In 1996, two Stanford students decided to develop a sort of computer algorithm for their thesis project.
That algorithm formed the basis of the search engine that we all call Google.
Of course, officially speaking, Google has actually transformed into Alphabet.
Alphabet, and not Google, is amongst the biggest international conglomerates that are listed on the New York Stock Exchange.
Since both the founding members of Google had PhDs, they knew how to make a ton of money via their search engine.
After earning a shipload of money, they reinvested that money both in the original product and towards developing some of the most effective and wide range of online apps and services.
We won’t fault users for thinking that, at least on the surface, the search engine that we know today as Google makes use of a youthful branding theme and a pretty young management team behind the company to present the world a project that seems friendly and relaxed as far as attitude is concerned.
However, this isn’t how Google operates as a company behind the scenes.
Away from the glitter of cameras and social media, Google operates like an extremely effective and brutal data mining enterprise.
And then it sells huge amounts of data on its users to people who are willing to pay a good price.
That’s not all.
Google is constantly investing higher and higher amounts of money in redefining the company’s discovery and indexing standard operating procedures.
In the process of doing so, it is also regularly ensuring that the search engine results which it displays are actually as relevant to the user’s search terms as possible.
There is no denying the fact that Google reserves the first three and sometimes four, top slots on its first search results page for sponsored content.
In other words, paid entries.
It gets more ugly.
Just keep reading.
Google’s pursuit of 100 percent relevance isn’t without its impurities.
This single aim has actually created practices such as retargeting.
What is retargeting?
Well, Google uses this technique to display advertisements for different products and apps that the user has previously visited, used and/or browsed in order to show the same user advertisements on subsequent pages that the user may visit.
Google, in its attempt to accurately allocate appropriate positions to relevant advertisements, tries to make double sure that it is able to track anything and everything about where a given user goes and what the user does on the wider world of the internet.
It may come as a surprise to some that Google doesn’t make its money from apps or other technology products.
The company makes money by selling ads.
In that sense, Google is an advertising company.
And a very good at that.
Google Ads has put tons and tons of US dollars into Google’s pockets.
It is also true that the vast income Google has derived from its ads business has helped the company to actually expand into several other industries.
Now the company offers an extremely wide range of apps and services.
Some of the services include,
- Mobile phones
- GPS systems
- Video delivery
And so much more.
Users who are just sick and tired of seeing Google anywhere and everywhere on the internet should know that even if they don’t use the Google search engine or even any other of the company’s online services such as YouTube and Gmail (which is pretty hard), they should still expect to see just a little bit of Alphabet/Google here and there embedded on various websites that the user may visit on the internet.
The thing about the internet is that whenever a web page tries to load in the user’s web browser such as Google Chrome, the browser shows the user a whole series of different activities and messages that flash right at the bottom of the user’s screen.
We are living in a world where hackers have gained the ability to destroy power plants and hack into presidential elections by using nothing but a laptop and an internet connection.
In the other words, the modern internet uses web pages which include references and code from a ton of different sources.
And that flashing that we just talked about, actually shows the user messages in order to bring attention to all of the additional work that the service and program in question has to perform whenever the user tries to load a web page.
In our estimation, any modern internet user would come across the company’s name (Google) popping up at least once (for the majority of times, twice) while the web browser tries to load a given web page.
The vast majority of the sites that exist on the internet make use of Google Ads and Google Analytics.
Believe it or not, but these two services have ubiquitous.
Readers need to pay attention when we say ubiquitous.
We are not kidding.
These two services are literally everywhere.
What do they do?
They help websites and Google to track all of the user’s online habits and activities.
Ultimately though, it is Google who is benefiting from all the data that the user and the website generates.
If we are talking about normal circumstances, experts in the cybersecurity industry would actually have little problems in classifying such Google embedded website code as nothing but infection.
And since infected web pages have never helped anyone except criminals, cybersecurity companies would also produce online solutions to assist people in removing that Google spyware.
Of course, there is no normal in today’s world.
Circumstances are changing all the time.
The other thing is why cybersecurity products don’t vaporize Google code is because Google is a huge corporation.
In other words, it is not really a threatening enterprise.
If a hacker team from China had done something same then cybersecurity products would have taken notice and then would have wiped the code off from existence.
But because it is Google, cybersecurity products consider such “infected” websites as pretty healthy.
Security products consider Google code as nothing but a helper in developing business process delivery mechanisms.
Now, let’s not move away from the fact that in the end all of this Google code is just a way for the company to track the activities of other online companies.
But since it is a necessary evil, no one considers Google code as spyware.
And neither should you.
Of course, you should take care that it does not invade your privacy.
The thing we’re trying to explain here is that Google has to track the user’s location in order to remain a sustainable business.
It does that via the user’s device GPS system.
It also takes notice of the IP address of the user’s device.
