In this tutorial, you will learn how to install the Surfshark VPN app for Android.
You will learn how to:
- Install your Surfshark app
- Log into the Surfshark app
- Connect to a VPN
- Choose and manage locations
- Manage Surfshark features
- Manage Surfshark settings
- Make sure your connection was successful
For that, you need an Android device running OS 5.0 or later and an active Surfshark subscription, which you can purchase on our pricing page.
Install the Surfshark app
Begin by finding the Play Store app on your device and opening it.
Type Surfshark into the search bar and choose the first result that appears on the list.
The Surfshark VPN app page will open. Click Download or Install, and the installation will complete in a few moments.
Log into the app
Once the installation is complete, open the app straight away, or go back to the home screen of your phone.
You will find the Surfshark VPN app there. Open it.
If you have purchased your Surfshark VPN subscription already, Log in as an existing user.
If you do not have the subscription yet, feel free to sign up!
Enter the email address you used when registering and your password.
Click Log in.
Connect to a VPN
As soon as you log in, you will see the home page of your Surfshark app. It shows the VPN connection status.
All you need to do now is to connect to Surfshark servers. Click the blue Connect button, and your app will connect to the fastest server available.
You can set your default VPN connection to be to the fastest server or to the nearest country. In order to do that, click the button as in the picture below.
Choose the Fastest server or the Nearest country.
Once you click the connect button, you will be asked to allow Surfshark VPN to set up a VPN connection.
That is necessary for Surfshark to be able to create and manage the VPN tunnel.
When your app successfully connects to a VPN, you will see the connection status on the main screen.
Also, you may notice a Surfshark logo and an icon of a key at the top of your screen. That indicates you're still connected to the Surfshark VPN.
In order to disconnect from the VPN, click the Disconnect button.
Press the white arrow on the green status bar to see detailed information about your VPN connection.
Here you can see your new IP address, the amount of your securely transferred data, and an option to turn on the Kill Switch feature.
Choose and manage locations
So you'd like to connect to a specific location? No worries, Surfshark has over 3200 servers in 65+ countries, and you can connect to any of these.
Go to the Locations section on your Surfshark app and pick any location.
Tap on the flag icon of your preferred country, and the app will instantly connect to that location.
You can check location latency and traffic by tapping on the speedometer icon.
This will display the current latency for each location on the list. Lower latency means a more stable connection to that location.
The bubble icon next to the star indicates how loaded the Surfshark servers are in a specific location, in other words - how many people are connected to servers in that location.
The first bubble in this picture indicates that Surfshark servers in Germany at the moment are under a heavy load. The second bubble shows that servers in Japan are being used by fewer people.
You may have noticed Static IP and MultiHop tabs at the top of your Surfshark app.
Here’s what these do:
Static IP - you will get the same IP address each time you connect.
MultiHop - you will connect via two different VPN servers in different countries and add an extra layer of security.
If you want Surfshark to remember your favorite locations, press the star on the right side. Now this server will appear in the list of your Favourite servers.
Manage Surfshark features
Open the Features section in your Surfshark app. You will find 4 features there:
CleanWeb - it's a smart feature that blocks ads and malicious sites on the web. Learn more about it here.
Bypasser - it allows you to choose which apps or websites to exclude from connecting via VPN tunnel, and vice versa - which ones to route through it. Learn how to use it here.
Alert - sends real-time alerts when your emails & passwords are at risk of being hacked. Learn how to use it here.
Search - a browsing tool that allows you to perform web search queries in complete privacy with no ads, no logs, no history, and no trackers. Learn how to use it here.
Manage Surfshark settings
You can fine-tune your Surfshark app to your personal preferences. You can find all the necessary settings that allow you to customize and troubleshoot your VPN connection.
Open the Settings page on the Surfshark app.
In the Application tab, you can see the version of your Surfshark app, change the app language, and turn the Dark mode on and off.
Go to the Connectivity tab to enable and set preferences of Auto-connect. You can choose on what networks Surfhsark should auto-connect to a VPN. Also, here you can turn the KillSwitch feature on and off. KillSwitch is a security-focused feature that will disconnect you from the internet if the VPN connection unexpectedly drops.
In the Reporting tab, you can decide if you wish to provide our developers with anonymous data about the technical performance of your Surfshark app and help them improve it more effectively.
The Advanced settings tab is the place where you can troubleshoot and adjust the performance of Surfshark VPN. Here you can find:
Data encryption - determine if you wish to use heavier or lighter encryption to protect your data. Lighter encryption (ChaCha20Poly1305) should result in a better speed.
Protocol - choose what protocol you would like to use to connect to the VPN. Learn more about what is a protocol and how protocols differ.
NoBorders mode - it helps to bypass internet restrictions in countries with heavy censorships in place.
Override GPS location - a feature unique to Surfshark allowing you to match your GPS location to the location of your VPN connection. Read more about it here.
Invisible to devices - turn it on if you wish your device to be invisible to other devices on the same network.
Use small packets - turn it on and your data will be transferred in smaller chunks. That might result in better connection speed.
The Earn free months tab enables you to get free months of Surfshark by recommending it to your friends or any people you know. Open it to get a unique link to share or learn about the rewards. Learn more about how to join the Surfshark referral program.
Switch to the ACCOUNT tab.
Here you will find your subscription details, an option to change the password and TV login that will help you to conveniently log in to the Surfshark app on your TV.
The last tab is for HELP.
Make sure your connection was successful
It's always recommended to check whether your connection was successful after setting up a VPN for the first time. This can be easily done by doing an IP leak test and a DNS leak test which is available on our website. Click here to find out how to make sure your connection was successful.
That’s all you can currently find on our Android app and everything you need to customize it according to your needs. Enjoy everything good the internet has to offer in privacy!
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