Right off the bat, I want to say two things:
- I have not completely stopped using Google.
- I know there are many others that have stopped using Google and posted about it.
I'm recording these thoughts for two reasons as well... mainly for myself to reflect, but also to provide just another bit of insight among the other glimpses that are readily available. (I Stopped Using Google As My Search Engine, I Stopped Using Google Apps and Services for 5 Months)
I stated in the post I made last September that I was attempting to leave Google's ecosystem. My main concern was that I couldn't delete my email because I was afraid that I'd miss an important message or be unable to recover any old accounts I had made with that email. It definitely has come in handy, but at the cost of having to keep that email around. I've also found that I'm way more dependent on Google as a developer than I thought. While DuckDuckGo (DDG) is an amazing search engine for privacy-minded individuals, sometimes it just doesn't quite cut it. However, when I turn to Google it's usually because I can't be bothered to refine my search query a little bit more on DDG. I'd rather just type in one query and get my answer right away. A little bit of self discipline would help me move away from Google's search engines.
Another big obstacle is Google Maps. If you've ever used Google Maps, you know that it is simply world-class. Yes, Apple has their offering and it's decent for navigation... keyword being decent. But they don't provide a lot of the information that Google does, such as the current status of a business or the ability to make restaurant reservations right in the Google Maps app.
But you know what this is? Whining. I can live without the conveniences that Google offers me. I've just grown too accustomed to it. And I want to highlight once more that this is a personal decision. It in no way reflects what I think about others who use Google. I've just found that I am personally very dependent on Google, even when I find that their stance on privacy conflicts with my desire to maintain my personal privacy.
If you would like to learn more about alternatives to Google and its apps and products, check out Prism Break!