Android and Google always go hand on hand, although it doesn’t necessarily have to be that way. The operating system and the Google ecosystem are so intertwined that it is difficult to see where one begins and where the other ends. Thus, the question arises: Can we use Android smartphone without using Google Apps?
Ofcourse, it is possible. It happens only when we modify it or installing ROM like LineageOS. Although it has to be known that, what happens if you dispense all Google apps on a normal and current Android device without rooting.
I don’t want Google in my smartphone
So, let us continue the process of kicking Google out of a normal Android smartphone. They will roughly be three separate steps: Delete the Google account, Uninstall and disable apps and change the system settings to remove the latest loopholes.
#1 Delete the Google account
The Google account is the heart of Google within an Android mobile. Deleting the Google account produces a cascade reaction that causes most of the company’s services to stop working, as they do not have an account to associate with.
Deleting the Google account does not have much mystery. From the Android settings, in the accounts section, just enter each account and delete it. A warning message tells us that, in fact, many functions will be disabled if there is not at least one Google account set up on your mobile.
#2 Uninstall and Disable the Apps
This is the longest process. Because, Instead of using rooting, the only way to uninstall apps in batch is via Google Play, which is one of the ones we want to uninstall. Some Google apps can be uninstalled without further ado, while others are preinstalled on the system and therefore the most you can do is disable them. Which exactly depends on the Android version. For example, Hangouts was once included as a system app, but not today and therefore could be uninstalled.
You will have to go one by one, uninstalling or deactivating as appropriate. Don’t worry because Google apps are disabled. These apps cannot run, so your goal to dispense with Google remains intact even if they are there. Moreover, even if you have root and uninstall them by force, you would not even gain space because they are in a separate partition. At last, it is better to disable Google Play in order to escape from background installations.
#3 Change the settings
Now, your smartphone is practically free from Google, although there are still small cracks here which are hidden in the mobile configuration. While some of these features are disabled when there is no active account, the best way to make sure to turn it off manually.
Two key points that you should keep in mind is Play Protect, which you must manually disable from Google – Security options. The other is the location because Android relies on Google’s location service to improve accuracy using Wi-Fi and Bluetooth networks and not rely on GPS. This location is one of the most important points in the life of Android without Google because really your alternative is either to use only the location using GPS or disable the location completely.
Time to look for alternatives
Out of the Google PlayStore, one can find hundreds of Google alternative apps. Moreover, a smartphone with a layer of personalization loaded like Samsung, Huawei or Xiaomi, it is very possible to get alternative apps. Here, is a list of alternative apps that are mostly used.
Alternative to the Google app – Bing, DuckDuckGo
Alternative to Google Photos – Cluster, Slidebox
Alternative to Google Tasks – Trello, Wunderlist
Alternative to Snapseed – Picsart, Adobe Photoshop
Alternative to Google Drive – DropBox, Mega
Alternative to Google Keep – Evernote, Zim
Alternative to Gmail – Outlook, Yandex, Zoho
Alternative to Google Play – F-Droid, Aptoide
We can see most of the Google Apps In Microsoft store, like Bing maps similar to Google Maps. Google has enriched its maps and anonymized data of millions of Android users, where other map apps lack the same level of detail. The same goes for Google Play. There are several app stores outside including Samsung, Huawei, and Xiaomi with their own. But, none of these companies manages to have a selection remotely similar to that of the Google store. Thus, the experience is often desperate, impossible to find well-known applications.
The download of applications, therefore, becomes a somewhat artisan process, as some apps will be available in alternative stores, others on the official website. And some will make you dive through the network until you find the appropriate APK. Perhaps the alternative store with a higher probability of success is that of UpToDown, which allows you to keep apps in update.
While you can find alternatives for Gmail, YouTube or Google Keep, there are no alternatives for location service, unless you have paid subscriptions. Without Google’s location services, you only have GPS. It works well outdoors and with a clear sky, but in other situations, you must have Google support.
The most effective way: Changing ROMs
So with everything, the answer remains yes: it is possible. It really does not cost too much to disable the majority of Google functions, although this entails certain inconveniences such as having to use poorer maps or that the mobile location is reduced. It is not an option available to everyone, but if you really want to use Android without Google, it is best to use specialized ROMs such as Replicant or LineageOS.
The advantage of using a ROM is like a blank sheet without Google, so you can, for example, install a location provider like UnifiedNlp to not rely entirely on GPS, something not possible in a mobile that was already preinstalled.
Finally, using Android without Google is not a path of roses, although it is entirely possible as long as you are willing to make certain sacrifices. It is not so much the apps themselves, easily replaceable, but other internal elements for which there is no alternative, such as the improved location.