The best free VPN for Android in 2024

VPN toggled on on an iPhone
(Image credit: Shutterstock)

Today's top Android VPNs are must-have bits of kit, seeing as they keep your personal data and browsing history safe from nosy third parties (which is doubly important if you regularly use public Wi-Fi hotspots). This protection doesn't need to come with a massive price tag, however, because there are reliable free options on the market.

With that said, picking out a trustworthy service isn't always straightforward, but the TechRadar team is here to help. Our experts have real hands-on experience testing the best VPNs of 2024, with 3,000 hours of device testing, 28,000 speed tests, over 2,200 streaming tests, and 100 VPN reviews.

I've compared the best free services and how their security tools, unblocking power, speeds, and data allowances stack up. Keep reading, and I'll walk you through each provider in more detail (and some of your most frequently asked questions).

Best VPNs for Android in 2024: paid for services

Free VPNs are handy in a pinch, but they have some serious downsides that make them better for occasional use rather than day-to-day protection. For one thing, their data limitations, capped speeds, and a reduced pool of servers can get pretty frustrating. Essentially, they're no match for their paid counterparts who boast thousands of servers in hundreds of locations, better apps and quality of service, strong unblocking powers, and tons of extra privacy and security features. 

You can get a premium provider for just a few bucks, too, and a cheap VPN is always going to offer a better experience than a free one. With that in mind, here are today's top paid VPNs:

1. The best Android VPN: NordVPN

1. The best Android VPN: NordVPN
NordVPN is, quite simply, unbeatable thanks to power-packed mobile VPN apps, awesome speeds, and an all-in-one security package with a built-in antivirus, ad-blocking, and a data breach scanner.

Servers everywhere and world-class unblocking capabilities mean that NordVPN is also the best Netflix VPN. It comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee so you can try it out risk-free before committing to a long-term plan.

2. The best for beginners: ExpressVPN

2. The best for beginners: ExpressVPN
ExpressVPN offers rock-solid privacy, consistent speeds, excellent unblocking, and easy-to-use VPN apps that make it a perfect choice for beginners. It also comes with friendly 24/7 support and an in-depth knowledge base.

While it may not be as cheap as some of the others, TechRadar readers can sign up for ExpressVPN's 12-month plan and get 3 months of extra protection and 1 year of Backblaze’s cloud storage for free—and there’s also a 30-day money-back guarantee in case you change your mind.   

3. The best cheap Android VPN: Surfshark

3. The best cheap Android VPN: Surfshark
Surfshark is the perfect pick for folks on a tight budget. It's the quickest VPN I've tested in a long time and offers unlimited simultaneous connections (that allow you to install the VPN on all your gadgets with one subscription), which is pretty serious value for money.

With servers in 100+ countries and great unblocking powers, Surfshark is also a delight for streaming enthusiasts. Be sure to make the most the 30-day money-back guarantee to see how it compares to NordVPN and ExpressVPN.

Recent updates

As AtlasVPN shuts down its service, I've removed it from my list of recommendations. If you're already subscribed to the service, don't worry. NordVPN is taking on all of Atlas' customers without charging them a penny for the remainder of their plan.

The best free Android VPN overall

PrivadoVPN Free VPN running on various devices

(Image credit: PrivadoVPN)

1. PrivadoVPN Free

The best free Android VPN

Available on: Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, and Linux | Data limit: 10GB at full speed, then unlimited via a single 1Mbps location | Servers: 13 | Locations: 10 | Simultaneous connections: 1

10 GB full-speed data a month, plus unlimited low-speed traffic
Unblocks all popular streaming sites
Lightning-fast connection speeds
Mobile apps could use some TLC
Not independently audited
Subscribe if:

✔️ You want a free VPN for Netflix: PrivadoVPN is one of the only free providers that reliably unlocked Netflix in our testing.

✔️ You need high-quality privacy features: all essential security features, such as split tunneling, a kill switch, and auto-connect are available.

✔️ Speed is a priority: with top speeds of around 900 Mbps, PrivadoVPN Free is faster than many paid-for VPNs.

Don't subscribe if:

❌ You need unlimited data: once you exhaust your monthly 10 GB, you'll be restricted to a single 'emergency server' with sluggish speeds.

