Pixel 7 owners can turn on a free Google feature to protect against hackers — here's how

Pixel 7 Pro with VPN by Google One
(Image credit: Future)

Google Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro owners can now access VPN by Google One for free, allowing users to reduce online tracking, stay protected from hackers on unsecure Wi-Fi networks, and surf the web with a private connection.

As promised, the major Google feature landed on its latest Android flagships in December. Users now have access to the VPN "at no extra cost," meaning they won't need a Google One subscription in order to use the VPN. Simply switch it on and Pixel 7 owners can hide their IP address and stay anonymous online. 

How to turn on VPN by Google One on Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro

Like all VPNs, the VPN by Google One will protect your online data by sending data through an encrypted tunnel. It will hide your IP address so no prying eyes can track your location. It may not have the selection of features like many of the best VPNs have, but free protection while browsing the web is always welcome.

You can check out the list of countries it's available here. It's important to note that Google claims most apps will work when the VPN is turned on, but not all. However, you can update settings to allow apps to ignore the VPN when it's switched on.

To turn on the free VPN, check out the step-by-step guide below. 

(Image credit: Future)

1. On your Pixel 7 or Pixel 7 Pro, head into the Google One app.
2. On the list of tabs at the bottom, tap Benefits.
3. A pop-up message will appear stating "Your Pixel comes with VPN by Google One." Press OK.
4. On the VPN by Google One menu, toggle the switch to start using the VPN. A key icon will appear to let you know it's on.
5. To access the VPN setting again, navigate to the Home tab, scroll down to see the VPN settings block, and tap on it.

There you have it. Users don't need to have a Google One subscription in order to use the VPN. What's more, Pixel owners can add the VPN to Quick Settings to quickly turn it on or off in settings.

There are plenty of reasons why you should use a VPN, although VPN by Google One doesn't have the list of features the best VPNs do. Google is set to deliver Pixel owners more features thanks to its frequent Pixel Feature Drop, with Clear Calling expected to arrive soon.

For more nifty Google features, check out how to find the name of any song using your Pixel and even see if you snore or not

Darragh Murphy

Darragh Murphy is fascinated by all things bizarre, which usually leads to assorted coverage varying from washing machines designed for AirPods to the mischievous world of cyberattacks. Whether it's connecting Scar from The Lion King to two-factor authentication or turning his love for gadgets into a fabricated rap battle from 8 Mile, he believes there’s always a quirky spin to be made. With a Master’s degree in Magazine Journalism from The University of Sheffield, along with short stints at Kerrang! and Exposed Magazine, Darragh started his career writing about the tech industry at Time Out Dubai and ShortList Dubai, covering everything from the latest iPhone models and Huawei laptops to massive Esports events in the Middle East. Now, he can be found proudly diving into gaming, gadgets, and letting readers know the joys of docking stations for Laptop Mag.