websites), and more.
- Good value. I only recommend VPNs that offer flexible payment plans, accept multiple forms of payment, and have reasonable prices.
Top Brands That Didn’t Make the Cut:
- Mullvad VPN. Mullvad VPN has fast speeds and good P2P support. But I’m not a fan of Mullvad’s Android app — it lacks a quick-connect feature and it doesn’t work with many popular streaming sites.
- Hola VPN. Hola VPN is a free VPN that has pretty fast speeds, but Hola VPN logs user IP addresses and browsing history. Hola VPN also routes your traffic through a peer-to-peer network instead of using secure servers — Hola VPN replaces your IP address with another user’s IP address, which allows other people to use your IP address to engage in illegal or suspicious activities.
- Boleh VPN. Boleh VPN has good security, good speeds, and is good for torrenting. But I don’t like that BolehVPN can temporarily store logs of user data if the provider notices unusual activity or if it receives complaints.
Frequently Asked Questions
What’s the best VPN for Android?
ExpressVPN is my favorite VPN for Android in 2023. It’s user-friendly, has excellent security features, maintains lightning-fast speeds, allows P2P traffic on all servers, works with all of the popular streaming services, and backs every plan with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
While ExpressVPN is a great Android VPN, there are other good VPNs available for Android users. Proton VPN is very secure and offers a good free plan, Private Internet Access has tons of customization options and very fast speeds, CyberGhost VPN is secure, easy to use, and pretty cheap, and PrivateVPN is good for streaming on your Android app.
Is there a free VPN for Android?
Yes, there are free Android VPNs. I typically don’t recommend that you use a free VPN — most of them lack basic security features, log user data, have slow speeds, and don’t offer good support.
But if you’re looking for a good free Android VPN, I recommend Proton VPN — you get unlimited data, access to 3 server locations (in the US, the Netherlands, and Japan), and pretty fast speeds. TunnelBear also has a decent free plan, but it limits you to only 2 GB per month.
That said, I recommend that you purchase a low-cost Android VPN like ExpressVPN, Proton VPN, or Private Internet Access. They’re all secure, fast, intuitive, great for streaming and torrenting, and include a 30-day money-back guarantee so you can test out the product risk-free.
How to get an Android VPN?
There are 3 very simple steps to get a VPN for Android:
- Pick a VPN. Choose a VPN that has an excellent Android app (I recommend ExpressVPN).
- Download and install the VPN app. It typically takes 1-2 minutes to download and install a VPN on your Android phone — all you have to do is follow the in-app instructions.
- Connect to a VPN server. Open the app, scroll through the list of server locations, and connect to a server — you can either use the quick-connect tool to connect to the recommended server for your location, or you can manually choose any server.
What is the fastest VPN for Android?
ExpressVPN is the fastest VPN on this list. In my tests, I only had an average decrease in speed of about 18%, which is excellent. I was able to surf the internet, stream content, torrent, and play video games without any delays — even on the most distant servers. But all of the other Android VPNs I recommend are also very fast, decreasing my speed by no more than 40%.