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The best VPNs for your iPhone: Keep your Apple device private!
The Apple App Store and the internet are crowded with a bunch of VPN options. There are so many options, each touting many different features and price points. We can understand the daunting task that is finding the best options around. Today we’ll help you find the best VPNs for iPhone users.
We have a specific list of the best free iPhone VPNs, so we won’t focus on those in this particular post. We might throw a free option or two, though. Some are good enough to make it to this list, even if they aren’t paid. That said, most paid VPN services will be far better than most free ones.
What is a VPN, and why should I use one?
VPN stands for “Virtual Private Network.” This technology connects your iPhone to a remote server, and reroutes all your internet activity through it. Information will travel from your phone to the VPN servers, then to whatever you want to access, and the same way around. Think of it as an intermediary between your device and the internet.
This process makes it possible for a VPN to hide your IP address, location, and identity. To the world, it will look as though whatever server is accessing the internet, not your own device.
This type of service is more commonly used by those who want to bypass geolocation restrictions. If you are in another country without access to a specific streaming service that only works in the USA, using a United States-based VPN will usually allow you to access it. That is just one example. Other users take advantage of deals, price differences, and other benefits found in different markets across the globe.
If you're using a VPN to access a service from another country, make sure you're not breaking the rules.
All those benefits are convenient, but always be sure to read a service’s terms of service and understand if it’s permitted to use a VPN to fake your location. You might be breaking their rules.
However, geolocation restrictions aren’t the only reason you might want to use a VPN. It’s also an essential security tool. A VPN provides anonymity while surfing the web. Given that your VPN provider has a no-logging policy, no company, website, app, or entity can see what you do online while using a VPN. Not even your internet service provider.
The best VPNs for your iPhone
Are you ready to jump join the VPN bandwagon? We have been using, studying, and comparing all the best options for years. Here are our very favorite VPNs for iPhone in 2023.
ExpressVPN: The best VPN around
ExpressVPN has kept the spot as our favorite virtual private network service for a long time. It’s also a popular industry favorite, and you really can’t go wrong with this one if you’re looking for the very best VPN for iPhone devices. It’s a bit pricey at $12.95 per month, but you can usually grab a subscription at a pretty nice discount if you sign up for six months or 12 months.
iPhone users like things clean and simple, and the ExpressVPN app is as straightforward as they get. You just launch the app, press a button, and wait some seconds to connect. The company has a strict no-logging policy, and it uses multiple security protocols to keep your data safe and secure.
You might want to use your VPN with more than your iPhone, and you can. ExpressVPN subscribers can connect up to five devices simultaneously. And the service supports a wide variety of platforms. Aside from iOS, these include Android, various browsers, routers, Linux, Windows, MacOS, ChromeOS, gaming consoles, and more.
You’ll also get access to fast speeds using over 3,000 servers in 94 countries. You should have no issues connecting to any country you wish to.
Check out our full review to learn more about ExpressVPN.
NordVPN: The second-best
NordVPN is another renowned VPN provider in the industry, so it’s no surprise it’s also expensive, with prices starting at $12.99 monthly for the standard plan. Prices go up if you want the more advanced plans, too. Thankfully, NordVPN is also very generous with its 1-year and 2-year discounts.
NordVPN also throws in some excellent additions to the experience. All plans have malware protection and an ad-blocker. Upgrading can get you access to a password manager, cloud storage, and improved file encryption.
Additionally, NordVPN hosts over 5,600 “ultra-fast servers” in 60 countries. You can get a dedicated IP, which will help avoid detection from geo-restricted services that try to detect VPNs. And if you really care about streaming, NordVPN uses SmartPlay, which uses SmartDNS technology. It is automatic and makes streaming from home or abroad much easier. All without any logging.
If you care about compatibility, you can use it with a wide variety of platforms. These include iOS, of course, as well as Android, Chrome, Firefox, Edge, Windows, MacOS, Android TV, PlayStation, Xbox, Chromecast, and many others. Sadly, the device limit is pretty low at six connections.
Check out our full review to learn more about NordVPN.
IPVanish: Great for gaming
Are you looking to keep your bandwidth high and your ping low? Gamers and others who require the fastest internet possible will usually notice a bit of lag when using a VPN. This makes sense, as all data is being rerouted through a third party. While IPVanish won’t automatically solve all these issues, it does let you filter through the server list based on ping, which will allow you manually increase performance when every second counts.
We experienced great stability and reliability during our review, but the reviewer wasn’t able to fool Netflix using it. You might want to keep that in mind if you’re trying to use geo-restricted services from an unsupported country. For everything else, though, it was great.
Prices start at $11.99 per month, but you can get a hefty discount if you buy a yearly or 2-year subscription. Of course, it has an iOS app. It also supports Windows, MacOS, Android, Linux, browsers, routers, and more. The service has a no-logging policy to keep your security and browsing private. It also hosts over 2,200 servers in more than 75 locations.
One thing that makes this service stand out is that it allows unlimited connections. Using your single account, you can connect as many devices to IPVanish as you wish.
Check out our full review to learn more about IPVanish.
Ivacy VPN: A good VPN on the cheap
The best VPNs for iPhone can get pretty pricey. If you want the best bang you can get for every buck you pay, while still signing up for a pretty awesome service, you should definitely consider Ivacy VPN. The regular plan is $9.95 per month, which is cheaper than the others, but not really earth-shattering. Things get really good if you sign up for the 5-year plan, which costs $60. That is equivalent to $1 per month!
