You need to use a VPN on your phone. Here’s how to set it up in less than 10 minutes

Yes, you need a VPN on your phone.

Sarah Teo / CNET

Editors’ note, February 9, 2022: The VPN industry has gone through a lot of change in the past few months, with All 3 of Our Top VPN Options Announces Big Changes in corporate ownership. in December, ExpressVPN has officially joined Kape Technologies, a company that already owns several other VPNs and has raised privacy concerns in the past. in february, NordVPN and Surfshark announce the merger of the two companies, although they will continue to operate independently. We are re-evaluating our top picks in light of these changes. We will update our reviews and, if necessary, our rankings to take into account this new competitive landscape.

We have all been there. You’re in a coffee shop or at an airport, and you desperately need to use public Wi-Fi to save your phone’s data plan, but are worried about your privacy being compromised when connected to a network that you may not fully secure. I’ve heard that VPNs can help, but they seem expensive and complicated. what should be done?

Do not worry. VPN Easier Use it on your phone Than you might think, most of them are less expensive than you might expect. Here’s how to get a VPN, or Virtual Private Network, set up on Iphone or Android phone – And back to browsing safely on your mobile device – in less than 10 minutes.

CNET’s Best VPN Services of 2021

Read more: Best VPN Services of 2022

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

Are all the internet-connected apps on your phone up-to-date and working with versions posted later, eg, 2017? What about your operating system – is it the latest version of Android or iOS? If the answer to any of these questions is ‘I don’t know’, you should use a phone VPN if possible. It can be difficult for malicious actors to take advantage of ordinary users on public Wi-Fi, but outdated software can give them the opportunity they need to steal passwords for your most sensitive accounts.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 provide some peace of mind. Some of our top-rated options include ExpressVPNAnd the Surfshark And the NordVPN.

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


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

Sarah Teo / CNET

How to choose the best mobile VPN

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

1. Browse CNET’s listing for Best VPNs for iPhone or Best VPNs for Android. If your goal is just to browse on public Wi-Fi securely, look for a VPN service with servers located in your current country. The general rule is that the closer the device, the faster the VPN connection.

2. Avoid free VPNs. We love 30-day guarantees and seven-day trial periods (and You will find many of these), but completely free VPNs are rarely secure, and are often just a way for inconvenient companies to get hold of 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 take a deeper dive, CNET does it Ratings of several major players in the VPN fieldand A guide on how to choose the right VPN for you.

How to set up a VPN on your Android phone

Now that you have chosen the VPN you want to use, follow these steps to get it up and running on your Android device:

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

2. Type in the name of the VPN you wish to use, and select it from the list of applications that pops up. Take a look at the app’s creator to make sure you’re downloading the official app instead of a clone. The company name must match the creator of the app. click fix Wait for the app to download.

3. Once the VPN app is installed, leave the Google Play Store and go back to your phone’s home screen to tap and open the VPN app.

4. The first time you open any paid VPN app, you will be asked to provide your login information or sign up for the service. If you are asked to sign up with an email address (which is the case for almost all services), be sure to check your email for a confirmation link from your new VPN provider.

For the apps listed in CNET’s VPN Guide, the process will be pretty much the same: you’ll be asked to choose your preferred subscription level and pay for it. We always suggest choosing a service that has a 30-day refund policy so you can test drive services until you find the one you want.

Android devices require additional steps to keep the VPN running permanently in the background. We don’t recommend this to most users – a VPN client that runs around the clock will quickly drain your battery, and may force you to hit your data limit too soon if you choose a VPN provider that limits their clients. data usage.

By default, this means that any new VPN you use will only work when you open and launch the app. Just remember to turn it off once you are done browsing.

Read more: Avoid the 7 Android VPN Apps for Privacy Sins

How to set up a VPN on iPhone

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

1. On your iPhone, go to your Home screen and tap to open a file App Store.

2. handle The Search in the lower right corner of the screen, then tap Search box near the top of the screen.

3. Type in the name of your chosen VPN, and select it from the popup. Then press Get that appears to the left of the app’s name. As with any other app, you’ll need to confirm the app’s installation with a passcode, Touch ID, or Face ID.

4. Once the installation is finished, close the App Store and go back to File Homepage Screen.

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

Almost all VPN apps will prompt you to connect to a specific VPN server automatically based on your location to enable the fastest browsing. From now on, anytime you want to use your VPN, all you have to do is tap the VPN icon on your home screen before you start browsing the internet, tap the app button to connect, then go back to the VPN app and turn it off once you’re done.

There now. Didn’t I tell you it was easy?

More VPN Recommendations