❌ You want excellent mobile apps: PrivadoVPN's Android and iOS apps are basic at best, and not as refined as Proton VPN's.

Bottom line ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

🔒 PrivadoVPN Free makes short work of unblocking Netflix and other streaming sites, is blazing fast, and offers a basic Android app that works well.

Want to know more?

Check out our in-depth PrivadoVPN Free review for a closer look at the service, and see why it's my top pick overall.

In my full PrivadoVPN Free review, I mention how it's the best choice if you want a free Netflix VPN for your Android device. In addition to reliable Netflix unblocking, it can bypass the geo-blocks of Disney Plus, Amazon Prime Video, and BBC iPlayer—whereas rivals like Windscribe and Atlas VPN Free can unblock some but not all of these streaming services.

What's more, PrivadoVPN Free doesn't skimp on performance, either, churning out peak speeds of over 900 Mbps in my recent testing; that’s almost on par with today's fastest VPNs. The good news doesn't stop their, either, as PrivadoVPN boasts rock-solid security, too. The Android app comes with all the VPN essentials, including a kill switch, AES-256 encryption, split tunneling, and a choice of protocols (OpenVPN and WireGuard).

Try PrivadoVPN: the best free VPN

The PrivadoVPN free Android app isn't quite as powerful or feature-rich as the competition, but it connects a lot more quickly than its desktop counterpart and is nice and easy to use. However, it's worth noting that while PrivadoVPN Free does stick to a no-logs policy—and I didn't find anything suspect during my own research—it's yet to undergo an independent security audit to prove its claims. 

As the best free VPN overall, PrivadoVPN Free also blows the competition out of the water when it comes to server locations. While Proton VPN Free offers access to servers in just 3 countries, PrivadoVPN Free gives you 13 cities located in 10 countries, including the US, UK, France, Canada, and Switzerland. The higher server count also means that you’re less likely to encounter a congested server that'll slow your streaming sessions to a crawl.

Now, as is the case with any free VPN, PrivadoVPN Free, has its share of compromises. First, only a single device is allowed on each free plan. Second, it offers limited data (just 10 GB per month), unlike Proton VPN Free, which comes with unlimited data. However, when compared to rivals with limited data allowance, PrivadoVPN Free doesn't totally cut you off after you exhaust the monthly data limit—you’ll still be able to use the service, although at a sluggish speed of 1 Mbps.

All in all, though, PrivadoVPN Free, despite being a new entrant in the VPN industry, manages to offer a comprehensive service with stunning speeds, lots of locations, and solid privacy features, and it’s the #1 choice if you want a free streaming VPN. However, if you want to watch a lot of content, you’ll need unlimited data, in which case consider upgrading to a PrivadoVPN paid plan.

Swipe to scroll horizontally
PrivadoVPN Free test results:
DesignSmart, simple, and uncluttered design⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Ease of useThe apps are well laid out, making them perfect for beginners⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
PerformanceOne of the fastest free Android VPNs⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
UnblockingQuite simply the best free service when it comes to unblocking⭐⭐⭐⭐
Security and privacyLots of privacy features, but the lack of an independent audit is a minor sticking point⭐⭐⭐⭐
Customer supportHelpful and reliable support agents, but the website articles could use some depth⭐⭐⭐⭐

The best unlimited free Android VPN

Proton VPN interface for mobile and desktop VPN apps

(Image credit: Proton VPN)

2. Proton VPN Free

Unlimited data allowance and top-notch digital privacy

Available on: Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, and Linux | Data limit: Unlimited | Servers: 3 | Locations: 3 | Simultaneous connections: 1

Unlimited data allowance
Impressive and stable speeds
Open-sourced audited apps 
Not a great pick for streaming
Limited server locations
Subscribe if:

✔️ You need unlimited data: Proton VPN is one of the only free providers to offer unlimited data.

✔️ You want a VPN you can trust: all Proton VPN apps are open-source and independently audited.

✔️ You want a free Linux VPN: Proton VPN Free's Linux app comes with a full graphical user interface (GUI).

Don't subscribe if:

 You want a good selection of servers: with Proton VPN Free, you only get access to 3 server locations, which is significantly fewer than Windscribe.

❌ You want to stream: Proton VPN's free plan doesn't reliably unblock top streaming sites, unlike PrivadoVPN.

