As Chromebooks become more mainstream for work, school and even just at home, a VPN is an essential piece of software that you'll want at your disposal. With Chromebooks running almost all applications and accessing files completely from the cloud, we explain below how to get a Google Chromebook VPN installed on your device and our picks for the top providers to go for below.
For the unaware, a VPN (or, virtual private network) channels your traffic through an encrypted server and masks your actual IP address, giving you better online anonymity. This means users benefit from stronger security and privacy online. You'll also gain the ability to unblock content, no matter where in the world you are, including watching options like Hulu when outside the US, or BBC iPlayer when abroad from the UK.
Pair up your VPN with a Chromebook, a budget-friendly laptop that allows you to do everyday online tasks — like checking emails and streaming video content — and utilize a Chromebook VPNs IP-spoofing and encryption capabilities. One thing to keep in mind is you'll need a VPN service that offers either a Chrome extension client, an Android VPN, or the ability to manually configure 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 (opens in new tab)
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 (opens in new tab)
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 (opens in new tab)
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 in 2022(opens in new tab)
ExpressVPN is the best VPN for Chromebooks thanks to consistently reliable speeds, fantastic security and legendary 24/7 customer service. It's easy to set up 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 tunneling 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 just about manages to circumvent Netflix's anti-VPN infrastructure, as well as providing access to Prime Video, Disney Plus, and BBC iPlayer.
Customer support is superb and works 24 hours a day, so you can log in 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.(opens in new tab)
NordVPN is one of the top VPNs for security and speed thanks to its double encryption. That's a mind-boggling 2048-bit encryption, over 5,400 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's also worth noting that the NordVPN Chrome extension will only encrypt traffic running through your browser, unlike the ExpressVPN extension, which works as more than just a proxy.
Still, NordVPN maintains its excellent performance track record, hitting peaks of 730-760Mbps. That partnered with its geo-unblocking capabilities, you can bypass blocks on foreign content on BBC iPlayer, Disney Plus, Prime Video. What's more, it's one of the best Netflix VPN services out there, outperforming even ExpressVPN with accessing country exclusives around the globe.
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.(opens in new tab)
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 VPN 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.
Better still, ProtonVPN will get you access to Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Disney Plus, and Amazon Prime Video — though you'll have to upgrade to the Plus plan for streaming service unblocking. 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 speeds range from 360-670Mbps.
It also boasts plenty of exciting features including its excellent kill switch, NetShield (its dedicated ad blocker), 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.(opens in new tab)
Surfshark offers the best of both worlds as a VPN — affordability while still be a sleek, powerful tool that delivers a whole roster of great features to boost security and privacy, terrific speeds, and a reliable track record for unblocking your favorite streaming services. With its Android client, you'll be able to benefit from all this on your Chromebook, too.
Offering an easy-to-use and clean interface, Surfshark sets itself apart both as a cheap VPN, but also with its unlimited connections. This means you can secure all your devices and even share your subscription with your household.
Boasting features like Bypasser, CleanWeb, and its kill switch, Surfshark is also incredibly fast (it tops our fastest VPN list), hitting peaks of 720-790Mbps, figures which soar above average and are partnered well with its ability to unblock top streaming services. Expect a very reliable connection while watching TV shows and movies on Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Disney Plus, Amazon Prime Video, and others.
Complete with a Surfshark free trial for Android users, Surfshark also comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee.(opens in new tab)
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 7,900+ network of 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 830-850Mbps, making it one of the fastest VPN.
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, 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.
Chromebook VPN FAQ
What is the best VPN for a Chromebook?
ExpressVPN (opens in new tab) 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 to do this.
- Need more information? Discover what a Google Chromebook is