It’s extremely difficult looking for the best VPN for iPhone, let alone a free one. After heavy search results and detailed testing, I’ve shortlisted 5 free VPN services that work with iPhones, iPad and that are compatible with other iOS devices.
Yes! You heard right! They’re absolutely free! Read on!
The search for an iOS VPN is not as easy as you think! I’m sure that a majority of you at some point may have downloaded the wrong VPN app or any app in general, from the Apple Store.
Most of us normally go for cheap VPN services if we’re on a tight budget, but there are also a few of us who require a free option. The confusion in it all is that there are so many free VPNs that it gets difficult choosing an authentic one. They might not be safe for your iPhone.
Using a free VPN for your iPhone means limited usage. With all honesty, you cannot use a free VPN and have the same kind of performance that a premium or paid VPN provides. A free VPN can only be used for selective and basic purposes on your iPhone.
Keeping that in view, if you’re on a tight budget and aren’t looking to invest in a best iOS VPN just yet, I’ve shortlisted 5 of the best and safest free choices for you.
Here’s a quick look:
- Surfshark – all-rounder free VPN for iPhone, providing a free trial period for iOS with unlimited device connections, unlimited data, premium features, unblocks Netflix, and much more.
- Windscribe – second-best free VPN for iPhone, providing 10GB data per month, and unlimited device connections.
- Hide.me – the best free iPhone VPN for security and privacy, offering 10 GB data usage a month, and an active Kill Switch of iOS devices.
- ProtonVPN – best free VPN for iOS with unlimited bandwidth, great for unblocking Netflix.
- TunnelBear – decent privacy policies for iOS even in the free app.
How to choose free VPNs for iPhones and iPads
It’s inevitable that at some point in time, you’re going to download a VPN app that may say they offer a lot in performance, features, and security. But, what happens when it delivers nothing in comparison? To pick a reliable free VPN means you’ll have to scavenge for it based on certain requirements.
Yes, free VPN services don’t have a variety to offer, but that doesn’t mean you dive in head first, to any app you find.
I picked these 5 free VPN providers based on extensive testing, and that also means getting in touch with each provider in accordance with what they have to offer.
Other than that, I looked for certain attributes. These include:
Firstly, a good VPN allows users to connect to more than one device, and finding a free one for that kind of support is difficult. Not many free or premium VPNs are compatible with all the major devices. An iOS app, in particular, is difficult to find. Based on that, always check to see whether the free VPN app works for iPhones and iPad.
This is a tough one, considering that a free VPN basically means “limited performance”. However, the 5 free VPNs for iPhones that I picked for this list all operate on 256-bit AES encryption and have strict no-logging policies. That is extremely rare to find, considering that they are free services.
It is a fact that free VPN services never offer wide server coverage. Most users require a VPN to access multiple geo-blocked streaming services that aren’t available within their countries. To do that, there needs to be a good selection of server locations However, the providers enlisted, don’t offer a huge coverage, but offer a reliable selection.
A VPN without great speed is a deal-breaker. Firstly, you’ll be experiencing limited performance from the app, then throw in lagging speed. What’s left? When I tested these 5 providers, all were rendered pretty decent speed results, which are pretty good for 4K HD streams.
Streaming and P2P
Many users need a VPN for streaming on big-league platforms or to safely download torrents. But, again, we all know that only some of the best VPN providers are capable of doing that. To my surprise, these 5 free VPN providers unblocked Netflix.
The best free VPNs for iOS devices (iPhones & iPads)
Now, let’s take a look at what each free VPN provider has to offer and why they’re the best for your iPhone. We start with:
Surfshark is one of the best VPNs in the industry, period!
In case you’re wondering why Surfshark, a British Virgin Islands provider, landed up in the list for “free iPhone VPNs” that’s mainly because it is one of the best providers for iOS devices in general.
Surfshark offers a 7 day free trial period for iPhones. Thirdly, during the free trial, you get access to unlimited and unrestricted premium features.
I get that 7 days may not be enough, but it also offers a reliable 30-day refund policy. You don’t have to worry about subscribing to the Surfshark services since this provider returns the money back in full!
The reason I placed Surfshark in the first place, is to give you a budgeted option to choose from just in case you change your mind about completely free restricted services. Surfshark offers 256-bit encryption, a Kill Switch, GPS Spoofing, 1700+ servers in 64 countries, fast speeds, and much more!
