Update: as of August 2019, KeepSolid has updated its VPN Lite platform support to include Windows and macOS versions as well.
KeepSolid, the company that’s given us VPN Unlimited, has recently updated its light product, fittingly titled VPN Lite. While VPN Unlimited supports a good variety of common platforms (Windows, Linux, Mac OS, iOS, Android, and Apple TV), this new VPN solution was previously available on two mobile platforms: Android and iOS. We’ve run some tests and done our homework to uncover what VPN Lite for has for you.
Without further ado, let’s see if this light VPN is of any interest.
KeepSolid and privacy
Let’s start with the bad news. KeepSolid is based in New York, which obviously means the company is subject to all the troubling privacy implications of being US-based. Since the US is a Five Eyes (FVEY) country, it shares intelligence data with other member states. ISPs in the States can log online traffic and sell that information to third parties or the highest bidder. That’s pretty scary.
Both the policy and the customer support claim that “KeepSolid Inc. does NOT collect and log any user activities while using any of their VPN services, except the total amount of web traffic for each session and the session dates.”
However, further down in the policy, you find this: “Upon your use of a KeepSolid’s website and activation and/or use of a KeepSolid app, we collect certain personal data from you.” This data collection includes the IP address (oops!), device name, session dates, amount of web traffic, operating system, and so on.
Now, that certainly goes a long way to help identify you, especially in conjunction with other information.
“Caveat” is probably the first word that comes to mind when considering these marketing materials. Yet KeepSolid solidly keeps on claiming that VPN Lite is a zero-log service. It’s also important to know that, when required, this provider is ready to share any stored personal data with the authorities. The question that remains is, “What might they have on you?”
What “zero logs” might mean here
To clear the air, KeepSolid says that your activities are not logged, so no internet traffic can be linked back to you. That’s a relief for sure.
Zero logs, in this context, simply mean that while protected by VPN Lite nothing you do online will be recorded and stored.
Please remember that using this VPN service legitimately should mean no risk to you. KeepSolid appears to be a trustworthy provider with no previous scandals of data sharing. Still, you’d better select a VPN with a strict no logs policy and a higher level of anonymity if it’s a matter of life and death for you. VPN Lite is not about complete privacy – it’s more like an easy-to-use tool to access geo-blocked content.
VPN Lite features on Android and iOS
Before we dive into the features, the most important thing to know about VPN Lite is that it comes in two versions: Free and Turbo. The truth is, you can’t expect too much from the free VPN – this is certainly not a tool for investigative journalists or hardcore hackers. But, before you rush to install it, you may want to check out what VPN Lite can give you.
Both plans (Free and Turbo) come with the following advantages:
- No ads
- No registration
- Fast performance
- Intuitive, one-tap interface
- No logs policy
- 24/7 support
- Dark mode
In addition to the no-logs policy, an extra layer of anonymity is added because you don’t have to register with your email address.
However, there’s no anonymous payment option if you want to purchase the Turbo version. This could be an issue for more serious VPN users, who wouldn’t settle for VPN Lite anyway. On the other hand, if you’re just an average VPN user reading or streaming geo-blocked content, you may well be satisfied with this KeepSolid VPN solution.
Why use VPN Lite
No matter how light this VPN appears to be, you can still use it for some light-weight online activities that don’t necessarily require absolute security and privacy:
- Spoofing your IP address: wherever you are on the planet, you can virtually be located in San Francisco, CA (Free version) or any other one of 70+ locations (Turbo version). This can come in handy in a number of situations. For example, all the websites you visit, including Google search, will believe that you’re in the fake location. Thus, all content will be customized to match that region.
- Geo-unblocking: to browse or stream region-specific or censored content that may be blocked at your current location. However, don’t get your hopes up if you want to stream Netflix because it’s not possible with VPN Lite. With that said, you may get lucky with Comedy Central and other media centers. It’s also possible to stream HD or even 4K YouTube videos. Unlike your phone, the speeds we measured (see below) are also ideal for online gaming.
- Protecting your mobile device on unsecured public wifi hotspots: if you ever go to cafés, libraries, airports, or other public places with WiFi, chances are your device will automatically connect. This is rather risky because it gives the chance for cybercriminals to gain access to your device. With VPN Lite, you’re secure (or more secure, anyway) to use any free public WiFis.
