As long as you didn’t blink this morning you would have seen the Gmail app for iOS sitting in the App Store. The long-awaited native app for accessing your Gmail account was posted and then pulled down in a bit of a whirlwind this morning. The official Gmail twitter explained their actions by saying, “The iOS app we launched today contained a bug with notifications. We have pulled the app to fix the problem. Sorry we messed up.”
It’s okay Google, we forgive you. We’ve waited this long and frankly many of us lost a few bets when you announced the app would be made available at all.
For those of you who use Gmail as your primary email service, this app will be a real life-saver by offering support for notification badges, conversation threading, organization of your email with archiving and labels, deleting and reporting spam, sending and receiving attachments as well as full search capabilities.
The Twitterverse was all abuzz following the launch this morning with people expressing their thoughts and feelings on the app. Most were expressing disgust with how Google released an app that was so visibly and obviously flawed.
Some early reviews from those able to give the app a test-drive indicate that there are few enhancements over the previously released HTML 5 version of the app. I think this is one of those cases where your mileage may vary (YMMV) but I know that I always prefer a native iOS app over a web app when I have the choice, particularly with the availability and sophistication of notifications.
I’m sure given the choice, Google would have preferred not to embarrass themselves in front of Apple and their loyal iFans. One conspiracy theory on TechCrunch suggests that Apple knew about the errors but released the app anyway out of spite. I am certain that isn’t the case, but it is a bit funny to consider.
There is no word yet on when the bug fixes will be complete and the app back in the App Store other than the promise of ‘soon’.