Best VPNs for iPhone 2018

July 27, 2018

12:19 pm

Choose a VPN iPhone app and you can browse online with privacy and security, straight from your smartphone. The best VPNs for iPhones make it simple to pick a remote server and anonymise your online activity.

A VPN (Virtual Private Network) can be a great way to get online without location-based restrictions and security concerns. They’ve been around for desktop computers for some time, but if you’re an iPhone user you don’t have to miss out – we’ve rounded up the best iPhone VPN apps to choose.

According to research carried out by Stone Temple, 63% of all website traffic comes from mobile devices. It’s just as important to be security-conscious when you’re on the move, however. The good news is that there is no shortage of VPN apps for your iOS device, so you can browse in safety and access a VPN server with your Apple phone or iPad.

So what are the best VPNs for iPhone? It’s a competitive market, but based on our expert testing, we’ve identified three great VPNs that stand out:

Top 10 VPNs for iPhone in 2018

These are Tech.co’s top picks of the best VPN iPhone apps you can choose. The VPNs below passed our expert, independent reviews with flying colors.

  1. PureVPN for iPhone – a great VPN iPhone app
  2. IPVanish VPN – a powerful VPN with top features
  3. Express VPN – Slick and with plenty of options
  4. NordVPN – featured packed and high speeds
  5. Cyberghost VPN – Straightforward with lots of neat touches
  6. VyprVPN – A great all-rounder VPN
  7. TorGuard for iPhone – a simple to use VPN app
  8. Private Internet Access – great app that is simple to set up
  9. Windscribe – excellent choice for unlocking Netflix
  10. Hide Me VPN – simple to set up with great security

All of the above VPNs charge just a small monthly fee of a couple of dollars. For that, you get top features, a range of servers to choose from, and strong speeds while you’re connected to a VPN.

As well as subscription based apps, there are also a range of free alternatives. However, we think it’s worth paying a few bucks a month for peace of mind rather than taking a chance on these. Read on to find out more.

PureVPN IPVanish VPN Express VPN NordVPN Cyberghost VPN VyprVPN TorGuard Private Internet Access Windscribe Hide Me VPN
Free trial
Price per month $10.95 $10 $12.95 $11.95 $11.99 $9.95 $9.99 $6.95 $9 $9.95
No. of devices 5 5 3 5 5 5 5 5 10 5
No. of servers 750 1000 1500 3605 1182 700 3000 3035 480 150
Data logging
Killswitch
Email Support
Live Chat

Best VPN Apps for iPhone

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  • Score
  • Full Review
  • Ease of Use
  • Features
  • Privacy
  • Speed
  • Help & Support
  • Value for Money
  • Monthly price
  • Annual price
  • Get VPN:

PureVPN logo - tech.co

IPVanish-VPN - tech.co

Torguard tech.co

PureVPN logo - tech.co
  • Score: 82%
  • Full Review
  • Ease of Use: 5 stars
  • Features: 5 stars
  • Privacy: 5 stars
  • Speed: 3 stars
  • Help & Support: 4 stars
  • Value for Money: 5 stars
  • Monthly price: $10.95
  • Annual price: $59
  • PureVPN Deals

IPVanish-VPN - tech.co
  • Score: 80%
  • Full Review
  • Ease of Use: 5 stars
  • Features: 5 stars
  • Privacy: 5 stars
  • Speed: 4 stars
  • Help & Support: 4 stars
  • Value for Money: 4 stars
  • Monthly price: $10
  • Annual price: $79.99
  • IPVanish Deals

Torguard tech.co
  • Score: 76%
  • Full Review
  • Ease of Use: 4 stars
  • Features: 3 stars
  • Privacy: 5 stars
  • Speed: 3 stars
  • Help & Support: 5 stars
  • Value for Money: 5 stars
  • Monthly price: $9.99
  • Annual price: 59.99
  • Torguard Deals

Pure VPN - tech.coPureVPN for iPhone

The best VPN app you can choose, at a great price

One of the things we like most about PureVPN is how refreshingly easy to use it is. Setup and day-to-day use feel entirely natural, thanks to an intuitive interface that offers plenty of options, but doesn’t confuse.