With Surfshark, you’ll be able to unblock multiple geo-blocked streaming platforms like Netflix, Disney Plus, HBO Go, Amazon Prime, BBC iPlayer, and more, on your iPhone or iPad from anywhere in the world.
If you ever think of investing in the full app in the future, Surfshark comes with some pretty budgeted prices. Its best prices for a 2-year subscription is at $2.49/mo. For more Surfshark details, you can go through a detailed review where you’ll even be able to check its extended features and speed/leak test results.
Windscribe is known to be one of the safest free VPNs for iPhone and multiple other devices.
It is a Canadian provider, which according to many users isn’t a safe option. But, what you don’t know is that Windscribe actually sticks to its privacy policies and no-logging regulations.
It is known as a freemium VPN, for the obvious reasons that it is a paid service, which also has a limited free version. This isn’t equivalent to a premium VPNs free trial. It’s not the same.
The free version of Windscribe is very much compatible with iOS devices as well as many other operating systems. And, speaking of other platforms, the great thing about Windscribe is that in its free version, it allows you to connect to unlimited devices per usage!
This means you can secure your iPhone, iPad, and many other supported devices.
Windscribe runs on military-grade AES 256-bit encryption with DNS and IP leak protection, which as I mentioned before is very difficult to find in a free VPN. It even has a Kill Switch, and a Firewall feature, which you’ll find even in the iPhone application.
Windscribe is loved by many users because of its great performance in many areas. This is why it also makes a great free app for iPhones.
Now, coming to the restrictions, you’ll be allowed to use only 10GB of data a month. You can use that limited amount of data to connect to any of its 10 servers.
This isn’t a lot but as I said, there’re always restrictions that come with free VPN services. The good thing from these restrictions is that its server coverage includes locations that are vital for streaming.
It covers servers in the UK and the US and unblocks Netflix, Amazon Prime, HBO GO, Disney Plus, and BBC iPlayer with decent speeds. Windscribe is also a good free choice for gaming!
Good speeds are very rare for free VPN services, but, Windscribe seems to do well in that area. All of this can be unlocked not only for your iPhone but unlimited supported devices since its free version allows unlimited multi-device connections.
If you ever find yourself scouting for the full Windscribe app, its best price goes at $4.08/mo. for its yearly plan. There’s also a small 3-day refund period.
Third, on the list we have Hide.me.
This has got to be one of my favorite free VPNs for iOS devices (iPhone and iPad) and is quite popular among many other iOS VPN users, all of which have rendered positive results.
Jumping straight into what’s good, Hide.me offers around 10GB data usage a month, which is similar to Windscribe. That is a much larger data capacity as compared to many other free VPN providers.
Plus; this provider is a safe option for your iPhone. So, that’s what counts more.
It allows you to bypass restricted services which again, most free services fail to offer. You can do so by connecting to unlimited servers spread across 5 countries (Singapore, Canada, Netherlands, US East, and US West).
Other than this, you’ll find that Hide.me makes a good free VPN for iPhones also because of its capacity to unblock Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, and other social media platforms, all with great speed results.
One of the more notable aspects of the free Hide.me VPN app features is the fact that it provides strong security backing for iPhones exactly the same as it does for its premium plan on multiple other devices. It operates on 256-bit AES encryption, is DNS and IP leak protected, and has strict privacy policies being of Malaysian origin.
The best feature yet; its Kill Switch, available even in the free app for iPhone, is very difficult to find in many other providers.
The only downside I would say is that it allows only one device connection for its free app. So, that means undivided VPN attention for your iPhone. You can always head over to its website for more information on it.
Another great free VPN option for iPhone or iOS devices is ProtonVPN.
This is a paid VPN service but breaks down into a couple of options, in which it includes its free version. The company is located in Switzerland, which is away from the 14-eyes alliance. This means you’ll have your online privacy observed with its no-logging policies.
ProtonVPN’s free version is a little too restricted in some ways, but it does make a good free app for iOS devices. You’ll even find a dedicated app for your iPhone on the App Store.
The better half about this provider is that it offers unlimited bandwidth. This means you’ll be able to stream through movies and browse the net unlimitedly without worrying about your data running out.
