The alternative services to Google more attentive to privacy

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Steven L. Ken
@stevenlken
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News of Google's decision to pay for the Photo service has displaced everyone, despite the fact that the possibility of running out of the 15 Gb of space made available for free is a little remote. Everyone certainly thought of running for cover looking alternative services a Google Photo or will it accept the new conditions, but the question we will have to ask ourselves is, do we really want to pay for a service that already earns itself thanks to the personal data of users?



We know that the business model of companies like Google essentially revolves around the advertising revenue and to do so, it makes its numerous services available to users who, in order to use them, are willing to provide them with their information and habits.

All this information is condensed into an exact profiling of each individual user, from his habits to what he likes to do and buy. These data in the marketing is invaluable information because they allow you to sell better and more targeted ads, consequently higher revenue. Just to give a few numbers, Google grossed over $ 2019 billion in advertising revenue in 116 and it's a figure that continues to grow.

It is difficult to think of finding all the services offered by Google for free in a single platform, we are used to having everything at our fingertips. Google account. But in the name of privacy, many are trying to do without it, after all it's just a matter of habits.


So let's see what alternative services to Google we have found on the net.

Alternatives to the Google search engine

When it comes to privacy, using Google search isn't always a good idea. When you use their search engine, Google records your IP address, search terms, user agent and often a unique identifier, which is stored in cookies.



Alternatives to the Google search engine

  1. DuckDuckGo is a private search engine based in the United States, it does not store any user information and is one of the first alternative services to Google.
  2. Qwant is a private search engine based in France, it has no cookies and does not save the history.
  3. Searx is a versatile and privacy-friendly metasearch engine that is also open source.
  4. Mojeek is the only true search engine (rather than metasearch) that has its own crawler and index (based in the UK).
  5. Ecosia is based in Germany and donates a portion of its revenues to tree planting.

With the exception of Mojeek, all of the private search engines listed above are technically metasearch engines, as they get their results from other search engines, such as Bing and Google.



Alternatives to Gmail mail

Among the alternative services to Google, email is perhaps the one to pay the utmost attention to.

    1. ProtonMail offers free accounts up to 500MB
    2. Very safe and private Tutanota; free accounts up to 1 GB
    3. Posteo offers € 1 / month accounts with a 14-day refund
    4. FastMail  $ 3,00/mese – OpenSource
    5. Zoho Mail offers accounts from € 0,9 / month
    6. Mailfence offers a free account and several paid solutions from € 2 / month, € 7,5 / month and € 25 / month

Alternative al browser Google Chrome

Google Chrome has become a very popular browser, but according to many it is also a little privacy-conscious tool and many people are abandoning it. Let's see the alternative services to Google Chrome.


  1. Browser Firefox is a well-known open-source browser that is very customizable and attentive to privacy.
  2. Brave is a rather popular Chromium-based browser. Block trackers and ads by default (except "approved" ads that are part of the "Brave Ads" network).
  3. Chromium ungoogled is an open source version of Chromium that has been “ungoogled” and modified for more privacy.
  4. Iridium is based on open source Chromium and offers numerous privacy and security enhancements on Chrome, source code here.
  5. Browser Tor is a hardened and secure version of Firefox that works by default on the Tor network.

Of course, there are other Chrome alternatives, such as Safari, Microsoft Internet Explorer / Edge, Opera, and Vivaldi, but they have some privacy drawbacks.

Alternative a Google Drive

If you're looking for a secure cloud storage option, you can check out these Google Drive alternatives:

  1. Nextcloud is also an open source self-hosted file sharing and collaboration platform.
  2. Tresorit is a user-friendly cloud storage option.
  3. ownCloud is an open source and self-hosted cloud platform developed in Germany.
  4. Sync offers an encrypted and secure cloud storage solution for businesses and individuals.
  5. Syncthing is a decentralized, open source, peer-to-peer cloud storage platform.

Of course, Dropbox is another popular Google Drive alternative.

