As a mostly internet-based laptop, a VPN is an essential bit of kit for Chromebook users, bolstering your online security while also benefitting from a Virtual Private Network's other capabilities. Here we'll highlight the best Google Chromebook VPN providers and how to install one onto Chrome OS.
With the arrival of Chromebooks as an option for those after a budget-friendly laptop, the Google devices largely run applications and files out of the cloud, though they're still excellent options for those who want to do every-day tasks like online browsing, checking emails, and streaming video content as well as listening to music. Essentially, it's a streamlined gadget with an online focus.
Great companions when you're on the move, a Google Chromebook VPN will come in handy for stabilising your connection and ensuring it's secure when on public Wi-Fi. It's also an excellent way to bypass geo-restrictions when you're outside of the country. Want to watch something on Hulu while outside the US? With a Chromebook VPN you'll be able to.
So which do you go for? Well, when it comes to a Chromebook VPN, you need to find a client that ticks those boxes as well as hosting either a Chrome extension client, a Android VPN, or get into the nitty gritty of it by manually configuring your VPN. Luckily we've done the legwork for you in finding the five best Google Chromebook VPN available.
1. ExpressVPN - the best Chromebook VPN
Choose between its extension or Android app and get an easy-to-use, powerful VPN that has an excellent geo-unblocking track record and incredible support. Get it 100% risk free with its 30-day money back guarantee and benefit from 3 months free.
2. NordVPN - the best for privacy
With double encryption and incredible performance, NordVPN is one of the most well-known providers on the market. Install on your Chromebook and be protected by its 30-day money back guarantee.
3. ProtonVPN - powerful with free option
One VPN that allows you to give it a try before you buy, get unlimited bandwidth on Proton's free plan before you upgrade to benefit from its array of features, excellent streaming unblocking, and exceptional speeds.
Top 5 best Google Chromebook VPNs
ExpressVPN is the best VPN for Chromebooks thanks to top speeds, fantastic security and legendary 24/7 customer service. It's easy to setup on Chromebook with either L2TP or OpenVPN options for you, so it should work on whatever Chromebook you have. All that spans over 3,000 servers in more than 160 locations.
An enterprise level encryption, over OpenVPN UDP, combined with a kill switch and split tunnelling make for superb security and anonymity wherever you go and whatever connection you're using.
For those looking to stream, it's also worth noting ExpressVPN gets ticks across the board. It's one of the few VPN that can still circumvent Netflix's anti-VPN infrastructure, as well as giving access to Prime Video, Disney Plus, and BBC iPlayer.
Customer support is superb and works 24 hours a day so you can login and ask someone directly and get an answer right away. So even setting up this VPN on your Chromebook can be a guided process if you need.
There is a limit of up to five devices using the service at once. So beyond your Chromebook you can also use things like Android devices, Mac, Windows, iOS and more. That's fewer than most other major Chromebook VPNs provide.
ExpressVPN offers a 30-day money back guarantee so you can try for free, and if you don't like it you can cancel without spending a penny.
NordVPN is the one of the top VPNs for security and speed thanks to its double encryption. That's a mind-boggling 2048-bit encryption, over 5,000 servers spanning 60 countries. You also get super strong DNS leak protection, two kill switches and fast connection speeds – what more could you ask for?
The Android VPN app and Chrome extension offers two ways to get setup on Chromebook, but these will only work on newer machines.
It offers some of the fastest speeds we saw in our recent round of VPN testing, hitting peaks of 760-900Mbps, second only to IPVanish. That partnered with its geo-unblocking capabilities, you can bypass blocks on foreign content on BBC iPlayer, Disney Plus, Prime Video, and US Netflix.
You get 24/7 customer support should you need help with setup or to get anything unblocked while online. There's a zero logging policy and you get a 7-day free trial too. The only area we now think NordVPN really needs to improve is the usability of its interface and apps.
ProtonVPN offers a dedicated-Chromebook VPN app through its open source Android client. It's an excellent VPN and one that comes with a free plan with unlimited bandwidth. While the likes of streaming are reserved for its paying customers, it offers the chance to give it a test drive before you commit - and you'll certainly want to with its spectacular performance and fantastic features.
One of the few able to unblock all top streaming services, ProtonVPN will get you access to Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Disney Plus, and Amazon Prime Video. Partner that with its exceptional speed results, ProtonVPN has come along leaps and bounds, especially with its WireGuard performance. Boosted by its VPN Accelerator technology, we saw highs of 720-740Mbps.
It also boasts plenty of exciting features including its excellent kill switch, NetShield (its dedicated adblocker), DNS and IPv6 leak protection, and so much more.
Offering amazing performance, great security features, and ticking all our streaming boxes, this is a fantastic choice of Chromebook VPN.
CyberGhost is a great option for Google Chromebooks as it offers an L2TP/IPSec setup for true VPN protection on your machine. That means you can enjoy the huge 7,400+ network of servers servers across 91 countries, automatic HTTPS redirection and, on mobile, optional data compression.
The client is also excellent at unblocking content for the likes of US Netflix, Hulu, Disney Plus, Amazon Prime Video, and BBC iPlayer so you need not miss out even when abroad. Bolstered by its excellent speeds, our performance testing delivered results of 760-860Mbps, behind only NordVPN and IPVanish for some of the fastest results.
If you want to go away from your Chromebook then you're covered with support for up to seven devices at the same time - get your mobile, tablet, alptop, TV streamer and more all covered on the same subscription. All that and you get a strict no-logging policy for security peace of mind too.
The only significant negative is that it has yet to carry out an independent security audit to see it meets all its privacy claims.
Speeds are excellent across local servers but can suffer a bit when you go for longer distance connections like UK to Asia. It has thankfully seen a boost to its network, going from 20-odd locations to now being based in 43 countries. Still a small offering compared to the competition, but it's growing.
There is also a free option with 500MB per month so you can give it a try, or just go ahead with a paid-plan for worry-free data access.
Chromebook VPN FAQ
What is the best VPN for a Chromebook?
ExpressVPN once again tops our list as the best Chromebook VPN. With an array of fully-featured and easy-to-use clients, you have the choice of its Android app or its Chrome extension to protect your Chromebook. Once installed, you'll benefit from its impressive Lightway protocol speeds, great unblocking track record, excellent support team, and selection of powerful features.
Can you use a VPN on a Chromebook?
You can use a VPN on a Chromebook. However, the provider you choose will need to offer either an Android app or a Chrome extension. This is because a Chromebook runs the Chrome Operating System, meaning the usual Windows desktop client isn't compatible.
With more and more apps downloadable on a Chromebook via the Google Play Store, many VPN offer the experience through their Android app. Chrome extensions can also be installed within the browser itself, too, though these sometimes simply offer a proxy as opposed to a fully-featured VPN, so be weary of what is and isn't secured when it comes to using one of these.
Alternatively, you can manually configure a VPN onto your Chromebook, with plenty of support guides available in order to do this.