Google releases a hugely disappointing Gmail app for iOS, soon pulls it

Sections: Communications, Computers, Email / IM, Mobile, Smartphones, Software / Applications

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Gmail app for iOS

Google has finally created an official Gmail app for iOS, but even this free app isn’t worth your time.

The Gmail app brings most of what you love of Gmail to iOS. There’s the priority inbox and threaded conversations, and it even has push support so you don’t have to wait for the Maill app to refresh your Gmail to find out when you have a new message. The app uses a panel display similar to the iPhone Facebook app, with a dual-pane mode for the iPad version of the app. It’s relatively clean, and works within Google’s new design sense.

The problem is the app is only just about as useful as the web version of Gmail, just buggier. I had to fully stop the app and reload it twice before it even worked, only to launch it and find that you can only have one Gmail account opened at once on the app. The inbox is just the same as the mobile version, so the app is barely better than a bookmark on your homepage in terms of usability. In that inbox you’ll only see 20 messages at once, and you have to reload to see any more than that, which is terrible if you get a lot of email throughout the day. Unlike the Mail app, the Gmail app won’t resize emails with images, so if you get an email with an image, expect to do a lot of scrolling just to read the text.

The one good point is that there’s push notifications on the app, but Boxcar can do the same thing if you really need push for Gmail. If you want a true Gmail experience on your phone, it seems for now the best bet is to just get an Android device.

UPDATE: Google has pulled the Gmail app do to a bug in the push notifications. Hopefully it takes the time to make the app better when it comes back.

Read [Gmail Blog]

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