Living without Google 2.0 - A Google free FP2

I was going to post this in another thread after my most recent call for help, but it seems better placed here, since this is a much more commonly read thread:

Have I mentioned that you guys are awesome? @therob, @paulakreuzer, @tphysm, @Stefan and many others who help so regularly :slight_smile: I think it’s absolutely amazing that I can post a question to all sorts of “non-standard apps” here, ones which I can’t find tons of information about online, and get useful answers that solve my problems within a few minutes. Just one of many, many advantages to being part of the Fairphone Community I guess :smiley: THANK YOU, seriously, you guys are the best support crew a complete newbie like me could ask for!


Another question regarding K9-Mail:
Is it possible to “lock” this app, i.e. I would like to always be required to enter a PIN or password before I am able to use the app (cf. Threema)?
I did not find this option in the settings, but maybe there is a ‘workaround’ :wink: or maybe there is an alternative app?!

A lot of apps exists to make this, although I never used one. K9 itself doesn’t support it, AFAIK.

But you really should use the simplest google search, to find lots of helpful links in PlayStore or general overwiews, at a first look I did not find any in F-Droid (sorry, as this thread should link to google-(playstore)-free apps)…


Although I do not have root, this forum thread has inspired me to experiment living without Google. So I have followed the instructions by @paulakreuzer above and reinstalled my system, not logging into the Google account and disabling everything Google. This went well until I started my first installed app, one that is vital to me and do not want to do without (Strava): it would not work because the Google Play Services were not enabled/updated. I therefore had to log in to my Google account and re-enable the Play Services. Most Google apps are still disabled: Calendar, Chrome, Drive, Gmail, Google app, Contacts Sync, Play Movie, Play Music, Hangouts, Maps, Photos and Youtube. This is satisfying enough but not I was hoping for. I am also worried that some apps might not work without Google Maps? Are there any alternate map services I can install, which ones and how?

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There is OSMAnd on F-Droid but if an App really needs Google Maps to work than OSMand won’t help. Marvin from the microg project is afaik working on a way to use OSM to fully replace Google Maps but it doesn’t work yet.

Some Apps only claim they need Google and with root and XPosed these claims can be bypassed.

The easiest way is probably to replace the Apps that need Google Maps with free Navigation-/Transportation-/…-Apps from F-Droid.

I can highly recommend OSMAnd, also available on F-Droid. It is not intendet to use it as an Android-“MapService” but as a nearly to perfect offline-navigation stand-alone programm (esp. for hiking and biking, quite OK for car).

For a real service maybe you can check Unified NLP for GAPPS-free devices (which I never tried and only hardly know how to use…)

And why do “Strava” need Google-Services? For the GPS signal? Or only to install it (then you can download the APK by the well working java-programm raccoon at a PC).

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Unified NLP is very cool, but only a replement for Location Services, not for the Maps API, which - I guess - is what Strava needs.

Thanks for the recommendations. I currently have HEREMaps but haven’t made use of it. It isn’t quite what I need because it does not offer navigation for cyclists (only cars, pedestrians, and stupidly: public transport). As for Strava, I sideloaded it, but it requires Google services to run. Strangely it does not require Google Maps enabled as it seems to be accessing it through the web.

I think the Google Maps API is part of the Google Play Services and not the Google Maps App. But don’t take my word for it.

I got used to the Google-provided Trust Agents for “Smart Unlocking” the phone, e.g. when connected to my car’s BT hands free audio system. Going Google-free (without a FP2 I’m testing this on my OPO) there’s no trust agent - is there an alternative?

Thank you!

Not really to the topic but it bugs me: Why would puclic transport be stupid in a maps app?


Does anyone know of a decent weather app or widget? My F-Droid search wasn’t terribly convincing… Ideally I’d like something where I can just store a few locations by postal code, no location services necessary. If I need a new location I’m happy to add it manually. Thanks!


I am sorry about this comment, I must be one of very few people who do not need assisted navigation when taking public transport :grin:

Depends what country you are in. In the UK the Met Office app is well designed and comprehensive despite a dated design. I think you can get it on f-droid.

Priority would be Germany, though something that can also handle other countries would of course be even better :wink:

It does do Germany and probably any other country you can think of. Maybe you should also try asking on the German speaking forum?

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I’ve got my phone now as well, and am busy ungooglling it… Until now, I’m having the following issues:

The ‘disable’ button for Google Play Services is sometimes greyed out, sometimes not. If anybody knows when and why please let me know.

For me, it’s greyed out and I can’t disable. Is there any known trick to disable this app/service?

Anytime I Installed an F-Droid-app, the telephone gave me a notification. Forgot what it precisely was, but it involved google chekink app-integrity or something? I accidentally accepted. Does anybody know, how to change this setting (and maybe make sure, I don’t get the message in the future?



I (thought I) ungoogled my phone. Afterwards I installted AFWall (Firewall) and Facebook (but NOT the messenger). In my normal Firewall-settings FB ist noch permitted to access the internet. But if somebody writes a FB-Message, it pops up as a notificatin. I can’t open the message, as I don’t have the app.
How do I stop FB getting all the messages? I also have the App Autostarts and have tried to disable FB everywhere.
Ist it Google Play Services that snoops around???

Ok, I found the trick via this practical ungoogling website (focused on Android 6.0)

Key is the order in which you disable apps. I enabled Google Play Store, GOogle Drive and Google account manager (just guess-work) and suddenly I could disable Google Play Services.


Another issue after ungoogling my phone ( I have the Google Framework and Play Services running but all Google apps apart from the Play store are disabled): casting a short video with Chromecast was awful. Both picture and sound are very scrambled. I am not sure though whether this is actually related to de-Googling or should just go under the general issues thread?