We tested and analyzed the best mobile VPNs for 2023 using the following criteria to help you make an informed decision:
Performance: We tested most of the VPNs on this list to ensure robust performance in terms of connection and speed. After all, there’s no point in using a VPN if your connection continually drops or lags, making it intolerable, which is especially important when you’re on mobile.
Simultaneous connections: Many VPNs limit how many devices you can connect to a service at the same time. If you have a phone, tablet, and laptop you want to connect to a VPN, you need a service that allows simultaneous connections.
Security: There’s no point using a VPN unless their security protocols and encryption levels are up to scratch. We also ensured that the development team behind each recommended VPN cares about making security improvements over time and patching reported bugs.
Kill switch: A kill switch prevents you from having an unprotected connection and is an important feature for a mobile VPN to have, as it protects you by preventing a return to a default Wi-Fi connection — in comparison, for example, with your cellular connectivity — should your internet connection unexpectedly drop.
Geoblocks and streaming: We know that VPNs can be key to accessing local content and services while you’re away from home and relying on mobile devices. We ensured that our top recommendations perform well when it comes to these factors and are unlikely to slow down your connection while you are streaming.
Countries & servers: In how many different countries does the VPN have servers? This can include physical and virtual servers, and whether or not there are enough — at least 50 or so — to provide variety.
Trial length & price: Each VPN we recommend has a solid money-back guarantee.
Most VPN providers recommended in this list have been subject to in-depth testing and reviews by members of our ZDNET team. We’ve been writing about these VPNs for years, have spoken with their management and their users, and have developed a generally favorable impression.
ZDNET tests VPN services from multiple locations, but we can’t test from all locations. Every home, every community, every local ISP, and every nation has a different infrastructure. It’s essential that once you choose, you test for all your likely usage profiles and only then make the decision to keep the service or request a money-back guaranteed refund.
These VPNs also have solid money-back guarantees, and we would not have recommended them otherwise.