Skip to content

Brave vs DuckDuckGo Comparison: Which is a Better Mobile Browser?

Amongst all privacy browsers, Brave and DuckDuckGo seem to be two great options for mobile devices. Brave has been around as a web browser, but DuckDuckGo has evolved from a privacy search engine to a standalone browser on Android and iOS. Both have great backend tech that offers good user security, and it might seem difficult to choose between them. We’re here to help you make one as we proceed with the Brave vs DuckDuckGo mobile comparison.

Brave vs DuckDuckGo Comparison

Related: 7 Best Privacy Browsers (No History Saved) for Android, Pros & Cons

Brave vs DuckDuckGo: UI, Performance, Stability

In this section, we’ll briefly understand how these browsers fare in terms of aesthetics and how both of them go about providing a basic web browsing experience.


Brave Browser: Fancy Yet Fast

Brave browser has a more visually detailed homepage. It has a background wallpaper with all your favorite websites listed in a translucent box. Interestingly, it also has a small window where you can see the job that Brave Shields has done- the number of trackers and ads blocked so far.

If you were not aware, Brave is built on the Chromium engine. So if you were wondering how most elements and options look similar to Chrome – you have an answer now. The tab management especially is the same as it is on Chrome.

You get a grid view by default; sadly, the stack view has been disabled. But, you also get an option to long-press on a tab and then group it accordingly. This is useful if you seek a more organized web browsing experience.

Brave seems to be quite optimized as well. Being long-term users, we can vouch for good performance and stability, provided the hardware on your device is decent enough. We do not remember facing any issues like an app crash during our usage time.

Brave gets a huge thumbs up from our side for offering a good user experience. But, reread the statement – we mentioned “our” side. As people who cover tech, we are enthusiasts and go gaga over a feature-stuffed product. And we say that because, for a normal user, the interface of Brave Browser will feel a little overwhelming.

There are buttons and icons everywhere and so many options under settings that probably most basic users won’t bother using. And why would a regular user bother about crypto features anyway? Well, you can opt for a few re-configurations to remove crypto features.

Or perhaps, there might just be a better option that focuses on providing a minimal web browsing experience and tremendous privacy features.

DuckDuckGo: Simple Yet Functional

DuckDuckGo has always been vocal in putting down all the quacks (pun intended) of Google being safe, as claimed by both fanboys and the company. They’ve always expressed concern for the lack of privacy on mainstream search engines, and they now have a web browser that goes hand in hand with what they stand for.

It starts with a plain and boring home screen with a big logo in the background. It does not have anything but a search bar, an attractive “fire” icon, a tab count, and the menu icon. But who said boring was bad? DuckDuckGo is far from being a bad browser as it offers a smooth and functional user experience.

We might not have used it as long as we’ve used Brave, but we did not face any performance-related issues. It did feel lighter than Brave. Navigating around the browser was a pretty snappy experience. But, the website loading and download speeds were slightly slower than Brave.

A downside, though, is that it lacks the group tabs feature. And switching tabs is similar to Brave, as tabs are displayed in the grid mode.

The best home screen feature must be the one-click button to clear all tabs and browsing data. This takes four to five steps on Chrome. The ‘fire’ icon we spoke about helps you do so. The option to change your app color icon also is a nice touch.

Overall, DuckDuckGo offers a good user experience too. It gets the basics right, and we can’t complain. But, we’d probably like a few widgets on the homepage, at least showing the amount of data saved from blocking ads and trackers. At least this would be a stat that a normal user would care about if not for the number of trackers blocked.

The bottom line is that both browsers are here to provide you with one thing – Privacy features. You’ve heard enough from us, so we might as well jump on to the next section of the article.

Brave vs DuckDuckGo: Privacy Features

Brave offers Shields to protect you against trackers and browser fingerprinting. On the other hand, DuckDuckGo makes up for it by using GPS and App Tracking Protection which is a unique addition to the Android world of browsers.

Brave Shields: Block Ads, Scripts, Trackers, and Cookies

Brave Shields helps prevent advertisements and trackers to improve your surfing experience while adding an extra degree of security. Quite a brave move indeed, to ruthlessly block all ads and ‘other creepy things’ as they call it.

Brave Shield protects the user through the following means :

  • Blocks most ads and the trackers that come with multiple websites.
  • Discards cookies from most websites.
  • Makes your browser harder to recognize and follow without cookies.
  • Upgrades you to secure connections as and when websites support them.
  • Blocks malicious code and malicious sites.

Oh, and you also get an option to disable the much-debated and hated AMP webpage technology. You can read our detailed guide about Brave Shields as we have comprehensive coverage.

DuckDuckGo: GPC & App Tracking Protection

DuckDuckGo disables all third-party trackers and even shows the statistics. It also has a one-click privacy toggle called Global Privacy Control (GPC) that protects you from cookies and trackers while also upgrading sites to HTTPS.

It is also testing two new features in beta: Email protection and App Tracking Protection. Trackers in apps are a huge barrier to maintaining your phone’s privacy as they collect data about your app activity, which can contain your personal information. DuckDuckGo helps keep these trackers out of your apps.

