Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) provide an effective way to secure Android phones. Using public wi-fi networks with smartphones poses a number of risks, from having your Facebook account hijacked, to losing thousands of dollars to man-in-the-middle attacks. But with a VPN installed and running, users can enjoy total peace of mind whenever they use their phones' connections.
We've assessed all of the latest Android VPNs, putting them through their paces. Not all of them measure up when it comes to speed, ease of use, and basic privacy protection. But the three VPNs listed below score highly on every attribute, providing the protection phone owners need. Let's introduce them in more detail to help you make the right choice.
NordVPN is right at the pinnacle of global VPNs, and the company could well be the best Android VPN around. The Panama-based company has created a dedicated Android client, which is completely optimized for smartphones.
NordVPN haven't just transferred their desktop client with a messy conversion. Instead, the NordVPN Android client is well thought-out and suited to smartphone interfaces, making it a joy to use. There's no need to fiddle around with multiple menus before logging on. Everything can be handled with a single swipe via NordVPN's Quick Connect feature.
But more importantly, the technology underlying the interface is as solid as it gets. AES-256 bit encryption will make your data invulnerable to hackers even on the worst-secured public networks, and there's no logging at any stage.
NordVPN also offer a few different Android settings for specialist users. For instance, there's a P2P setting for streaming content on the go, and an Onion Over VPN feature for users of the Tor browser. And the Panama location is a good sign, too. Panama isn't known for leaking information to the US or other nations, and has a strong privacy record.
Finally, NordVPN is fast. With servers in over 60 nations, users are spoiled for choice, and they can easily bypass Netflix geoblocks, making the Android app ideal for travelers. So if you're heading on a global adventure but can't stand missing Game of Thrones, NordVPN has your back.
Developed by Golden Frog, VyprVPN is right up there with NordVPN as far as Android users are concerned, and we loved its premium features.
The Android client is hugely popular, and focuses on security like few other providers. Unlike some Android privacy tools, Vypr is completely developed in-house, with no third party connections (and no ads). That's a very good sign for privacy fans.
As you'd expect from the best Android VPN providers, the encryption used by Vypr is as solid as can be, and there's also a Kill Switch. This will automatically cut out your internet connection if IP leaks are detected or the VPN fails for some reason. And it's essential for 100% privacy.
Being based in Switzerland, VyprVPN can be trusted on the privacy front. Not much leaves Swiss organizations, and that includes any data you use on the Vypr network. But with zero logging, that shouldn't be a problem in any case. We also loved the app-by-app connection settings, allowing users to decide exactly which apps need full VPN protection.
Speed isn't likely to be a problem, either. Vypr doesn't have the broadest server selection, but it seems to have chosen wisely, and you can count on their Android VPN delivering impressive speeds. Vypr actually automatically select the fastest server (unless you turn off that setting), so users don't need to hunt around for a connection that works for them.
However, Netflix fans might be disappointed. Vypr falls down a little when it comes to beating the streaming giant's geoblocks. P2P traffic is prohibited, and the most comprehensive packages are a little more expensive than most competitors. Still, if you need a VPN for general Android activity, you won't find many superior options.
Our final selection is CyberGhost. Often found on "top 10" VPN lists for its desktop clients, this Romanian VPN's Android software is just as accomplished.
As with NordVPN, one-tap connection lets you engage VPN protection as easily as can be, while the client is probably the best Android VPN for new users. Entry-level VPN users won't find anything to baffle them here. It's all laid out with crystal clarity, without limiting CyberGhost's options.
Speeds are exceptional, and they should be. With over 3,000 servers located all over the world, CyberGhost can hook Android users up to lightning fast servers wherever, and whenever they need them. And CyberGhost knocks down geoblocks for fun, providing reliable Netflix access. In fact, it's great for accessing any streaming services.
On the security side, there's not much to worry about. Encryption is up there with NordVPN or VyprVPN, and the Kill Switch adds extra protection when required. However, customers should be aware that CyberGhost has caused a few alarms about DNS leaks (though they claim to be dealing with these issues).
Price-wise, CyberGhost is a mid-range product. It's not super cheap, but it's definitely not a rip-off. And the free trial lets Android users try before they buy as well - which we'd always recommend.
Whether you're thinking of your own smartphone security, or you need to protect your kids as they connect to public wi-fi networks, VPNs are essential tools. The best VPN Android services offer rock solid privacy, encryption and malware protection, along with excellent value.
So don't take chances with free VPNs or providers with seductive promotional material. Go for proven winners on Android and use your phone in complete safety.