Cloudflare launches its free security-focused mobile VPN called WARP for all users
Previously launched to a limited group of users starting back in April, Cloud provider Cloudflare officially announced the public availability of its security and speed-focused mobile VPN called WARP. The VPN is available to everyone who downloads and installs the Cloudflare's 18.104.22.168: Faster & Safer Internet application for Android and iOS.
A VPN (Virtual Private Network) is essentially an encrypted channel for all of your web traffic. That keeps your online activity private, assuming you trust the VPN provider. The new 22.214.171.124/WARP secures and optimizes all of your traffic and has no traffic restrictions. When you enable WARP in the app it will install a VPN profile on your device and you can then connect/disconnect the service as required.
When you stop the VPN you are given the option to pause it for 15 minutes, pause it for one hour, or stop it until you manually enable it once more. The pause for this Wi-Fi option requires that you give the app location permissions. On Android, you get a notification that informs you when you are connected and controls to stop the connection from the notification area.
WARP is built into the 126.96.36.199 app and comes in free and paid tiers. The free one is truly free and unlimited, but it is not as fast as the paid WARP+ service. The paid option (WARP+) promises a 30 percent improvement in performance when loading sites. The cost of WARP+ varies by region, but it is $4.99/mo in the US. You can also get up to 1GB of free WARP+ traffic a month by referring friends to the service (100MB per friend).
The 188.8.131.52 application installs a VPN profile on the user's device when the option is selected. Cloudflare promises that it collects "as little data as possible" and that it will not "sell, rent, share or otherwise disclose" personal information.
The app displays the terms on first start; these reveal what Cloudflare collects and what it does with the data. Data may include the app installation id, the amount of data transferred through Cloudflare's network, and the average speed.
The registration ID is a unique random number that is assigned to each profile. Cloudflare notes that it is used for the referral system. The basic version of Warp is free and it has no traffic restrictions. WARP+ is an add-on service that improves the performance of connections made on the device by "avoiding traffic jams" and picking the fastest routes.
The app has just a few settings. You may switch from using 184.108.40.206 with WARP to just 220.127.116.11 there, enable the dark theme, and open the connection options to disable the app for select applications.
The biggest downside with Warp is you cannot choose the servers/locations you get routed through, so that might be an annoyance if you need to pretend to be browsing from another country in order to get around geographic blocks.
Some applications may not work correctly when you are connected to the VPN and this may be the case for applications that restrict content regionally. Use the whitelist to exclude these to continue using them.
WARP was supposed to launch earlier this summer, but the waitlist just kept growing. Apparently, it took longer than expected to build the desired functionality without slowing down devices or wasting battery. Now that it is done, Cloudflare says its WARP service is better than other VPNs, but of course, it would say that. You can try it and come to your own conclusion, though. To make up for the delay, those on the waiting list get 10GB of free traffic on the faster WARP+ tier.