Top 8 Google Alternatives iPhone

When I mention Google alternatives, I of course mean alternatives to their all-encompassing search engine, up against which there are strangely few competitors. You’d think that given the monopoly like success that Google currently has when it comes to search engines, others might be lining up with the intent of grabbing a share of the market. Oddly, we find that many of the search engines out there available as standalone apps for the iPhone are actually existing search services such as Yahoo and Ask.com, or smaller independently developed apps. We here at Top 8 found this to be infinitely curious, so recently download all the search apps we could get our hands on for the iPhone, putting each one through its paces. I can reveal that few lived up to the speed and power of Google, but there are a few nice alternatives out there. Especially if you are perhaps an Apple fan against Google, and would prefer not to download and use Google apps if at all possible! Check out our Top 8 below, and feel free to recommend any other cool search apps or Google alternatives you’ve found in the comments section below.

8. Dragon Go! (Free)

The Dragon Go! and Dragon Dictation apps are almost a duo that should be download both together or not at all. While the iPhone allows for voice search through both Bing and Google, often accessed through Siri, Dragon Go! actually lets you do a whole lot more with the results. When it comes to requesting stuff through Siri, I think it’s a fun, hands-free alternative to browing for information since it is given to you quickly and without the need to browse and navigate. This is especially the case when travelling in the car, for you don’t want to pull out your phone nor do you want to pull over just to check the cinema times for example. The problem I have with Siri is that you can’t do a lot with the results, whereas Dragon Go! links to other apps in order to help continue whatever you want to do with the info. – Download from iTunes

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7. WolframAlpha ($2.99)

If you couldn’t figure it out above, I guess I should state it here: while here are a few genuine search engines on this list, many of the apps featured are Google alternatives in the sense that they represent an alternate route to information. This is definitely the case with Wolfram Alpha, which is designed in a completely different manner. The concept is basically that, when you are searching for stuff on Google, you are often seeking factual information. This app works as a query service, where your questions are met not with links to potentially untrustworthy web pages but a sheet of different features, including calculations and graphs and technical info on just about everything you can imagine. The interface design is also beautifully clean, which is always a big plus point! – Download from iTunes

6. CamFind (Free)

CamFind has been described as a “visual search engine”, which I suppose tells you all you really need to know about this interesting Google alternative. CamFind is a visual recognition technology that analyzes images and then returns search results to the user based on the characteristics of that particular image. It will sound normal to those that have ever used Google image search, and is a great way to identify images you might find around the web or simply to find a better quality version of an image that you already own. – Download from iTunes

5. Ask.com (Free)

Ask is one of those search engines that has been around for quite some time, and is based around the idea of asking questions to the engine and receiving responses. There is also the option to see user responses as well as search results, and to search using voice rather than text input. I have something of a soft spot for Ask, just as I have for the likes of Altavista as an alternative search engine to run to should Google not offer what you are looking for, and that still applies to browsing on your smartphone or tablet today. – Download from iTunes

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4. Wikipedia (Free)

The same goes for Wikipedia that I wrote about Wolfram Alpha above. These days, Google will bring up a small thumbnail or column to the right of the screen including any general info on whatever you have typed in, often from Wikipedia. But why consult Google when the Wikipedia app has everything you could ask for, when your searches are reference based. Often, it can be difficult to find what you want through Google, but that’s rarely ever the case with Wikipedia. And while their mobile app could admittedly do with something of a design rehaul, it’s still a very powerful and vast resource nonetheless. – Download from iTunes

3. DuckDuckGo (Free)

DuckDuckGo recently made waves as a potential Google alternative for the iPhone, and was actually pushed into the position in many ways by Apple, who have their own brower but no dedicated search app. While DuckDuckGo doesn’t exactly offer anything different, it does seem to be a little more compatible with some iPhone devices than Google is. It also has a bunch of added features that may seem small but could interest users, such as the small notes above each search result designed to give you an idea of credibility and help you not to waste clicks. There is also the fact that DuckDuckGo does not track your browsing and search history, which is a massive tick for some users. – Download from iTunes

2. Yahoo (Free)

Yahoo is one of the best search engines out there besides Google, and their iPhone app is no contradiction to such claims. I really like what Yahoo have done recently in the visual rehaul of their various apps, especially with the fantastic looking Yahoo Weather app. This Search one offers much of the same in terms of a clean interface that is easy to navigate, but doesn’t bring much to the table in terms of added functionality, or stuff that sets it apart from Google’s current search app. There is a built in map function for directions, and the trending articles feature is cool. –  Download from iTunes

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1. Bing (Free)

As someone who has also owned a Windows Phone in the near past as well as an Android device and the latest iPhone, I think that the main Google alternative is Bing – and it has been for quite some time. While I don’t really agree with the way in which Microsoft push their own search engine (there’s actually a button on the Nokia Lumia dedicated to opening Bing and nothing else) you can’t deny that it looks great, with its nature photo backgrounds and all that stuff. It’s also quite sleek in terms of looks, and quick to access stuff. There is also a built in function to let you recognize bar and QR codes through Bing Vision, and the app can be linked to your Facebook account to show you what stuff your friends have clicked like on, if that’s youre thing. – Download from iTunes

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