2 Must Use Browser Alternatives For Android Smart-phones
Security Focused Browsers that are easy to use, say bye to chrome or just leave that Sh#t alone!
Maybe I took it too far, but hey I couldn’t help it I got carried away. And, you might too once you realize you have an option — or two. Android smartphones come with basic, and everyday apps like your dialer, messaging, contacts and calendar app. These aren’t the only apps that come with your phone though. Google apps like one drive, Gmail, and Chrome browser come pre-installed too.
Some people don’t bother making a change to these, but it can be done, you can actually use an alternative app and disable the pre-installed apps if you wish to. But, in most cases you cannot uninstall them.
We’re focusing on your browser, Google Chrome is great especially for tracking, simple and easy to use. So, yes security is an issue here because security is not the browser or search engine’s primary focus. Private tabs are just a way of erasing your browsing history so that whoever may use the same device after you doesn’t get the chance to play around with your history, nothing more, to the websites you visit this changes exactly nothing.
If you expected Firefox on this list know that it isn’t here especially because you probably knew about it already. It has some special and interesting features. It is one of the best Chrome alternatives on Desktop PC, and a great option on Mobile. But, DuckDuckgo is simple, lightweight and straight to the point. This is why it earned the number one spot here.
You can make some changes to your liking, like changing the app’s icon. You can switch from the default orange like Duck logo and choose one of the above options. I usually go for purple but this doesn’t change the browser’s performance in any way so feel free to choose any other color.
As mentioned before this is simple and straight to the point.
Knowing what DuckDuckgo stands for is a must, it’s just those awesome features into a mobile app no surprises. The screenshot that follows shows all it has in the settings tab.
You have black and white and nothing else, do you need anything else, yellow maybe?
Great feature I personally don’t use this. I don’t mind starting a new session every time but you can definitely give this a shot.
Automatically Clear Data
You can either select tabs and data, or just tabs or data. The browser automatically wipes your data at the end of each session so next time you open a new tab nothing from your last session shows. No history here!
Now, to make things interesting you can actually clear ongoing searches if you enable this. The browser can detect when or not you’re on a website or if you put your phone down with the medium tab open for instance. So, if you choose to clear data every 5 minutes you’re inactive it will do exactly that even if you have multiple tabs open for as long as you’re not using the app it clears everything. No peeking!
The browser also has a privacy dashboard where it shows whether or not trackers were found and blocked as you can see.
Right at the bottom you can see that Google is leading, with 86%.
To download the app open up Google Play store, and search for DuckDuckgo, and download.
Here’s a report, this shows the number of ads that Duckduckgo blocked.
Tor Browser for Android
I have more to say about DuckDuckgo than Tor. One of the best privacy focused browsers on the internet today. Tor has not only a browser but you can use its services (the Tor network) as ad-ons or with different anonymizing software to strengthen security, and anonymity online.
The Tor browser uses DuckDuckgo as its default search engine. You can obviously make a few changes here and there but if you chose the browser for security I don’t see why you would want to substitute DuckDuckgo. Before starting any session it connects you to the Tor network the process may take a couple of seconds, the process is similar to the Desktop version, and if you have a strong internet connection it’ll only take literally a second or two.
The app doesn’t allow screenshots, great feature!
Besides the Tor Browser you can use Orbot for android which acts as a VPN. With this program you get to choose what goes under the Tor circuit making it easier for you to control the apps and a bit of what the apps get from your browsing experience. (See below) Because the Tor browser alone has quite a number of limitations specially on mobile devices because most of the services we use are available as applications and the browser version is sometimes not the best option so orbot gets the job done.
Do you recognize the sweet, and tasty onion?
What follows shows some of the apps I have on my smartphone, by checking the boxes I allow the Tor network to do its magic for certain apps. Fortunately this VPN like app allows screenshots, so take a look.
On your smartphone look for Google play (App store), open the app type in Tor browser and download. The same goes for orbot, it’s that easy, even though being security focused is not.