Microsoft recently launched a new app called Hotspot Shield VPN for Windows 10 Mobile and PC. The app’s description reads:
“Use any device, anywhere. Always. VPN for Mobile & PC connects to a powerful encrypted VPN server to protect your privacy while browsing, making calls, or sending texts.”
Even though the description leaves something to be desired, it’s pretty clear what the app does. You can use it to browse the web privately, make calls without being traced, and send texts without the other person knowing you’re sharing a connection with them.
Once you download and install the app, you’ll see a small VPN icon appear at the top right corner of your PC’s screen when connected to a Wi-Fi network. Similarly, when connected to a mobile network, you’ll see a VPN icon appear at the top of your phone’s screen.
If you click on the icon, you’ll be presented with the app’s main screen. From here, you can toggle VPN settings, disconnect from the network, or make a connection profile. A quick tutorial on creating a connection profile will follow.
Creating A Connection Profile
The first thing you’ll need to do is to set up your PC or mobile device to connect to VPN. You can do this by following the steps outlined on the device manufacturer’s website. For example, if you’re using a MacBook with MacOS, you can use the built-in VPN features or download and install a third-party app like Hotspot Shield or ExpressVPN.
After you set up your device, you’ll need to create a connection profile. To do this, launch the VPN app and click on the cog icon at the top right corner of the main screen. Select Create New Account.
A login screen will appear. Use your email address and password to log in. Once you’re logged in, click on the Create Profile button.
The next screen will ask you to select the type of VPN connection you have. If you have a paid account with Hotspot Shield, you can select Connected, which will automatically connect you to a VPN server whenever you use the app. Or, you can select Disabled, in which case you’ll need to manually connect to the VPN server whenever you use the app. Your selection will determine which option you see when you click on the VPN icon at the top of your screen. If you have a paid account with ExpressVPN, you can choose between an app-based VPN connection or a hardware-based VPN connection. The ExpressVPN app is available for download from the Apple App Store and Google Play.
On the next screen, you’ll be required to enter the details of your VPN account, including the server address and login credentials. You can also optionally add a tip to your account. A VPN server will validate your account once you log in.
Now that you have a VPN connection established on your PC or mobile device, you can make calls using the internet. You’ll need to download a program called a “PIA gateway”, which is available for free from the Google Play Store. You can also use Skype, WhatsApp, or any other similar apps to make calls through the VPN.
While calls are in progress, a small phone icon will appear at the top right corner of your screen. This is your VPN connection’s icon and it will only appear when you’re actually connected to a network. To disconnect from the call, simply press the End key on your keyboard or close the app that you’re using to make the call.
Browsing The Web Privately
If you have a paid account with Hotspot Shield, you can use your device in private mode. Private mode will prevent your IP address from being recorded, so websites you visit will be loaded and displayed without the other person knowing you’re using a VPN.
To enter private mode on your device, enter the Settings app and click on the Network icon. From here, you can change the default DNS servers to OpenDNS, which is a popular and free service that provides a more private experience while browsing. You can also use a VPN app to connect to a server that’s based in the UK, which will also make you more anonymous while browsing the web.
Managing Your Bill
Your Hotspot Shield VPN account will be credited for each connected device. You can track your account’s activity on the My Account page of the website. From here, you can download a PDF report that outlines your charges for the current billing period. You can also change your password, which will log you in automatically the next time you use the app.
Hotspot Shield VPN is a simple, easy-to-use VPN app for Windows 10. It has a minimalistic design but provides a solid and reliable VPN service. If you use VPN on a regular basis, consider paying for the app’s premium account, which provides you with additional features and more connection options. And, if you’re looking for a free VPN option for Windows 10, check out Windscribe, which is another popular choice among users.