NordVPN is the best VPN for iOS devices, retaining its extensive feature set across its iPhone and iPad apps. Thus, allowing you to unblock content over its 5400+ servers, bypass censorship, stay safe on public Wi-Fi and keep your ISP out of your online business.
This VPN is rivaled only by Surfshark, PrivateVPN, PureVPN, and AtlasVPN, with their robust security and privacy features.
So, whether you want DDoS protection while gaming, public Wi-Fi safety, general data encryption, or unblocking content anywhere, these iPad and iPhone VPNs can help.
Top 3 VPNs for iOS Devices
Surfshark’s unlimited simultaneous connections protect all iOS devices in your household over a single account. The affordable VPN also packs intuitive security and privacy features like an ad blocker and kill switch for iOS devices.
NordVPN offers an extensive suite of security and privacy features for iOS devices, including a malware scanner, ad blocker, deep web scanner, and obfuscated servers. It also provides 5400+ servers to unblock content across 60 countries.
PrivateVPN’s FREE dedicated IP addresses improve online privacy and security when gaming, downloading files or browsing the web on iOS devices. It also offers flexible encryption protocols for advanced users and iOS connection options.
iOS devices already have robust in-built security. However, you’re still exposed to public Wi-Fi dangers, DDoS attacks on your IP address, ISP data collection, and other online privacy/security issues.
Likewise, some apps and services may not work correctly on your iPhone due to geo-restrictions.
But don’t worry. These VPN services have a few tricks up their sleeves.
Bypass Geo-Restrictions and Get Online Security on Your iOS Devices With These VPNs
Here’s a snippet of what you get over these top VPNs for iOS units:
- NordVPN – Enhanced Threat Protection, Privacy, and iOS Security Over 5400+ Servers
- Surfshark – Reliable Unblocking and Online Privacy Across Unlimited iOS Devices
- PrivateVPN – Free Dedicated IPs and Flexible Encryption Options on iOS Devices
- PureVPN – Ultra-Fast Quantum-Resistant Servers & Live Content Streaming
- AtlasVPN – Trustworthy Freemium VPN Service for iPhones and iPads
Keep reading to see the details of the Virtual Private Network (VPN) tests and comparisons informing this reliable provider selection.
Comparisons & In-Depth Tests of the Best iOS VPNs
Let’s take a peek under the hood of these VPN providers to see what they offer regarding iOS device security and privacy.
I’ll also help compare the VPNs on crucial features to help you make a better and faster buying decision based on your needs.
NordVPN - Enhanced Threat Protection, Privacy, and iOS Security Over 5400+ Servers
NordVPN gets a 4.7/5 App Store rating in my region, and that’s no mistake.
A standout feature is the Wi-Fi protection feature to ensure your online privacy when using public networks. You can set it up to recognize trusted networks and automatically activate on random Wi-Fi networks.
This is backed by NordVPN’s AES 256-bit encryption on all protocols (NordLynx, IKEv2, and OpenVPN on iOS) across 5400+ servers in 60 countries.
I confirmed the encryption by connecting to a random NordVPN server and running an IP/DNS/WebRTC leak test. Thus, ensuring no one (public Wi-Fi operators, your ISP, the government, hackers, and snoops) can see your internet activities.
My tests showed IKEv2 to be the least data-consuming, but NordLynx offered a better balance of security and data consumption.
That said, NordVPN can be fun for iOS users too.
You can enable its Siri shortcut to quickly encrypt your iOS internet connection without lifting a finger. I customized my command to “Hey Siri, Connect Me,” and it worked smoothly every time!
You can also unblock Netflix US (or other Netflix libraries), Crave TV (on Canada servers), BBC iPlayer (via UK servers), etc., over its standard or specialty P2P servers.
Furthermore, NordVPN provides iOS users with extra security and privacy features like:
- Dark Web Monitor: Scans the dark web for your details and lets you know of leaks.
- Threat Protection: Blocks ads and malicious sites on your iOS devices. It got a 96% ad-blocking score in my test, ensuring zero distractions while reading “The Lady and Her Butler” manga on Bato.
- Specialty Servers: Onion over VPN, DoubleVPN, and obfuscated servers, for extra protection.
While this easy-to-use iOS VPN doesn’t break the bank, it’s the costliest here.
Grab these NordVPN discounts to save more.
Surfshark - Reliable Unblocking and Online Privacy Across Unlimited iOS Devices
Surfshark is an ideal group buy since it offers unlimited connections for travel groups, large families, or other group buyers. Little wonder it’s rated 4.6/5 on the App Store.
But what else does it offer?
For starters, you get 3200+ servers to unblock content in 100 countries. I’ve used these servers to get Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, Netflix Japan, NRK TV, and BBC iPlayer during my iOS streaming tests.
Surfshark also offers DDoS protection on its servers, and I tested its AES 256-bit encryption for secure gaming on your iPhone or iPad.
