How To Setup A VPN Without an App On Android (Updated for 2019)

Published by Sarah Barnes on December 14, 2018

While the easiest and best way to a put a VPN on your Android device is by downloading the app, Android has built-in settings that will make it easy to install a VPN without an app.

The basic VPN setup on Android is simple and can be done in a few easy steps. However, not every VPN can be installed without an app, and those that do have some limitations. ExpressVPN , for example, only allows for L2TP protocol without the app. You’d have to download the app to benefit from all the features.

How to Setup a VPN in the Android Settings

Setting up and activating a VPN in the Android settings is relatively straightforward. There is some information that you will need to get, such as username, password, and server address from either the VPN provider or, if you are using a private VPN, from your network administrator.

You’ll also need to know which protocol you want to choose.

Once you have this information, all you have to do is:

  • Go to the “Settings” application
  • On the next screen, tap the “More…” buttonSetting Up a VPN on Android Without App Step 1
  • Click on the “VPN” optionSetting Up a VPN on Android Without App Step 2
  • Click on the + Button
  • Insert the information from your VPN provider (We have complete instructions for ExpressVPN, CyberGhost and PrivateVPN below) Setting Up a VPN on Android Without App Step 4
  • Choose your protocol of choice
  • Tap on “Save”

 

Read on to find out more about the top 3 VPNs to use on an Android device as well as, how to set up a VPN on your Android device and why you should use one.

Top 3 VPN Services for Android Devices Without Needing to Download an App

It’s important you choose the best VPN to keep your data safe. Here are the top 3 VPN services available for Android:

1 ExpressVPN


ExpressVPN

Key features:

  • More than 2,000 servers worldwide
  • 256-bit encryption
  • DNS/IPv6 leak protection
  • An automatic kill switch
  • 30-day money-back guarantee

How to Install ExpressVPN without an App on Android

You need an account with ExpressVPN in order to proceed. If you have done so already go to ExpressVPN and create an account. Once you have a subscription to one of their plans you can proceed with step 1.

  1. Login to to your account at ExpressVPN
  2. If you are already logged in click on My Account
  3. Click Set up on More Devices
  4. Click on Manual Config
  5. Choose PPTP & L2TP-IPsec
    (If you choose OpenVPN you will still have to download the OpenVPN app in order to run it, and then you may as well just download the full ExpressVPN app)   
  6. Copy and paste the username and password shown on the page to the appropriate fields on your app.
  7. Click on the region of the world that you want to connect with to open the server address. Copy and paste the address in the “Server Address” field on your phone
  8. For the IPsec pre-shared key – Input 12345678
  9. Click Save and connect

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2 CyberGhost VPN

CyberGhost VPN
Key features:

  • More than 2,852 servers worldwide
  • An automatic kill switch
  • A strict no logs policy
  • DNS and IP leak protection
  • 45-day money-back guarantee

How to Install CyberGhost without an App on Android

You will need a subscription to CyberGhost VPN  in order to connect to your Android

  1. Login to your CyberGhost account using the username and password you received when you created your account.
  2. Click on My Devices
  3. Click Add a New Device
  4. Click on Other
  5. Click Create new credentials
  6. Scroll back up and click on the same “other” box 
  7. Give your device a name and choose the options you want turned on or off
  8. Scroll down the page to see your login credentials. You’ll heave to click on the “Show” button to reveal your password 
  9. Now you can open up the VPN option on your Android phone using the instruction from above and plug in all the information.
    1. Name – Create a name that you will remember
    2. Choose L2TP IPsec PSK protocol
    3. Copy the Server address and into Server address field
    4. For IPsec pre-shared key input CyberGhost
    5. Put in the Username and Password shown (Note this is not the same as your CyberGhost account)
    6. Click Save and connect.

 

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3 PrivateVPN

PrivateVPN
Key features:

  • More than 100 servers in 56 countries
  • A zero data logging policy
  • 2048-bit AES encryption
  • IPv6 leak protection

PrivateVPN is a little bit easier to configure for an L2TP connection on Android because you can use your regular username and password.

  1.  Open the VPN settings by following the steps at the beginning of the article
  2. Name the connection PrivateVPN L2TP
  3. Choose L2TP/IPSec PSK for the connection type
  4. Choose from this Server List and paste the server you want in the Server Address
  5. For the IPsec pre-shared key writing in privatevpn
  6. Use the username and password you received when creating an account at PrivateVPN
  7. Click connect

PrivateVPN comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee, which will allow you to take them for a test drive before purchasing.

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The Top Reasons Why You Should Use a VPN on Your Android Device

The best VPNs encrypt your data from prying eyes and hackers. Not only this, they will allow you to bypass geo-restrictions so you can gain access to content wherever you are in the world.

If you connect to a public Wi-Fi hotspot in a café, hotel or airport, a hacker can view your online activity using sophisticated technology. Unfortunately, the only security protocol you can use when connecting without the app is L2TP which, to be honest, isn’t the best. But if you have no room on your phone for another app then this is the best you can do for now.

They can also create a fake network with a similar name to the one in your location. For example, they could call it “coffee shop internet” instead of “coffee shop Wi-Fi”. By connecting to the wrong one, you give them free rein to steal all the details you share online and on your device.

hacker vpn Thanks to new and improved mobile applications, the majority of us undertake tasks such as online banking on our phones. Unfortunately, many forget that intruders can also access personal information on your smartphone or tablet.

With the above in mind, it’s now more important than ever to protect yourself while using your mobile device. You can easily do that with one of the best VPN services. The VPNs listed above all have mobile applications that are easy to install and use while on the go.

 

Keep Your Android and Info Safe

Using a VPN without an app on your Android device will help you stay safe from prying eyes even when on the go. You’ll also be able to access all your favorite websites and social media platforms no matter where you are in the world.

Not sure which VPN to choose from our list? We recommend ExpressVPN . This VPN has various levels of encryption and is the best value for money. It also has the largest repertoire of servers in the industry.

While we believe ExpressVPN is the best service, you can try any of them. After all, every service comes with a risk-free trial or a money-back guarantee. Stay safe and enjoy your new VPN on your Android device!

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Sarah Barnes
Sarah is a security writer who believes that people are entitled to a high level of online privacy. She specializes in managing digital projects for small to medium businesses from various industries.