The other thing to note here is that the Associated Press did an investigation of sorts on Google and its business which found out that Google actually tracked all its users and their locations even when these users had disabled the option of Location History via their official Google account settings.
What does this mean for the end user?
It means that various Google applications such as Search and Gmail are recording the user’s location at random times during a given day whenever the user opens those apps and uses Google services.
So how do you get rid of all this tracking and gathering and then selling activities?
Well, anyone who is serious about blocking Google and all its spying and tracking activities should know that it will require a bit of effort.
And all effort will have to come from the user himself/herself.
Avoiding Google will also prevent Google from generating tons of money off its customers’ information that the company works so hard to log, store and then sell.
To get rid of Google, the user has to stop using Google.
That was awfully obvious.
So let’s explain a bit more.
Google products will have to go if you want to protect your privacy from Google.
Moreover, in order to get rid of Google advertisements and block Google tracking codes, you will have to install some things for the websites that you regularly visit.
We have written this guide for users who want to know everything there is to know about all major Google online products and the best methods to eliminate them without many consequences.
We will also list some alternative services that users can start to utilize in order to preserve their online privacy.
Which Google Products You Should/Can Replace?
There are lots of services.
Currently, the list of Google products that users can get rid of by stopping their use goes something like this,
- Google search engine
- Gmail service
- Google Chrome web browser
- Google Docs
- Google Drive
- Google Keep
- Google Forms
- Google Maps
- Google Voice
- Google Plus
- Google Photos
- Google Calendar
Of course, this is not an exhaustive list.
It is actually pretty limited.
In other words, Google offers a lot of other services which we will not talk about in this post because not many people know about them or use them.
So there is no point in giving Google any more publicity that it certainly doesn’t need.
The thing readers need to start realizing is that there are lots of alternatives.
If there is a Google product out there somewhere, there is a good chance that there are other companies which are developing similar online apps and services.
Now is the time for listing out what’s really on offer for users who want to move away from Google and all its services.
Best Google Search Alternatives
We have established that Google tracks you.
It keeps information on you.
What’s worse is that it has a way of logging all that information about the user’s activities on Google’s search engine against your original IP address.
Google also has the ability to examine a given user’s IP address at each and every internet service and website that the user visits.
Because of that, it becomes even more important for privacy-conscious users to prevent Google from further knowing more about their whereabouts in the online world.
The first step for any user to get away from Google should be along the lines of finding another worthy search engine.
Let’s take a look at what options do the users have right now.
Some of the best Google search engine alternatives are,
Read on to find out more about each of the above-mentioned options.
As a search engine, DuckDuckGo does not bother with making attempts to tailor its search engine results page to its customers’/users’ individual habits and/or search history.
And since it doesn’t like to present tailored results, it does not profile any visitor that comes to find information about some subject via its search engine.
DuckDuckGo also does not gather information about a given user’s web activities.
Each and every given user get to see the same search results for the same search query.
Which is great.
Perhaps this is the reason why the Tor browser makes use of DuckDuckGo as its default search engine.
What is MetaGer?
It is a German online search engine.
And a private one.
It tries to deliver search engine results in various other languages.
One of the languages that it supports is English.
Who created MetaGer?
SUMA-EV represents a non-profit organization.
This NPO created SUMA-EV.
And, till now, it operates all the MetaGer systems.
MetaGer considers the privacy of its users as its primary concern.
Because of that, it does not store any kind of data about visitors who come to its site.
MetaGer also does not make any attempts in profiling visitors so that it is able to tailor its search results to a particular user.
This search engine does not engage itself in selling various types of targeted advertising.
And no, it doesn’t try to employ any tracking code either.
Perhaps we should have mentioned it earlier but MetaGer is completely open source.
Anyone who has some coding skills, a laptop, and an internet connection can download the source doe and then audit it.
Our research shows that MetaGer’s SUMA-EV is disinterested in resting on its laurels.
Instead, the organization is trying its best to take rapid strides towards becoming a top competitor to what Google is offering.
It is also making efforts to rub shoulders with the likes of Google in other markets that have nothing to do with search engines and such.
Google offers Google Maps.
Similarly, SUMA-EV also operates a full mapping system.
We’ll talk more about that in a later section.
For now, readers should know that the mapping system of SUMA-EV can rival Google Maps.
We have come to know that the creators of this search engine actually went to astonishing lengths in order to make sure that they have the technology required to enable its customers to preserve their security and privacy.
MetaGer even has a separate version of its search engine site that users can easily access from the Tor browser by the Tor Project.
This search engine is based in France.
And it tries to serve the vast and varied international community with various foreign language implementations.
One of those implementations takes care of English.
The first thing we should mention about Qwant is that it too does not take part in tracking users via tracking codes.
As such, Qwant refrains from making attempts to change and tailor default search engine results page.
