Professional Reviews
Affiliate Commissions
Reviews Guidelines

5 Best Mobile VPNs in 2023 — Safe, Fast & Intuitive Apps

Raven Wu Raven Wu

Short on time? Here’s the best mobile VPN in 2023:

  • 🥇 ExpressVPN: Easy-to-use, ultra-fast, and highly secure VPN with a proven zero-logs policy. It works well with all major streaming sites, has extremely intuitive iOS and Android apps, and backs up all of its plans with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

I use my phone daily, so it’s very important to me that I keep all my mobile data secure. Otherwise, third parties (like my internet service provider) can spy on my browsing and malicious actors can try to compromise my personal data.

That’s why I always use a VPN on my mobile phone. It’s an online service that encrypts all of my data to keep it secure. In addition, it also changes your IP address to provide more privacy — and also help you access streaming sites while traveling abroad.

Unfortunately, many VPNs have poor mobile apps — they’re missing essential security features, have slow speeds, or come with confusing interfaces that make using them a chore.

But the 5 mobile VPNs on this list are different — they’re fast, have strong security features, and are very intuitive. They also come with the ability to access major streaming services (like Netflix, Disney+, and Amazon Prime Video) and cool extras, including an ad blocker and split-tunneling. ExpressVPN is my #1 pick because it has the best iOS and Android apps on the market.

Try ExpressVPN Now

Quick summary of the best mobile VPNs: 

🥇1. ExpressVPN — Best Mobile VPN for Android and iOS in 2023

🥇1. ExpressVPN — Best Mobile VPN for Android and iOS in 2023
ExpressVPN is my favorite mobile VPN for browsing, streaming, and gaming (it’s also why ExpressVPN is our #1 pick for the best VPN for Android and iOS in 2023). It has great security features, it offers user-friendly Android and iOS apps, and it gave me the fastest speeds of all the VPNs on this list during my tests.

I was impressed by how little ExpressVPN impacted my speeds. Web pages loaded instantly, and I got no lag while playing an action-intensive mobile game. This can be credited to ExpressVPN’s unique Lightway protocol, which is faster than other VPN protocols, as well as its huge number of servers (3,000+ in over 90+ countries), which makes it easy to find a nearby server location to get the fastest speeds.

ExpressVPN’s mobile apps have been audited and have security features like:

  • Perfect forward secrecy — Generates a new encryption key for every session to foil potential hackers from accessing past or future keys.
  • RAM-only servers — Your data is never written to a hard drive, and all information on the server is wiped with every reboot.
  • Threat Manager — Stops tracker apps from collecting information on your online activity and sharing it with third-party companies, who may use it to serve you targeted ads or engage in malicious behavior. It also prevents you from visiting malicious websites (only available on iOS).
  • Password manager — This feature for Android and iOS users helps you maintain and secure your various account login credentials.

ExpressVPN is also really good for streaming on your mobile. It works great with all major streaming services including Netflix, Disney+, and Amazon Prime Video, and it claims to work with 100+ other streaming apps.

Navigating ExpressVPNs mobile apps is very easy. Connecting to a server only takes a second with its Smart Location feature (which automatically connects you to the VPN server that will give you the best speeds) and the interface is clean and clear of clutter.

ExpressVPN provides extra features like split-tunneling on its Android app (choose which traffic goes through your VPN and which traffic goes through your local network) and obfuscation, which hides the fact that you’re using a VPN and is good for getting around workplace or government internet restrictions.

ExpressVPN has plans that start at $6.67 / month, which is a bit pricey. But I consider this a fair price because ExpressVPN offers the best value on the market. ExpressVPN comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee for all of its plans, so it’s risk-free to give it a try.

ExpressVPN Coupon in May 2023: 49% off 15-Month Plan
Get a full 15 months (12 months + 3 free months) at a 49% discount.

Bottom Line:

ExpressVPN is the best mobile VPN in 2023 — it has ultra-fast speeds ideal for browsing, streaming, and gaming, provides advanced security features like perfect forward secrecy and RAM-only servers, and works with all major streaming sites. It’s really easy to set up and use, has split-tunneling for Android, and offers a 30-day money-back guarantee on all plans.

