Apple’s iPhone is known for its stability and security though it has its own issues regarding its security and privacy. Switching to close-ended iOS means you will be sacrificing a lot of open-ended features offered by Google’s Android. Apple gives much importance to the security of their devices even if they come at the cost of features and innovation. However, that doesn’t mean you are completely immune from attacks and an even a small security breach if left unchecked can wreak massive havoc.
Apple’s App Store is not completely free from shady Fake Apps which are loaded with malware and spyware. These apps may lay dormant for a zero-day attack though the possibility is less compared to your Windows and Android devices. Even so, you should take steps for the protection of your data and prevent them from snooping, sniffing, hacking and modifying your unprotected web communications. The best solution is to a VPN or a Virtual Private Network on your iPhone. In this article, we will be explaining about best VPNs for iOS/iPhone.
PS: If you are an Android Fan then check out this article.
What is VPN?
A Virtual Private Network (VPN) creates a safe and encrypted connected over less secure networks. The technology is designed in such a way that it allows remote users and branch offices to securely access applications and other resources. A VPN extends across a public or shared network to acts as a tunnel for the exchange of data securely and anonymously across the internet as if you were connected to a private network.
Though the modern cellular communication is thoroughly encrypted, and hackers can’t tap with unless they have access to police-level tools like Stingray device, data dumps from cell towers or takeover your network by a small briefcase-sized cell tower called femtocell. But unless you are a high-value target, the chances of such attacks are vanishingly small.
The main problem arises in Wi-Fi. We all connect to free Wi-Fi at restaurants, airport, and libraries unaware that our security is at the hands of the hotspot owner. A hacker with the right set of skills can surf through our communications, credit card information, passwords and more. Your iPhone will also connect automatically with that hotspot when it comes in range. The verification used is an SSID (network name) and is easy for attackers to obtain a portable hotspot that can listen to those broadcast queries and mimic the name requested by the devices.
When you connect your iPhone with a VPN, all your browser traffic from browser, apps or iOS itself is encrypted before traveling through the net. The encrypted data stream then travels to a server by the company where the decryption takes place and sent on its way. It also hides your IP address and geographic location from the Ad-trackers, snoopers and government agencies who can track it to observe your online activity. The best VPN companies install their servers all around the world and even you can select the server in a particular country.
How to Choose a VPN for iOS
There are plenty of iOS VPNs in the market with decent features but you should look for features like speed, the number of simultaneous connections, easy to use interface. Other features to look before subscribing include best security protocols and privacy policies so that you do not regret later.
Best VPN for iPhone/iOS You Won’t Regret Getting
ExpressVPN is the VPN with most features in the list and is an all-round VPN. This British Virgin Islands based provider has a larger service network of about 148 server locations in 94 countries. This VPN managed to provide very good speed and had no issues in accessing streaming services like Netflix and Hulu.
The iOS client is very easy to set up and comes with a smooth and friendly user-interface that focuses on smart server selection via different filters. There is a one-tap use feature along with an option to reconnect automatically should your mobile’s Wi-Fi or data connection unexpectedly drops. It supports iOS 8 and higher and uses 256-bit encryption, which is the best industry standard encryption for non-corporate connection. Additionally, it encrypts the streaming using AES-256-CBC and has support for P2P.
The prices are not the cheapest but is worth the added cost if you want the best VPN experience for iOS devices, which includes the iPhones and iPads.
If you want the best security for your iPhone/iPad you should go for the NordVPN. This iOS client comes with unique features like 256-bit encryption, double VPN encryption (though it may slow down), VPN into Tor and automatic kill switch. Users can pre-set the kill switch to turn off any app in the event of internet speed degradation to stop any data or DNS leak.
This VPN also comes with zero-log policy though it is not as fast as ExpressVPN. The company boasts 1004 servers in 59 countries and supports P2P and BitTorrent. You can install it in 6 of your devices simultaneously and can access up to 3,000 free proxies. You have to pay extra money for dedicated IPs. Their customer care is excellent but is limited to Email, Facebook, and Twitter and ticketing. It would have been nice to include the Live Chat option. There is a SmartPlay feature to help you with streaming services.
The app is user-friendly and you will find everything organized with at-a-glance information offered by the ‘quick connect’ widget which informs about the closest server, availability, load percentage and more. Interested customers have the option to sign up for a free trial before subscribing.
3. Private Internet Access
Private Internet Access strikes a good balance between price and performance. The iOS client supports iOS 9 on 64-bit or higher and works well in iPads as well. Though it lacks in certain features and can be termed simple, it does its job well.
The company has more than 3243+ servers in 33 countries. It is easy to use with instant setup and can be installed in 5 devices simultaneously. It also offers a zero-log policy but lacks supports for IKEv2 protocol as of now. This service offers protection from MITM (man in the middle) attacks protecting you from ARP (Address Resolution Protocol) spoofing. It supports PPTP, OpenVPN and L2TP/IPSec protocols with 128-AES and 256-AES encryption along with a kill switch. Additionally, it offers a tool called MACE for ad-blocking and tracker-blocking.
There is no free trial but has a 7-day money back guarantee offer while the plans are quite affordable. There are multiple payment options including Bitcoin, Paypal, OkPay, CashU and more.
If you are looking for the highest number of simultaneous connections supported VPN in the list, this the VPN you are looking for. IPVanish delivers superb performance both in iPhones and iPads and supports iOS 9 or higher. It automatically connects when an internet connection is detected and suggests the fastest server based on your location and ping time.
The US best company claims to be “The World’s Best VPN Service” with features like 40,000+ shared IPs, 1100+ PSP friendly servers in 60+ countries, no traffic logs, and live chat support that is available 24/7. However, this VPN lacks a kill switch making it vulnerable to unexpected data drops. The interface is also not the best and leaves room for improvement. The speeds are of average quality, though it’s not the best. The VPN lacks a polished interface and an ad-blocker.
The iOS client offers a broad range of protocols and works well for the beginner VPN users who have no use for features like BitTorrenting and automatic IP address cycling. This VPN suits the heavy downloaders as it doesn’t restrict BitTorrent to just a few servers, unlike other VPNs. Users can install it in 10 device simultaneously which is better than the other VPNs in this list.
IPVanish doesn’t offer any free trial but gives 7-day money back guarantee. The Payment method is limited to PayPal only.
This Hong Kong based VPN service has 750+ servers in 141 countries and has 88,000+ IPs. They offer zero-log policy and can connect 5 devices simultaneously. The new VPN users can set the VPN to automatically choose the best security protocol while the advance VPN users can choose from all other available protocols including PPTP, L2TP, SSTP, OpenVPN and IKEv2. It also comes with a custom protocol called Stealth protocol.
PureVPN offers advanced security protection with 256-bit AES, DDoS protection and NAT firewall. It offers a 7-day money back guarantee on all their pricing plans and accepts payment across multiple platforms including all major credit cards, Bitcoin, Alipay, CAshU, Starbucks, Walmart and more.
So here is our final list of the best iOS VPNs. Choose according to your requirements and make sure you comment below which iOS VPN you liked the most and why.