And since there is a marked absence of customized results, it also means that Qwant has no commercial intentions.
Even if the company did engage in collecting user information, it would have no use for it since it does not engage in commercial activities which involved buying and selling of user data.
Now, there is one downside to using Qwant.
What is that downside?
Well, Qwant has limited resources.
And because of that, it has to recycle search results from Bing to show its own.
That only holds true for its various national implementations.
Moreover, this does not apply to countries such as Germany and France.
Okay, all of that is pretty understandable.
But some of our readers might wonder, how does Qwant make money then?
It makes money via commissions.
Well, every time a searcher makes a purchase via a certain link and from a certain website, it is able to earn a small commission income.
The sites from where Qwant earns money are eBay and TripAdvisor along with any other such sites.
As for the end user, we recommend that he/she should exercise moderate caution if they see a lot of search results from sites which deal in similar businesses as eBay and TripAdvisor.
This is one search engine that the user is free to run on his/her own.
Individual users can run Searx on their own.
The company behind Searx has provided its valuable code on GitHub.
And it is completely free to make use of.
Searx itself runs the main URL that users can make use of in order to access its service.
It is called searx.me.
Click here to access it right now.
With that said, it is also true that because of the fact that Searx has made the code available to the public and is free to access, users often come across Searx versions on hundreds of other sites on the internet.
Accessing these versions of Searx may or may not be safe from a privacy standpoint.
The general philosophy behind search engines such as Searx simply prevents the actual organization behind this search engine to log the real IP addresses of users who visit the site to consume its services in some way.
Just like all the search engines we have mentioned so far, Searx too does not tailor its search results page according to the user.
Hence, it does not have any need to track and monitor the online activities of its web visitors.
The last Google search engine that we want to talk about here is StartPage.
Previously it went by the name of lxquick.
Similar to DuckDuckGo, this search engine does not have the resources to categorize and/or index its websites on its own.
Instead of doing that, it acts as a proxy service which enables access to the default Google search engine in a safe manner.
Google users who want anonymization by default can start using StartPage right now.
When users access the Google search engine via services such as StartPage, Google is unable to profile them and hence collected data on them.
The official StartPage server takes the responsibility of presenting Google with search queries.
StartPage then delivers results directly to the user but on another and separate channel.
In this way, Google does not get an opportunity to come in and deposit its tracking codes and/or log the visitor’s original IP address.
Now, the important thing users need to understand here is that with StartPage users are actually putting a firewall between themselves and Google.
This results in StartPage regularly presenting users with different search results than what they would get if they directly accessed Google and allow it to deliver normal results.
Best Gmail Alternatives
This is where Google has some serious and legitimate competition.
The one very annoying problem with using Google services is that in order to fully use them to their potential, one needs to have to sign up with Google via its Gmail service.
Without a Gmail account, the user should forget about commenting on YouTube or using Google Drive or Calendar and all such services.
In effect, the user’s Gmail address becomes the user’s username for tens and sometimes hundreds of other services and facilities.
To take an example, the user only has the option of porting his/her settings from his/her Google Chrome browser across his/her other devices if the user logs in to the Chrome browser with his/her Gmail password and username (the actual email address).
There is no way around it.
Some feel this is not fair.
We’re not sure what to say here since on the one hand, Google collects a mammoth amount of data on users and the other hand it makes things easier for the less technical and lazy of online consumers.
In any case, the huge problem with logging into various other online apps and services with one’s Gmail address is that it allows Google to actually unify all the profiles that it has tracked and stored on the company’s user base with regards to the products that they use.
When Google does that, it opens up even more doors for the company to collect even more data on the user.
Google’s tracking database is massive.
Like unimaginably big.
Some say the company has data centers the size of football fields.
Whenever a user enters his/her Gmail username to use other online products, it means that Google can forget about needing the user’s real IP address in order to identify the user.
With reliance on the user’s IP address out of the way, Google can easily trace the user’s online activities even when the user has switched from a given device to another given device.
Now, we want to let users know that some recent media reports have revealed Gmail having pretty sloppy user privacy standards.
The above-mentioned report should act as enough evidence for an online consumer to simply give up using Gmail webmail service.
Of course, we are aware of the fact that isn’t possible at all times.
For such people, we suggest that they should adopt the very good idea of breaking their habit of utilizing Gmail accounts on each and every other website they use and log into.
Once that habit is broken, the user should move to the next step.
And the next step is to delete one’s Gmail account.
Instead of using Gmail, the user should actually sign up for some of the best Gmail alternatives that we have listed below.
Most of the services that we have mentioned above are principally free.
Some of them have advanced options which cost a little money.
But overall, all of the best Gmail alternatives that we have mentioned here offer much more security for the user’s email messages than Gmail.
Let’s take a look at them one by one.
