VPNs have become indispensable tools for those who wish to protect their privacy. As a smartphone owner, you may want to take advantage of the security virtual private networks offer. But a good VPN for Android can unlock many opportunities, far beyond providing an extra layer of protection to your devices. Let’s see how you can benefit from installing a virtual private network and what the best VPNs for Google’s mobile OS are.

What is a mobile VPN?

A mobile VPN is an application on your smartphone that activates a VPN client. It works the same way as a desktop app but on your mobile phone. This means that it encrypts your internet traffic and routes it through a secure server, thus assigning you a different IP address. We need to mention that mobile VPNs are not exactly the same as the desktop version since they can offer or lack features, depending on the OS.

Advantages of using VPN on Android devices

We have already written about the benefits of using a VPN in general. But it’s always a good idea to mention them again!


Protection from hackers

Man-in-the-middle attacks are pretty often. Many networks are getting infiltrated, and connecting to public Wi-Fi can be tricky. With over 3 billion users, the global reach of Android has become a tasty bite for people with bad intentions. Fortunately, using a VPN can turn out to be crucial for users’ protection.


Content streaming

Streaming Netflix, HBO Max, Hulu, ESPN+, and other platforms is another strong argument for using VPNs. Since you can bypass geographic restrictions, you can watch content from abroad. It’s a great option for travelers who want to watch their favorite TV series. According to 9to5 Google, there a more than 110 million Android TV devices. So, it makes great sense to install a VPN for Android TV.


Bypass censorship

Whether you live in a country with harsh access constraints for websites and social media networks, or you want to open YouTube and Facebook from your school Wi-Fi, you may need to use a VPN to mask your traffic. Using VPN apps to bypass country restrictions is a very popular move for people living in less democratic states.

5 Best VPNs for Android

PrivateVPN is Time4VPN’s choice for the best VPN for Android, as it offers a great package of features that aim to improve your security and let your stream content platforms.

The Android app isn’t stripped and offers a whole range of functions, like a kill switch, multiple protocols, and smart locations. While there are 200+ servers in 63 countries, it doesn’t suffer from slow speeds. It is fast, steady, and reliable – exactly what a user needs.

The user interface is simple and very intuitive. So if you’re a beginner with VPNs, that might be of good use! On top of that, you can stream multiple content platforms – Netflix, HBO Max, Amazon Prime Video, ESPN+, Disney+, BBC iPlayer, and many others. You can turn your smartphone and tablet into TVs, and if you have Android TV, you’ll get even better results.

Security-wise, it’s also well protected. AES-256 encryption, a kill switch, and multiple VPN protocols ensure you’ll be out of prying eyes. It didn’t have IP leak issues at all and even bypassed China’s firewall (a benchmark for a VPN’s capabilities).

Last but not least, PrivateVPN lets you subscribe to the service for 3 years with a single $72 payment or just two bucks per month, one of the best Android VPN deals on the market, plus a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Surfshark is one of the best Android VPNs on the market right now. It has a good 4.4 rating in Google Play, and it offers one of the best packages, especially given the fantastic price it comes at.

One of the best things about Surfshark is that it offers unlimited device connections, which aren’t provided by many others in the VPN market.

It has a specific Trust DNS on Android, plus standard AES-256-bit encryption, and passed our leak tests successfully. Still, we’d love to witness IPv6, as it has become a standard now.

Speed-wise, there were no compromises. 3,200+ servers and over 100 countries with coverage are pretty good news. Moreover, the WireGuard protocol works well and is much more versatile for smartphones and tablets, but IKEv2 also does a great job. It’s one of the most rapid Android VPNs right now, and it can easily stream in 4K without any buffering.

Speaking of streaming, it does open many Netflix libraries, BBC iPlayer, Disney+, and many others. Unfortunately, it’s not a good VPN for Hulu, so bear that in mind.

The user interface is typical for Surfshark – sleek and modern but not the easiest to use. Still, for what you’ll pay, it’s one of the best VPNs for Android devices.

