How to Use a VPN on iPhone: Guide

In today’s digital world, we often move between public Wi-Fi networks and use our iPhones to go online. This constant switching can be risky for our online safety. That’s why using a VPN is so important1. This guide will cover everything you need to know about using a VPN on your iPhone, from setting it up to connecting.

Understanding VPNs and Their Importance

A virtual private network (VPN) boosts your online privacy and security, especially on your iPhone. It creates an encrypted tunnel between your device and a VPN server. This hides your IP address and location, keeping your internet traffic safe from others2. With 256-bit encryption, your sensitive info stays safe on public Wi-Fi networks too.

What is a VPN?

A VPN makes a secure connection between your device and the internet. It routes your internet traffic through an encrypted tunnel to a VPN server. Then, it connects you to websites or services you want to reach. This hides your IP and location, making it hard for others to track you or see your data3.

Benefits of Using a VPN on iPhone

Using a VPN on your iPhone has many benefits. It lets you get past location blocks, access blocked content, and keep your online activities private3. It also stops your ISP from tracking your online actions and selling your browsing history3. Premium VPNs like NordVPN don’t slow down your internet much, and they offer extra security features24.

For business users, a VPN is key for keeping sensitive info safe2. It protects your data when you’re on your work network or sharing documents online3.

Free VPNs might seem good, but they can be slow and limit your internet speed2. Premium VPNs, like NordVPN, offer fast speeds and strong security, making them a smart choice for protecting your online life4. They’re about $4.99 a month, which is a small price for your privacy and security.

In some countries, like North Korea and Belarus, using a VPN is banned2. But in most places, VPNs are legal and a great way to protect your iPhone and online activities243.

Choosing the Right VPN Provider

When picking a VPN for your iPhone, think about a few key things. Make sure it works well with your device, has the features you need, and is easy to use. It’s also vital to pick a VPN that keeps your internet use private by not logging it5.

Factors to Consider When Selecting a VPN

Look for a VPN that has what you need, like many server locations, fast speeds, and reliable bandwidth. Security is crucial, so choose one that uses top-notch encryption like AES 256-bit6.

Also, consider the VPN’s privacy policy. Go for ones that don’t log your online activities, keeping your data private even from the VPN itself6.

It’s important that the VPN is easy to use on your iPhone. The app should be simple to set up and use, and there should be good customer support if you run into problems5.

VPN ProviderMonthly CostVPN Review Rating
Mullvad VPN$554.5 Outstanding7
Proton VPN$5 – $1055.0 Exemplary7
Surfshark$2.49 – $3.4954.0 Excellent7
TunnelBear$3.3354.0 Excellent7
IVPNN/A4.0 Excellent7
NordVPNN/A4.5 Outstanding7

By looking at these key points, you can pick the best VPN for your iPhone. It will give you the security, speed, and privacy you need5.

how to use a vpn on iphone

Using a VPN on your iPhone boosts your online security and privacy. You can set up a VPN on your iOS device in two ways: through a dedicated app or by manually configuring the settings. Let’s look at both methods.

Using a VPN App on iPhone

The simplest way to use a VPN is by downloading a VPN app from the App Store. These apps make setting up easy, letting you connect to a VPN server securely8. Top VPN providers like NordVPN, Surfshark, and ExpressVPN have easy-to-use iOS apps. They let you connect with just a few taps.

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When picking a VPN app, think about the server network, encryption, and performance. Some apps also offer ad-blocking, split-tunneling, and a password manager9. After installing the app, sign in, pick a server, and connect with a button click.

Manually Configuring VPN on iPhone

For a hands-on approach, you can manually set up a VPN on your iPhone. This method lets you connect using your device’s settings, but it’s more complex than using an app9.

To manually set up a VPN, go to the Settings app, tap “VPN,” and select “Add VPN Configuration.” You’ll need to enter details like the VPN protocol, server address, and login info from your VPN service. After setting it up, you can connect to the VPN from the Settings app.

Manual setup might limit access to some advanced features, which are often in the VPN app9. But, this method is good if you want more control over your VPN or if your VPN doesn’t have an app.

Whether you use a VPN app or set it up manually, it’s a smart move for protecting your online privacy and security, especially on public Wi-Fi8. With the right VPN and a few easy steps, you can enjoy safer and more private browsing on your iPhone.

Setting Up a VPN on Your iPhone

Installing a VPN app on your iPhone and signing up for a VPN service are the first steps to enjoy a secure internet on your iOS device10. You can set up a VPN on your iPhone in two ways: through a dedicated app or by manually configuring the settings10.

Installing the VPN App

Downloading a VPN app from the App Store is the easiest way to set up a VPN on your iPhone10. Just search for your preferred VPN provider, like ExpressVPN or NordVPN, and install the app10.