Hushmail represents those webmail systems that users can access with nothing but a web browser.
Which is great.
However, those wishing for more options can download and install the Humail app for devices running the iOS operating system.
Hushmail protects email transmission via the HTTPS system.
Perhaps this is an appropriate time to mention one other serious problem with most standard email services.
That problem is standard email is generally stored on email servers in plain text.
This isn’t very safe.
With that said, Hushmail tries to be different by encrypting the actual content of the email messages in order to keep them fairly private.
This holds true even when those email messages are resting on the email provider’s server.
Hushmail customers who send email messages to other Hushmail customers can rest assured that their email messages actually never leave the company’s system.
However, this isn’t the case when Hushmail customers are trying to message non-Hushmail users.
When that happens, Hushmail sends the recipient of the email message a link.
This link provides secure access to a web page where the recipient of the message can actually read its content.
It is also true that the actual contents of the sender’s message never ever leave the servers at Hushmail.
This email service provider is actually based in Germany.
However, if one goes to the web address mailbox.org, one finds that the whole website has content on it that is written in the English language.
Users have the option of purchasing a low-cost mailbox.org account.
That account (with this webmail service provider) includes a 30-day official free trial along with 2 GB of email storage.
The actual mail service is devoid of any advertisements.
Moreover, it does not store and/or track any type of user activity.
Mailbox.org also offers an optional PGP encryption feature for email messages.
The company also includes 100 MB of cloud storage along with many other features like a standard task planner application and a calendar.
ProtonMail is perhaps the most well-respected and well-regarded anti-Gmail email service provider in the world.
It has a dedicated team of scientists and researchers working behind the scenes.
This email service provider is based in Switzerland.
Potential customers who decide to become private users have the option of signing up for a free account.
This account comes with a total of 500 MB of easy storage space.
ProtonMail also offers paid accounts.
Paid account users gain the right to have a total of 5 GB of storage space in their mailbox.
Unlike a ton of email service providers on the internet, ProtonMail takes the pains to offer users end-to-end encryption.
However, the success of this end-to-end encryption system is only possible if and when the correspondent has also signed up for a ProtonMail account.
In other words, ProtonMail finds it difficult to implement encryption if both the sender and the receiver of the message are not using ProtonMail.
With that said, we would also like to mention that it is possible to have end-to-end encryption if the receiver makes use of an email system which supports compatible encryption methodology.
Similar to Mailbox.org, the correspondents of the message have another security option at their disposal.
If the Protonmail user sends the recipient of the message (a recipient who is not a ProtonMail customer) a link which opens up a secure page, then the security and privacy of the message is preserved.
In simpler terms, the ProtonMail user first has to send an email to the receiver which has a link that opens up a secure web page.
This web page allows the recipient of the message to read the text of the email message without having any concerns about privacy and security.
There is one problem with this system though.
That problem is, the sender cannot get around the requirement of him/her to communicate the actual decryption key for his/her secure web page via a separate and different communication method.
Most of the times, that communication method comes in the form of a good old telephone call.
ProtonMail takes great pride in the fact that its staff (people who operate the actual mail system) do not have any opportunity to read the content of email messages of customers.
As mentioned before, because ProtonMail encrypts all email messages by default.
Moreover, it also protects the encryption key with the help of a separate and additional encryption layer.
This email service provider is based in Norway.
It offers users a wide range of subscription-based plans.
Basically, the plans offer the same thing:
An email service.
However, the amount of storage the plans offer goes from 1 GB to a total of 25 GB.
Runbox looks like it has a decent bit of confidence in its email service since it offers a 30-day official free trial for all users.
For those interested, Runbox isn’t completely open source.
What do we mean by that?
We mean that Runbox has made all of its back-end processes open source.
This means, anyone with enough skills can examine the mail system’s code.
Coming to the front end of the Runbox mail system, the company delivers it in the form of a webmail service (as is obvious).
Unlike Gmail, Runbox takes no part in monitoring any of its customers.
The company has also forbidden itself from entering into different data sharing agreements that Gmail so conveniently and unapologetically signs with third-party advertising companies.
This email service provider is based in Germany.
Tutanota is the only email system that is secure enough to give the likes of ProtonMail a good run for its money.
Users can access this secure email service provider via a web browser.
There are other options as well.
Tutanota has dedicated applications for operating systems such as,
- Amazon Fire
In total, Tutanota offers two packages.
The first package is the Private package.
Using this package an individual gains the ability to use the Tutanota mail system without paying anything to the company.
This free version allocates 1 GB of online storage space for each user.
Then there is the Pro version.
Tutanota has aimed this version at businesses.
It comes with a total of 10 GB of online email storage.
Tutanota protects its email system via AES encryption.
This email service provider makes use of a 128-bit encryption key to protect its data.
Additionally, in order to protect the actual transmission of data, it uses a 2048-bit RSA encryption.