The encryption extends into its automatic Wi-Fi protection (dubbed “Auto-connect”) to ensure network admins can’t see your chats, sensitive passwords, and other information you share over their networks.
Surfshark’s ad blocker (CleanWeb) only blocked 67% of ads during my testing period, making it less efficient than NordVPN’s solution. But I didn’t see any ads on manga websites (notorious for ads) during my real-life tests. So, no complaints.
That said, the VPN lacks a malware blocker and a deep web scanner like NordVPN.
While Surfshark is just as user-friendly as NordVPN, it lacks a Siri shortcut feature. I even tried to tell Siri to connect me to a Surfshark server, and the assistant told me Surfshark is yet to add such support. Sad.
An interesting Surfshark feature is the unique Rotating IP that bounces your data off different IP addresses. Thus, sending anyone tracking you on a wild goose chase. It also offers a toggle-able kill switch button (unlike the others) which truly disconnected my internet to prevent IP/DNS leaks while switching networks.
On top of that, Surfshark is fast: scoring 39Mbps on a 100Mbps connection against NordVPN’s 33Mbps results. You’ll get similar speeds on its WireGuard protocol (fastest), but IKEv2 remains the least data-consuming option (not by much) that I tried.
Interested? Grab these Surfshark deals.
PrivateVPN - Free Dedicated IPs and Flexible Encryption Options on iOS Devices
PrivateVPN scores 4.4/5 on the App Store, and its most critical comments were from a couple of years ago (issue now fixed) about not being able to register on the app. Nothing major.
The VPN provider stays true to its name, ensuring even better online privacy over its FREE dedicated IP addresses. NordVPN and PureVPN also offer dedicated IPs. Still, you’ll have to shell out extra to get the feature from them.
Besides the privacy, I used these dedicated IPs to bypass VPN blocks on chat services like Omegle, gambling websites like Roobet, and other VPN-sensitive platforms on my iPhone.
The only downside is these dedicated IPs are dynamic – so you’ll never get the same IP twice. Meanwhile, NordVPN and PureVPN offer static dedicated IPs.
You’ll get 200+ servers across 63 countries to unblock content in more regions than NordVPN. That may be the least server count here, but I never encountered any server overcrowding issues while testing this provider.
Sadly, PrivateVPN doesn’t allow automatic Wi-Fi protection on its iPad and iPhone VPN apps. It’s also lacking an ad-blocker (like NordVPN and Surfshark), doesn’t include Siri functionality, and lacks a kill switch setting.
On top of that, PrivateVPN isn’t as beginner-friendly as NordVPN but is a better bet for more tech-savvy users who know what they’re doing.
That’s because it offers the chance to switch OpenVPN encryption types (128 and 256-bit) and choose preferred VPN connection ports.
If you don’t know about these, I recommend leaving it set at its default (AES 256-bit).
PrivateVPN noticeably lacks an ad-blocking tool, unlike the others before it.
But it makes up for that with mouth-watering prices.
Grab these PrivateVPN discounts to enjoy these low prices while they last.
PureVPN - Ultra-Fast Quantum-Resistant Servers & Live Content Streaming
Every other listed VPN uses AES 256-bit encryption, but PureVPN follows up with quantum-resistant servers. Connect to these specialty servers (denoted by the QR tag) on your iPhone/iPad; not even high-tech quantum computers can hack your live traffic!
I ran IP/DNS leak tests on a few of these servers and was always satisfied with their high-level encryption. No wonder PureVPN maintains a stellar 4.5/5 star rating on the App Store.
However, PureVPN lacks automatic Wi-Fi protection, Siri compatibility, and an ad blocker. You also don’t get a kill switch setting, although the provider claims it’s automatically enabled whenever you’re connected to its servers.
I confirmed this to be true when changing from my mobile network to Wi-Fi and seeing no data leaks on my testing tool.
Fortunately, it has a “VPN on Demand” feature that allows you to customize the websites on which the VPN is activated. I used this feature to:
- Keep sensitive websites (like online banking platforms) off the VPN’s encryption.
- Protect specific websites and online accounts with the VPN.
Given PureVPN’s extensive server list (6500+ servers in 78+ countries), you can unblock content in more countries than NordVPN. For instance, I got access to Voot (via Indian servers) on PureVPN but couldn’t unblock the service with NordVPN.
On top of that, my PureVPN speed tests yielded 87Mbps over the WireGuard protocol, making it ideal to live stream MLB games without blackouts, NBA Game Pass, and concerts on your iOS device.
It also offers an IKEv2 protocol which is more stable (and equally fast) on some 5.0GHz Wi-Fi networks I used during my tests.
The best part is that it’s the cheapest VPN provider on this list.
Use these PureVPN discounts to get it cheaper and test the VPN risk-free for 31 days.
AtlasVPN - Trustworthy Freemium VPN Service for iPhones and iPads
This no-logs provider offers a robust, easy-to-use iOS app with AES 256-bit encryption on all servers and protocols. While I usually recommend against free providers, this 4.8-star rated provider is an exception.
