What beginners need to know about running a VPN on Android

May 8, 2013
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The Play Store has a lot of VPN apps, and as I mentioned before, not all of them will provide you with the best security. That said, we’ve gone through the Play Store and found some great VPN apps that will easily get the job done. However, since a lot of these apps we picked out are pretty high on the quality scale, they all aren’t free of charge.

Hideman VPN

hideman-vpn

Hideman VPN is a personal favorite. It’s easy to use and has a number of features that make it an all around great experience. It’s simple enough for the beginner VPN user, so it shouldn’t cause too much frustration.

When you first open the app, it’ll show your current location and a vast array of servers in a multitude of countries that you can connect to. There are a great number of countries that you can connect to without paying a dime, but even more will become available to you if you decide to pay for a subscription or time on the VPN on a hour-by-hour basis.

As I said, Hideman is my favorite out of this list. It doesn’t cost a whole lot and it offers AES-256 bit encryption, which is about the best you can get. Now, there is a downside to this particular VPN. You can only use it on an hour-by-hour basis. You can tap a button to add an hour or hours of time during your session. That time will continue to run out whether you’re connected to the VPN or not.

You can get Hideman VPN from the Play Store here.

Hideninja VPN

hideninja

Hideninja is very similar to Hideman VPN, but it doesn’t offer nearly as many countries to connect to as Hideman VPN does. There are nine total countries available to connect up to, four of which require the pro version of the app. You don’t need to sign up for a subscription or hour package with Hideninja either, it can be used feely. Although, most of the features and countries aren’t available without a subscription, so in some cases, it may be needed, but it can be used without.

You can’t configure any of Hideninja’s settings without the pro version of app. Of course, this won’t matter for a lot of people since the settings are just autoconnect options. However, if you’re wanting to connect to a server in the U.S. you won’t be able to do unless you have the pro version of the app.

If you’re interested in Hideninja VPN, you can head on over to the Google Play Store, and if you’re interested, the pro version costs a one time payment of $3.99.

HotSpot Shield VPN

hotspotshield

HotSpot Shield VPN is the most simple VPN on this list, making it great for beginners who aren’t familiar with virtual private networks at all. Simply hit the connect button, and boom, you’re connected to a network. It’s that easy to use.

On the other hand, HotSpot Shield VPN doesn’t have as many features as Hideninja or Hideman. However, and in my opinion, the app makes up for this by offering data compression, which will lower your data usage during your session. This is great for those who are on a limited data plan.

Just like Hideman VPN and Hideninja VPN, the free version of the app is very limiting. You’ll have to purchase the pro version to take full advantage of it. Also, HotSpot Shield doesn’t work with Android versions 3.x or the Amazon Kindle. However, it’ll work with Android 2.x and 4.x, though, there are still a few incompatible devices, such as the Archos G9 and the ASUS Transformer Pad TF201.

If you’re interested in a simple to use VPN, you can grab HotSpot Shield from the Play Store here.

Tunnelbear VPN

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Like most of these apps, Tunnelbear VPN is another great one for beginners. You can simply tap a button to connect or disconnect, and you can choose between for countries to connect to by using a knob in the top left corner of the app. There aren’t a whole lot of countries available, but the Play Store description for the app says there’s more coming soon.

Tunnelbear is a bit more interactive than the rest of the apps, but not by much. When you connect, there’s an animation of a bear tunneling, and that’s about it. As with every app on this list, you’re pretty limited with what you can do unless you pay for an upgrade. Still, you can take Tunnelbear for a test drive, as you get 500MB per month to use before you have to buy it.

On the other hand, you can get an extra gigabyte of data to use every month by tweeting about Tunnelbear inside the app. If you’re interested in Tunnelbear VPN, you can grab it here.

Conclusion

This article will by no means educate experts in this topic, but it introduces the beginner or everyday consumer to what a VPN is and why they should use one. VPNs can be very important, especially with ever increasing cyber crimes and how Internet-based our lives have become.

If you have any questions or even VPN app suggestions, feel free to leave a comment below!

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