When Google unveiled its latest hardware at its event back in early October, one of the features that was promised as an exclusive to the new Pixel 7 and 7 Pro phones was free access to Google’s already-popular Google One VPN. The Google One VPN is already available to those who use Google Fi or pay for the 2TB tier of Google One storage, so when Android fans heard that they could get it free of charge when purchasing a Pixel 7 series, it made the investment look even more attractive. However, this feature didn’t actually ship along with the phone’s launch; instead, we were advised we would have to wait until December to get it.
Though originally it was thought that we would have to wait until the December Pixel Feature Drop for free access to Google One VPN, recent news from 9to5Google indicates that it is arriving to some users ahead of time. Several users, including the 9to5 staff, are reporting that when opening the Google One app, a splash screen comes up announcing that their Pixel device comes with the “VPN by Google One” option. This same announcement is available when checking the “Benefits” section of the app.
As a 2TB Google One subscriber, I am able to see the option under the “Benefits” tab, but I am not seeing the splash screen announcing that this benefit is due to my owning a Pixel 7 device just yet. It is unclear if this is because the feature hasn’t rolled out to me yet, or if it will skip me since I already have it due to my Google One storage tier. I am hoping that this won’t be a cause for confusion for Google One subscribers that also own a Pixel 7 or 7 Pro if that is in fact the case.
Either way, it is good to see that this is finally rolling out, and hopefully it won’t take long to reach all eligible accounts. Google has also been expanding its VPN by making it available on desktop operating systems such as Windows and macOS, as well as making it available internationally to more countries. Though this VPN solution won’t let you get away with streaming content that is only available in certain locations, it will provide some safety on public Wi-Fi and other unprotected networks, concealing your traffic and IP address and minimizing the possibility of being tracked while browsing the internet.