VPN Lite Free
VPN Lite Free for Android and iOS only offers one server: US-California San Francisco. You may think that’s rather poor. Nevertheless, if you’re an expat living abroad or a foreigner trying to access US content, VPN Lite could be just enough.
VPN Lite Free sends your internet traffic through a tunnel encrypted with AES-128 encryption. While this isn’t the strongest around, it should provide you with enough security. Let us put it this way: it would take about 10 quadrillion years to go through half of the possible keys of the 128-bit encryption by a using brute force attack. Sounds safe enough? This free app also offers the OpenVPN protocol and 24/7 support.
Here’s another bit of good news for free users: there are no annoying third-party ads. That’s possibly one of the best things about this VPN solution apart from the “no registration” feature.
VPN Lite Turbo
Well, seeing how poor the free VPN version is when it comes to locations, the VPN Lite Turbo app may satisfy your needs. This paid version offers 400+ servers in 70+ locations. This already sounds much better. You can also choose whether to encrypt your VPN tunnel with AES-128 or AES-256.
However, let’s make something clear here. For the average user, there’s no real advantage in using the safer, AES-256 encryption algorithm. The truth is, it may need more processing power and may also be somewhat slower to use this encryption on a smaller device.
The Turbo version also claims to keep zero logs. You can select whether to use the OpenVPN or KeepSolid Wise protocols. The VPN Lite Turbo version offers a free 7-day trial. If you were to choose that option after launching the app, you’d have to choose your payment method.
Keep in mind that you can only pay for the VPN Lite Turbo app via the methods available in the respective stores. This also means that you’ll probably not find anonymous payment options, such as cryptocurrencies (e.g., Bitcoin). The primary options include Credit or Debit Card, Paypal, and Mobile phone billing.
If you have any questions, the 24/7 support is at your service. Don’t expect live chat assistance though. Your questions will be taken care of via email. The support team is quite fast and helpful.
The Turbo plan is relatively cheap. However, it’s important to consider what you get for the price, which is:
- Annual plan: $2.49 per month (billed $29.99 annually)
- Monthly plan: $4.99 per month (billed monthly)
How to download and install VPN Lite
Downloading and installing VPN Lite for Android, iOS, and macOS is quite straightforward. You can either choose the official website or directly download the app from the Google Play Store or the Apple Store.
Similarly, Windows users can now find it directly on the Microsoft Store.
Installing your VPN Lite app is as simple as one tap on the Install button in the store. In a few moments, you’re ready to run the app and protect your online activities.
After launching the VPN Lite app, you have three choices: Start free trial, Upgrade to Turbo, or Free only.
How to use VPN Lite
With the VPN Lite for Android and iOS Free app, online protection can’t get any simpler. Basically, all you need to do is run the app and tap the Start button at the bottom. In a few seconds, you’ll be connected to the one and only US-California server.
If you want to disconnect, just tap the Stop button. That’s all.
The main difference when using the VPN Lite for Android and iOS Turbo app is that you can select a location from a list of 70+ locations (400+ servers). So it may require one extra tap. It’s also possible to change from the OpenVPN protocol if you open the Menu (3-Bar button) and tap the Protocols option.
The connection times we experienced were pretty fast. How about speed?
Doesn’t matter how safe and versatile a VPN solution is if it can’t offer good speeds, right? Well, it seems that VPN Lite is just fast enough for whatever it’s good for. We’ve tested the VPN Lite for Android Free version (1 server) on a Samsung phone.
These were our baseline speeds right before the test:
And, this is what we measured while connected to the US-California server:
These are quite impressive speeds. You shouldn’t have any issues with streaming HD or even 4K YouTube or other media center videos. Online gaming also shouldn’t be a problem.
All in all, VPN Lite for Android and iOS is a neat app that you can use for free. If you’re not looking for something super advanced, you may be totally fine with this VPN service.
You can learn more or get VPN Lite from their website.
However, if you want a higher level of anonymity and versatility, you should check out what we consider the best VPN services.
If you feel safe with KeepSolid but want a more decent VPN app, find out what VPN Unlimited has to offer you.
Ethan is a security researcher and digital privacy advocate. He spends his time unraveling various anonymity and security tools, plus contributing to open-source projects. Otherwise, he keeps a low profile by hiking or cycling around the countryside.