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The best free VPNs for your iPhone: Keep your Apple device private!

You don't need to pay for a good VPN!
By
November 3, 2022
People using an Apple iPhone stock photo 18
Edgar Cervantes / Android Authority

Finding the best free VPNs for your iPhone (or any other device, for that matter) is no easy task. Virtual Private Networks require heavy investment by the company in charge; thus, offering people this service at no cost is not always simple. Free VPN services exist, though. How can this be possible?

Some free VPNs for your iPhone manage to generate revenue in other ways. The most obvious solution is advertising. Some may also sell your data to third parties, which is more worrisome and partly beats the purpose of a VPN. Additionally, free VPN services tend to have limitations in place. Almost all have a data allowance, and some don’t allow you to pick your own server locations. 

What is a VPN, and do I need one?

VPN stock photo 3
Edgar Cervantes / Android Authority

VPN stands for Virtual Private Network. This technology routes your internet data through the provider’s servers, which then travels to whatever you’re accessing. Think of it as a middleman between you and the internet. 

As such, a VPN hides your location and identity, displaying only the VPN’s information. To any website or service, it will look as if its information is being accessed by the VPN’s servers. Effectively, a USA-based VPN will allow you to browse the web as if you were in the States. Many use VPNs to bypass geo-restricted websites like streaming services or apps. 

Of course, anonymity is another advantage of using a Virtual Private Network. Given that your VPN provider has a no-logging policy, no company will be able to see your browsing history, including your ISP. This is because VPNs encrypt your data. 

The best free VPNs for iPhone

With all these factors to consider, we know many of you will need some help finding the right free VPN for your iPhone. Here’s a list of our favorite ones. If you need assistance, we have a guide on setting up a VPN on iOS

TunnelBear: The simplest, most user-friendly VPN for iPhone

TunnelBear Press Image VPN Deals
TunnelBear

TunnelBear is one of the longest-standing modern VPN services for iPhones, and for good reason. It used to be one of very few free VPN services, and continues to offer a basic plan at no cost. The free version of TunnelBear will grant you a 500MB allowance, and give you access to over 40 servers across the globe. If you need more, plans start at just $3.33 a month. 

It will bring you peace of mind to learn TunnelBear has a strict no-logging policy, which means the company will keep no records of you or your browsing. The app is super simple to use, and has a very clean interface. It’s definitely one of the most user-friendly options around. 

HotspotShield: User friendliness meets “unlimited” data

Hotspot Shield
Hotspot Shield

Hotspot Shield is another very popular service known for its ease of use and a great variety of servers (over 160 for the free plan). Hotspot shield also loves touting its fast servers and no-logging policy. It’s a bit more advanced than TunnelBear, while still focusing on ordinary consumers. 

The great thing about Hotspot Shield is that it claims to offer unlimited free data. It’s ad-supported, though; you’ll need to watch advertising to keep using it past daily limits (500MB). The app is super simple to figure out and very intuitive, so any user can get familiar with it in no time.

Avira Phantom: Fewer limitations for free

Avira Phantom offers a free data limit of 500MB, but this number can be increased to 1GB if you sign up for a free account (and give the company some of your information). It still has a no-logging policy, but the company can now reach out to you to offer services, promotions, and more. 

What makes Avira Phantom special is that the free plan is very similar to the paid version, save for the data allotment and lack of customer support. Otherwise, you’ll still get encryption, DNS leak prevention, a virtual IP address, and more. The app is also super simple and clear about your data allowance. And you can manually pick between servers in 37 countries. 


Hide.me: 10GB of data, no sign-up, zero logs

Hide.me
Hide.me

You thought 500MB and 1GB were good deals for a free VPN for your iPhone? Think again. Hide.me gives you 10GB of VPN browsing per month! The best part is that the company asks for nothing. You don’t need to sign up, there’s no card required, and it still keeps a no-logging policy. The app autoselects your server, but at least it’s a nice and simple app.  


Windscribe

Windscribe
Windscribe

Windscribe also offers 10GB of free bandwidth, but it does so only if you sign up for an account, but there is still a strict no-logging policy in place. You’ll have to conform with 2GB if you don’t want an account.

We added this option to this list of the best VPNs for your iPhone because, unlike Hide.me, Windscribe allows you to change your servers manually. The free plan offers servers in 11 countries, including the USA. 


ProtonVPN

ProtonVPN
Proton VPN
Did we leave the best for last? We just might have. ProtonVPN is something else, and it’s definitely one of the best free VPNs for your iPhone. ProtonVPN offers unlimited bandwidth; no hassles, no limits, and no watching ads to keep using it. You’ll also get access to over 100 servers in the USA, Netherlands, and Japan. 

That said, some sacrifices must be made for such an amazing free service. You need to sign up for a ProtonVPN account. The service will also limit you to “medium speeds” unless you pay up. Regardless, the company promises not to keep any logs of your activity. 

FAQs

VPN stands for Virtual Private Network. It serves as a middleman between your device and the internet, routing all data through a remote server. VPNs can mask your IP, encrypt your activity, mask your location, and secure your browsing.

Netflix, as well as other geo-restricted services, are getting better at detecting VPNs and stopping users from streaming when using them. You can always try, though. Chances are some VPNs will work, while others won’t.

Most free VPNs are pretty limited, or the company finds odd ways to monetize its services. That said, some free VPN apps manage to offer a good service and a morally fit philosophy at no cost.

If you’re willing to pay for a VPN, there are better options than the free alternatives listed in this post. Paying will give you the full experience, more compatibility, no limitations, and a smoother experience. Not to mention support will be better.