Creating an Account and Signing Up

After installing the VPN app, you need to create an account and sign up for the service10. You’ll enter your email and choose a subscription plan10. Sometimes, you’ll get a confirmation link in your email from the VPN provider11.

Once signed up, the VPN app will help you connect to the service11. Just tap the VPN icon on your home screen, connect through the app, and turn off the VPN when done browsing11.

ComparisonFree VPNsExpressVPN
CostFreeMonthly subscription
Bandwidth UsageCappedUnlimited
Connection SpeedSlowFast
Server LocationsLimited105 countries
EncryptionWeak or unencryptedAES-256 encryption
Customer SupportNo support24/7 live chat and email
Business ModelData selling or adsSubscription-based with user privacy
Extra FeaturesNoneAd blocker, password manager, etc.

By following these steps, you can easily install a VPN app on your iPhone and sign up for a VPN service for a secure and private internet11. Choose a reputable VPN provider that meets your needs12.

Manually Configuring VPN Settings

If you need to access a private network at a business or school, you might need to set up a VPN manually on your iPhone. Start by going to the Settings app, then select General, and finally tap “Add VPN Configuration.”13 Choose the VPN protocol you want, like IKEv2, IPSec, or L2TP. Enter the server name and your login details, and then hit “Done” to save the settings13.

For setting up a VPN on iOS, IKEv2 is a top choice because it’s built-in on Apple devices13. But, you might need to get an IKEv2 certificate and connection details from your VPN provider’s site13. WireGuard is also great, being the fastest VPN protocol out there13. OpenVPN needs a third-party app from the App Store for your iPhone13.

In places like Russia or China where VPNs might be blocked, a manual setup is a good idea for keeping your connection open13. This way, you can also customize your VPN settings. You can pick the VPN protocol, enable Auto-connect, set up a Kill Switch, and use CleanWeb features13.

When picking a VPN provider, think about the encryption and protocols they use, the features they offer, the server count, speed, and quality, their policies, and their track record13. Top paid VPN apps for iPhone include NordVPN, SurfShark, and ExpressVPN14. For free options, check out PrivadoVPN Free, ProtonVPN Free, and Windscribe Free14.

manual VPN setup on iPhone

To set up a VPN on your iPhone manually, head to the Settings app, then General, and finally VPN, and tap “Add VPN Configuration.”14 After filling in the details, turn on the VPN by sliding the switch in the Settings menu from left to right14. But remember, setting up a VPN without help from a system admin might not be possible14.

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Connecting to and Using the VPN

After setting up the VPN on your iPhone, it’s time to start using it. To activate the VPN, go to the Settings app, select General, then VPN, and turn the VPN switch to “On”15. This creates a secure connection, keeping your online activity and personal info safe.

Using a VPN on your iPhone has many benefits. It makes your connection safe on public Wi-Fi by encrypting your traffic and hiding your IP address15. It also helps you get past network restrictions at work or school, letting you access blocked websites15. Plus, it lets you avoid censorship by changing your location, so you can access content from your home country while abroad15.

One big plus of using a VPN is avoiding ISP throttling. This is when internet providers slow down certain activities, like streaming15. A VPN can also help you beat price discrimination, letting you change locations to find better deals online and save money15.

When you’re done using the VPN, turn it off to save your iPhone’s battery and data15. This way, you only use the VPN when you really need it, keeping your device running smoothly.

If you want more control over your VPN, you can set it up manually on your iOS device15. This lets you pick specific VPN protocols, like IKEv2, supported by many iPhones15. Apple’s Private Relay is another option for iCloud+ subscribers, designed to protect your online data but works differently from traditional VPNs16.

Whether you use a pre-installed VPN app or set it up manually, the main thing is to use this tool to boost your online security and privacy with your iPhone17.

Changing VPN Server Locations

iPhone users can easily switch their VPN server locations to access different content worldwide. Many VPN providers offer a wide range of servers. This lets us get past geographical restrictions and boost our online security and privacy18.

To change your VPN server on your iPhone, just open the VPN app. You’ll see a list of available server locations. Pick the server in the country or region you want, and your connection will switch to that location19.

Switching your iPhone’s virtual location has many benefits. It helps keep your true IP address private18. It also lets you access content and services blocked in your area19. Plus, you might save money on online purchases because prices vary by location19.

But, changing your VPN server location can sometimes cause issues. Some apps or services might not work right if they use your device’s GPS location18. Also, changing your Apple ID region can make it hard to update apps and manage your purchases and subscriptions18.

Change IP AddressYesYesYes
Unblock WebsitesYesYesYes
Privacy and SecurityHighModerateHigh
Encrypt Internet TrafficYesNoYes
Bypass Geo-BlocksYesYesYes
Prevent Third-Party TrackingYesPartialYes
Stop Internet ThrottlingYesPartialNo
Avoid Connection DropsYesPartialNo

There are many ways to change your VPN server location on your iPhone. You could use a VPN service like VeePN, which has servers in 89 locations worldwide20. Or, you could switch your Apple Store region to get around app restrictions. You could even use apps like iTools or iMyFone to temporarily change your GPS location19.