For those who don’t know, HTTPS also makes use of RSA for encryption purposes.
Gmail, also utilizes RSA for its transmission encryption.
As with all the email service providers on this list, the above-mentioned end-to-end encryption only starts to work when both the sender and the receiver of the email message make use of a Tutanota account.
Okay, so what about other cases?
In all of the other cases, Tutanota stores email messages on the Tutanota email server which are encrypted.
However, users do not get to control whether other email systems (of their correspondent) make use of any encryption as well.
Best Google Chrome Alternatives
Web browsers have transformed from applications that people used to access the internet to full-blown operating systems.
According to some, the best web browser in the world right now is Google Chrome.
We don’t know if we would want to say that.
But there is no doubt about the fact that Google Chrome is indeed the most popular web browser in use today.
Of course, we had the Internet Explorer from Microsoft before Google Chrome.
Then the Internet Explorer developed security vulnerabilities.
And Chrome helped itself to knock off the Internet Explorer from the number one spot in terms of popularity, a position that the Internet Explorer held for a long time.
However, what most online consumers don’t know is that Google Chrome comes with its own privacy issues.
And some of them are much more serious than the ones they are likely to find on other mainstream web browsers.
No one can argue the fact that the Internet Explorer is slowing dying.
Microsoft knows this as well.
And that’s why the company introduced Microsoft Edge a couple of years back.
Microsoft Edge basically brings Internet Explorer into the current era of Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox.
The company has put a lot of thought into the design of the web browser.
It has some brilliant privacy and security features.
All of this meant that we had little choice but to accept the fact that Microsoft Edge indeed had closed the gap between itself and Google Chrome considerably.
With that said, let’s take a look at some of the other best Google Chrome alternatives.
Currently, we have a list that goes something like,
- Ungoogled Chromium
- Mozilla Firefox
- Microsoft Edge
As readers can probably see, we have gone ahead with a genuine mix of startup minnows and well-known corporate giants.
All of them can rival Google.
We hope that some of the lesser-known web browsers that struggle to get attention in the media are able to get some after we mention them in our list.
So let’s see what we have in the marketplace at the moment.
The thing about lesser known web browsers is that, they rarely offer users a completely different experience and/or technology.
In simpler terms, most of them use technologies already in use.
For example, this new Brave web browser is based on the open-source version of Google Chrome called Chromium.
As mentioned just now, Google Chrome uses the same technology.
Brave is different from Google Chrome in the sense that it blocks online trackers by default.
With that said, we would also like to mention that Brave does show users advertisements.
And the content of these ads is based on the user’s anonymized online web activity and history.
Brave displays these ads to users by injecting them into various web pages.
These Brave ads replace the already existing advertisements of targeted systems like Google Ads.
In essence, Brave’s ad blocker works more like an ad replacement program and/or system rather than anything else.
Users who wanted to get away from Google because of its targeted ads campaign will find no respite with Brave.
It is a decent alternative nevertheless.
As mentioned beforehand, Microsoft had to create Edge because without it the company would not have successfully managed the concerns of the general public regarding the security and privacy features of the Internet Explorer.
One of the absolute standout features of Microsoft Edge is its ability to open up a new InPrivate window whenever a user presses Ctrl + Shift + P.
In the InPrivate mode, Microsoft will make sure that it deletes all records of the user’s session including information regarding cookies and cache as soon as the user closes the InPrivate window.
Microsoft Edge has not escaped a healthy amount of criticism as well.
All of these criticisms are regarding the security issues with the new browser.
However, our research shows that Microsoft Edge has solid security and privacy measures in place.
What we have noticed is that, the large portion of the negativity that Microsoft Edge has received has come to it because of people falsely associating Microsoft Edge with the older and discredited Internet Explorer.
Moreover, a good portion of the online community also happens to have this general dissatisfaction towards products from Microsoft because of the fact that the company has shown a lot of will and determination in cooperating with the United States security agencies.
With that said, we can’t deny the fact that Microsoft Edge’s inability to offer users an option where they can set a preference to block Microsoft Edge from directly loading PDF documents in the browser.
And that, as most of you would already know, presents a huge security flaw within Microsoft Edge.
Mozilla Firefox, perhaps taking the cue from Microsoft Edge (the flagship browser of Microsoft), has also gone through a complete overhaul.
Our research shows that the new Mozilla Firefox the most security amongst all other web browsers including Google Chrome.
That is saying something.
Because unlike Google, the Mozilla Foundation does not have access to billions and billions of dollars just waiting to go somewhere and work.
Back in November 2017, Mozilla Firefox released the Quantum version of Firefox.
It was a complete root and branch rewrite of the old Mozilla Firefox.
That single overhaul drastically improved stability, security and more importantly , loading speeds.
Now, the latest version of Mozilla Firefox comes with Tracking Protection feature.