You can use a PureVPN account across five devices. If you have it installed on your iPhone and desktop, you can still log into another three computers, phones or tablets.

The PureVPN lets you control which sites and services you want to use the VPN for, via a method called split-tunnelling. Suppose you want to access one website through a VPN and another through your regular connection. This is simple to set up in the apps options.

PureVPN is very security savvy, and has features that offer antivirus and ad-blocking. It’s perfect if you want to use PayPal for example, and are concerned about using the unsecured Wi-Fi of a public hotspot.

It also passed the Netflix detection test, effortlessly accessing it through the browser and streaming video, hitch-free.

Read the full review of PureVPN

Save money on a subscription to PureVPN with this special offer

Pros:

  • Effective privacy and security features
  • Clear notifications
  • Excellent value

Cons:

  • Not as fast as billed
  • Only unlocks Netflix via browser

IPVanish VPN for iPhone

The best VPN app for fast speeds

On the App store, IPVanish pitches itself as the ‘fastest VPN’. While it’s a bold claim, we can say from our own testing that it is certainly one of the quickest we’ve used. It also has a healthy number of VPN servers – over 1,000 in 60 countries at time of writing, so there shouldn’t be any issues getting connected.

If you’re looking to mask your IP address, you won’t find many better options than IPVanish. Using lots of devices in your household? An IPVanish account let’s you connect 10 devices to the VPN at once.

However, IPVanish is better for the technically minded than novices to using a VPN. While it does offer a lot of flexibility for those who like to tinker with settings, it could be confusing for total beginners.

While the monthly cost of $10 is fairly typical, the annual cost of $77.99 is more expensive than other offerings. However, you can get a discount when signing up to IPVanish.

Check out our full review of IPVanish

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Pros:

  • Lots of control
  • Strong privacy options
  • Good speeds

Cons

  • Slightly intimating
  • Pricier than some rivals

Express VPN

The best for lots of features

Express VPN has a strong set of features and a slick interface, making it easy to use and a powerful tool. The range of choice is excellent, and there are a long list of servers available to connect to. You’re not just limited to Express VPN’s suggestions either, you can manually connect to your preferred servers instead.

A killswitch function means that if the connection is lost, you won’t automatically connect to your ISP, meaning that your online activities remain safe.

Read our full ExpressVPN review

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Pros:

  • Easy to use with great support
  • Extensive features
  • Smart location selection

Cons

  • Inconsistent speeds
  • Expensive

NordVPN

The best for additional security features

NordVPN is one of the best VPN packages we’ve tested. It might be a little too feature-rich for the novice user, but for those who like full control.

NordVPN is fast, and can maintain speeds at an impressive rate, beating many of its competitors. There is always some small loss of speed when using a VPN, but with NordVPN, it’s minimal. A suite of extra security features mean that NordVPN is an excellent choice for those looking to protect their data.

Read our full review of NordVPN

Get NordVPN for just $3.99 a month

Pros:

  • Fast and effective
  • Packed with features
  • Excellent value

Cons

  • Not the most intuitive VPN
  • Can’t unblock some streaming services
  • Assumes some technical knowledge

CyberGhost

The best for first-time users

A nice choice for first time users, CyberGhost goes out of its way to be as logical to use as possible. It has simple icons to select for the VPN service you need, including a handy ‘Unblock Streaming’ option, for Netflix. There’s a handy CyberGhost app on tablets and phones for accessing Netflix on those devices, too.

CyberGhost has ad-blocking, tracker blocking and web blocking functions all built-in, so you can feel safe while you browse or stream.

Find out more with our full review of CyberGhost

Sign up to CyberGhost for a 77% discount on an annual plan

Pros:

  • Clearly-explained settings
  • Lots of advanced features
  • Strong online help and support
  • Good value

Cons

  • Not very speedy
  • Makes some odd server choices

VyprVPN

The best for not tracking your activities 

VyprVPN is a great all-rounder VPN service, and also offers a high level of security. It doesn’t track your activities or hold any data about your online activities.