Try ExpressVPN Now

Read our full ExpressVPN review here

🥈2. Private Internet Access (PIA) — Highly Customizable Mobile Apps With Strong Security

🥈2. Private Internet Access (PIA) — Highly Customizable Mobile Apps With Strong Security
Private Internet Access (PIA) is a secure, fast, and customizable VPN for Android and iOS. For example, it lets you choose between 256 and 128 AES encryption — the latter might be useful if you’re looking for a little extra speed. And using its Network Management Tool, you can also configure how the app behaves on different networks.

Security-wise, PIA is great. It has perfect forward secrecy and RAM-only servers, its apps are open source (this means the source code is publicly available and anyone can inspect it), and you can also trust its no-logs policy — it’s been verified through an independent audit and proven multiple times in court.

Speed-wise, PIA performed very well during my tests, though it wasn’t quite as fast as ExpressVPN. It allowed me to play various mobile games without lagging and stream shows on Disney+ without encountering any buffering. With servers in 80+ different countries, it also has great coverage.

PIA is an excellent VPN for streaming — it worked with every popular streaming service I tested, including Netflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime Video, and more.

PIA has user-friendly iOS and Android apps — the interface is simple to navigate, and you can connect to the fastest server with 1-click connections. PIA also allows unlimited connections, so everyone in your family can use it on their mobile devices.

PIA comes with an ad, tracker, and malware blocker on Android (MACE) — though you have to sideload it from its website due to Google’s TOS (there’s a simple, 4-step guide on how to do this in the Help Center). I tested it by visiting some sites known for serving obnoxious pop-up ads and am happy to report an ad-free experience. PIA’s Android app also includes split-tunneling.

Private Internet Access’s plans cost as low as $2.19 / month and come with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Private Internet Access Coupon - 82% off in May 2023
You can save 82% if you act right now.

Bottom Line:

Private Internet Access (PIA) gives you a lot of value with its mobile apps — it’s fast, feature-rich, and has more configuration options than most other mobile VPNs. It works great with a wide variety of popular streaming apps as well. All of PIA’s plans are covered by a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Try Private Internet Access Now

Read our full Private Internet Access review here

🥉3. CyberGhost VPN — Dedicated Streaming Servers & Easy-to-Use Apps

🥉3. CyberGhost VPN — Dedicated Streaming Servers & Easy-to-Use Apps
CyberGhost VPN is a great mobile VPN for streaming because it has dedicated servers that are optimized for specific streaming sites (including Netflix, BBC iPlayer, and Amazon Prime). The servers are also frequently tested to ensure that they work.

It’s also very beginner-friendly, with a quick-connect tool and helpful explanations for all settings and features. I tested both the Android and iOS apps and was pleasantly surprised at how easy it was to navigate around the apps to change settings and connect to the server I wanted.

When it comes to speeds, CyberGhost is quite fast. Downloading a 1 GB file took just under two minutes, which is comparable to Private Internet Access. But it’s a bit slower than downloading the same file with ExpressVPN, which took just over a minute and a half. For streaming, the differences were unnoticeable.

CyberGhost is also very secure. In addition to using perfect forward secrecy and RAM-only servers, it also has NoSpy servers (extra secure servers located at CyberGhost’s headquarters in Romania). Also, CyberGhost releases a transparency report every quarter.

For extra features, CyberGhost has an ad blocker (Content Blocker) — though I personally found it pretty weak compared to Private Internet Access. It was unable to block ads on some of the same websites where I tested MACE. It did let me know when I tried to visit a known malicious site though. Its Android app also supports split-tunneling.

CyberGhost VPN has one of the cheapest plans out there at just $2.11 / month and offers a generous 45-day money-back guarantee for its yearly plans (the monthly plan has a 14-day money-back guarantee).

CyberGhost - 84% off
You can save 84% if you act right now.