By all measures, it is a welcome feature addition.
As mentioned just now, Mozilla is the non-profit organization that develops and manages Firefox.
This makes Mozilla Firefox particularly attractive to users who want don’t just want to shift from one mega-corporation like Google to another one in the form of Microsoft.
Microsoft Edge is a legitimate alternative to Chrome but it gets bogged down simply because of the fact that it too belongs to a corporate behemoth Microsoft.
At the time of writing this guide, Mozilla Firefox offered support for platforms such as,
- Mac OS X
The new Mozilla Firefox also comes with a new Private Mode feature.
Users who open up a browser window using this feature will enjoy the freedom it offers because Firefox would automatically delete all the cookies, cache and history the user might have accumulated throughout the given session whenever the user decides to quit and close the Private Mode window.
As Brave was based on Chromium, the Tor Browser is based on Mozilla Firefox.
However, it is not based on Firefox Quantum.
It uses a slightly older version of Mozilla Firefox as its base.
The majority of online users who install the Tor Browser do so because it if the only convenient and quick way of entering the Tor network.
Think of the Tor browser as a gateway to the Tor network.
What is the Tor network?
Well, this isn’t a post about the Tor Network.
However, for now, it should be sufficient for users to know that the Tor network is actually a network of computers that various different volunteers around the world run in order to enforce the maximum amount of privacy possible.
The United States Navy takes the credit of inventing this system.
Of course, now it is available to anyone and everyone for free.
The Tor browser is perfect for the general public as well as people who want to protect their privacy without compromising features.
Privacy activists all over the world recommend users to try Tor if the nature of their work is sensitive.
What does this do?
Well, this provides users with privacy and security.
As mentioned at the top as well, Chromium is nothing but a simple open source version (and hence with fewer features) of Google Chrome.
With that said, it is also true that Google still claims ownership to the browser system.
Because of that, the company is really unable to stop itself from injecting adware and tracking code into it.
Some believe that Chromium is simply a method that Google has made available to anyone who is willing to spare some time and then comb through the entire Chromium open source doe to see all the methods that Google employs to make money and generate data off its Chrome users.
Our research shows that Ungoogled Chromium is the perfect way for users to experience the best of what both worlds have to offer.
The Ungoogled Chromium is available for free via GitHub.
We are totally aware of the fact that some of our readers and indeed the general online consumer would find it very unfriendly to manage GitHub and get started with Ungoogled Chromium.
However, the thing we want to let users know is that, Ungoogled Chromium offers users all the benefits that they are likely to get with a web browser like Google Chrome.
Google invests a lot of money in its efforts to develop the best technology on the planet as far as web browsing is concerned.
Now, the company isn’t a charity organization.
In other words, it has to find a way to recover its costs.
And Google does that by tracking and monetizing.
Ungoogled Chromium takes that billions of dollars worth of technology and then strips out all of Google’s hidden and sneaky tricks which the company has no trouble in slotting into Chromium as well as Chrome in order to generate revenue, cover its investment cost and then earn some profit.
Of course, there are lots of other things that users can do in order to have a perfectly private and secure web browser.
But we won’t discuss them here since it would get really technical.
Best YouTube Alternatives
This is the big one really.
Because let’s be fair.
Who goes to Google.com anymore?
Everybody wants to see some funny cat videos and the latest movie trailers (no matter how hideous they get).
And the best place to do that is YouTube.
You see, YouTube is just like Google.
Let us correct ourselves.
YouTube is Google.
We were surprised to find out that there still existed online consumers who did not know that Google owns YouTube.
YouTube is absolutely and completely a Google property.
There is no way around it.
Either you submit to Google or stop using YouTube.
Regardless of who owns YouTube, the truth remains:
YouTube is the greatest site on earth when it comes to delivering fast, HD and reliable video content.
All the videos are free.
Or at least 99 percent of them if we count out YouTube Red.
YouTube isn’t just a metasearch engine for random videos.
The video platform has passed that age now.
In the modern world of YouTube, users will find dedicated TV shows that are available nowhere else.
YouTube has given rise to independent movie producers, actors, directors and all sorts of other artists.
It is another fact that most of these “artists” rarely produce something of value and generally play on people’s primal instincts.
The point that we want to make here is that YouTube now has full TV series with full episodes.
Google now has also introduced YouTube TV in an effort to extend the brand.
What is YouTube TV?
It is a subscription-based online and premium video service.
We hope we don’t need to convince anyone that YouTube is fairly unique and a very popular website.
YouTube has dominated a very niche market.
And there are no rivals in sight.
However, we can’t just give up.
Here is the list of best YouTube alternatives that we think users should definitely give a try if they are fed up with YouTube.
- Sling TV
- Hook Tube
Our list of best YouTube alternatives will not only include alternatives to YouTube but also to its premium version, YouTube TV.
