GIS Software

ArcGIS Alternatives – The Top 10 Alternatives to ArcGIS

ArcGIS is an online geographic information system (GIS) software developed by Esri.

First released in 1999 as ARC/INFO, ArcGIS has become an industry standard, providing the scaffolding and foundation for what is now a 10.1 billion dollar industry.

With over 40% of the market share, Esri’s ArcGIS is the leading GIS platform on the market today, however that is quickly changing as new competitors emerge.

What are some alternatives?

According to AlternativeTo, Equator Studios is the 6th most popular alternative to ArcGIS. We offer free (& paid!) GIS solutions right in the browser, you’re only a few clicks away! Try Equator Studios here.

“R is a free software environment for statistical computing and graphics.” -AlternativeTo

The classic “DIY” option: program it yourself! The number one alternative to ArcGIS is to roll your own solution. We’re not surprised by this (we chose to develop our own GIS platform after all!): GIS data is typically used to engineer things, it makes a lot of sense to us that the ‘solution’ isn’t the latest data, but often a program or application that is designed to work with dynamic data that changes frequently.


“QGIS, formerly Quantum GIS, is a user friendly open source Geographic Information System (GIS) licensed under the GNU General Public License that runs on Linux, Unix, Mac OSX, and Windows and supports numerous vector, raster, and database formats and functionalities.” -AlternativeTo

QGIS is the #1 completely free (& open source!) GIS software solution available right now. We use it daily at Equator as a benchmark for what we do. While not always the most user-friendly solution, QGIS can probably do it if you’re willing to dig deep enough through it’s massive library of menus, functions, and plugins.










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Equator Studios was built from the ground up to cover the basics of GIS, hiding the complexities in a user-friendly and accessible browser based web app. Our teams philosophy is that if you can’t do it with a simple drag, drop, or slide, then we must return to the drawing board until you can. We don’t like to waste our time, or yours, on difficult to understand manuals or unnecessary software training. K.I.S.S. all the way!

and last but not least 🙂