As of now, we were able to test the app tracking prevention which prevents large corporations from snooping on your data while you use apps. On Android, DuckDuckGo uses the VPN to filter out tracking requests from the network traffic coming from apps.

You will be surprised to know how apps slyly leak your data to big corporations. So the next time, you see an ad about something you just searched for or something that seems specific to you, you can divide the blame among all of your once thought innocent apps.

Brave vs DuckDuckGo: Search Engine

Brave Search vs DuckDuckGo

Brave Search is a first-party search engine. It’s similar to Google and Bing but doesn’t keep track of your searches or preferences. Furthermore, except for images, it does not rely on the aforementioned search engines or algorithms for its results. It’s available at search.brave.com.

As for the settings on the mobile version, you get the bare minimum options to open the link in a new tab or change the theme. Brave has just started its journey in developing a search engine, and we’re quite eager to see how they stack up against big names in the future.

If you thought DuckDuckGo was a fully independent search engine, we hate to tell you that it has partnered with Bing to provide search results. But, do not get us wrong, this does not compromise the privacy and the title claim of a ‘private search engine.’

Your searches on DuckDuckGo are still protected and are private. We have compared Brave Search vs DuckDuckGo and Google Search here.

Extra Features: Brave Has Crypto!

Users who watch advertisements are rewarded uniquely by Brave. Instead of blindly inserting advertisements and ‘productizing’ the user, it gives them the option to turn on optional ads that pay them in BAT tokens for their “attention.”

Basic Attention Token(BAT) is a cryptocurrency token based on Ethereum, which forms the fundamentals of the Brave Browser business model. It is a cryptocurrency token based on the ERC-20 standard. You can mainly earn BAT in two ways:

  • Earn BAT Using Brave Ads: As a Brave user, you can turn on Brave Ads to earn free BAT for getting ad notifications and surfing the web.
  • Get Free BAT Token Grants: You can earn BAT tokens just for installing and using Brave Browser.
  • Earn With Brave Creators Program: Brave allows users to tip BAT tokens to their favorite creators directly.

We’ve covered more about the Brave Crypto features in our detailed FAQ.

Brave vs DuckDuckGo: Pros and Cons

We’ve seen all the highlights of what these browsers can do, especially on the privacy front. But as we said, we’re here to help you make a choice. Well obviously there is no single choice, we’ll give you compelling reasons to install one of the two as you finish reading our article by reading the pros and cons. And, we’ll also give you our pick as well.

Pros and Cons of Brave Browser

Pros :

  • Loaded with features – highly engaging and detailed interface.
  • Brave Shields does a brilliant job of blocking ads and trackers while giving a good amount of control.
  • Crypto features are a great add-on and an incentive to use Brave.
  • It is similar to Chrome in terms of the settings and UI.
  • Refined UI elements make it a pleasure to use and navigate around.

Cons :

  • Similar to Chrome is also a disadvantage. Features removed by Chrome seem to be quickly removed in Brave too.
  • May appear cluttered for users who do not care about fancy features.
  • The VPN is a paid add-on.
  • Excessive privacy settings can break websites.
  • There have been concerns about Brave running in the background.
  • In our experience, a few websites, ex. Reddit refuses to load a few UI elements.

Pros and Cons of DuckDuckGo Browser

Pros :

  • Minimal User Interface
  • Lightweight and Stable
  • Clear all your tabs and browsing data with one click.
  • You can secure the DuckDuckGo browser with Touch ID or Face ID on iOS devices.
  • App Tracking Prevention is a fantastic new addition.
  • Once available, E-mail tracking prevention also seems like a good addition.

Cons :

  • Maybe too minimal, at least in comparison to Brave.
  • The search engine is not as good as Google Search.
  • Although it covers most privacy features, the end-user can only control a few.
  • DuckDuckGo still relies on advertising for revenue, so chances are you might see a few ads, but mind you these are not personalized.
  • Fewer personalization options, and weak autosuggestions.
  • There are faster web browsers available.

Brave vs DuckDuckGo Android Browser – Our Verdict!

We’d not like to beat around the bush and summarize our learnings in just two quick points. If you want a safe, Chrome Esque, and feature-rich browser experience and are willing to spend some time understanding the crypto rewards program, go ahead and install Brave Browser. Brave is available on Android and iOS.

If you do not want anything other than a basic web browsing experience, with just the necessary features, and are okay with a slightly less fast browsing experience, while not compromising on Privacy, you can install DuckDuckGo on either your Android or iOS Device.

This is what we had to say about Brave vs. DuckDuckGo. We hope you liked our detailed comparison of the two. Apart from helping you fix common web browser problems, we at BrowserToUse also work on detailed browser reviews and comparisons so that you make the best choice. Stay tuned for more!

nv-author-image

Supreeth Koundinya

Hey there, I'm Supreeth! I currently cover browser-related technology on Browser to Use! I'm an engineer, I love technology, and forever curious to explore and learn anything related to it!