As a general rule, paid VPNs are usually the best quality, but a Free VPN It may also be the best option depending on our particular needs. By establishing a VPN connection we can obtain an extra layer of security when browsing dubious pages, connect to public Wi-Fi or avoid regional blocks of some online content. What are the best VPNs that we can currently use without spending a single penny out of our pocket?
4 factors to consider before you start using a free VPN
Like almost everything in life, offering a VPN service has a fairly high cost and associated maintenance expenses. In the case of VPNs, this requires having several servers in different countries, technical support, development and a long etcetera.
Therefore, before we start surfing with a free VPN - especially considering that we do it to have greater privacy - it is important that we take into account several things:
- What is your business model? As we say, maintaining a VPN service with servers scattered all over the planet is expensive. The money certainly has to come from somewhere, so if we are using a “free” service, where does all that money come from? Some companies offer a limited free plan for us to upgrade to their paid subscriptions, while others include ads or sell our personal data to recoup some of their investment and make a profit. The only thing we are clear about is that we do not want our data to be sold to external companies, so before starting to use a free VPN it is advisable to review what their business model is.
- Does the service keep the user's records or logs? Many VPNs claim that they do not keep any record of what the user does when connected, but it is always advisable to read the policies and terms of service to make sure that all our activity data is completely deleted once we close the connection.
- What are the disadvantages or trade-offs of the free plan? As we say, free VPNs usually have certain limitations. Some companies only allow a certain consumption of megabytes per month, while others reduce connection speeds during peak hours. First of all, we must assess whether these counterparts seem acceptable to us and are compatible with our needs.
- What information do you ask us to register and use the service? When signing up, some VPN providers ask us for certain information such as name, email or password, while others let us use their service without providing any prior information. If our goal is to browse anonymously and privately, the less data we have to give, the better.
In addition to this, if our main objective is to avoid regional blockades it is also recommended that we review how many different locations offers the service.
The best free VPNs of the moment
That said, let's see which are the most desirable free VPNs that we can find on the market today.
The big star feature of ProtonVPN is that there is no monthly data limit, so we can use it as long as we want. The consideration - as you can imagine - is that free users have less priority in terms of bandwidth during traffic peaks, so at certain times of the day we may notice certain speed drops.
Another positive point is that we can only sign up with an email address. Now, only one device can be connected simultaneously and the number of available locations is limited to 3. There is also no support for P2P, but on the positive side, it should be mentioned that ProtonVPN has a strict “no logs” policy. There are also no ads on the web or on any of its clients for PCs or mobile devices, which is not bad at all.
Access ProtonVPN Free
Windscribe is a fairly recent VPN service and has garnered a lot of attention thanks to its generous free plans. For zero euros per month we have access to 10GB of data per month, although they frequently publish offers of up to 20 gigs per month (or even 50GB as we discussed a while ago in this OTHER POST). There is even the possibility of earning more gigs by sharing tweets about the company and similar actions.
Windscribe does not keep connection logs, IPs or records of the pages we visit. While we are connected to a server, it retains our username, but once we disconnect from the session, all data is automatically deleted after 3 minutes. In terms of security, it uses a 256-bit AES encryption protocol and a 4,096-bit RSA key. One of the most recommended free VPNs of the moment.
3. Hotspot Shield VPN
Hotspot Shield is one of the few VPN companies that offers both paid and free service. One of its great advantages is that we can use it up to 5 devices simultaneously, and it also has a data limit much more generous than most, with a maximum consumption of 500MB per day (15GB / month).
The app is very easy to use and has more than 2,500 servers spread all over the planet (more than 70 locations available), although with the free plan we can only connect to a certain number of servers. There are also advertisements, but since they are not very annoying they are not a big problem.
Of course, an important detail to mention is that if we enter the Hotspot Shield page we will see that there is no “free plan” that we can choose from the outset. We must first sign up for the 7-day free trial period of the “Elite” subscription, cancel the subscription and from there continue with the free plan (which also implies having to provide a payment method). In any case, one of the most powerful free VPNs that we can find today.
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4. Turbo VPN
A Fast and unlimited VPN compatible with Android, Windows, iOS and MacOS and that offers up to 8 different locations within its free plan: Netherlands, United Kingdom, USA (New York), USA (San Francisco), Canada, Germany, India and Singapore.
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The great advantage of using Hide.me is that it does not save logs of any kind and even the free version is free of ads. The company currently offers 10GB of data per month with the free plan, although the number of servers is restricted to 5 different locations.
Therefore, if we want to connect to servers in very specific countries, we may not be able to go very far with Hide.me. Now, we are facing a highly recommended alternative to add that extra layer of protection when we browse the Internet or are connected to the library's Wi-Fi, the airport and the like.
Speedify has several factors in its favor. With the free plan we get access to one of the fastest VPN services at the moment, with a lot of servers available (more than 70). The same thing that the premium subscribers of the platform get.
On the other hand, data consumption is limited to 5GB the first month. From there the limit is lowered even more until we are left with a maximum of 2GB of data per month. An excellent VPN if what we are looking for is speed and speed above all else.
SurfEasy is developed by the same team behind the Opera browser. It is for this reason that we can find it integrated into the browser itself, although they also have an independent app that we can use for other things than just browsing the Internet.
Yes OK the data consumption of the VPN is unlimited If we use it through the Opera browser, when we switch to the app version of SurfEasy this limit is set at 500MB per month. You can see more details about the operation of Opera's integrated VPN in this ANOTHER POST.
8. Cloudflare WARP
The first thing to clarify regarding WARP is that it is not designed to hide our IP. Rather than a tool to facilitate access to content with regional blocking, WARP presents itself as “a VPN for people who don't know what a VPN means” (this is literally its slogan) and its goal is shield our privacy and security when connecting to the Internet. That is, it does not allow you to choose any location or server if that is what we are looking for.
The application is completely free and unlimited, although there is also a payment service called WARP + that offers more speed and greater data encryption for 3.99 euros per month. We can download the application for Android from the Play Store, or configure Cloudflare's free DNS if we are using a PC (installation guide).
TunnelBear is one of the highest quality and “user friendly” VPN services that we can find. However, although it has free and premium plans, with the free plan we will only have access to 500MB of data per month. It is a fairly limited figure, although the number of available locations amounts to more than 20.
The connection is very stable and over time the company has been reducing the requirements to be able to register, in such a way that now they do not even ask us for the name to start using the application. A very limited service in terms of traffic volume, but it can be great if we only need it for specific occasions, while we are traveling or similar.
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