You Really Need a VPN on Your Phone: How to Easily Install It on Android or iPhone

It doesn’t matter if you use an old phonea brilliant new Samsungor (soon) the next iPhone 14 — your mobile device needs a virtual private network. A VPN will keep your browsing history and internet searches deprived of your wireless carrier, internet service provider or law enforcement entities. Additionally, if you’re worried about putting your privacy at risk when connecting to an unsecured network at an airport or coffee shop, VPNs can provide an extra layer of protection.

VPNs are easier to use on your phone than you might think, and most are relatively affordable. Here’s how to set up a VPN on your iPhone Where android phone quickly – and start browsing privately – in just minutes.

Read more: Best VPN Services of 2022

Why do I need to use a VPN on my phone anyway?

Are all internet-connected apps on your phone up-to-date and running versions released after, say, 2017? What about your operating system: is it the latest version of android Where iOS? If the answer to any of these questions is “I don’t know”, then you should use a phone VPN if possible. It can be difficult for bad actors to take advantage of everyday users on public Wi-Fi, but outdated software can give them the opening they need to steal passwords to your most sensitive accounts.

If you’re concerned about the risks of using public Wi-Fi to check sensitive work email accounts, bank account balances, or airline ticket and passport information, a VPN can offer some peace of mind. Some of our top rated options include ExpressVPN, Surfshark and NordVPN.

Read more: NordVPN vs ExpressVPN: Speed, Security and Price Compared

A red lock on a black shield with VPN underneath on a phone

Choosing a VPN for your iPhone or Android doesn’t have to be difficult.

Sarah Tew/CNET

How to Choose the Best Mobile VPN

Whether you use an iPhone or an Android smartphone, your first step is the same: find a VPN that you like and that is compatible with your mobile device. Here’s how:

1. Peruse CNET’s list of best vpns for iphone Where best vpns for android. If your goal is simply to browse public Wi-Fi safely, look for a VPN service whose servers are located in your current country. The general rule is that the closer the hardware, the faster the VPN connection.

2. Avoid Free VPNs. We like the 30-day guarantees and seven-day trial periods (and you will find many), but completely free VPNs are rarely secure and are often just a way for unseemly companies to get their hands on your data.

If you are looking to invest in a VPN for the long term, you will need more than 10 minutes of research time. But when you’re ready to dive deeper, CNET has reviews from many major players in the VPN spaceand one guide on how to choose the right VPN for you.

How to Set Up a VPN on an Android Phone

Now that you’ve chosen the VPN you want to use, follow these steps to get it working on your Android device:

1. Open the Google Play Store on your mobile phone and tap the search bar at the top of the screen.

2. Type the name of the VPN you want to use and select it from the list of apps that appears. Take a look at the app creator to make sure you are downloading the official app instead of an imitator. The company name and the app creator’s name must match. Click on Install and wait for the app to download.

3. Once the VPN app is installed, exit the Google Play store and return to your phone’s home screen to click on the VPN app and open it.

4. The first time you open a paid VPN app, you’ll be asked to provide your login credentials or sign up for the service. If you’re prompted to sign up using an email address (which almost all services are), be sure to check your email for a confirmation link from your new VPN provider.

For apps listed in CNET’s VPN directory, the process will be largely the same: you’ll be prompted to choose and pay for your preferred subscription tier. We always suggest choosing a service that has a 30-day money-back policy so you can test services until you find one you like.

Android devices require additional steps to keep a VPN running constantly in the background. We don’t recommend this for most users – a 24-hour VPN client will quickly drain your battery and may cause you to reach your data limit too soon if you’ve chosen a VPN provider that caps their clients. use of data.

This means that by default, almost any new VPN you use will only work when you open the app and activate it. Don’t forget to turn it off once you’re done browsing.

Read more: Avoid These 7 Android VPN Apps Because of Their Privacy Sins

How to Set Up a VPN on an iPhone

Here’s how to get a VPN working on your Apple iPhone:

1. On your iPhone, go to your home screen and tap to open the App store.

2. Faucet the Look for in the lower right corner of the screen, then tap the tab Look for box near the top of the screen.

3. Type in the name of the VPN you chose and select it from the list that appears. Then press the Obtain button that appears to the right of the application name. As with any other app, you’ll need to confirm app installation with your password, Touch ID, or Face ID.

4. Once your installation is complete, close the App Store and return to your House filter.

5. Just like when using a VPN for the first time on Android, when using a VPN for the first time on iPhone means you will be prompted to create a new account and select your preferred subscription level. Be sure to check your inbox for any confirmation links your VPN company sends you if you signed up using an email address.

Almost all VPN apps will prompt you to connect to an automatically selected VPN server based on your location to allow for the fastest browsing. From now on, whenever you want to use your VPN, just tap the VPN icon on your home screen before you start browsing the internet, click the app button for you connect, then go back to the VPN app and turn it off when you’re done.

Right here right now. Didn’t I tell you it was easy?

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