Bottom line ⭐⭐⭐⭐½

🔒 Proton VPN Free is a class apart when it comes to privacy and security, and it's the best pick for those after unlimited data. However, its lack of streaming support and limited servers keep it from the top spot.

Want to know more?

Check out our detailed Proton VPN Free review for a closer look at one of the most popular free VPNs in the industry.

As our testing has proved time and time again, Switzerland-based Proton VPN is one of the most secure VPNs on the market right now—and the same is true for the Proton VPN Free Android app. In addition to being independently audited, the app is also open-source, meaning users are free to inspect its code at any time to make sure the provider is living up to its privacy promises.

Next, as we mentioned in our full Proton VPN Free review, you get a stacked buffet of security features, including class-leading encryption, a reliable kill switch, and a strict no-logging policy (which has been audited, too, unlike PrivadoVPN Free). Speeds are lightning-fast, too, with Proton VPN clocking at over 950 Mbps when I last tested it.

Sign up to Proton VPN Free Now

Proton VPN Free’s Android app, like its free iPhone VPN app, has a very similar design to the desktop version—and it’s certainly more powerful than PrivadoVPN Free’s Android app. You get expert-level networking tweaks as well as support for the IKEv2 protocol alongside OpenVPN and WireGuard. Furthermore, I saw no technical issues, pesky ads, or leaks during my hands-on testing, and the option to choose locations from either a map or a conventional list is praiseworthy. 

Proton VPN Free’s party piece, though, is its unlimited data allowance. Unlike other free providers that cap your data usage to around 10 GB per month, Proton VPN doesn't come with any data limits. A huge perk of this—in addition to limitless browsing, of course—is that you can use Proton VPN’s always-on VPN feature to connect once and stay protected. 

Another standout offering is that it has partnered with German news broadcaster Deutsche Welle to offer free and unrestricted access to unbiased news coverage from around the world. It's the kind of commitment to transparency and accessibility that I love to see.

However, the lack of streaming support, P2P support (making it a less than ideal torrenting VPN), and server limitations mean that Proton VPN is no longer the #1 free choice. It gives you access to just 3 servers (US, Netherlands, Japan), as compared to PrivadoVPN Free's 13 and Windscribe’s 14. Even worse, you won't be able to choose your location—you'll have to rely on an auto-connect button.

To conclude, while Proton VPN Free is undoubtedly a top choice for privacy buffs and those after 24/7 unlimited VPN protection, its inability to move a muscle on the streaming front and lack of servers are both serious concerns—which, by the way, can be done away with by upgrading to its paid plan, where it now offers one of the largest server networks and a clean sweep of streaming services. Plus, you’ll have a 30-day money-back guarantee to try it out risk-free.

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Proton VPN Free test results:
DesignFuturistic and dark design, akin to Cyberpunk 2077⭐⭐⭐⭐
Ease of usePowerful apps, but beginners could find them a bit complex⭐⭐⭐
PerformanceQuite simply the fastest free service in our testing⭐⭐⭐⭐
UnblockingDedicated Deutsche Welle servers, but it doesn't unblock any streaming sites with geo-blocks⭐⭐⭐⭐
Security and privacyPowerful encryption and open-source and audited apps⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Customer supportNo dearth of help articles, and support agents are all high-quality⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

The best free Android VPN for streaming

Windscribe VPN app showing server location search function

(Image credit: Windscribe)

3. Windscribe Free

Powerful and secure with generous streaming support

Available on: Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS | Data limit: 10GB | Servers: 14 | Locations: 11 | Simultaneous connections: Unlimited

Unlimited simultaneous connections
Unblocks UK Netflix and BBC iPlayer
Lots of servers
Not as speedy as my other picks
Only 10GB data allowance
Subscribe if:

✔️ You want unlimited simultaneous connections: Windscribe allows you to use a single account on as many devices as you want.

✔️ You want tons of server locations: 14 server locations in 11 countries is quite simply the most generous selection I've seen in any free Android VPN.

✔️ You're a fan of British content: Windscribe unblocks UK Netflix and BBC iPlayer, although its streaming support isn't as comprehensive as PrivadoVPN's.