Whatever method you pick, think about the possible effects. Consider how it might affect your device’s GPS or managing your Apple ID region. By understanding these things, you can make smart choices. This way, you can enjoy different content and services safely and privately on your iPhone1819.

Troubleshooting Common VPN Issues

If you’re having trouble with your VPN on your iPhone, like slow speeds or disconnections, there are steps you can take. First, check your internet connection to make sure it’s stable21. Then, try reconnecting to the VPN or switching to a different server21.

iPhone users often face compatibility issues with older iOS devices21. If you have an iPhone 7 or older, your VPN app might not work with the latest iOS updates. In this case, using a third-party VPN client like OpenVPN Connect can help21.

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Resolving Connection Problems

To fix VPN connection issues on your iPhone, start by checking your account and network settings21. Ensure your VPN subscription is active and your network is set up right. If problems continue, try restarting your iPhone, updating the VPN app, and testing different servers21.

For more help, check for account issues, reset your Wi-Fi settings, and set the VPN’s DNS address manually21. Also, be aware that switching from Wi-Fi to cellular can sometimes cause VPN disconnections21.

To make sure your VPN works right, test for IP, DNS, and WebRTC leaks with third-party tools21. If leaks are found, fix them to keep your online privacy and security21.

When dealing with VPN issues, look at the provider’s FAQs and customer support21. Many VPNs offer money-back guarantees, letting you test them for free and check compatibility with your device21. By following these steps, you can quickly solve any VPN problems on your iPhone21.

VPN ProviderMonthly CostServer LocationsProtocolsFeatures
NordVPNWireGuardFast service
Surfshark$2.493,200+ in 100+ countriesWireGuardSplit-tunneling
Private Internet Access$2.03

As shown in the table, providers like PureVPN, NordVPN, Surfshark, and Private Internet Access offer good pricing and features for iPhones22. It’s smart to research and compare these options to find the best VPN for you22.

Remember to keep your VPN software updated and remove any conflicting VPN apps to avoid problems22. By following these tips, you can fix common VPN issues on your iPhone and enjoy secure, smooth internet21.

VPN problems are not rare and can happen on many devices and platforms23. Issues like unstable internet, outdated VPN clients, server overload, and conflicts with security software can cause VPN problems23. Knowing these causes and the steps to fix them can help you quickly solve VPN issues on your iPhone23.

If you keep having VPN problems, don’t hesitate to contact your VPN provider’s customer support for help21. They can give you specific advice to troubleshoot and fix VPN issues on your iPhone21.

Advanced VPN Features and Settings

Enhancing your online security and privacy on your iPhone is easy with advanced VPN features and settings. These tools protect your data and customize your VPN experience for your needs24.

Split tunneling lets you choose which traffic goes through the VPN and which stays on the regular internet. It’s great for accessing local resources without the VPN’s protection24.

Another feature is multihop, which sends your traffic through several VPN servers for extra security. It’s good if you’re worried about being watched or want a super secure connection24.

iPhone VPNs let you pick your server location, adjust privacy settings, and use special servers for streaming or torrenting24. These options help you customize your VPN for your needs and likes.

When picking a VPN for your iPhone, look at security, encryption, streaming, and money-back guarantees24. Providers like Private Internet Access (PIA) are great for iPhone users with their strong security and easy apps24.

It’s smart to keep your VPN on your iPhone for privacy and protection, even for everyday tasks24. With the right VPN and its features, you can have a secure online experience on your iPhone.

Apple’s iOS has built-in VPN settings for manual setup, but it’s harder than using a VPN app24. VPN apps are easier to use, set up, and offer more features than manual setup24.

Choosing between manual setup and a VPN app depends on your tech skills, security needs, and what you prefer24. By checking out different VPN providers’ features, you can find the best one for your online privacy and security on your iPhone242526.


Using a VPN on your iPhone is key to keeping your online life safe and private. It creates a secure link between your device and the internet. This way, your IP address stays hidden, your online actions are private, and your personal info is safe, even on public Wi-Fi27.

Setting up a VPN on your iPhone is worth the effort. It offers many benefits like privacy, getting past geo-blocks, safe downloads, and avoiding tracking and ads27. Trusted VPN services like ExpressVPN, NordVPN, and Surfshark give you a smooth experience. They are known for their strong security, fast speeds, and cool features like Meshnet and Multihop servers28.

Using a VPN on your iPhone adds an extra layer of safety and privacy. It helps you feel secure while doing online banking, streaming, or just browsing. By following a simple guide, you can keep your online activities safe and your data private, even on public Wi-Fi27.

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