VyprVPN is also fast, especially for transatlantic connections, meaning that you can download and browse without taking too much of a hit on your connection.

Read our full review of VyperVPN

Sign up with VyprVPN today

Pros:

  • Comprehensive all-rounder
  • Useful features
  • Fast connection speeds

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Slow to make initial connection
  • Not easy to pick the best location

Torguard VPN for iPhone

The best for accessing Netflix with ease

Torguard is best suited to those who know their way around a VPN. But anyone with some degree of experience will find a lot to like with the Torguard app.

There’s not shortage of VPN servers – over 3,000, based in 55 countries. Not only that, but we found that Torguard maintains great connections speeds when in use, so you won’t be compromising your broadband speed.

One pitfall of many VPNs is Netflix spotting that you’re using one. The video streaming giant doesn’t take too kindly to VPNs accessing its service. A lot of big name apps fail penetrate Netflix’s defences. Torguard, however, which can access Netflix with ease. It can also access Hulu, making this a great VPN to choose for streaming services.

Sign up for Torguard VPN today

Pros:

  • Strong global presence
  • Great features and control for expert users
  • Impressive VPN performance

Cons

  • Not great for less experienced users
  • Awkward sign-up process
  • Tiny text when you sign in

FAQs

How do VPNs Work on an iPhone?

Using a VPN on your iPhone is a simple process. Download the dedicated app from the App Store. You can then create an account in the app, or separately in a web browser. Log in, and you’re away.

You’ll need to manage the VPN settings within the app, including the location that you want to access the internet from, but these options tend to be well signposted. That’s generally true of all the three apps we’ve covered here, though PureVPN is hands-down the most user-friendly.

Once you’ve turned on the VPN in the app, you’ll be able to use your iPhone online, safe in the knowledge that your web browsing is secure and private.

This applies to not only using Safari (or your browser of choice), but any apps that you are using which rely on an online connection.

One neat feature of using a VPN on an iPhone is that you’ll always know when you’re using the app thanks to the dedicated icon at top of the screen. If that disappears, your connection is no longer being tunnelled through a VPN server.

How Much do VPNs for iPhones cost?

VPN apps are surprisingly inexpensive, especially if you sign up for an annual subscription. The longer you commit to, the bigger the discounts. Pay monthly, and the fee can be less appealing (around $10 per month). Pay for a year or two, and this drops to around $2-$3 per month.

Given the competition in the VPN market, companies are falling over themselves to offer enticing rate for customers. But don’t assume the cheapest (or free VPNs) are always the best. The smartest thing you can do is pick a good deal on a well-rated service.

PureVPN for example, is our top-rated VPN, and it costs just $2.49 a month if you sign up to its two-year subscription.

Best Free VPN Apps for iPhone

Hop onto the iTunes store, and you’ll see plenty of free VPNs for your iPhone that promise to connect you online and hide your identity. It’s a tempting proposition, but should you be using one and saving your cash?

There’s an old adage that if a product is free, then you’re the product. That’s no truer than with VPNs. Paid-for packages make a big deal about the fact that your data is secure and private, and won’t be shared. VPNs know that their customers value their privacy above all else, and don’t want to compromise that. However, with free VPNs, there’s a trade off, especially when you consider the high cost of running VPN servers.

The data that the customers of free apps funnel through the servers are highly valuable to third-parties, and can be sold on (typically anonymised) to help fund the app. Others, such as the well-known Hola, will hijack your bandwith and use it for peer- to-peer  connections. It’s always worth checking the terms to see exactly how secure your personal data is and what rights you’re signing away when you install them.

Not all free VPNs are sketchy, however. The most important thing is to pick one you can trust – see our guide to the Best Free VPNs to choose for more.

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Jack is a senior writer at Tech.co with over a decade's experience researching and writing about consumer technology, from security and privacy to product reviews and tech news.

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