54Mbps same city speed
Based on a 100Mbps test connection
In 2020 it’s essential to use a VPN app on your iPhone (and your iPad) if you want to hide your online activity from your internet service provider, or if you want to use free WiFi more securely. Moreover, the best iPhone VPNs will even unlock blocked websites and apps from any location.
Using free iPhone VPNs can also be good, but the overwhelming majority aren’t safe. We’ve tested far too many free VPNs that either perform badly, or are outright dangerous to your security and privacy.
That’s why we invested over 30,000 hours analyzing hundreds of free VPNs for iOS to find the safest, most trustworthy, and best-performing ones. They have strong built-in security features, deliver fast speeds, and some can even unlock streaming platforms like Netflix and BBC iPlayer.
Following our July 2020 tests, the apps below are the best free VPNs for iPhone:
- Windscribe: It keeps proving to be the very best free iPhone VPN with high security and good speeds. It also unblocks US Netflix and BBC iPlayer.
- ProtonVPN: A fast and secure VPN that unlike its rivals doesn’t come with any data restrictions whatsoever.
- Hide.me: The fastest free VPN we’ve tested for iPhone and iPad. A very secure app that even comes with a VPN kill switch for added security.
All three VPNs above will hide your IP address and secure your connections with strong encryption, whether you’re using public WiFi or your 3G/4G data connection.
Unfortunately, free iPhone VPNs come with limitations, such as slower speeds and limited streaming access. For the best unrestricted VPN experience, read our guide to the best VPNs for iPhone and iPad. At the moment, the overall best VPN for iOS is ExpressVPN.
Wondering why you should trust our reviews?
See How We Review VPNs.
Best Free VPN Apps for iPhone in 2020
60Mbps same city speed
Based on a 100Mbps test connection
3 countries, 8 servers
72Mbps same city speed
Based on a 100Mbps test connection
4 countries, Not disclosed servers
Free iPhone VPN FAQ
How to Use a Free VPN on Your iPhone
If you want a simple free VPN for your iPhone, choose one that offers a custom iOS app. This way all you need to do is install the VPN directly from the App Store.
When you install your VPN app, make sure you enable security features such as the VPN kill switch and DNS and IPv6 leak protection, if available. If there’s an option to choose the VPN protocol, we recommend selecting OpenVPN.
At this point, you can choose the VPN server to connect to. The closer it is to your physical location the better the speeds should be. Once you’ve found your desired server, tap connect.
If you don’t want to use a custom iPhone VPN app, read our guide on manually setting up a VPN on an iPhone.
Which Free iPhone VPN Has Unlimited Data?
When it comes to the best free VPNs, all of them have various limitations. This is done to encourage you to purchase the premium version of the VPN.
Some free VPNs limit server locations, others the extent of the features available. Most common among free VPNs are data caps: Windscribe’s 10GB being the most generous on our list and TunnelBear’s 500MB being the most stingy.
Currently, the only free VPN for iPhone which has unlimited data is the free version of ProtonVPN.
What's the Best Free VPN for iPhone in China?
It takes a very strong VPN to beat web censors in China. For this reason, it’s difficult to find a free VPN that works there.
If a free VPN is going to bypass Chinese web censorship, it’ll be our #1 pick Windscribe. It’s reported to be quite effective in China, especially on laptop and desktop computers, but for iOS users it’s not as reliable.
You could also try TunnelBear, as it comes with ‘GhostBear Mode’, which is designed to circumvent censorship. However, in our experience TunnelBear has yet to work in China.
If not in China, Windscribe and TunnelBear are more likely to work in countries like Dubai, Iran, Qatar, Russia, Sudan, and Turkey.
Which Free iPhone VPNs Should I Avoid?
We understand the desire to avoid paying for software, as well as the pain of having too much choice. That’s why we put together this guide of the safest and fastest free VPNs for iOS users.
But the free VPN market is flooded with risky apps. Many either don’t work properly, are poorly built, or are simply designed to do the opposite of a VPN and extract your information. Quite frankly, it’s a minefield.
With that in mind, we wanted to share our knowledge of the VPNs available with our list, but we’re prepared to name and shame the worst options, too. Make sure you don’t download:
- Betternet Free
- FreeVPN by FreeVPN.org
- VPN Book
- VPN Proxy Master
What is the Best Free VPN for Gaming on iOS?
Whether it’s PUBG or Mobile Legends, videogames on iPhone and iPad are bigger than ever. Some of these popular games have been banned in various countries – perhaps even yours. Turning to a VPN is one of the most common ways to get around it.
Bear in mind: free VPNs present serious limitations to gamers.
Free VPNs often feature minimal server lists and serious data caps. With a stingy data cap you’ll run out of bandwidth fast, ending your game early.
Worse than that, free VPNs often just don’t cut it when it comes to privacy and security. Some are actually more dangerous than not using one at all.
If you want a VPN for gaming, we highly recommend choosing a paid-for VPN.
With that in mind and you still want to know which is the best free VPN for iOS gaming around, we recommend Windscribe with its 10GB of available data or, of course, ProtonVPN, which is unlimited in its available data. You’ll be able to play a bit longer with that than you would with other VPN services like TunnelBear.
What is the Best Free VPN for Netflix on iPhone?
We all know that movies and TV aren’t resigned to the cinema and the living room anymore. We see people enjoying them nearly everyday on our daily commutes, only they’re enjoying Netflix on iPhone.
Security conscious people love to watch Netflix too, so they wonder: how can I protect my device whilst enjoying the latest episode of my drama?
And who wants to spend the money, right? You’re already paying the Netflix fee.
We get that, but here’s the problem: even the best free VPNs fail to access, and those that manage to get under the radar soon begin to sink under the limitations of data caps.
Avira Phantom Free for example, while we have had intermittent success unblocking Netflix, it’s 1GB monthly data cap just isn’t going to allow you to binge at all. You might get around to an episode a month with that.
Does a Free VPN Drain the iPhone Battery?
This is a fair question — we know that your smartphone’s battery is precious, and some apps can be super battery-sensitive.
A VPN will use up your iPhone or iPad battery, but only slightly.
First of all, there will only be a difference when the VPN is actually being used to encrypt and transfer data (like when you watch YouTube, for example).
Secondly, the difference will be so minor that you it’s extremely likely you won’t even notice it at all, which is a good thing.
The benefits of using a VPN to keep your iPhone secure far outweigh the potential extra battery usage.