Alternatives to Google Docs, Sheets e Calendar

There are many alternative services to Google Docs available. There are obviously offline document editing suites such as, Microsoft Office, LibreOffice or OpenOffice, however, there are some other good online alternatives:

  1. Zoho Docs is a good Google Docs alternative with a clean interface and good functionality, although it may not be the best for privacy.
  2. CryptPad is a privacy-focused alternative with strong encryption and it's free.
  3. Etherpad is a self-hosted collaborative online editor that is also open source.
  4. Mailfence Documents is a secure tool for file sharing, archiving and collaboration.
  5. Cryptee is a privacy-focused open source platform for storing and editing photos and documents.

Here are some alternatives to Google Calendar:

  1. Lightning Calendar is an open source calendar option developed by Mozilla and is compatible with Thunderbird and Seamonkey.
  2. Etar, a great open source base calendar.
  3. Fruux, an open source calendar with good features and support for many operating systems.

Alternative to Google Photo

Here are some good alternatives to Google Photos:

  • Piwigo is a great service that you can host yourself. It is also free and open source.
  • Lychee is another self-hosted open source photo management platform.
  • Cryptee also offers a great service to securely store photos.

Alternative a YouTube

The popularity and number of video content on a service like YouTube is hard to match, but even then there are several viable alternatives.

  1. Peertube
  2. DTube
  3. Bitchute
  4. Vimeo
  5. Dailymotion

Alternative to Google Translate

Here are some alternatives to Google's translation service:

  1. DeepL is a solid alternative to Google Translate that appears to be performing well. Like Google Translate, DeepL allows you to post up to 5.000 characters at a time (but the pro version is unlimited). The user interface is good and there is also a built-in dictionary function.
  2. In addition to the classic online translator, Translate.com offers many translation services for companies, in the medical, technical and document fields.
  3. WordReference has become one of the most used online dictionaries. Within the site it is possible to subscribe to various forums, in which topics, expressions and translations from one's own language to the one of interest are discussed.
  4. Linguae doesn't allow you to publish large chunks of text like DeepL, however it does provide very accurate translations for individual words or phrases, along with examples of context.
  5. Dict.cc is an alternative to Google Translate and seems to do a decent job in all languages ​​even if the graphics are a bit outdated.

Alternative to Google Analytics

For website administrators, there are many reasons to use a Google Analytics alternative. There are faster and easier to use alternatives that respect your privacy and that of your users.

  1. Matomo (formerly Piwik) is an open source analytics platform that respects visitor privacy by anonymizing and truncating visitor IP addresses (if enabled by the website administrator). It is also certified for respecting user privacy.
  2. Fathom Analytics is an open source alternative to Google Analytics available on Github. It is fast, light and essential.
  3. Clicky is a great alternative to Google Analytics which truncates and anonymizes visitors' IP addresses by default. It is lightweight, easy to use and fully GDPR compliant, as well as being Privacy Shield certified.
  4. Get Insights is another privacy-focused analytics platform, with a comprehensive analytics suite. The front-end client is open source and available here.
  5. AT Internet is a French-based analytics provider that is fully GDPR compliant, with all data stored on French servers and a good track record dating back to 1996.

Alternatively a Google Maps

A great alternative to maps for web desktops is OpenStreetMap.

Some alternatives to Google Maps for mobile devices include:

  1. OsmAnd is a free and open source mobile map app for Android and iOS (based on OpenStreetMap data).
  2. Maps (F Droid) uses OpenStreetMap data (offline).
  3. Me is another free option on both Android and iOS, but there is a fair amount of data collection with this alternative, as explained in their privacy policy.
  4. MapHub is also based on OpenStreeMap data and does not collect user locations or IP addresses.

Note: Waze is not an alternative as it is now owned by Google.

Alternatively al Google Play Store

Currently the best alternative to the Google Play Store is to use F-Droid and then go through it store Yalp. As explained on the official website, F-Droid is an installable catalog of FOSS (Free and Open Source Software) applications for the Android platform.

After installing F-Droid, you can then download the Yalp Store APK, which allows you to download apps from the Google Play Store directly as an APK file.

Other alternatives to the Google Play Store include:

  • Aptoide: an independent market for Android apps.
  • APKMirror: This is a huge library of APK files uploaded by different users
  • Aurora Store: A derivative of the Yalp Store.

I Google services do not end there, there are many others that we have not mentioned but that still have their valid alternative on the net, just look for them.

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