Best Mac VPN 2021
If you own a Mac, you might think that you don’t need to pay attention to security products, wrong! It’s always nice to have extra protection, and VPNs provide total encryption making sure that your internet service provider or any other third party is not able to track your online activity or gain access to your personal information. VPN stands for virtual personal network, and by running one you can set your location as anywhere in the world, encrypt your data and protect your online identity from cyber criminals. In this review, we will address price, user experience, security and features so that you can find the right Mac VPN for your needs!
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What is a Mac VPN?
A Mac VPN is a virtual private network that is compatible with a Mac and the MacOS. VPNs are virtual private networks that work to keep you and your information safe and secure from any third parties. By running a VPN, you’re taking an extra step to make sure that your data is encrypted, and your location is hidden from snoopy cybercriminals, third parties or governments. VPNs aren’t only about security though – they’re also about access. A good VPN will let you access blocked content and websites, and will allow you to access content that has been geo restricted, so that you can watch your favourite foreign soap opera right from the comfort of your own home.
How to choose the right Mac VPN?
First evaluate your needs. Do you need to watch foreign TV shows on Netflix? Or do you desire a more private online life? Or both? Does your government restrict access to websites? Once you understand what your needs are, it will be easy for you to sift through the VPNs that are optimized for Mac computers and iPhones and choose the one that best addresses those needs. Some things to remember when you’re evaluating your features is that you’ll want a Mac VPN that has a stellar iPhone app. Also, if you own the whole suite of Apple devices, you might want to ensure that the product you choose is able to handle multiple connections at once.
Top 5 Rated Best VPN for Mac
Best for Speed and Security
ExpressVPN is one of the best VPN services out there for Mac users. With over 2,000 servers in 160 locations this VPN service has been consistently celebrated by individuals and enterprises as one of the fastest VPNs. Macs run efficiently and have a lot of power, so the last thing you want is your VPN slowing you down, with this service, we’re confident that won’t happen. The app is intuitive and super user friendly – one click, and you’re connected.
When it comes to privacy the company says they don’t store any logs of user activity or information. It turns out they weren’t lying because after their equipment and information were seized by authorities, it was proven that, at the time, they really didn’t have any personally identifying data on their servers.
Apple users can really take advantage of some of the VPN’s more advanced features. For example, if your computer is connected to the internet via a hard wire, you’re able to make it a wireless hotpot and connect other devices via the VPN without them having to be set up on ExpressVPN.
- Kill switch
- Split tunnelling
- Accepts bitcoin as payment
- Zero-log policy
- Stable server
Express VPN also lets you connect up to 5 devices simultaneously, so all of your Apple products can run at the same time.
- 12 month subscription – $6.67/month
- 6 month subscription – $9.99/month
- 1 month subscription – $12.95/month
If you try it out and don’t like it, the company offers a 30-day money back guarantee!
Best for Security
NordVPN is known as THE security VPN. Through its own Double VPN technology, the company encrypts your data, not once, but twice! This means your information goes through two servers to make it very hard for third parties to access it. If you consider yourself someone who takes their security seriously, then this is the VPN you want on your Mac.
The company is even audited annually by PricewaterhouseCoopers, so you can rest assured that their zero logs policy is upheld. This means that they don’t store any of your personal identifiable data on their servers, so if you’re doing something like torrenting, this could be a good option for you.
Do you use your Mac for streaming your favourite shows? If so, then this is your ideal VPN. Restricted content on Netflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime and YouTube were all accessible with NordVPN, so no matter where you are you’ll be able to binge your favourite shows.
NordVPN’s iPhone app is good, but many consumers have reported connection issues.
- Double encryption
- Security audits
- Fast Speeds
- 2 year subscription: $3.30/month
- 1 year subscription: $4.92/month
- 1 month subscription: $11.95/month
Like ExpressVPN, NordVPN offers a free 30-day money back guarantee.
Best for blocking ads
AirVPN is a powerhouse product for people who really understand what’s going on behind the curtain.
Calling all techies! This is the VPN for the technically savvy who wants to understand everything that’s going on under the hood. AirVPN provides detailed information about its protocols, ciphers and network – which makes it attractive to people who are concerned about privacy.