And since it’s compatible with streaming, I managed to unblock Netflix, YouTube and ran it with other platforms like Kodi, rendering moderate speeds.
This is very tough to achieve from regular paid VPN services, but the fact that ProtonVPN managed to pull through, proves a lot! There are more features and test results you need to look into, and for that, you can take a look at this detailed ProtonVPN review.
In terms of server coverage, ProtonVPN doesn’t seem to cover much. But, despite the fact that it only covers servers in around 3 countries (the United States, Netherlands, and Japan); its placement stretches out covering countries in major parts of the world.
Apart from its strict no-logging policies, it operates on bank-grade AES 256-bit encryption and has an in-built ad blocker. Not bad for a free VPN right?
And, speaking of free VPN for iPhones, ProtonVPN also offers a free trial period on top of a paid subscription. You don’t even have to provide any credit card details. This, of course, is only for those who plan on investing in its premium plans.
Last on the list, we have TunnelBear. This app makes a pretty slick and user-friendly software for iPhone users. You’ll find a free version available readily on the Apple Store.
Even though TunnelBear is a great free VPN option for iPhones and iPads, it still comes down to the fact that its value depends on what features it provides for your iOS devices.
Unlike the apps mentioned above, TunnelBear seems to offer far less in comparison for its free version, with a data limit of 500MB.
This pretty much restricts what all you could use the VPN for. It’s streaming and P2P compatible, but you’ll probably have to use it for simple surfing and irregular usage.
Apart from this, it offers server coverage in around 23 countries, some of which include the US, Japan, UK, and more.
I wasn’t able to unblock Netflix but managed to unblock other platforms like Hulu, YouTube, HBO GO, and Facebook. Even though I was successful, I still don’t recommend streaming more than one movie a week using this provider.
Is it safe to use a free VPN for iPhone?
It’s an unsullied fact that a free VPN needs to make up for staying in business somehow or the other. Think of it, why would any VPN offer free VPN services to anyone without wanting something in return?
If you’re looking for a free VPN in particular there are only a few that work best and that’ll take care of you. So, finding a reliable free one for iPhone is twice the task.
Most free providers steal your data, log your information, or flood your screen with a malicious and annoying wave of ads. One wrong click on a shady yet intriguing link, and that’s the end of it for your iPhone.
A free VPN for iPhone and iPads (iOS devices) is a risk. Choosing one needs special attention and detailed testing. This is why I listed only the safest options for your iPhones that happen to be both paid and free VPN services.
Do I need a free VPN for my iPhone?
Honestly, no you don’t.
Why do harm to your device than good? Despite the fact of me enlisting 5 great free VPNs, with Surfshark being a premium VPN, the remaining 4 won’t provide you with every ounce of security or protection that an iPhone needs. And yes, the in-built security structure of an iPhone isn’t enough.
It will not mask your physical location from an ISP or the government, and neither will it allow you access to geo-blocked websites with great ease, unblocking all its libraries and services. Only the best and premium features of a paid iPhone VPN will do the trick.
However, I understand that premium VPN services aren’t attainable by everyone, and are more inclined to opt for an affordable iOS VPN, which is why Surfshark is the best-budgeted choice for you.
Can I use a free iPhone VPN for other devices?
All of the free iPhone VPNs mentioned on my list allow you to connect to multiple platforms like Windows, Android, and macOS. They also allow more than one connection at a time. It all depends on the provider you go with.
- Surfshark – Free VPN for iOS allows you to make unlimited device connections simultaneously.
- Windscribe – Free VPN for iPhone also allows unlimited device connections simultaneously.
- Hide.me – supports multiple devices but only allows one device connected at a time.
What free iOS VPNs should you avoid?
As mentioned before, not all free VPNs are what they seem to be. Some are reliable whereas others are just out to steal something from you. Here are a few to avoid, especially if it’s for your iPhone:
An iPhone comes with some of the strongest security measures. However, it alone isn’t enough to maintain online privacy, how would a free one be any different? The point is, in order to experience the ultimate security, privacy, and surfing privileges on many devices in general, only the best VPN will work.
If you’re on a for-sure budget, which is alright too, any one of the 5 free providers for iPhone (Surfshark, Windscribe, Hide.me, ProtonVPN, and TunnelBear) will provide enough security and streaming rights for short time usage.