Google abandons custom design, switches to iOS toolkit for Apple apps

“To paraphrase Lucas Pope, we’re ‘swimming in a sea of minor things,’ and I couldn’t be more excited about this new direction.” — Google’s Jeff Verkoeyen

From Jason Snell’s “Google’s apps to embrace iOS on iOS” posted over the weekend:

Over the years Google has unified its design language and moved its work forward in a lot of ways that are admirable. But as Verkoeyen’s Twitter thread points out, it also takes a lot of effort to reinvent your own design language when the platform provides its own for free. It’s easier to be a standard iOS app on iOS.

This is good news. It’s good for Google’s developers, who no longer have to build that custom code. And more importantly, it’s good for people who use Google’s apps on iOS, because with any luck they’ll be updated faster, work better, and feel more like proper iOS apps, not invaders from some other platform.

My take: When you’re working inside the garden walls, resistance is futile.

6 Comments

  1. Romeo A Esparrago Jr said:
    Like boiling an ocean.

    1
    October 11, 2021
    • Alan Birnbaum said:
      “It’s like giving a glass of ice water to somebody in hell “

      1
      October 11, 2021
  2. Daniel Epstein said:
    Can anyone point to a feature that Google’s Design Language allowed on the IPhone that the IOS software kit couldn’t. This seems like a very smart move on Google’s part. Most users noticed that Google didn’t always update their Apple IOS apps quickly more than they would care about the programming process behind the scenes. Increased return on the investment Google makes on Apple products. Win win for them.

    1
    October 11, 2021
  3. Hugh Lovell said:
    I’ve never used Android, but have often found Google’s web-based services opaque and frustrating to navigate due to their “design language.” I am interested to see comments from John Gruber (daringfireball.net) on this.

    0
    October 11, 2021
  4. State government contracts require me to use Gmail & their calendar. I look forward to the improved experience. State & local governments use Google services extensively. IT workers aren’t easily attracted to the public sector. I fulfill training contracts, when the front doors are open. None in 2020.

    0
    October 11, 2021

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