No Nonsense List of Google Alternatives for Linux Users

Kyle Benzle
2 min readNov 23, 2020

I’ve been saying for a decade that this year is the year Desktop Linux will take over and yes, I again believe 2021 will be that year.

But why?

There are tons of, “Best Google Alternativeslists out there with sometimes dozens of alternatives for each offering but with this article I aim to give you the single best option for a non-Google Linux based workflow. I’ve obsessively tried hundreds of apps and will keep this list up to date so you can be assured you are getting the best non-Google products for an optimized experience on Linux. Please get in touch on Twitter or comment here if I’ve missed something obvious, thanks!

Now, onto the list!

  1. Search - DuckDuckGo - An anonymized “wrapper” for Bing.
  2. Browser - Brave - Getting flack for this but I still like Chromium over FF.
  3. Mail - Fastmail - Protonmail is great too but personally I like FM.
  4. Cloud Drive - - Also good,
  5. Desktop OS - Kubuntu - The best OS, change my mind…
  6. Mobile OS - Sailfish OS - I’m sorry to say I still use Android :(
  7. Maps - OpenStreetMaps - I love being able to add my own data!
  8. Phone - Grasshopper - A case where I’m still using Voice but trying to switch.
  9. Docs - Bear Writer - I use LibreOffice offline but in a pinch Bear is great.
  10. Spreadsheets - AirTable - LibreOffice is best unless you need to be online.
  11. Photos - Flickr - An oldie but goodie, especially if you don’t mind paying.
  12. Calendar - - It’s… fine, but Apple and Google are still better.
  13. Passwords - LastPass - I was slow to adopt to a manager but now love it.
  14. Videos - Vimeo - I want to be able to recommend but just can’t, yet.
  15. Authentication - Authy - A rare case of having no complaints!
  16. Blogging - Medium - I actually hate Medium, but its easy and popular.
  17. Meetings - Zoom - Discord is better but grandmas (and bosses) love Zoom.
  18. Ads - - The payouts are low but I love the anonymity they offer.
  19. Flights - SkyScanner - Always trying to get you to “upgrade” but still good.
  20. Web Analytics - Matomo - But I’d love to set up someday.
  21. Payments - Venmo - Honestly they ALL suck, use Bitcoin instead!
  22. Music - Pandora - I missed out on the switch to Spotify and its too late now.
  23. App Store - F-Droid and Aurora Store - An OK alternate to the Play Store.

That’s its. These are my daily drivers that keep me free from Google. Please let me know if I’ve missed anything or there’s room for improvement. Thanks!



Kyle Benzle

I am a plant biologist with an MS from OSU and broad experience in data science, cell biology, genetics, genomics, and plant breeding.