De-Googlify your Android phone

Hi everyone

I have successfully de-Googlified myself and my Android phone from Googles net of convenient services designed to track you. Much of this possible thanks to Disroot. I think this is the right place to share how I did it.

Android Operating System

LineageOS without any Google apps, not even Google Play Services.

Note: Excluding Google Play Services (GPS) disables use of Google Play app*, and since many apps depend on GPS it drastically limits the number of apps that can be used. However if you’re concerned about privacy you shouldn’t have Google Play Services installed.

* Yalp Store can be used to download apps from Google Play, but excludes your paid apps.

Instead of Google Play, F-Droid is a great place to find excellent open source apps.

It’s also adviced to add F-Droid Privileged Extension as privileged app (do this on OS installation):

I’m really impressed with this operating system. Fast, clean and secure, without bloatware.

Applications

Note: Much of the following already described in the Disroot howto.

Google Drive
Disroot.org cloud storage.
NextCloud Android and desktop app.

Gmail
Disroot e-mail.
I used the K-9 Mail app.Works great.

Google Contacts
Disroot contacts.
DAVDroid for sync: https://f-droid.org/en/packages/at.bitfire.davdroid/
LineageOS contacts app.
Export contacts from Google as vcard. Import in Disroot contacts.

Google Calendar
Disroot calendar.
DAVDroid for sync: https://f-droid.org/en/packages/at.bitfire.davdroid/
LineageOS calendar app or Etar: https://f-droid.org/en/packages/ws.xsoh.etar/
Export calendars from Google. Import in DAVDroid (not tested myself).

Google Docs
Disroot Pads (not tested myself)

Tasks (and Google Keep)
Disroot Tasks.
DAVDroid for sync: https://f-droid.org/en/packages/at.bitfire.davdroid/
Tasks app: https://f-droid.org/en/packages/org.dmfs.tasks/
This is the kind of tasks often integrated in calendar. Not used by Google Calendar.
For Google Keep, there are numerous apps for TODO lists. I found Simpletask nice.

Diaspora
There’s apps for that too: https://search.f-droid.org/?q=diaspora&lang=en

Much more to read here: https://www.privacytools.io/
Happy de-googlification!

9 Likes

yay!

Also if I may add to the list:
Maps you should check out OSMAND. Awesome offline maps and navigation:
https://f-droid.org/en/packages/net.osmand.plus/

Chat disroot account and conversations (xmpp/jabber):
https://f-droid.org/en/packages/eu.siacs.conversations/

Video conference disroot account and nextcloud talk:
https://f-droid.org/en/packages/com.nextcloud.talk2/
or
https://calls.disroot.org and optionally https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=org.jitsi.meet&hl=en (no disroot or any account needed) << available through yalp/aurora store linked above

Browser
https://f-droid.org/en/packages/de.baumann.browser/

8 Likes

Oh thanks, I actually use OSMAND and Conversations. Works great.

Also worth to mention: Replace the keyboard! Several keyboards (including Google’s and Samsung’s) have the “full internet access” permission, creepy. I use AnySoftKeyboard.

1 Like

Awesome, not for me today as I use iOS but nice writeup!

May I add bitwarden with payed premium sub?
You can host it yourself but I think they do a good job.
I dislike password managers without sync and do not want to keep it on my cloud storage.

1 Like

Also, there is an option called eelo.

https://hackernoon.com/leaving-apple-google-e-first-beta-is-here-89e39f492c6f?gi=a17c4f7c5b8f

I funded it on kickstarter. I hope it is useful to someone.

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@disrootfan What an ambitious project! Have to support this. I’ve registered as test user.

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Great write-up, @flite!

A few more apps worth mentioning, IMHO, are:

andOTP - Open-source two-factor authentication App
Disroot App - Disroot app is like your Swiss Army knife to the Disroot platform
ICSdroid - Subscribe to ics calendars
Nomad - This is an unofficial client for the distributed social network Hubzilla
Notes - View and edit notes on Nextcloud
OpenKeychain - Encrypt your Files and Communications. Compatible with the OpenPGP Standard.
Tasks - Fork of Astrid Tasks & To-Do List
Riot.im - Open team collaboration

Cheers!

6 Likes

Worth to mention initiative like this: https://prism-break.org/en/ and https://www.privacytools.io/

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@Lazo Great list. Notes installed.

yes OpenKeychain is a must have on android!
I miss it in iOS :frowning:

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Tschüss Datenkrake: Ein Leben ohne Google
bye bye google (in german)

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hi! this is a great guide and i appreciate it, however. from what i can find, this os doesnt support galaxy s8. nor does /e/. are there any similar oses that do? am i just gonna kinda have to live with this?

I have one more suggested app. It’s called Kontalk. It’s available from F-Droid. It is end-to-end encryption messenger and hosted in Europe so it has very nice privacy. I use it all the time.

Hi! This is my first post here! :smiley:
I strongly recommand Aruroa Store instead of Yalp Store. Yalp Store has a lot of problems at this time because of some Google API changes!

2 Likes

Plus aurora looks very pretty. I’m not installing many apps from there (quite content with what f-droid has to offer), but for those its a life saver.

Hi @tuxifan and welcome.

1 Like

This is a really great list. A feast of info.

A while ago, I followed the same process and wrote a three part blog post about how I went about it. If anyone is interested, please do take a look - https://dhanesh95.wordpress.com/2016/12/02/de-googlification-part-1/

Part 2 and Part 3 are linked in the blog posts. Part 3 mentions how Disroot helped me in the journey.

P.S: Sorry for the shameless self publicity. :stuck_out_tongue:

1 Like

I have found Nanodroid to be really easy to use if you want to setup MicroG without any problems. It also provides an option to install a patched Play Store so that you can make IAPs and run apps that use GPlay License Verification. It also has a package for Bromite WebView which is a privacy enhanced fork of WebView for Android.

hello everyone; flite, how do i download the lineageOS? i click on the download link and it takes me to a page of changelog updates? …or are these modular components of the OS? …sorry for my ignorance…can anyone help me plz

Some people on web stated that lineageOS is not so google free because this os speaks to google api servers