You only have to look at the VPN’s history to know that privacy is important to its creators. The company started in 2010 as a free project by “activists, hacktivists and hackers,” becoming an entity in 2012, according to their website.
Transparency drives many of the features associated with this app. The company makes a lot of information available to users that some of its competitors do not. For example, if you head over to the status page on the AirVPN’s website you’ll be able to see server locations per city, current load and the number of users on the server at any given time. This lets you make an informed decision about which server you’re going to connect to.
When it comes to user experience, it could use a little makeover, but we suspect the target audience doesn’t mind the look when they’re given so much extra, valuable information.
- Payments in cryptocurrencies
- Real time data
- 3 day trial – 2 euros
- 1 month – 7 euros
- Three months – 15 euros
- Six months – 29 euros
- 1 year – 49 euros
- 2 years – 79 euros
- 3 years – 99 euros
Best for Beginners
Its name is deceiving, because FastestVPN isn’t the fastest, but it just might be one of the simplest. While the app isn’t the fastest on this list, it has decent speeds and offers up a better bouquet of features for those who are just dipping their toes in VPN waters for the first time.
When you open the app on your Mac, all you must do is choose a country in the left panel and then click the big lightning bolt button, and ta-da! You’re connected. This app doesn’t force you to make a bunch of technical decisions you don’t know anything about, even the settings are simplified. For example, the only choice in settings is between the default VPN protocol IKEv2 or IPSec.
To maintain your privacy the company says it doesn’t log user activity and only stores your email address, it also says if you deactivate your account, the information they do have is removed from its database.
This app is accessible to anyone who wants to start doing more to protect their information online. Although it’s a great starter app, the Mac app has less features and is limited when compared to the Windows version.
- Kill switch
- Ease of use
- 1 year – $30
- 2 years – $40
- Month-to-month – $10
Best for Speed
Did somebody say Speedy Gonzalez?! Nope! We’re just talking about Hotspot Shield, this VPN has the right speed to match your Mac’s powerful processing power.
Some people don’t use VPNs because they are worried that the VPN will slow down their system so much that it will become cumbersome. Enter Hotspot Shield. Using their Catapult Hydra protocol, this VPN is so fast that it keeps up with the Mac’s processing power, so you are never delayed while it’s running.
Speaking of speed and no delays, the VPN also makes it easy to watch whatever you want, where you want. Hotspot Shield unblocks content on major streaming services like Netflix and Disney+ with very little issues.
The user experience with this platform is also a breeze. For beginners, this is a good first VPN to try out, all you have to do after signing up is download the Mac client and click the on button to turn it on, and off to turn it off! Pretty simple, right?
- Easy for beginners
- 3 year subscription – $2.49/month
- 1 year subscription – $7.99/month
- 1 month subscription – $9.99/month
The platform has a 45-day money back guarantee.
Our Rating Process
We looked at price, user experience, security and features to determine what the best VPN is for Mac and iOS devices is. When making the decision on which one is best for you, make sure you take time to understand your needs and wants, once you know that – the decision is easy!
It’s pretty obvious why people are concerned about price. You want to make sure the services you subscribe to make sense for your budget, and that you can continue to sustain the cost and get a good return on your investment.
Frequently Asked Questions
Macs are supposed to be safer when it comes to cybersecurity than Windows computers, but it doesn’t hurt to have a second layer of protection. VPNs help you ensure that your data is being encrypted and makes it that much harder for a third party to access your personal information. Security aside, a VPN will also allow you to access blocked or restricted content on your Mac.
ProtonVPN is the best free VPN on the market, this is because it offers unlimited data usage. Beware though, ProtonVPN’s free customers take a backseat to paid customers, so during peak usage times the VPN will slow down for anyone not on a paid plan. This is useful if you are connecting to a public wifi network, but if you’re using it for torrenting or streaming, you’re going to need a paid-for VPN.
VPNs hide your activity and IP address from your side of a connection, so it shouldn’t affect FaceTime or iMessage. VPNs also encrypt your internet traffic from your ISP and other users on the same wifi network. You can however rest assured because on the latest versions of iOS devices, iMessage and Facetime encrypt all end-to-end data by default.