You’ll only get three servers on the free plan (two in the US and one in the Netherlands), enough to secure your internet experience on public Wi-Fi networks. You can also connect to these servers to encrypt your online activities from the government, hackers, your phone carrier, and snoopers.
However, these limited servers are less than ideal if you want to unblock content in other regions over your iOS device. Likewise, Atlas VPN doesn’t have an automatic Wi-Fi security setup on iPads and iPhones, nor does it include native Siri support.
Instead, it provides a SafeBrowse feature that automatically blocks ads, trackers, and malware. It even features a Data Breach Monitor, like NordVPN’s Dark Web Monitor, which notifies you when your data gets leaked.
The only downside is that these features aren’t enabled on the free VPN.
I tested the ad blocker on its premium plan, and it kept almost all ads at bay while streaming live sports on a niche platform.
That said, Atlas VPN is fast enough (37Mbps on my WireGuard tests) for HD content streaming and unblocking. But it has a 5GB monthly bandwidth limit. So, I only recommend it for public Wi-Fi security on non-bandwidth-intensive websites.
However, you don’t have to endure these AtlasVPN limitations on your iOS devices.
These HUGE discounts make it one of the cheapest providers on this list.
How to Set up a VPN for iOS Devices?
Here’s how to set up a VPN to stream content, get public Wi-Fi protection, improve your privacy, or get preferred IP addresses on your iOS device:
- Buy a reliable iOS VPN. I recommend NordVPN (get discounts here).
- Go to the App Store, search for “NordVPN,” and download the iPad/iPhone VPN app.
- Launch the NordVPN app and log in with your account credentials. This is the email and password you created in step #1 above.
- Choose a suitable connection protocol. I recommend NordLynx for the best speed and security or IKEv2 as the best alternative. Here’s how:
- Tap on the avatar icon at the bottom right of the screen.
- Tap on the settings cog at the upper right of the screen.
- Tap “Protocol” and select your option.
- Go to the VPN home page and tap “QUICK CONNECT” to get the fastest/nearest server.
- OR tap “Search” to look for a preferred server to connect.
- Wait for the connection confirmation, and start browsing the web securely with NordVPN.
How to Setup VPN Automatic Public Wi-Fi Protection on iOS?
You can set up some VPNs to automatically activate on your iOS device once connected to a public Wi-Fi network. That protects your data from public network admins and hackers on the network.
- Get a VPN with automatic Wi-Fi protection on iOS. I recommend NordVPN.
- Download the NordVPN iOS app, launch it and log in with your account credentials.
- Tap the avatar icon at the bottom right of the screen, then the settings cog at the upper right of the screen.
- Tap “Auto-Connect.”
- Select “On Wi-Fi networks.”
- Tap the “Auto-Connect To” option to configure the server you want your NordVPN app to connect to on Wi-Fi networks.
- You can automatically connect to the fastest server or select a specific server location.
You can do this for your private home networks.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Can You Use a Free VPN on iOS Devices?
You can use a free VPN on your iPhone and iPad, but they won’t give you the best experience. Most free VPNs lack enough servers to unblock content, aren’t well optimized for security, lack efficient public Wi-Fi protection, and may even collect your mobile data to sell.
Likewise, free VPNs are notorious for causing a severe battery drain and damage to your iOS devices, lowering the battery health and ruining your phone.
Will a VPN Slow My iOS Device's Internet Connection?
A VPN will slow your iOS device’s internet connection due to the encryption protocols it uses to keep your data safe from third parties. However, well-engineered VPNs like NordVPN are lightweight and optimized for speed, causing negligible internet speed drops.
Does a VPN Stop Hackers on iOS?
A VPN can help stop some hackers on your iOS device, especially those on public Wi-Fi networks and DDoS hackers. However, a VPN is powerless against password-level hacks, phishing attacks, and malware hacks.
Does the iPhone Have a Built-in VPN?
The iPhone doesn’t have a built-in VPN. However, it allows you to manually connect to a VPN server via the device settings menu if you know the server’s details.
Likewise, it has a private relay that offers data encryption. However, your data is still visible to Apple and its partners.
Will a VPN Affect My iOS Device’s Battery Life?
A VPN will affect your iOS device’s battery life like any other app you run.
However, some VPNs (usually free and heavily-coded VPNs) cause a higher battery drain than others.
Thus, opt for lightweight and properly coded VPNs (like NordVPN and ExpressVPN) to enjoy protection without ruining your battery health.
Keep Your Apple Safe
Don’t let hackers, snoops, your ISP, the government, or copyright trolls take another bite out of your iOS’ Apple.
Get one of these VPNs today to secure your internet experience, enjoy public Wi-Fi security, bypass restrictions anywhere, and get the most out of your smartphone.
And if you’re ready to start now, enjoy these limited-time NordVPN deals to save more.