Bottom Line:

CyberGhost VPN is excellent for streaming, has speedy connections, and offers very good security tools — including perfect forward secrecy, RAM-only servers, and NoSpy Servers. You can take advantage of its 45-day money-back guarantee for its yearly plans to try it out risk-free.

Try CyberGhost VPN Now

Read our full CyberGhost VPN review here

4. NordVPN — Has Great Mobile Security Features

4. NordVPN — Has Great Mobile Security Features

NordVPN has advanced features to secure your mobile traffic, including full-leak protection, RAM-only servers, and perfect forward secrecy. Also, its no-logs policy has also been confirmed by both an independent audit and a server breach that didn’t leak any user data.

It also comes with a few extra security features, like Threat Protection Lite. This is one of the best ad blockers offered by a VPN and protects you from suspicious sites, trackers, and ads — I still prefer Private Internet Access’s MACE feature. There are also double VPN servers that send your data through 2 servers for added security. And the Android app also has Tapjacking Protection, which protects you against malicious apps that try to add a screen overlay to trick you into compromising your data.

I got pretty good speeds for streaming with NordVPN on my mobile phone. There was no noticeable delay when loading web pages, and only about 1–2 seconds of loading for Netflix movies or ESPN+ live streams. NordVPN’s speeds were similar to CyberGhost VPN but slower than ExpressVPN and Private Internet Access.

Plus, the provider’s mobile apps are really intuitive. It only takes 4 seconds to find and connect to a server, there’s also a quick-connect tool, and there are helpful explanations for all features, so you never feel lost using this VPN.

NordVPN’s plans start from $4.99 / month. All plans are covered by a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Bottom Line:

NordVPN comes with an impressive suite of security features, including perfect forward secrecy, full-leak protection, and RAM-only servers. It can also protect you from ads and shady sites, secure your data with double VPN connections, and prevent tapjacking. Plans are covered by a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Try NordVPN Now

Read our full NordVPN review here

5. Surfshark — Beginner-Friendly and Affordable Mobile VPN

5. Surfshark — Beginner-Friendly and Affordable Mobile VPN

Surfshark is one of the most affordable VPNs on the market. With its low prices, this is a great option for someone who needs a good mobile VPN and is also on a tight budget.

Surfshark is simple to use, too. It doesn’t take more than 2 minutes to install its mobile apps. What’s more, the interface is extremely easy to navigate. Plus, I like that it also allows unlimited connections.

And it comes with pretty good security features. This includes CleanWeb, which is a great ad blocker, RAM-only servers, and perfect forward secrecy. Unfortunately, it’s missing full leak protection (ExpressVPN and Private Internet Acceess have full leak protection) and only provides DNS leak protection — still, I never experienced any leaks in my tests.

Surfshark’s speeds held up pretty well. I was able to load most sites in just 3 seconds, while HD videos only took around 2 seconds to load and I only experienced minor buffering at the start.

The Android app also has a feature that spoofs your GPS data. This is useful for streaming, as it makes it harder for mobile streaming apps to detect and block your VPN connection.

Surfshark has plans starting from $2.30 / month. All purchases are covered by a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Bottom Line:

Surfshark is an affordable VPN that is easy to use. It also allows unlimited connections, comes with good security and privacy features, has decent speeds, and can spoof your GPS data on Android. Plans are covered by a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Try Surfshark Now

Read our full Surfshark review here

Comparison of the Best Mobile VPNs in 2023

VPN Starting Price Works with Netflix? Servers (Number of Countries) Number of Devices Money-Back Guarantee
1.🥇ExpressVPN $6.67 / month 90+ 5 30 days
2.🥈Private Internet Access $2.19 / month 80+ Unlimited 30 days
3.🥉CyberGhost $2.11 / month 90+ 7 45 days (14 on monthly plans)
4. NordVPN $4.99 / month 55+ 6 30 days
5. Surfshark $2.30 / month 100+ Unlimited 30 days

