Google has centered itself as the undisputed leader in the online industry and at least some part of our daily online activity is dependent on Google’s services. Over a whopping 100+ web-based and hardware products under it, it is fair to say that Google’s services have taken over our digital lives. Seamless syncing of user data between different products and services, is what makes Google an ever better organizer of data online.
But there are a few trade-off’s to be considered before basing all your online activity on Google’s services.
Why the need for Google Alternatives?
Although Google is the de facto industry standard for web search and is also used as a verb for web search engine, it has got some kinks to it. As Google preaches, ‘Don’t do evil!’, sadly, they do have the presence of a bit of notoriety on the web. Putting all your online activity eggs in a single basket would definitely not recommended and there are a few other key reasons to consider Google Alternatives.
Google has numerous accusations for manipulating search results in their own favor. Yelp even went on to hire Tim Wu, the father of net neutrality to prove that Google’s search results are biased. Also, Google has been displaying a major portion of the search results bombarded with ads of lately. The death of white space and ad-infused Google is not what many online users would wish for.
Apart from all of this, Google also keeps a track of what all their users are searching, to display better ads; or so they say! If you do not want an internet giant to easily renounce your online activity, you might want to take a look at some Google Alternatives, with better privacy assured.
Top 10 Google Alternatives for Search
So, whatever your case might be, if you are looking for a better alternative to the ubiquitous Google Search, here are the 10 Best Google Alternatives.
Although Google, as of now has a search market share of 64.5%, the second biggest search engine in the US currently is Bing, with a market share of 19.8%. Backed by Microsoft, Bing Search Engine now even powers the search results pulled up by Yahoo! Search. Bing’s homepage has an ever-changing background consisting of places, animals, people, sports, etc. Among some of the key capabilities of Bing include the ability for operating calculations, Sports scores, Flight tracking, Products shopping, Translate, Conversions, Spell check and more.
Bing also does feature Bing Ads, Bing Events, Bing Finance and more according to the task at hand. Bing also integrates easily with Facebook and into Apple and Windows-based devices. Also featuring its own standalone mobile applications, Bing is easily one of the best Google Alternatives.
DuckDuckGo is one of the fastest growing web search engines, which has gained particularly because of its plans on maintaining user privacy. DuckDuckGo aggregates its results from many different sources and it does not keep track of your searches, to show you personalized results. DuckDuckGo aggregates results from Bing, Yandex and other engines and displays them privately to the end user. This is entirely open-source and the code is even available on GitHub.
DuckDuckGo features strictly one-ad-a-page revenue model. Its proxy based search engine meant that the user’s search requires are left untracked and it also features a Voice Search. All in all, DuckDuckGo quickly gained attention from users who were not willing to sacrifice their privacy on the web. Recently, Mozilla Firefox has been added with DuckDuckGo as a search option for the user.
3. Yahoo! Search
After playing trials with different search engines to power their own Web search, Yahoo! have now partnered up with Microsoft to use Bing search results for their web engine. Now powered entirely by Bing, Yahoo! Search provides access in up to 38 International languages and is now officially the search engine that comes with Mozilla Firefox.
Although it wouldn’t make sense for normal users to be precarious of handing all of their online data to Google, Yahoo! Search steps in as a better alternative, with an interface that will make you forget you are not even Googling! Yahoo Answers and Yahoo Finance are a wealth of information on niche topics and now the recent purchase and integration of Flickrmade them even with Google on the Image front. Yahoo! still offers a better privacy to their users and Yahoo Local and Yahoo Weather are other most often used services.
4. Wolfram Alpha
If you were on the impression that Wolfram Alpha is just for the Math geeks, think again. Although it is primarily a computational algorithm mechanism, it is also a powerful search engine. Wolfram Alpha mainly curates its data, instead of caching web pages. This search engine curates data from a lot of reputed and trustworthy college publications/libraries, Crunchbase, FAA, Best Buy and many other sources.
Wolfram Alpha comes up with results which are computational facts. On the home screen are some of the examples of searches through which Wolfram Alpha could assist in. If you look up a University on Wolfram Alpha, it curates all of the key information like the Enrollment numbers/Tuition Fees/location, etc. and all the essential data curated and presented in a single spot.
