iOS is the Best Platform for Google Apps

Posted by Matt Birchler
— 2 min read

I saw that story go by today and I got me thinking again: if you want the best Google software, iOS is really the place to be.

That sounds crazy, and maybe for some people it is, but as someone who relies heavily on Google’s software in both my personal and professional life, iOS has been a great platform for getting everything done that I need to do. Not only that, but a shocking amount of Google apps are updated first on iOS or are totally exclusive to iOS for months before going to Android. And with new apps like Files and updates to Siri intents, Google’s apps can interact more closely with iOS than they could in earlier versions of iOS.

I use all Google properties at work and have about a dozen Google apps running on my phone to keep up with what’s going on at work. All of these apps work great, and when I use them side-by-side with the same apps on Android, they’re all as good, if not better. At the very least they perform better on the A11 processor in my iPhone 8 than they do on the Snapdragon 835 in my Pixel 2.

And the above-mentioned example of dark mode not on Android despite being on iOS for months is far from the only instance of this happening. There are a number of examples, but the biggest one I can think of is Gboard, which turned out to the the stock keyboard for Android was an iOS exclusive for many months. And even after it came to Android, it was still getting some feature updates on iOS before Android.

How much of a problem it is that Google makes apps that I want to use is up for debate. I just know that I can use Google’s software for basically everything in my life and I never feel like it’s a second class version I’m stuck with. No, it feels like it’s the best version Google can make, and it’s running right next to all the other best mobile software on the planet. That ain’t bad.

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