The big G is watching. Even though Google has one of the most widely used collection of online services, the privacy concerns surrounding Google’s policies are always there. In the end, advertising makes up a major part of Google’s revenue. Tracking the user is actually beneficial to Google. So, if you own an Android tablet or phone and you want to cut down on Google’s services for the sake of privacy, or even better battery life, then here’s how to do that.
Books, Movies and Music
A small fraction of people actually uses Google’s own Books, Movies or Music services. These can be easily uninstalled or disabled from the application manager. If you are using the Music app for managing your local music collection, you can also try out VLC, Phonograph, jetAudo HD, AIMP, or MediaMonkey. Most of these apps also have a version that runs on Windows desktops. VLC can also double as a video player and is also ad free. Poweramp is also another popular music player.
The best email app that is there an Android without doubt is Microsoft’s Outlook app. It is at par with the version that is on Windows 10 desktops. Also, it is much leaner than the Gmail app. You get a focused inbox, integrated calendar and contacts and integration with the other Microsoft Office mobile apps such as Word, Excel and PowerPoint.
Besides Google Keep, Microsoft’s OneNote is a great option for taking notes. You can have multiple notebooks; each notebook can have multiple sections and each section can have multiple pages. You can take photos, or record audio right in your notes, and also have them on your desktop OneNote app.
Documents and Spreadsheets
Again, Microsoft here offers the best alternative. However, Microsoft’s apps are better with an Office 365 subscription. If you do not have that, you can obviously use WPS Office or Polaris Office. OfficeSuite is also a great alternative. However, with Microsoft’s suite, you also get to work with documents on OneDrive, which is an added bonus.
Firefox is the best browser on Android, right after Chrome. Next in the line in Opera. Firefox on Android supports extensions. Also, there is another browser from Mozilla, called Firefox Focus that allows you to browser privately. Samsung users can take advantage of the browser provided by the manufacturer – called the Samsung Internet Browser, which is now available on other devices too.
Reminders and Calendar
The Outlook app itself has a calendar. For reminders, you have a ton of apps on the store. The best ones would be Cortana or the Arrow Launcher. Nether are dedicated reminder apps, but both have a comprehensive and functional reminder feature.
Drawbacks of leaving Google
One of the major drawbacks of leaving Google is security. With Google watching your phone always, you are guaranteed security updates and a malware free device. Also, you get all your data backed up automatically. Now, OneDrive and Dropbox also supports that, still, leaving Google’s services when you have an Android device can be pain. However, if you are annoyed by too much Google bogging down your device, then this guide will surely help.