The service offers over 5,700 servers in more than 100 locations. You’ll also enjoy great added features, such as malware protection, military-grade encryption, unlimited bandwidth, a dedicated IP, split tunneling, and support for 10 simultaneous connections. Like most others, it also supports a wide variety of devices; iOS, Android, Windows, MacOS, Linux, etc.
SurfShark: Comes with a bunch of features
You’ve probably heard of SurfShark. It’s one of the most popular and advertised VPN services around. It’s actually a pretty good option, too. You get an excellent portfolio of features with it.
Aside from the usual private browsing and location masking you get with all VPNs for iPhone, SurfShark also has an ad-blocker, protects you against malware, can block algorithms to provide genuine search results, offers identity leak notifications, sends you reminders when it’s recommended to change passwords, can provide email security reports, and removes internet restrictions. As if that wasn’t enough, SurfShark also allows you to use your account on unlimited devices simultaneously. It has a no-logs policy, can connect to more than one VPN location at once, has an IP rotator, and more.
SurfShark has over 3,200 servers in 100 countries. Prices start at $12.95 per month, but that number can go down if you sign up for more time. We’ve seen the monthly equivalent go to as low as $2.39 if you sign up for a whole year. There are usually deals you can take advantage of, too.
Atlas VPN: The best free VPN
AtlasVPN doesn’t have too many fancy features, but it’s really good at the basics. It uses SafeSwap to access the internet from multiple IP addresses, blocks malware, can switch VPN locations automatically, uses split tunneling, and allows you to browse the web safely and privately. It also has a no-logging policy and a kill switch.
You can access over 750 AtlasVPN servers in 49 locations. It also allows you to connect an unlimited amount of devices to its VPN services.
What makes AtlasVPN truly special is that you may not need to pay for it at all, depending on your needs. This makes it one of the most enticing VPNs for iPhone users. Of course, there are limitations to free accounts. You can only access three locations. One of them is the Netherlands, and the other two are in the USA. More specifically, in Los Angeles and New York. It’s still great to see support for unlimited devices and bandwidth, though.
The problem with using these free servers is that they tend to get pretty crowded, which can slow down your speeds. If you’d rather pay, you can get a subscription for $10.99 a month, or as low as $1.83 per month if you prepay for three years.
The one downside is that it doesn’t support as many devices, but it still covers all the main ones. There are apps for iOS, Android, Windows, MacOS, Linux, Android TV, and Fire TV.
Perimeter 81: The best for business users
If you’re looking for the best business VPNs for iPhone devices, Perimeter 81 has a reputation like no other. It offers a wide selection of business-focused security features. These will keep all communications and connections secure.
One of its many products includes a Cloud VPN, which allows employees and permitted guests to access the company’s private network securely.
Perimeter 81 uses top-notch encryption and gives the IT team total control thanks to SDP. The service also offers a firewall, malware protection, software-defined perimeters, zero-trust network access, and more.
The only downside is that Perimeter 81 can get really pricey. Prices start at $10 a month per user. And it requires a minimum of 10 users. This means you’ll be paying at least $100 a month. While you can save if you pay for a year in advance, the 20% discount isn’t as convincing.
ProtonVPN: Another great free alternative
ProtonVPN is another great option if you want one of the best free VPNs for iPhone. Unlike most other free VPN options, this one doesn’t limit your data consumption. But of course, all free stuff has its limitations. You can only use it with one device at a time. A free account also only gets you access to three locations. At least you get three countries, though, as opposed to two with AtlasVPN. These include the USA, the Netherlands, and Japan. You still get a no-logging policy, though, which is nice.
Of course, you can choose to pay and get a wide array of added features. For starters, a VPN Plus subscription can get you access to over 1,900 servers in more than 65 countries. It will also allow you to connect 10 devices simultaneously. And if you care for streaming, you’ll get faster speeds. A VPN Plus plan will cost you €9.99 per month. Or you can upgrade to the €11.99 Proton Unlimited plan, which also opens access to more features from Proton Mail, Proton Calendar, and Proton Drive.
Android devices can now take advantage of Google One VPN, some for free and some when paying for a Google One subscription. This essentially means Android now has an official VPN service. The same doesn’t apply to iPhones. iPhones have no built-in VPN, and Apple doesn’t offer official VPN services. This means you have to go with a third-party service to use one.
Of course! Virtual private networks are all about security and privacy. If anything, it’s safer to use a VPN than it is not to. And while Apple offers no VPN services, iOS fully supports them, and all of the VPNs listed here have an official app in the Apple App Store.
Free VPN services can be good, but they are usually not as good as paid ones. Free VPN services limit you in many ways. They may limit the amount of data you use with them, as well as the number of multiple connections. Additionally, they tend to give you access to much fewer servers, and you’ll get a significant reduction in features.
This is a bit of a tricky question, as the law is different in every country, state, county, and city. You’ll have to do a bit of research to find out.
That said, VPNs are legal in the USA as long as you’re using them to do legal things. If you get in trouble, it won’t be for using a VPN; it will be for doing whatever illegal thing you did while using the VPN.
VPNs are known to slow down data speeds. This is simply because data has to travel through the server, which usually causes some form of delay. You can get a fast VPN to reduce slow-downs, but ping and data speeds will still be affected, even if by a little.
When a VPN provider says it stores no logs, this means they keep no information about your internet activity, connection, and other related information. This means they won’t sell your data to third parties, or keep any information around for anyone to see.
Some streaming services and other geo-restricted apps aren’t fond of virtual private networks. Using one may be against their terms of service. Companies like Netflix, Disney Plus, and BBC have been known to actively block connections when they notice subscribers are using a VPN.