I have been a huge fan of Google since it’s early days. Or well, since my early days of finding about Google, but I haven’t been too happy about it lately. First, there were some privacy concerns, then they closed Google Reader which really annoyed me, and now they are constantly moving away from open standards and protocols.
I stared my slow exodus from Google services a while back, there are some services that I still use, but I am mostly de-googlified now, atleast compared to before. Here are alternatives I am using, they aren’t the only alternatives, but they are the ones I have chosen to go with:
Search: I have been a long time DuckDuckGo.com user, gave it a try when it was just launched and have been using it since then. It’s zero-click info is very cool, and 80% of the time I don’t even have to look at the actual results. Not to mention it’s privacy aware and doesn’t save or share your personal info.
Email: My primary email address is @aqeeliz.com, previously it was set up on Gmail, but I have moved to FastMail now, a paid email service, it has pretty good prices, a nice webmail client and all the features expected of a good email service.
Calendar / Contacts: I am not sure about this one yet, currently I’m trying Fruux. The free account allows access from only two devices, which is good enough for my current needs, though I can always upgrade later if I need more. I am also keeping an eye open for other alternatives.
Tasks: Only good thing about Google Tasks was that it was available right in my Gmail window, so there wasn’t any need to use it once I stopped keeping my Gmail tab open. As for an alternative, there are lots of goods ones, I have moved to Wunderlist, it is a highly recommended, feature rich task management app, with multi-platform clients. It’s also a Lifehacker favourite, if that means anything to you.
Storage: I’ve been using Dropbox for a long time, tried to switch to Google Drive when it launched, but the lack of Linux client stopped me from it, I guess that was a good thing, one less service to migrate from.
Photos: I have always been a Flickr fan, and using Google Photos mainly as a backup storage, I may still use it as a backup service but not sure yet… probably not.
Things Where I am still stuck with Google:
Google Talk: That is one of the thing where I am still stuck, pretty much all my contacts are on Google Talk, and unless I can make them switch to another service, I am stuck here too. Currently the only alternative I like for this is Jabber/XMPP, time to convert the people!
Google Play: It is the best and safest App store for Android, I don’t think I am going to step away for this any time soon. If nothing else, this is going to stop me from deleting my Google account.
I guess that is pretty much all the Google services I was using, will update the post if I thought of anything I missed.