AlternativeTo

AlternativeTo

Have you ever been struggling to search for a software on Google? Or for some reasons you need an alternative to an application that you've already had but Google cannot fulfil. Let us introduce you to AlternativeTo.net - your new way to find good software. It is a website that lists alternatives for web-based software, desktop software, mobile applications and also sorts the alternatives by various criteria, including by popularity among the website users.

The site is made by Ola Johansson and Markus Olausson in Sweden, in 2009 with a lot of help from their friends and contributors from all over the world. All the lists of alternatives are crowd-sourced, and that's what makes the site's data powerful and relevant.

Originally, what makes AlternativeTo different from most sofware directory sites, which sort the programs and apps into categories, is that it is organized by the software themselves. Each individual program or application has its own list of alternatives, permitting a more tailored listing approach. Users can also find software by searching with tags or by the platforms they operates on.

The site does not require registration to use, but only registered users can vote, comment on, review, and add alternatives to software.

1. Create an account

You can use accounts from several external services to log in to AlternativeTo, including Facebook, GitHub, Google, Microsoft, Twitter, Yahoo. Or use your email to create an account.

  1. Go to https://alternativeto.net.
  2. Click SIGN UP in the top right.
  3. Enter your email address and create a password.
  4. Check the box next to I'm not a robot.
  5. Click CREATE ACCOUNT.

Your account is created. Next, the site will help you complete your profile. You will also have to verify your email address before you can do anything on the site. Go here for more details about AlternativeTo Sign up.

2. Sign in

You can sign in using any of the following services: Facebook, GitHub, Google, Microsoft, Twitter, Yahoo. Or using the email you signed up AlternativeTo with.

  1. Go to https://alternativeto.net.
  2. Click LOGIN in the top right of the page.
  3. Choose your login method.
  4. Enter your login information (username and password).
  5. Click LOGIN.

For more instructions, go here.

3. Feature

A. Alternatives

As mentioned above, AlternativeTo is a website for software alternatives and recommendations. You can search the name of the software that you want to find its alternatives of, or browse for all applications available for a platform on the site. Each software or application has its own lists of alternatives with similar functions and purposes. When you search or click on a software or application's name, the site will take you to its entry page, where you can find information about the program including the platform(s) it runs on, license type (free or commercial), description, official website, where to download, users' comments and reviews and of course, list of similar software. Some major and popular applications may even have articles about them written by respectable newspapers and magazines displayed on their entry pages. The list of alternatives can be filtered by platforms and license type or by tags for advanced searching. Although the idea of searching for app by categories is totally left out in the beginning, in 2012, the owners of the site launched 22 categories that can be attached to the applications to make casual browsing easier. 

Fun fact: As AlternativeTo is a web application itself , it also has a page for alternatives to itself.

B. User feature

Because AlternativeTo is a crowd-sourced website, almost all of its content is provided by its users. Registered users can write comments and reviews about a software or application, as well as suggest/add alternatives for it. Comments and reviews can be voted as "Helpful" or "Unhelpful" and the software themselves can be voted as "Good" or "Bad" alternative. Users can also "like" an application by clicking the "Like" button to increase its popularity and share it on other social media websites. The information on a program's entry page (name, platform, license type, description, categories, tags...) can also be edited by users, but any changes will be reviewed before being made publicly visible. If you are the developer/publisher of a application, you can email the site's owner to have full access to edit your own product's information without having to wait for approval.

C. News

AlternativeTo also incorporate a news section on the site, which are external links to articles about software, applications or services on other news websites. 

D. Forum

The site also has a discussion forum for users to discuss the products they love and hate and their alternatives.

AlternativeTo is a website which lists alternatives to web-based software, desktop computer software, and mobile apps, and sorts the alternatives by various criteria, including the number of registered users who have clicked the "Like" button for each of them on AlternativeTo.