YouTube has not had to think too hard about the competition.
Because it hasn’t had any.
That might change with the arrival of BitChute.
It is relatively new.
But we have little doubt that without proper effort (and lots of prayer and hope) BitChute too can become a close second to YouTube just like Metacafe was all those years ago.
While BitChute cannot compete with the likes of YouTube in terms of numbers of visitors and number of views, but it can and does attract a lot of vloggers.
According to some, BitChute is starting to become the platform of choice for a lot of vloggers.
The great thing about BitChute is that, the percentage of videos that are just complete garbage is markedly low when compared to YouTube.
YouTube throws absolute garbage videos at you if you have not subscribed to some sensible channels.
From people claiming to have seen God while praying to offers of leaving earth (right now) if the user simply clicked on the video.
One is bound to find anything and everything on YouTube.
The majority of the videos on the streaming site BitChute fall into the history and politics category.
And wherever there is history, there are conspiracy theories.
Users can find plenty of those on BitChute.
Because of that, there are lots of conspiracy theorists channels on sites like BitChute.
Users who went to YouTube for the very first time because they wanted insight and opinion videos would feel right at home with BitChute.
We don’t think such users would find too much of a difference in terms of quality of videos between YouTube and BitChute.
The other great thing about BitChute is that users don’t have to pay anything to watch a video, similar to YouTube.
Moreover, the platform has categorized all its videos by general topics.
Users have the option of arranging the videos shown in terms of popularity as well.
The interesting thing about BitChute is that the platform operates via a P2P (peer-to-peer) content access model.
What is that model?
We don’t have time for that.
Right now, the only thing users should know about BitChute’s inner working is that, it makes use of the BitTorrent protocol to deliver content to users.
In other words, there is no central megastore of videos as in the case of YouTube.
Moreover, there is no central manager or any mechanism of that kind either.
There is no video index.
Hence, BitChute has no way of tracking the user’s video accessing habits and history along with activities.
The one slight downside to using BitChute is that, members of this video streaming service have to provide the service a bit of personal information in order to actually stream content.
BitChute uses that personal information to enable users to set up an official account with the service.
However, BitChute also caters to non-registered users who are free to access the entire system with complete anonymity.
Dailymotion is slowly making a comeback.
And it is doing that with the money it can now tap into thanks to Vivendi, a broadcasting giant, who is now a majority-owner of Dailymotion.
Along with Vivendi, there is also Orange.
Orange is now a minority partner in Dailymotion.
With two giant corporations backing Dailymotion, it is hard to see how Dailymotion will not continue to attract more visitors and content creators.
As far as the content on the site goes, the majority of the Dailymotion videos come in the form of snippets.
These snippets cover events and other newsworthy happenings from around the world.
Several TV companies now post their copyrighted material directly to Dailymotion.
Dailymotion tries to set itself apart from other streaming services by operating and managing a fingerprinting system.
It uses this fingerprinting system in order to accurately check each piece of content for copyright violation.
Dailymotion, as a matter of policy, does not tolerate video content that is pirated.
To experience the full functionality of the site, a user has to become a member.
However, there is also an option to join Dailymotion for free.
Dailymotion allows users to sign up for an official account via their Facebook profile.
Users who are worried that signing up with their Facebook profile may cause privacy problems should obviously stay away from signing up with Dailymotion via their Facebook profile.
Dailymotion, by default, records and stores plays and searches that its members make.
For all times.
And it does that because it wants to rank the videos on its site by popularity.
Why does Dailymotion do that?
Well, it wants to make sure that the user gets the most customized experience as possible.
People who are concerned about this feature too should open up the private window feature on their web browser before they actually go ahead and access the site.
The private window of any given web browser actually makes sure that the web browser deletes all cookies as soon as the user quits and closes the open windows.
HookTube enables users to keep their YouTube and all its videos.
However, it differentiates itself from the normal YouTube experience by blocking YouTube from collecting and storing any type of information on the user.
Think of HookTube as a domain.
A domain whose only purpose is to provide users with an alternative method of accessing anything and everything that YouTube has to offer.
If there is a URL that is associated with YouTube, then users can use the HookTube URL to access that particular YouTube URL.
To do so, all that the user has to do is to simply enter the exact address of the YouTube video that the user wants to stream via his/her web browser.
However, users should take note that if they want to play the video via HookTube, they need to replace the youtube.com part of their YouTube URL with hooktube.com.
Okay, let’s move towards the part where we discuss what exactly HookTube does.
First of all, it blocks YouTube from monitoring the user’s video browsing.
Moreover, it also breaks the YouTube censorship tool which may or may not be a bad thing depending on where you are and if you are a parent or a kid.
Of course, the main purpose of the censorship tool on YouTube is to block and restrict access to specific videos in specific countries.