ExpressVPN is known to be one of the most secure VPNs for Android but also for all kinds of devices. It does a great job of securing your internet privacy with AES-256-bit encryption, SHA512 hashing, and even its own secure protocol (“Lightway”).

Speed-wise, it does a good job, although it lacks the IKEv2 protocol for Android, which is the main used one on smartphones since it keeps the VPN connected all the time and optimizes the kill switch. 3,000 servers across more than 90 countries ensure good coverage.

If you wish to stream on your device, then ExpressVPN won’t disappoint. It opens many Netflix libraries, but it also does well with HBO Max, BBC iPlayer, and a whole range of other content services. You won’t witness any delays or buffering issues.

The user interface is a mixed bag since some people like it, and others are not that fond of it. We consider it professional but definitely not beginner-friendly.

Another thing to notice is that you can have only 5 simultaneous connections with the same device, which is limiting.

Price-wise, it’s one of the most expensive software, with the annual plan being the best offer – it comes at $6.67 per month, which is more than what you’ll pay monthly with PrivateVPN, Surfshark, and PIA altogether.

Private Internet Access (better known as PIA) is a very solid VPN provider that has an even better Android app.

We were quite surprised by the outstanding user interface of the app – it was very user-friendly. But we were also impressed by the features that this VPN service offers. A kill switch, the proprietary PIA Mace, which is considered an adblocker on steroids, plus split tunneling (great for Android TV).

While it has over 30,000 servers across the world, we have to see the speeds are slightly above the industry average and cannot compare with Surfshark. However, you can enjoy relatively high speeds and enjoy watching content at 4K with ease.

Speaking of streaming content, we must admit that PIA is not the best VPN for streaming. It does a good job with Netflix, HBO Max, Disney+, and BBC iPlayer, but it is caught sometimes. On top of that, you are re-routed every now and then.

Security-wise, it does have IPv6 protection and AES-256-bit encryption. PIA didn’t fail our leak tests and did a good job protecting your privacy.

An area where it shines is the value for money. For just over $2 per month, you can get the best deal provided by Private Internet Access.

CyberGhost is one of the leading VPNs for Android today. We were impressed by the variety of features this provider can offer. On top of the VPN, you can pay a little extra and get antivirus software plus an ad blocker.

We’ll have to start with the amazing user interface. It isn’t the easiest on the planet, but the dark theme looks stunning! It’s our personal favorite.

Having over 8,900 servers across more than 90 countries globally means you can connect from multiple places and enjoy high speed. We were quite impressed with them. 4K content isn’t an issue at all.

CyberGhost allows you to stream multiple services, like HBO Max, Disney+, Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, BBC iPlayer, and others, and it will do that with high speeds!

The Romanian VPN provider will also deliver good results in the security department – it has AES-256 encryption and IPv6 protection, and it didn’t disappoint in the leak tests and passed them easily. However, it doesn’t work well in countries with restricted access to VPNs, so have that in mind.

Finally, it comes at $2.19 per month on the biennial plan, but it’s limited to 7 devices. However, CyberGhost has a 45-day money-back guarantee which is the industry’s highest.


There are quite a bunch of differences between desktop and mobile VPN apps. The desktop app is usually stacked with most software package features, while the mobile version may lack some (or many) functions.

For the most part, yes. But there are some differences since Android is open-source while iOS is Apple’s proprietary software. As a result, Android allows more “freedom.” But there are other things, too. IKEv2 works better on iOS.

There are some free options for Android, like AtlasVPN, ProtonVPN, and TunnelBear. These plans all come from reliable providers and can be of good use. Of course, the market is packed with options, but many of the free VPNs are scams that will abuse your personal data.

Yes, in most countries worldwide, using a VPN on Android devices is legal. Still, there are some less democratic states which forbid the use of any VPN, regardless of the operating system. Many VPNs already bypass country firewalls, but we advise you to pick a VPN with obfuscation capabilities.