How to set up and use ExpressVPN on Android 5.0 and above

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This tutorial will show you how to download, set up, and use your VPN app for Android.

Note: This tutorial is for ExpressVPN for Android Version 7.0, which is compatible with Android 5.0 and up: Lollipop (5.x), Marshmallow (6.x), Nougat (7.x), Oreo (8.x), and Pie (9.x).

Using Android 4.0 or lower, or prefer manual setupSee the instructions for manual setup on Android.

Not yet a customer? Read more about VPN for Android.

 

Jump to section

Sign in to your account
Download the VPN app
Set up the VPN app
Connect to a VPN server location
Disconnect from a VPN server location
Choose a different server location
How to add shortcuts to the ExpressVPN app
How to switch VPN protocols
Trouble connecting? Try this

 


Sign in to your account

To begin, open a web browser on your device and sign in to your ExpressVPN account.

To sign in, enter the email address and password you used to sign up for ExpressVPN, then tap Sign In.

ExpressVPN Sign in page with Sign In button highlighted.

After signing in, tap on Set Up ExpressVPN.

ExpressVPN setup page with Set Up ExpressVPN button highlighted.

You will be taken to the downloads page to download your app.

Need help? Contact the ExpressVPN Support Team for immediate assistance.

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Download the VPN app

Navigate to the Android section, then download the app by doing one of the following:

  • If you can access Google Play, tap GET IT ON Google Play to download the app.
  • If you cannot access Google Play, tap Download APK to download the APK directly to your Android device. (ExpressVPN does not recommend downloading our APK from third-party sources.) For more information about downloading APKs, see here.

ExpressVPN setup page with Google Play and Download APK buttons highlighted.

If you chose to download the app from the Google Play Store:

  1. Tap INSTALL on the Google Play Store page for ExpressVPN.Google Play Store screen with Install button highlighted.
  2. Tap ACCEPT, then wait while the app downloads.Play Store screen with Accept button highlighted.
  3. Tap OPEN after the app has been downloaded to your device.Play Store screen with Open button highlighted.

If you chose to download the ExpressVPN app for Android as an APK:

  1. Tap OK to allow the APK to download. Make sure you have allowed non-Play Store downloads to your device first.Android APK download warning with OK button highlighted.
  2. Wait for the APK to download.
  3. After the APK has finished downloading, tap OPEN.Android download message with Open button highlighted.
  4. After opening the APK, you will be asked to approve the installation. Tap INSTALL.Android installation screen with Install button highlighted.
  5. Wait for your app to finish installing, then tap OPEN to launch the app.Android installation screen showing app installed, with Open button highlighted.

Need help? Contact the ExpressVPN Support Team for immediate assistance.

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Set up the VPN app

After opening the ExpressVPN app for Android, tap Sign In.
ExpressVPN Sign-in screen with Sign In button highlighted.

Enter your ExpressVPN username and password, then tap Sign In.

ExpressVPN Sign-in screen showing username and password with Sign In button highlighted.

You can share crash reports and other anonymous analytics to improve ExpressVPN. Tap OK if you agree to share reports.

ExpressVPN diagnostics sharing request with OK button highlighted.

You will be invited to set up your VPN and approve connection requests by ExpressVPN. Tap OK and OK to continue.

ExpressVPN setup and connection request screens with OK buttons highlighted.

Need help? Contact the ExpressVPN Support Team for immediate assistance.

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Connect to a VPN server location

To connect to a VPN server location, tap the On Button. By default, ExpressVPN will suggest the location that provides the optimal experience for you, called Smart Location.

ExpressVPN home screen with On Button highlighted.

Once you see the Connected message on the app screen, you can begin surfing with freedom and security!

If you would like to learn more about VPN or read the latest news and tips from ExpressVPN, tap More news & tips.

ExpressVPN home screen showing VPN connected.

Note: A single ExpressVPN subscription can be used simultaneously on three devices, regardless of platform. If you try to use more than three devices simultaneously on one subscription, you will see this screen:

ExpressVPN screen showing connection limit reached.

Need help? Contact the ExpressVPN Support Team for immediate assistance.

