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Google Apps for iOS: A Comparison with Native Apps

Google iOS offerings
Google offers many iOS app options.

Apple and Google create the two most successful and best selling mobile phone operating systems. While Apple focuses strictly on iOS, and Google is responsible for Android, Google also has releases a number of apps that can be used on an iPhone.

Some of the Google apps released for iOS seem to compete directly with Apple’s own offerings. This could be seen as a direct attack at Apple, or just as a way for Google to spread its product for all to enjoy, while not restricting its potential customers only to those with Android-based phones.

App Comparisons

Here’s a look at how several popular apps compare in their Apple version and their Google Apps for iOS versions:

Passbook Wallet
Released with iOS6 Released as iOS app officially on September 18, 2013
Stores boarding passes, concert tickets, discount cards Pay for goods, store discount cards
Passbook Wallet

 

Google Now app
Google Now app on iOS

Search & Siri vs Google Now

Search and Siri Google Now
Easily find applications and search notes on the iPhone with Search Search the web using voince recognition feature
Search the web, send text messages, post social media status updates, and more with Siri Proactively offers answers based on previous answers, including local weather, directions, and favorite sports team’s game results
Siri Google-Now-Logo

 

Mail vs Gmail 

Mail Gmail
Works with virtually any email provider Works specifically with Gmail, taking advantage of the features Gmail offers
Can push new email notifications, syncs across devices, and lets you categorize email in folders Ability to search emails more efficiently, includes new Gmail tabs, easier to categorize and sort emails
Mail New-Gmail-app-icon

 

Safari vs Chrome

Safari Chrome
Many features, including cross-device syncing, reading list, and shared links Fast browsing, syncs across devices, and more
Only works with other Apple devices (iPad, Macbook) Works with any device, including PC and Android
Safari google-chrome-app-iphone-logo

 

Google Hangouts App
Google Hangouts app on iOS

Text/Facetime vs Hangouts

Text/Facetime Hangouts
Texting lets people easily communicate with short texts Text, video chat, and Gchat all in the same app with up to ten contacts at once
Facetime is limited to Apple devices, but makes for easy video calls Syncs across devices, so you can easily chat with someone at a computer and continue the conversation on a phone without missing a beat
ios7callandtext Google-Hangouts-iPhone-App-Logo


Apple Maps vs Google Maps

Google Maps was originally a pre-installed app on iOS devices. When iOS6 was released, Apple released its own version of Maps that failed. Though it works better as time goes on and the app is improved, Apple allowed for Google to offer Google Maps as a downloadable app within the App store shortly after the backlash against Apple Maps made it clear that a change needed to happen quickly. 

Google Maps, like Apple Maps, offers turn-by-turn directions. They both have similar features, but Google Maps remains superior in accuracy.

Even More To Choose

Other Google app offerings on iOS devices include:

  • Youtube, no longer offered as a pre-installed app, but it can be downloaded from the App store.
  • Google+ social networking 
  • Google+ Local
  • Google Latitude
  • Google Drive
  • Google Offers
  • Google Play Music

If you have an iOS device, do you use the Google app offerings instead of iOS apps? Let us know why or why not in the comments section!

Sam Edelstein

Sam is an alumnus of the iSchool's Information Management and Data Science programs, and works as the City of Syracuse's first Chief Data Officer. Sam loves to talk all things Orange, tech, and travel. Connect with him on Twitter @samedelstein.

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