Don't subscribe if:

❌ You need plenty of data: 10GB of data per month can be limiting for many users. If you want unlimited data, choose Proton VPN.

You need a fast free VPN: Windscribe doesn't hold a candle to the likes of PrivadoVPN and Proton VPN when it comes to connection speeds.

Bottom line ⭐⭐⭐⭐

🔒 Windscribe has a wide selection of servers to choose from, an Android app with all essential features, as well as UK Netflix and iPlayer unblocking. However, it lacks the speed and quality of PrivadoVPN and Proton VPN.

Want to know more?

Check out our in-depth Windscribe Free VPN review for a closer look at this popular free service.

In my comprehensive Windscribe Free VPN review, I found that this Canada-based provider is a well-rounded free VPN with excellent reach, great unblocking, and reliable privacy and security. It stands out from the crowd by offering an impressive spread of servers—14 server locations in 11 countries. This is better than both the providers mentioned above.

While not as comprehensive as PrivadoVPN Free, Windscribe Free does well to effortlessly unblock UK Netflix and BBC iPlayer, meaning it’s a good UK VPN and an excellent option for fans of British movies and TV shows who want reliable access to their favorite content. All in all, it's an impressive performance for a free service.

Check out Windscribe for free

Another positive of Winscribe is that it comes with unlimited simultaneous connections. In fact, it’s the only provider here that allows you to install its app (whether you're on Android, iOS, or desktop) on any number of devices with a single account. Windscribe is a great pick for VPN newbies, too, and its Android app is particularly easy to use. All you need to do is choose a location from the simple text-style list, click Connect to begin, and Disconnect when you're ready to call it a day. 

If you're looking for deep and customizable configuration, you'll be better off with Proton VPN, but the good news is that Windscribe’s Android app doesn’t miss out on any key features. You get a good selection of protocols, a well-written privacy policy, strong AES-256 encryption, multiple layers of leak protection, and a firewall to block internet access if the VPN connection drops. However, just like PrivadoVPN Free, Windscribe, has yet to undergo an audit for its privacy claims and apps.

The only real downside to using Windscribe Free is its stingy data cap of 10 GB a month. If you’re a regular VPN user, you’d be much better off with Proton VPN Free (unlimited data); even PrivadoVPN Free, which offers 10 GB of regular data and then unlimited data at a speed of 1 Mbps, is a better pick than Windscribe, where once you exhaust your limit for the month, you’ll have to wait for the next month to be able to use it again. Also, while consistent speeds of around 240 Mbps will get the job done, Windscribe is not as speedy as the competition.

Overall, though, Windscribe is a simple and easy-to-use free Android VPN with good security, surprise unblocking successes, and more servers than most free providers. However, a strict data limit means that it doesn’t quite compete with the big dogs.

Swipe to scroll horizontally
Windscribe Free test results:
DesignIntuitive design, but not as polished as the competition⭐⭐⭐⭐
Ease of useA simple layout makes it great for beginners⭐⭐⭐⭐
PerformanceBelow-average speeds, albeit good enough for most use cases⭐⭐⭐
UnblockingGoes past the geo-blocks of UK Netflix and BBC iPlayer⭐⭐⭐⭐
Security and privacyOpen-source and reliable⭐⭐⭐⭐
Customer supportResponses to email tickets are fairly quick, but the lack of live chat isn't good⭐⭐⭐

How I test free Android VPNs

TechRadar's VPN testing starts at the provider's website where we look for clues to gauge how reliable the service is. This includes combing through and inspecting the VPN's privacy policy, support options, and any security claims it makes.

Next, we install the provider's free VPN apps on various platforms (iOS, Android, Mac, Windows, Linux) and test each one of them. This includes checking the reliability of the kill switch and leak protection, as well as any additional features on offer, such as split tunneling, one-connect functionality, etc. This one's a biggie, since free VPNs aren't always safe.

We use two locations and a total of close to 120 tests to evaluate the provider’s speeds. Lastly, to check if the free VPN can in fact unblock geo-restrictions on streaming sites, we throw multiple big-name streaming sites at it, including Netflix, Disney Plus, BBC iPlayer, and Amazon Prime Video.