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Disconnect from a VPN server location

To disconnect from the VPN server, tap the On Button while the VPN is connected.

ExpressVPN connected screen with On Button highlighted.

You will know you are disconnected when the “Tap to connect” message is shown.

Need help? Contact the ExpressVPN Support Team for immediate assistance.

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Choose a different VPN server location

To connect to a different server location, tap the ellipsis (…) to launch the Location Picker.

ExpressVPN home screen with three dots highlighted in the location bar.

You can change locations while connected to VPN, but you will get a warning stating your internet traffic may be unsecure during reconnection. This warning will reappear each time unless you check the Don’t show me again box.

The list of VPN locations initially features two tabs: RECOMMENDED and ALL LOCATIONS.

The RECOMMENDED tab shows you ExpressVPN’s top picks for you to connect to.

ExpressVPN Locations screen showing Recommended locations.

The ALL LOCATIONS tab lists the VPN server locations by region. You can expand and collapse the lists by tapping on the triangular arrowheads.

ExpressVPN Locations screen showing All Locations.

To add a location to your list of favorite locations, swipe to the right.

ExpressVPN Locations screen showing a finger sliding right to add a favorite location.

You can access your favorite locations by tapping the FAVORITES tab, which will now appear between the Recommended and All tabs.

To remove a location from your list of favorites, swipe it to the right.

The favorites tab of the ExpressVPN Android app.

Need help? Contact the ExpressVPN Support Team for immediate assistance.

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How to add shortcuts to the ExpressVPN app

The shortcuts feature appears on the ExpressVPN home screen after you connect to VPN. (It will not appear the first time you connect, but it will appear from your second connection onward.)

Shortcuts allow you to conveniently and quickly launch apps and websites straight from ExpressVPN anytime you are connected. If you find yourself regularly visiting a handful of favorite destinations after connecting to VPN—a particular streaming service or social network, for example—adding it as a shortcut saves you from having to switch back to your device’s home screen or browser to find it each time.

Shortcuts shown after connection.

To launch an app or website, tap its icon when connected to the VPN.

If you have fewer than five shortcuts selected, you can add one by tapping the gray plus icon.

You can also add or remove shortcuts by tapping the About menu (≡) in the top-left corner of the screen.

ExpressVPN home screen with About menu icon highlighted.

Tap on Shortcuts.

Tap on "shortcuts" in the ExpressVPN Android app menu.

Under INCLUDE, you can select up to five apps or websites you want to appear as shortcuts.

Select apps to include in the shortcuts menu.

You will be able to launch these apps or websites directly from the ExpressVPN home screen when connected to VPN.

To remove an app or website from the shortcuts list, tap the red remove (-) icon. If you have a slot available, you can add a shortcut to the list by tapping the green add (+) icon.

Remove apps from the ExpressVPN Android app shortcuts menu.

Need help? Contact the ExpressVPN Support Team for immediate assistance.

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How to switch VPN protocols

VPN protocols are the methods by which your device connects to a VPN server. Switching to a different protocol can help you achieve faster connection speeds.

To switch VPN protocols, tap the About menu (≡) in the top-left corner of the screen.

ExpressVPN home screen with About menu icon highlighted.

In the menu, tap Settings.

ExpressVPN About menu with Settings highlighted.

From the settings menu, under VPN Settings, tap VPN protocol.

Settings menu with VPN protocol highlighted.

Select your preferred protocol by tapping on it.

VPN Protocol menu.

Need help? Contact the ExpressVPN Support Team for immediate assistance.

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How to uninstall the VPN app from your device

To uninstall ExpressVPN from your Android device, tap and hold the ExpressVPN icon on the home screen, then drag it to the Uninstall icon.

Android home screen with Uninstall highlighted.

You will see an uninstall confirmation message. Tap OK to remove the app from your device.

Need help? Contact the ExpressVPN Support Team for immediate assistance.

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Trouble connecting? Try this

If you are having trouble connecting on Android Lollipop, please refer to this blog post for troubleshooting tips.

If you encounter the “TUN driver missing” error, please use this troubleshooting guide to fix it.

Need help? Contact the ExpressVPN Support Team for immediate assistance.

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