Try ExpressVPN Now

How to Choose the Best Mobile VPN in 2023

  • Look for a VPN with good security. All of the VPNs I recommend have industry-standard VPN security features, including 256-bit AES encryption, a strict no-logs policy (prevents the VPN from recording your session data), and DNS and WebRTC leak protection.
  • Find a VPN with fast speeds. All VPNs will slow your connection speeds to some extent because they encrypt your data. I only recommend VPNs that maintain fast speeds for browsing, streaming, and gaming on local and distant servers (ExpressVPN is the fastest).
  • Choose a user-friendly VPN. I like mobile VPN apps with minimalistic interfaces and features that are quick and easy to use, even for less-experienced VPN users.
  • Check for streaming capabilities. Each of the VPNs on this list works with popular streaming apps such as Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Amazon Prime Video, and more, so you can access all of your streaming entertainment on the go.
  • Go for a VPN that provides good value. The VPNs listed here all have lots of extra features like split-tunneling or ad blockers, offer competitive pricing, and come with a money-back guarantee.

Try ExpressVPN Now

Top Brands That Didn’t Make the Cut

  • IPVanish: IPVanish has good speeds and good security, but it can’t access a lot of major streaming sites like Disney+ and Amazon Prime Video. It also lacks DNS leak protection on its mobile apps.
  • PrivadoVPN: PrivadoVPN has easy-to-use Android and iOS apps, but it lacks perfect forward secrecy, RAM-only servers, extras like split-tunneling and an ad blocker, and it doesn’t work with Netflix, Disney+, and Hulu.
  • TorGuard: TorGuard’s mobile apps have excellent security features, but they aren’t intuitive, they have some annoying glitches, and the pricing plans are very expensive.

Frequently Asked Questions

Which VPN is the best for mobile phones?

In my opinion, ExpressVPN is the best Android and iOS VPN in 2023. It works with all of the top streaming apps, and it was the fastest in all of my speed tests, making it great for browsing the internet, streaming, and gaming. It also has excellent security with 256-bit AES encryption, a proven no-logs policy, perfect forward secrecy, RAM-only servers, and a tracker and malware blocker.

Should I use a VPN on mobile data?

Yes. While using a VPN does cause some extra data usage, it’s an essential tool to help ensure your privacy and security.

VPNs provide great security and privacy. They encrypt all of your data (making it completely unreadable) and hide your IP address behind one belonging to your VPN provider — this conceals your online activity and your location from third parties such as advertisers. In addition, VPNs like ExpressVPN and Private Internet Access include advanced security features like perfect forward secrecy, RAM-only servers, and built-in tools that will stop ads and trackers or provide an extra layer of protection against visiting sites that may contain malware.

How do I use a mobile VPN?

Here are 3 easy steps you can follow to get a VPN up and running on your Android or iOS device in just a few minutes:

  1. Choose a VPN. You want one that’s fast, secure, and has great Android and iOS apps (I recommend ExpressVPN).
  2. Download and install the VPN app. This should only take a few minutes. Simply follow the instructions on the installer.
  3. Connect to a VPN server. Most VPN apps will have a quick-connect feature that chooses the fastest server for you based on your location, but you can also choose a server manually if you prefer.

Which VPN has the best speeds?

ExpressVPN had the fastest speeds in my tests, and this didn’t surprise me since it’s the fastest VPN out there. The slowdown was hardly noticeable on local or distant servers — web pages loaded instantly, I experienced no buffering while streaming HD videos, and I was able to play mobile games without any lag whatsoever.

That said, all the other mobile VPNs on this list are also very fast.

Best Mobile VPNs in 2023 — Final Score:

Overall Score
Best Deal
save 49%
save 82%
save 84%
save 63%
save 82%
About the Author

About the Author

Raven Wu is a freelance writer, editor, and translator. He is a strong advocate of internet freedom and is very passionate about technology, and he’s honed his craft by researching and writing about a variety of other topics including education, literature, health, pop culture, and games. Outside of work, he's an amateur novelist and history enthusiast who enjoys hard games, spicy food, and thinking way too hard about everything.