Should I use a free VPN

A free VPN is limited at its best and outright unsafe at its worst. However, as long as you pick a reliable provider (which are often "freemium" editions of their paid versions), a free VPN can be a serviceable solution, especially if you’re not looking for anything more than basic (and occasional) privacy and security on the internet and public Wi-Fi networks. 

However, if you want to use your VPN to stream, torrent, game, etc, that's when a free VPN won't cut it. This is because almost every single free VPN comes with limited data allowances (10 GB per month in most cases), which you're likely to chew through in just a short stint of high-bandwidth activity such as gaming or torrenting. 

What's more, even if a VPN offers unlimited data (such as Proton VPN Free), it might not offer unblocking capabilities or a large pool of servers, meaning either you won't be able to access your location or choice, or even if you do, you can't bypass the geo-blocks.

It's well worth noting, though, that this doesn't mean you need to spend a fortune if you want a high-quality and fast VPN that can double up as a good VPN for gaming, streaming, and torrenting, and is super-secure at the same time. There are plenty of affordable cheap VPNs that can do everything a premium-level service can do, and that too, for a teeny tiny price.

How to choose a free VPN

While your personal use case will have the ultimate say on which VPN is the most ideal for you, there are a few key factors to keep in mind when you’re out shopping for a free Android VPN.

  • Security: make sure you’re not paying for a free VPN with your privacy; choose a provider with a strict no-logs policy, a reliable kill switch, leak protection, and a history of upholding customer trust. 
  • Servers: while almost every free service offers a limited server list, you can still get a good selection of global servers if you opt for a high-quality free VPN. What’s even more important is to choose a provider that offers servers in the regions you wish to connect to.
  • Speed and bandwidth: most free VPNs come with a limited data allowance per month, with Proton VPN being the only high-quality exception to this. However, you shouldn't settle for such stinginess on the performance front—top VPNs such as PrivadoVPN and Proton VPN offer the same lightning-fast speeds to both their free and paying users.
  • Unblocking: if you want to stream geo-blocked content on your Android device for free, there aren’t a lot of free VPNs to choose from. PrivadoVPN Free and Windscribe Free are the two best options. 

Free Android VPN FAQs

What is the best free VPN?

Our testing showed that PrivadoVPN Free is currently the best you can get. It comes with a great number of privacy and security features, tons of server locations (13 cities in 10 countries), and lightning-fast speeds. However, its party piece is its superior unblocking capabilities. 

In addition to Netflix, it can also evade the geo-restrictions of other sites, such as Disney+, Amazon Prime Video, and BBC iPlayer. Lastly, while it does come with a data limit of 10 GB per month, in truth, it's an unlimited VPN; just note that after you've exhausted your monthly data cap, your connection will be reduced to a sluggish speed of 1 Mbps. 

Why do I need a free Android VPN?

A good free Android VPN is a potent way to improve your device’s security when using unsecured public Wi-Fi hotspots, or for general privacy and anonymity on the internet no matter where you are. It'll also come in handy if you're traveling abroad (especially to a country with strict internet censorship and privacy-invasive ISPs and government authorities) and want to have continued access to VoIP apps and banking portals back home.

However, if your intended use cases include streaming, gaming, or torrenting, or if you want access to a vast number of locations worldwide, you'd be better off with an affordable premium VPN. 

Can you get a premium VPN for free?

If you’re dead set on not wanting to pay for a good VPN service, there's a compromise you can lean into—use a premium VPN's money-back guarantee to get around 30 days of coverage, risk-free. 

However, it's worth noting that premium, high-quality VPNs don't necessarily have to break the bank—Surfshark and PIA cost anywhere between just $2-3 a month and still manage to snap at the heels of expensive providers with their well-rounded packages. 


We test and review VPN services in the context of legal recreational uses. For example:
1. Accessing a service from another country (subject to the terms and conditions of that service).
2. Protecting your online security and strengthening your online privacy when abroad.
We do not support or condone the illegal or malicious use of VPN services. Consuming pirated content that is paid-for is neither endorsed nor approved by Future Publishing.

Krishi covers buying guides and how-to's related to software, online tools, and tech products here at TechRadar. Over at Tom's Guide, he writes exclusively on VPN services. You can also find his work on Techopedia and The Tech Report. As a tech fanatic, Krishi also loves writing about the latest happenings in the world of cybersecurity, AI, and software.