With HookTube though, the user can access any video that is still uploaded to YouTube.
Now, as far as free video streaming services are concerned, YouTube is the king.
And it looks like the king is going to live for a long time since this one has access to the best food and medicine.
However, things aren’t the same when it comes to YouTube TV.
This is where it has some serious competition.
And one of the competitors is SlingTV.
It competes directly with YouTube TV because both offer users video on demand and live TV.
Apart from that, both are online only.
And of course, both YouTube TV and Sling TV offer users over-the-top TV bundles.
Sling TV and YouTube TV also try to emulate the older home TV bundles that people used to get through their dish and cable services.
Sling TV does not have a free version.
Users have to first set up a subscription-based paid account in order to get started with Sling TV.
This means that the user has to give out his/her personal information to Sling TV.
Since Sling TV is a subscription-based streaming service, it requires the user’s bank details as well.
Without these, the user cannot access the Sling TV video system.
Moreover, the Sling TV platform also makes no secret of the fact it does keep a track of what the user has watched.
It does that in order to make sure that it can give as accurate recommendations as possible.
This is something the service has probably stolen from other streaming services such as Netflix.
The other thing users should know about Sling TV is that, they can watch content both on their mobile device as well as desktop computer machine.
Users also have the option of channeling it to their home TV via devices such as,
- Android TV box
- Any other casting device from the user’s computer machine
In essence, anything that YouTube TV can deliver, so can Sling TV.
Sling TV allows users to log into the official Sling TV site with their social media profile and/or account.
Of course, the issue of privacy still exists here.
So, those who want to preserve their’s are recommended to not use this option and avoid it as much as possible.
Sling TV can also post likes and reviews on the user’s social media account profile page.
With that said, we recommend that users should make sure of the fact that they have not activated this feature if they want to keep their activities and watch history private.
Originally, the developers of YouTube intended to come up with a space that offered users completely original content.
However, since the platform offered so much opportunity, it became very crowded.
And as soon as it became crowded, broadcasting corporations all over the world started to upload videos on the platform.
Moreover, pirated copies of TV series and movies from the old and mainstream entertainment channels also started to show up on YouTube.
This, sort of, diluted the impact that YouTube should have had.
Vimeo has more patience though.
In other words, it is still sticking to the company’s original goal of hosting only original content.
Vimeo, as a website, has one aim.
And that is to feature movies and short films.
Not only that, its aim is to become a platform where the creators themselves upload their movies and short films.
In one way, Vimeo actually assists media professionals to come online and showcase all their skills without much hindrance.
Content creators can also use Vimeo as a repository where they can upload product guides and promotional videos.
Vimeo may seem like the less attractive choice because it does not allow pirated videos.
But it still manages to pull in a pretty large chunk of online consumers.
This makes it a viable alternative to YouTube.
Vimeo managed to pass the coveted 100 million unique visitors every month mark about four years ago at the end of 2013.
And it has kept on growing ever since.
Alexa has currently ranked Vimeo as one of the most visited sites of the world.
More specifically, it has a rank of 131.
Vimeo is different from YouTube in the sense that it expects the user to pay if he/she wants to upload large videos to its platform.
However, there is a free basic plan as well.
It offers users a total of 500 MB of storage space without charging users a single penny.
In order to use Vimeo, the user has to set up a new account.
Vimeo requires the user a specific amount of information.
Some may consider that information as sensitive and private.
But the user has no choice.
If he/she does not disclose that information, Vimeo will simply not work.
However, users should know that the only piece of tracking information that they need to disclose to Vimeo in order to open up a free account and create content is a verified email address.
This email address is the only thing Vimeo will use in order to contact the user.
Of course, users can always make use of those burner email addresses and accounts in order to sign up with sites like Vimeo.
The other thing users should know that Vimeo, just like YouTube, does track video views.
It also logs and records the user’s original IP address.
It does that on each user visit.
Vimeo has also stated that the company, by law, has no choice but to comply with any kind of court order that asks the company to submit some logged information.
However, users can easily get around this problem by making use of a VPN service.
All that the user has to do is to first sign up for a VPN service, then install the VPN app and then connect to a decent and fast VPN server before logging into Vimeo.
This will solve most of the user’s privacy problems.
Now since there are a lot of VPN services available in the market, some of you may be wondering, which is the best one.
Well, we have done a lot of research and we think that IPVanish is the best one.
IPVanish is the best VPN service because it is,
All IPvanish packages come with an official seven-day money-back guarantee.
So the user does not have to take any risks while signing up with IPVanish.
The best place to purchase IPVanish packages is via the official website.
Click here to go to the official IPVanish website and then sign up for a package right here and right now.
There are tons of Google alternatives.
We will talk more about how to eliminate Google from your life in the coming days as well.
For now, leave us a comment if you found this post helpful.