The task is very difficult, but as it turns out, real.
Journalist Nitin Coca recently published an article on Medium about how to completely abandon Google products. To avoid the omnipresent Corporation that bend under several niches in the digital market, it is very difficult.
Why would anyone opt out of Google
Coca does not consider himself googleanalytics, he agreed that since the end of 90s years, the Corporation has brought many benefits. However, over time, Google has changed a lot.
Like many, I fell victim to the slow expansion of Google. Search queries led me to the tools for email, documents, web Analytics, photos, and dozens of other services built on top of one another and connected together. Google has evolved from a Creator of healthy products in company that uses us and the entire Internet, as an apparatus for the production of money and data collection. Google enters digital human life deeper than any other Corporation.
He also explained what Google is worse than other tech giants.
To stop using the products of other companies is relatively simple. With Apple, you either are i-life or not. The same applies to Amazon, and even Facebook belongs to only a few platforms to go one harder psychologically than technically.
What services to use instead of Google?
After the scandal with the program for surveillance of users under the name Prism, many developers began to produce analogues of the Google products. Unfortunately, to find enough high-quality replacement, you have to work hard — have a Coke it took six months, but found some services work better than my Google.
• Search — DuckDuckGo and Startpage
Both search engines do not collect data about the user and produce quality results.
• Browser — Mozilla Firefox
A great browser from the nonprofit organization that cares about user privacy.
• Video — Jitsi Meet
Except for Jitsi Meet Coca also recommends that Zoom, if you are willing to pay a monthly fee.
• Maps — Here WeGo for PC and Maps.me for mobile devices.
For that I had to pay
Google provides many free services, but instead processes data for the user. Unfortunately, in the case of email and calendar so behave all the tech giants, so just change Gmail to Outlook Coca agreed. The only acceptable option in this case — high-quality, but paid service.
Look at the problem from this point of view: there was a time when you sent letters and paid for the stamps. Also had to buy a diary in the store. To use the app for mail and calendar, which protects confidential data, you need to pay. It’s not so bad.
• Email — ProtonMail
Convenient when using the mail service from former CERN scientists from Switzerland. There is a free version with limited drawer 500 MB, but coke is paying for the storage to 5 GB, and VPN services.
The author also noted an alternative: Fastmail, Hushmail and Tutanota.
• Calendar — Fastmail Calendar
Adequate calendar was not easy to find, as competition from Google and Microsoft discourages many developers.
Technically difficult replacement
• Google Docs, Drive, Photos, and contacts — NextCloud.
NextCloud the kit includes everything you need to work with digital documents. Coca also praises him for a good interface.
The catch is that you need to deploy your own implementation with NextCloud and to obtain a safety certificate. According to the author, it’s more complicated than just create a free account in Google Docs and open, but not “too hard”.
Among the alternatives are also mentioned OwnCloud, Openstack, Dropbox and Box.
• Analytics — Matomo (also known as Piwic)
This service is not so rich in functions like Google Analytics, but it is possible to understand the situation with the traffic on the website.
• Mobile platform — LineageOS + F-Droid App Store
The mobile market was an oligopoly, and avoid Google or Apple is difficult. Coca stopped in Lineage OS, it’s implementation of Android, which you can install without the apps and Google services.
Among the possible alternatives there are also PureOS and UbuntuTouch.
Nitin Coca does not regret that has passed this difficult path.
[After transition to other services] feel liberated. Dependence on one company for such a large number of products is a form of service, especially when you have to pay your own data. However, more than half of the alternatives work better. It’s also nice to feel comfort from the fact that you own your information.