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If you want Google Apps buy an Android, otherwise buy an iPad

Google have this week added Google Drive and Chrome apps to their IOS arsenal of apps in the App Store. On the iPhone this includes Google+, Google Search, Gmail, Youtube, however on the iPad is a little less fulfilling experience at the moment with a gMail app and Google Search.

Google Drive for iPad

I’ve had a good go on the Google Drive app and am wondering just why Google bothered even releasing this App, its a viewer which doesn’t even let the user edit documents and it appears that if you send the documents to safari or another IOS app then all you get is a non editable PDF.

There is hope for Google Drive is the recent purchase by Google of the QuickOffice Pro HD suite which should have access to Google Drive and at least make use of the offline Google Doc’s and Gdrive editing. Until then this current app is a nice idea poorly implemented to just tick a few boxes.

While you are waiting for google to provide a decent experience on the iPad for using Google Drive the best alternative i’ve found so far is CloudOn a great free service which runs on the iPad and opens your Gdrive docs in Microsoft Office via the web interface.

None of your files are stored permanently on any of CloudOn’s servers. They are pulled only when you need them, saved back to your original storage provider and then wiped from our system. Your credentials are encrypted using secure hashing technology and all communication between your workspace and our server is secure using 128-bit/256-bit encryption.

Google Chrome for IOS

Google’s other big announcement was Chrome for IOS, built on the same system as just about every other browser which is to say, under the hood the system isn’t supposedly as fast as the native IOS safari browser which has additional bells and whistles. Having taken it for a spin a couple of really nice features came to the front. The first was if i run this app and login on both an IOS and an Android device i can see both of them and tabs open in one version (say the IOS) will also be open in the Android Chrome app as well.

Also there is a little look and feel tweak which makes the app appear faster than it may be, when you swap table while it won’t load in the background or update, what it shows is a screenshot of the webpage while it does actually load, so it appears the page has loaded really quickly. It’s a nice attention to detail.

However the lack of the ability to run bookmarklets, those small javascript apps which sit in the bookmarks bar and send pages over to different pages are not supported. This doesn’t fit into my workflow so i’ll keep on using the rather nice Mercury Browser.

This is a really nice browser with this aside and Google have at least shown what can be done, it’s just a shame the iPad doesn’t let you choose your own default web browser without Jailbreaking.

Nice try

Google should not be criticised for these apps, they are trying to get their platform on the iPad, however i can’t help but think that while Google are making a big show on how they still love the IOS platform, recent events such as Apple removing Google Maps is going to really make this a downhill slope for Google on IOS.

Google have their own platform Android, a platform which doesn’t require jumping through hoops to get apps which can’t even be default in many cases. I can’t help thinking over the long term if you’re into google apps that Android is more the plafrom for you than IOS. The Google+ app is a good example of this, it’s taken a huge amount of time for Google to port their app over to the iPad platform, and in the mean time iShare+ has been doing a great job at providing the G+ platform via an App.

Potentially API’s and good support such as this may be the best way Google can support their platforms on IOS, allowing developers to write apps which can link Editing to GDrive and view and participate in G+ streams mean that Google will still get eyes on their Ad’s and platforms, designed by people who will make them do what they want them to do to provide better functionality and in the mean time Google get to play in their own sandbox. Android.

As the title of this post suggests, if you are a Google Apps user or tied into Google then maybe native apps such as Apple Mail can suffice however Android may be better for that all round experience.

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This entry was posted on June 29, 2012 by in Android, Apple, comment, Google, ipad, Tablets and tagged , , , , , , , , .
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