Ask.com is still more of a question-answer community rather than a full-blown search engine, but you could find answers to a wide variety of search queries here. Ask.com closed its doors on Web search in 2009 and became completely focused on its original mission of providing a Questions-and-Answer community. Ask.com now has outsourced all of its Tech and Q&A management work to provide a network where a wide variety of questions ranging in different fields of interest to be answered adequately.
You can find topics ranging from Art & Literature, Geography, Education and Politics to Technology, Science and Business queries answered here. Ask.com is one of the great alternatives to Google in the sense of finding human-edited content that is strictly to the point and is better organized.
Yandex is a Russian-based company providing Search and other such services on the web. With over 150 Million search queries operated per day by Yandex, it is the fourth largest Web Search engine in the World and the leading search engine in Russia. Although it does feature a English localized version, Yandex.ru is by far the most popular search engine.
Yandex provides its users with lots of services like Images, Videos, Mail, Maps, Metrica (Equivalent of Google Analytics) and Yandex browser; in addition to its Mobile apps, Yandex Disk (Cloud storage), Translate, Market, Money and more. These full-fledged services offered by Yandex make it easily one of the best alternatives to Google. Also, Yandex is the default Search engine on the Mozilla Firefox browser for users in Russia.
IxQuick also allows search of Images and Videos and with over 5.7 Million search queries per day, this network is one of the fastest growing web search engines. Supported in 17 different languages, IxQuick returns results based on its own version of rating links. These links are ranked based on the number of times they are returned by a search engine. IxQuick also happens to be the default search engine of Tor browser.
Dogpile is one of the oldest web search engines to curate information, links, images and videos from other search engines. Dogpile curates results for your search terms by fetching links from Google, Yahoo, Yandex and other such services. Although initially it fetched links from AskJeeves (now Ask.com) and Bing, it has now went on to add more web engines to fetch links, videos and images from.
Some of the key features offered by Dogpile include Categories, White pages, Preferences, Search filters, Recent searches, favorite fetches and more. Dogpile also has its own toolbar for Internet Explorer and Mozilla Firefox, which provides users an alternative search from their web browser.
While all of the above Google Alternatives tackled the issue of Privacy, Gibiru takes on Censored content. Do you happen to know that most of the content you look up online is presented after the removal of censored content? Gibiru pulls up all search results, including the ones censored for the general audience. While doing so, the issue of privacy is also well-tackled through its Anonymous proxy search engine.
Gibiru crawls mainstream media for your search query and presents the uncensored results to the end user. Providing complete privacy and uncensored content, Gibiru is by far the best Google Alternative as far as Internet activists are concerned. Gibiru also has a Mozilla Firefox extension, to make the search for Uncensored content painless.
10. Internet Archive
Although technically not a web search engine, Internet Archive does let userssearch for iterations of a website in the past. You can check how a website looked in the past, of your choice of selected date. Apart from just browsing through older iterations of websites, the Internet Archive is also a great source for millions of public books, images, software, movies, videos and much more.
You get unprecedented access to all of these resources for free on Internet Archive. Some of the classic movies and novels are up for grabs via Internet Archive. This non-profit digital library is a member of International Preservation Consortium, and this network crawls the web and archives valuable pieces of information.
YouTube for Video Search
While a lot was talked about web search engines, where you enter a text manually, Google’s YouTube is by far the most popular website for searching videos on the web. The second largest search engine on the web, only second to Google, YouTube has by far the biggest collection of videos.
TinEye for Search by Images
For Reverse searching of images, that is, to search for content by uploading an image, TinEye is one of the best services. You can also find some alternatives to TinEye here, Best Reverse Image search engines and mobile applications.
Search for Mobile
Out of the services listed above, many of them do offer their own standalone mobile applications. You can make use of these applications to search directly from your mobile application.
You can find both Android and iOS mobile applications for DuckDuckGo, Wolfram Alpha, Yahoo! Search, Bing, Yandex, Ask Mobile, Dogpile and more.
Now that we’ve come to the end of the best Google Alternatives, how many of these search engines have caught your attention? Felt any of your favourite Google Alternative missing from the list? Feel free to share your thoughts and comments below.